Connect To Wireless Network in Windows XP or Vista

Users can manually connect to a wireless network, or you can use Group Policy settings to configure client computers to automatically connect to your wireless networks.

Use the buttons below to navigate through the lesson

Manual Connections

To create a manual connection, Select Start>Connect To, Select the Network and Click Connect. Connecting to the desired Network, Successfully connected, click Close.

Click the Network icon on the Taskbar, The dialogue box shows current connection. You can connect to or disconnect from networks and access Network and Sharing Center.

Network and Sharing Center shows

  • Sharing and Discovery options.
  • Network details.
  • connection map.

To connect select Internet, Select Local Network.

Automatic Connections

Configuring Clients to Automatically Connect to Wireless Networks

You can also use Group Policy settings to configure computers to automatically connect to protected wireless networks without requiring the user to manually connect:

Select Start>Programs>Administrative Tools>Group Policy Management. Select Default Domain Policy. Then select Settings. Right click Policies and select Edit. Expand Computer Configuration>Windows Settings> Security Settings. Right click Wireless Network (IEEE 802.11) policies and select Create A New Windows Vista Policy.

You can create either Windows Vista or Windows XP policies.
Windows Vista policies are automatically applied to wireless clients running Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista.

Windows XP policies apply to clients running Windows XP with SP2 and Windows Server 2003.

If no Windows Vista policy exists, computers running Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 will apply the Windows XP policy.

Click Add. Select Infrastructure. Note Ad Hoc networks are rarely used at Enterprise level. Enter Profile Name. Enter Network Name(s) (SSID). Then click Add. The default NEWSSID can be removed. Select Security. Select Authentication. Select the Authentication mode from the list. Select the Network Authentication Method. Select the Authentication Mode. Select the Advanced. Tick Enable Single Sign on for this network.  The new policy has been added.

Select Network Permissions.  The new policy has been added.  Other permissions can be enabled or disabled.  Other permissions can be enabled or disabled.  Click OK.  The new Group policy has been added.

Deploying Wireless Networks with WPA-EAP

Deploying a wireless network with WPA-EAP requires combining several technologies:
Wireless access points,
Active Directory users and groups,
Group Policy settings.

Although deploying a protected wireless network can be complex, after you understand the individual components and how they fit together, it is reasonably straightforward.
To deploy a protected wireless network, you need the following:

  1. Deploy certificates (preferably, using Active Directory Certificate Services).
  2. Create groups for users and computers that will have wireless access and add members to those groups.
  3. Configure RADIUS servers using NPS.
  4. Deploy wireless access points and configure them to forward authentication requests to your RADIUS server.
  5. Configure wireless clients using Group Policy settings.
  6. Allow the client computers to apply the Group Policy and either manually or automatically connect them to the wireless network.