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I need to know what the address for my proxy server is so I can configure another program to also use it. If I go into IE, Internet Properties, LAN Settings, then all I see is an automatic configuration script but not the actual proxy address. How can I get this?

I'm using Windows XP.

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6 Answers 6

up vote 43 down vote accepted

The auto proxy detection system works by downloading a file called wpad.dat from the host wpad. First confirm this host exists from a command prompt:

ping wpad

If it doesn't exist, you may have to put the correct DNS suffix. In the same command prompt, type

ipconfig /all

You should see a Primary DNS Suffix and a DNS Suffix Search List

Try appending each of these with a . to wpad:

ping wpad.<primary dns suffix>

If any of these work, then in your browser enter http://wpad.<suffix>/wpad.dat. This will download the proxy auto configuration file you can open in notepad.exe

Toward the bottom of this file, you should see a line saying

PROXY <host:port>;

It might be repeated if you have multiple proxies available. The host and port are what you need.

If this file doesn't exist, then either there is no proxy server, or the proxy server is being provided by dhcp (note that this would only work with IE, so if firefox can surf, this is not the method being used). If you don't have access to the dhcp server to see what it is sending, the easiest way would be to open a site in ie, then go to a command prompt. Type

netstat -ban

This will provide a list of connections made with the process id of each process. Go to Task Manager, and select View/Select Columns and enable PID (Process Identifier). Look for the PID of iexplore.exe in the list returned by netstat -ban This will reveal the proxy ip and port.

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I tried in both IE and Firefox, neither could find that site. –  Mike Christensen Oct 14 '11 at 1:23
I updated my answer with some more detail... –  Paul Oct 14 '11 at 2:46
It probably works on some systems, but there's no host called "wpad" here (with or without the DNS suffix). I think this might be configured through some sort of domain policy or logon script, since it's greyed out in IE and cannot be changed. Anyway, I ended up writing a little C# program to get it instead. Hopefully your answer will help someone though! –  Mike Christensen Oct 14 '11 at 15:04
To download the automatic configuration script I find it is easier to just copy and paste the link to the script into the address bar (YMMV)… –  mousio Oct 17 '11 at 21:30
Yea the problem with that is the domain policy prevents that from being changed, and IE disables the box for the URL. It won't let you copy it or see the entire thing heh. –  Mike Christensen Oct 30 '11 at 19:03

You can also get the automatic configuration file URL from the registry by running:

reg query "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\Wpad" /s | find /i "WpadDetectedURL"
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Non of the above hints worked for me (working in a big company using Windows 7 Enterprise, "completely closed" for endusers).

I finally found this little Java program, which worked fine for me: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/4933677/detecting-windows-ie-proxy-setting-using-java

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The following command also seems to work. As a bonus it avoids contacting lots of DNS servers that might or might not work, and it avoids querying the registry, so it functions even in fairly locked-down environments:

Windows Vista or later:

netsh winhttp show proxy

Windows XP or earlier:

netsh diag connect ieproxy

Some additional work is required to extract the proxy address from the output, so the registry approach is simpler if you know it's going to be available.

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Try the following command in cmd:

reg query "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings" | find /i "proxyserver"

Hope helps

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Try this.

Open IE => Tools => Internet Options => Connections => LAN Settings

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He is using an automatic proxy configuration. The settings will just show where the configuration is coming not the actual proxy address. –  Matteo Jan 24 at 7:43

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