My Windows 10 machine has an icon in the status bar which is linked to its network connectivity:

enter image description here

It can be either the one above (which suggests a Wi-Fi connection) or in the form of a "desktop", which suggests a wired connection.

At the same time I see the following default routes:

      0.0.0.0          0.0.0.0      10.237.76.1      10.237.78.2     25
      0.0.0.0          0.0.0.0     10.239.144.3   10.239.144.109     35

10.237.78.2 is the IP assigned to the wired interface and it has the smallest metric, which means that this route will be preferred.

This makes sense: when connect to a live wired network I want the traffic to go there.

In that case what does the logo mean?

Since I also see from time to time the "desktop" icon (when connected, like in the case above, to the wired network) I assume that this is a bug. So if the answer is "it is to have something but the logo does not matter as it is more or less random", I am fine with that answer.

Note: there is one usage which is useful and works correctly - the indication whether there is a connection at all and whether this connection reaches internet.

  • As far as I can see, the icon changes between "desktop" and "wifi", according to the current connection. If you think it is "random", perhaps you are not connected to the network you think you are. – harrymc Dec 6 at 15:21
  • @harrymc: I am connected to the right network (please see the routes) and the traffic goes where it should go. The icon does not reflect that - so I wonder what it does – WoJ Dec 6 at 15:29
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    @harrymc: The importance of route metrics have been much reduced - would you have some information about that? I see in two MS articles (here and here) that the link which will be used is decided upon the metric (a sum of metrics, actually). In my case the metric decision matches the actual flow (tested by snooping on the traffic) – WoJ Dec 6 at 15:51
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    My experience is that if you connect to a WiFi network it always shows the WiFi icon instead of the wired icon, regardless of metrics/routing. I believe it's because the WiFi Icon shows status beyond just "connected", so it's considered more important/useful (when attached to a WiFi network). – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Dec 6 at 17:34

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