I have a Windows 7 laptop, and 2 wifi connections.

Windows 7 allows me to specify a strict preference list of networks in the "Manage Wireless Networks" under the Network and Sharing Center. However, of these 2, I'd always like to just connect to the strongest of the two networks, which varies depending on exactly where I am.

Is there a way I can configure Windows to do this? Using Windows or third-party software. I tried unchecking "Connect to a more preferred network if available" for both networks, but it still seems to default to the higher one on the list.

  • 1
    I do this at home by setting the ESSID and password for both access points to the same thing. Are you able to do that? All my home gadgets seem to choose the strongest one. Some of them are Win-XP but none are Win-7. Dec 20 '12 at 8:03

Not that I am aware, and if it were to work like that, it could be potentially very dangerous.

If I mis understood you, and you mean simply connect to whichever connection is strongest at any given moment from a pre defined list, again, this is not how it works.

Windows should automatically always connect to the strongest signal at the time it is turned on and will not switch until the connection is lost/very weak.

One of the easiest solutions I can think of is to quickly toggle wireless off/on when you want to switch but this is more of a workaround than a good solution.

  • 4
    Why would it be dangerous? I am only asking to connect to networks which are already in my preference list.
    – bacar
    Oct 4 '10 at 23:39
  • @Bacar - then it won't be dangerous and please ignore the first sentence, I was unsure if you meant automatically connect to (possibly unsecure) wifi, or just the preference list. Oct 4 '10 at 23:53

I was looking to do this myself just now. What you want to do is set the "roaming aggressiveness" of you wifi adapter. You should be able to do this by

  1. going to network and sharing center
  2. select change adapter settings
  3. select your wifi adapter and select properties
  4. click the "configure" button on the popup window (network tab)
  5. click the advanced tab
  6. if roaming aggressiveness is there, set it to "highest.

Your laptop should now seek out the strongest signal.

  • 4
    This should be the accepted answer!
    – Gravity
    Nov 2 '16 at 17:41
  • Thanks I am trying this in windows 10 because when I roam in my house it ends up connected to the wifi AP with a low signal and does not switch without manual intervention.
    – drescherjm
    Sep 22 '18 at 12:45

This isn't always desirable. For example, say you're sitting right next to an access point, but so are 20 other heavy internet users. You might do much better connecting to the access point across the hall. Or say you get 5 bars from the wifi router powering your 20 Mbit home dsl connection, but you get one bar and a good relationship with the owner from the business across the street that has a gigabit synchronous connection siting largely unused most evenings.

  • 5
    I understand; I'm not asking for such behaviour to be the default in Windows - I'm asking if I can set it up so that of my two home wifi access points, by default it just chooses whichever's stronger. Ideally I'd set the same preference level for both, and in such cases windows chooses the stronger one.
    – bacar
    Oct 4 '10 at 23:43
  • Joel, I don't agree with your analysis. If you use Faster's method and don't like the access point which was automatically used then just manually connect to your preferred access point.
    – user215779
    Apr 9 '16 at 2:03
  • the question in topic is mostly about AP Roaming, and there no clear way to tell windows to which AP to connect, as in most it is WiFi adapter decision
    – Reishin
    Apr 4 at 23:46

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