I am running Windows 7 Home Premium on a laptop which I attach to a network using Wi-Fi both at home (where my network connection is configured as a Home Network) as well as in a classroom where I attend a computer programming seminar (and have not yet really decided whether I should have my network connection configured as a Work Network or Public Network in such scenario, since I guess it's somewhere in between the two). I am currently at home, and would like to configure the network connection I use when in such classroom. However when I go to Control Panel -> Network and Internet → Network and Sharing Center -> View your active networks, I cannot see the name of the connection I use in such classroom, and since the classroom's Wi-Fi router is out of range, I cannot visualize it in the wireless network shortcuts found on the right-hand side of the task bar.

So, my question is, given that I would like to reconfigure the connection to the classroom's router prior to going there and actually connecting, can I actually do this, or is there no way to carry out this very important security step (without connecting first).


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    Would you consider changing the default location of all unidentified networks as a workaround. Because essentially I believe the answer is no if you want to define it for an individual unknown network. However through group policy or powershell scripts you can set your machine to default to public or private on all new connects. – Mrsonord Nov 23 '13 at 2:32
  • Well, first of all thank you for your answer. However the problem is not that I am trying to set the default network to something else. The problem is that I have used this "classroom wi-fi router" before, hence the network type for this connection (home, work, or public) should appear somewhere, shouldn't it? – John Sonderson Nov 23 '13 at 2:35
  • Or is it possible that I somehow configured the router, and saved the password for such router on my system, but did not assign such connection a network type (and thus it is somehow set to neither home, work, or public)? If this is the case, then, since the password for such connection was memorized, I should be able to access such connection and assign it one of home, work, or public. But how can I do this? The GUI does not seem to help here. Can I achieve this effect via a command line utility? Thanks. – John Sonderson Nov 23 '13 at 2:38

You can try searching your registry using the name of the network. What you would be looking for is a GUID that will look like: {5C761DE2-2155-429D-9680-A402BB248B53}

Then you will create a new string value in the following key: HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\HomeGroup\NetworkLocations\

The name of the key is the GUID with the curly braces. The data is the name of the network.

If you have not previously set this networks location to either home or work there is a good chance you will not find any records of it. At that point you would have to go there and get the GUID from the router in question without connecting to it directly or ask someone to obtain it for you.

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  • Thank you for your answer. I probably never set the network type and so probably cannot do it. However I cannot follow your answer. I should at least be able to see the values data stored for the home network in the windows registry. But when I run regedit I can see Computer -> HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -> SOFTWARE but there is no entry named Microsoft beneath it. Could you please provide some more concise instructions? Thanks. – John Sonderson Nov 23 '13 at 15:42
  • OK, now I see it. Under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\HomeGroup\NetworkLocations\ I see two virtual folders, one named Home (which contains six entries), and the other named Work (which contains two entries). However, if I click any one of these entries I can change the network name, but that's about it. How can I proceed using this method? Thanks. – John Sonderson Nov 23 '13 at 18:03
  • Does one of the entries have a value that matches the name of the network in question? – Mrsonord Nov 24 '13 at 14:23
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    If so copy the GUID hash string including the braces.Right click your choice of home or work and select new>string value enter the GUID Hash for the string name and the data will be the networks name exactly as it appears capitalization counts. – Mrsonord Nov 24 '13 at 14:30

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