To remove a wireless connection setup I basically go to (network and sharing center) then select (manage wireless network) and then from the list of wireless networks I right click on the one that I want to remove and select (remove network) from the drop down menu. Problem is that when I go to define the wireless network again the system said that the network connection already exist so it seems that even when the wireless network definition is not longer display in the connections list, Vista keeps the configuration somewhere.

So How can I be sure that a particular wireless network has been completely removed?


Try deleting the network profile from the registry. Likely in:

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\NetworkList\Profiles

You might also try searching the registry for the SSID you are trying to remove and delete the entries you find.

I should advise you to use caution when deleting things in the registry, before you do anything export the section you are going to modify / delete before actually making a change. That way if it was a mistake hopefully you can import it back and it will be good again.


Perhaps something went wrong during the removal and remnants were left behind or the profile was corrupted.

You can try removing it at a lower-level. Open a command prompt and view the list of profiles with the following command:

netsh wlan show profiles

Then you can delete it/them you can use the following:

netsh wlan delete profile name="ProfileName"

For example:

C:\>netsh wlan show profiles

Profiles on interface Wireless Network Connection:

Group policy profiles (read only)

User profiles
    All User Profile     : MyWireless

C:\>netsh wlan delete profile name="MyWireless"

Profile "MyWireless" is deleted from interface "Wireless Network Connection".

If you cannot see it even with the netsh command, then you may indeed have to resort to manually locating and deleting it from the registry as Jack suggested.


If the network still decides to come back there is one other option. Occasionally computers have software for their wireless cards that manages wireless networks. An example would be Intel PROset. If this software is being used to manage the wireless network (intentionally or by accident) the software will hold on to the wireless network even after trying the above two solutions. If this is the case, you must open this software and delete the network profile from there. At this point in time, a restart and the "netsh wlan show profiles" command should reveal that the network is gone for good.

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