Do you remember from memory all the passwords from the Wi-Fi networks to which your MacBook has ever connected? Likely not.
Imagine a situation when your friend asked you for a password from your home network, but you do not remember (or do not know) it. There are at least 3 ways to find it for MacOS. And all of them are applicable for different situations, such as when you know the password for an account and when you do not have such information: for example, if you use someone else’s Mac connected to the network, etc.
So how to find Wi-Fi passwords on Mac both on your computer and someone else’s?
The first way - for those who know the password for the account
This way to find Wi-Fi passwords on Mac is the easiest and fastest. You can see the Wi-Fi password for the network of your interest by using the Keychain Access utility. It runs in two ways:
01. Through Launchpad, following the path: Launchpad -> Others -> Keychain Access
02. Through the Spotlight Search bar (in the upper right corner of the desktop)
or called by the keyboard shortcut “command + spacebar”). Just start typing the name “Keychain Access” into the box, and the intelligent search on the system will offer the necessary utility software itself.
After starting the utility software in the upper left corner (“Keychains”), select the “System” item and then “Passwords” in the lower left corner (“Category”). After that, you will see a list of all Wi-Fi networks which passwords are stored in the computer’s memory in the program’s working window.
To find out the password of the necessary Wi-Fi network, double-click on its name. And in the window that appears, check the box next to “Show password” in the “Attributes” tab.
After that, the system will require you to enter the login and password for it.
After entering, the password for the selected Wi-Fi network will be displayed in the “Show password” field.
The second way how to find Wi-Fi passwords on Mac is more sophistic
You can find out the password for the desired Wi-Fi network with the help of the terminal. You can run it in two ways like the previous utility software:
01. Launchpad -> Others -> Terminal
02. Through the Spotlight Search bar(in the upper right corner of the desktop)
or called by the keyboard shortcut “command + spacebar”) just by starting to enter the name “Terminal”.
After running the Terminal, enter the following command into it: security find-generic-password-ga “Name of the necessary Wi-Fi network” and press “Return”. You can type it not in a manual way but by copying it from here and paste it into the terminal (cmd+c, cmd+v).
Important! It is obligatory to enter the network name in double quotation marks “”. Otherwise, the command will not be activated.
The system, as in the previous case, will ask you to enter the login and password for it, and then, it will execute the command entered. As a result, you will see a list of network settings. The penultimate line will contain the password for it.
The third way. If you don’t know the password for the computer account, you can see the Wi-Fi passwords on Maс through the router.
If you know your provider, you can get the Wi-Fi password with its help. To do this, connect to the router. How to do this is often written in the accompanying documentation for your tariff plan. You can also call the provider’s support service and ask how to connect to the router.
This is simple. Let’s look at it with the example of the Huawei Wi-Fi router.
Important! The interface of a router may vary depending on its manufacturer. But everything is carried out similarly. Just look for items in the menu similar to those that are discussed below.
Run a browser and enter the IP address of the router in it and press “Return”. It looks like the following combination 192.168.100.1. Different providers have their own addresses, and you should clarify it (on your provider’s website or by calling to its support service).
After entering the IP address, you will be transferred to the page when you should enter the login and password for accessing the router.
Factual information: Very often, Internet service providers leave the default login and password for the router when connecting to the Internet. Most manufacturers have the same ones: the login is “admin” (or “root”) and the password is “admin” too.
First, try to enter such data. If this does not work, you need to check them with your provider. This can be done on its website, or in an operator of its support service.
If the login and password are entered correctly, you will be transferred to the router control panel. The information we need is stored in the “WLAN” tab. Here, you should select the “WLAN Basic Configuration” category and find the “WPA PreSharedKey” item in the working window. Next, uncheck the “Hide” box, and you will see the Wi-Fi password of the network. Then just close the tab in the browser to exit the menu without saving.
So, you can see that it is not so difficult to find Wi-Fi passwords on Mac. There are several ways to do this. And even if you do not know the login and password of the user’s account on the computer, you can find the password. And to do this, you shouldn’t have any super-deep knowledge in the field of programming and system administration.