Connect your Chromebook to Wi-Fi

You can use the Internet from your Chromebook anywhere there’s a Wi-Fi network that’s compatible.

Supported Wi-Fi Networks

You can connect your Chromebook to a Wi-Fi network that that uses the following settings:

  • Standards: 802.11a/b/g/n and 802.11ac for AC equipped Chromebooks
  • Secure networks that use: WEP, WPA-PSK, WPA-Enterprise settings
  • Open networks: Wi-Fi networks that don’t require a password

Security options

WPA-2 works with most Wi-Fi routers and offers more security for your Chromebook than WEP or WPA-1. WEP and WPA-1 settings aren’t recommended as they’re less secure.

First, turn on Wi-Fi

In the lower right corner of your screen, check the network Wi-Fi icon Network Wi-Fi icon. If you see the network Wi-Fi signal off icon Wi-Fi signal off icon, click it to turn Wi-Fi on. Your Chromebook will detect nearby networks.

Then, connect to a Wi-Fi network

Connect to an open network Network Wi-Fi icon

Open networks don’t have a lock on them and don’t require the use of a password. To connect to an open network:

  1. In the lower right corner of your screen, click the network Wi-Fi icon Network Wi-Fi icon.
  2. Choose an open network to connect to.

Note: When you log in to an open network, your information may be visible to other people on that network.

Connect to a network that requires a password Wi-Fi lock icon

Secure networks are marked with the Wi-Fi lock icon Wi-Fi lock icon and require additional information before you can connect. To log in to a secure network:

  1. In the lower right corner of your screen, click the network Wi-Fi icon Wi-Fi lock icon.
  2. Click the secure network you’d like to connect to. A box will open.
  3. Enter the password for that network.
  4. When prompted, choose "WPA,” then select either WPA-1 or WPA2-Personal security. The WPA-2 setting offers more security than WPA-1. WEP isn’t recommended.
Connect to an unlisted network

Not all networks will show up in the list of available Wi-Fi networks. Some network administrators may choose to hide network details so only people who have the network name and password can connect to it. To connect to an unlisted network:

  1. In the lower right corner of your screen, click the network Wi-Fi icon Network Wi-Fi icon.
  2. Select your network status from the menu that appears.
  3. In the lower left corner, select Join other...
  4. Enter the network's information in the dialog that appears.
  5. Click Connect.

Information for this network is automatically saved so you can easily connect to this network again in the future.

Automatically connect to a saved network

If you have one or more network connections saved on your Chromebook, you can connect to them automatically.

Find your Media Access Control (MAC) address to connect to a restricted network

Some administrators restrict network access to prevent outsiders from accessing private information on the network. Only devices with Media Access Control (MAC) addresses, or hardware addresses, approved by the network administrator can connect to the network.

To find your device’s MAC address:

  1. In the lower right corner of your screen, click the network Wi-Fi icon Network Wi-Fi icon.
  2. Click the section that says Connected to and the name of your network.
  3. At the top of the dialogue box that opens, click on the name of your network.
  4. In the window that opens, find the Connection tab and look for “Hardware address.” It will look something like this: 0C:88:CC:C0:88:8C.

How to check your connection status

In the lower right corner of your screen, click the network Wi-Fi icon Network Wi-Fi icon to check the status of your connection.

Network Wi-Fi icon You're connected to a Wi-Fi network. The number of lit signal bars indicates the strength of your network signal. If the icon is flashing, that mean the connection is being established.
Wi-Fi signal off icon You're not connected to a Wi-Fi network.

If you’re having problems connecting to a network, you can troubleshoot connection issues.

Use the Internet safely

Find out how to keep the bad guys out of your computer when you’re online.

Discuss with other Chromies in Chromebook Central.

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