Manually Connect to a Hidden Wireless Network Using Windows 7

When connecting to a wireless network, most wireless networks identify themselves by broadcasting their SSID.  In Windows 7, if your wireless adapter is turned on, your computer will provide you with a list of the networks it has detected.  While not common, you may need to occasionally connect to a wireless network that does not broadcast its SSID, thereby masking its presence.  This quick tutorial provides instructions on how to create a manual connection to a wireless network that is not broadcasting its SSID.

From the Windows Start Button;
Select Control Panel, then open the Network and Sharing Center

From the Network and Sharing Center;
Select Manage wireless networks

From Manage wireless networks;
Select Add

Select Manually create a network profile

Enter information for the wireless network you want to add;
Network Name (SSID): PublicW7
Security type: WPA2-Personal
Encryption type: AES
Security Key (Shared Secret):  * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Connect even if the network is not broadcasting  should be checked
Select Next

A window should appear indicating the PublicW7 network was successfully added.
Select Close

PublicW7 should now be listed as an available wireless network

Click on the Network status icon, a list of the detected and manually created wireless networks should be listed.
If you do not see any networks, make sure your wireless adapter is powered on.
Select PublicW7

Select Connect

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