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New WLAN Netsh Commands in Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2

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Netsh helps you configure network settings via the command line. Eric Geier shares the new commands in Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2.
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The Network Shell (Netsh) is a command-line utility that debuted way back with Windows 2000 to help manage the network settings in Windows. Since then, it has been improved: New sets of commands have been added. For instance, a set of WLAN commands were added with Windows Vista and Server 2008 to provide commands specifically to manage 802.11 wireless connectivity and security settings. Now with Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2, we see additional WLAN commands.

Remember, Netsh commands not only let you configure the local computer but also enable you to configure multiple computers by using logon scripts.

Another important aspect to remember is that the wireless network profiles are read-only. The profiles cannot be modified or deleted using Netsh WLAN commands, but they can be exported and imported. The wireless profiles can be created and modified via the regular Windows GUI.

Getting Started with Netsh

If you haven't used Netsh yet, don't worry—it is simple. Just bring up a Command Prompt window and click Start > All Programs > Accessories > Command Prompt. You can also just type cmd into the Start Menu search field and hit Enter in Windows Vista or 7.

At the command prompt, you can then type netsh and the desired commands. To see a listing of all the contexts/commands, type netsh ?. To see a context's commands, enter the context followed by a question mark (for instance: netsh wlan ?).

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