How to Retrieve the WPA Key in Windows XP

Written by james stone
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How to Retrieve the WPA Key in Windows XP
(Ciaran Griffin/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Retrieving the WPA key in Windows XP requires logging into your router's configuration utility. Trying to view the key in Windows remains impossible. Windows automatically encrypts your WPA key after first supplying it manually and will always display the key with the "*" character. After accessing your router's configuration utility, find the key under the Local Networks wireless menu, where the 13-character key displays without encryption. Memorise or keep track of this key, and for added security, change your WPA key every six months.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Click the "Start" button, and click "Programs."

  2. 2

    Select the "Internet Explorer" application shortcut.

  3. 3

    Type your router's IP address in the address box in the browser, and press the "Enter" key or "GO" button. The router's IP address is found on the underside of your router.

  4. 4

    Type in the user name and password. If you did not set one up beforehand, then the user name is usually "admin," and the password is the manufacturer of the router. Click the "OK" button to log in to the utility.

  5. 5

    Click the "Local Network" icon, and select the "Wireless" option. Your WPA key appears under the "WPA Key:" section.

Tips and warnings

  • When entering your router's configuration utility, you may choose to enter a new WPA key for added security.

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