Windows 7/8.x/10: Delete Network Profiles

win7 [German]Today a short blog post about an ancient topic: How can we delete old network profiles in Windows 7, Windows 8.x and Windows 10 that were created automatically when connecting to a WLAN network? This is quite convenient in Windows 7. In Windows 8.x and Windows 10, there are tricks available.


What is this about?

Windows 7 creates a network profile for Internet access. This specifies whether its location applies to a home network, a work group network or a public network. For my netbook, for example, I use various Internet access options. I can access a router via LAN via the RJ-45 socket or use the WLAN connection. And occasionally I use Android smartphones for Internet access. Either a hotspot is opened – or I use USB tethering.

What annoyed me was that with USB tethering the name for my network is still counting (Network 3, Network 4,…, Network 10). I've already been to Network 74 and the problem typically occurs with USB network devices (USB tethering, UMTS stick). But how do you get the old and orphaned network profiles out of Windows 7? For Windows 8 I had described this some time ago within my German blog.

Deleting Network Profiles in Windows 7

In Windows 7 you can delete old network profiles quite comfortably with onboard functions.

1. Open the Network and Sharing Center (enter 'network and' in search box and select the entry Network and Sharing Center for instance). Or right click the network icon in the task bar's status bar and select the context menu command.

Network and Sharing Center


2. Click under View your active networks in Network and Sharing Center to the icon shown (see the arrow).


3. In dialog box Set Network Properties click on Merge or Delete Network Locations.

4. In dialog box Merge or Delete Network Locations click to an old profile entry and click Delete.

Confirm the delete within the dialog box shown. This allows you to remove old, unused network profile entries.

Delete Network profiles in Windows 8.x

I've described the way to remove old network profiles in Windows 8 using the registry editor within this German blog post.

  1. Launch regedit via Windows 8/8.1 start page (search box). It's important to use Run as administrator.
  2. Navigate to the registry branch given below and delete the old registry entries for the network profiles.

The network profiles are located under

Windows NT\CurrentVersion\NetworkList\Profiles

Below is the registry editor with these entries shown.

Using console to delete profile entries

Another way is to use the Windows console to remove the old network profile entries. Therefore opens command prompt window with Run as administrator and enter the command:

netsh wlan show profiles

This shows a list of all profiles known on your Windows machine. The use the following command:

netsh wlan delete profile name="name 15"

where "name 15" stands for the profile name to be removed (see also this article).

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9 Responses to Windows 7/8.x/10: Delete Network Profiles

  1. Michael Simpson says:

    I've been trying to find this information for a while. I'm not an IT/network guru but need to use many many LAN connections in my role as a field engineer for a major carrier. XP is so simple, it just " does what it's told to do". In IT guru had shown me the console method once in the field but I didn't document it. Bought a Win 7 Pro laptop with a serial port to up my game but been stymied by the OS blocking LAN connections……..

  2. Cole says:

    The screenshots for Windows 7 do not correspond to the dialog I am receiving. useless.

  3. John says:

    is there a batch command to delete contents of Profile in the registry?

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  5. Fahad Hassan says:

    Thank you so much! I was trying to delete a profile and setup the old router as a extender but its old setting kept f**in' up. Thank you so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. VictorG says:

    Thank you very much this was very helpful for me

  7. Emil says:

    Very well explained. Many thanks!

    I hope there will be a way to avoid Windows creating profiles each time my mac address changes.

  8. peter says:

    Great article — but fuken Microsoft took it away! They like to annoy people, and when great articles like this tell people how to actually set up their computer like they want it, M$ finds out and takes away the ability.

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