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How to find a saved Wi-Fi password on the Mac

Chances are that you never think of your wi-fi password after your set it up. So how can you recover a saved password from your Mac when you forget it? All you need is your administrator account password.

Method 1: Key chain Access App

  1. Open Keychain Access app. It is located in the Applications > Utilities folder.
  2. Select the System keychain in the left menu bar, and select Passwords from the category menu. This will filter the keychains to just your stored passwords.
  3. Double click on the name of the network for which you want to view the password.
  4. This will open a new window specific to that stored password. Click on the ‘Show password’ checkbox.
  5. You will be asked to authenticate with a username and password. This account must have administrator privileges on your Mac.
    If you are unsure what your username is, open up the Finder app and look for the home icon in the Favorites sidebar. Your home folder will called the same as your username.
  6. After successfully authenticating, the wi-fi network password will be revealed in the previous window.

Method 2: Terminal on Mac

Mac contains a built-in application that allows its users to control the device with the use of the command prompt. This method, however, is suitable for those who know the exact name of the WI-FI network that they want to retrieve the password for. It works best for those who prefer direct resolutions. To use the terminal, you have to follow a series of steps.


  1. Use the spotlight search to launch the terminal.
  2. Type in the command. security find-generic-password -ga WIFI NAME | grep “password:” ensure that the WIFI NAME section is replaced with the network in question. Once the command has correctly been entered, the system will automatically ask you to provide the Username and Password. If you are uncertain about your Apple username, navigate to the left corner of your screen and click on the Apple icon. 
  3. Once the authentication is successful, your password will be displayed just below the previously entered command. As a result, your long walk to the router will be over.

However, if you always forget your network’s password, other options can still be of help to you. You can go for trustworthy third-party applications. These password managers will remember the passwords for you.


The apps function just like the keychain, but most of them have other features that may interest you. Some of these apps include 1Password and Secrets, among others. You only need a single master password, and the app will store the rest of the passwords for you.


With these options, you will not be needed to endure the dusty corners to access your router. Use any of these methods to retrieve your password manually. You can also outsource your forgotten WI-FI password using any third party software of your choice.


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