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How To Fix A Mac That Won’t Connect To WiFi

by George Mensah
mac wifi

As much as we’ve come to rely on the internet, it can be really frustrating when you can’t gain access. This can also be a common problem, unfortunately, with any number of possible causes and cures. It’s equally so for PC as well as Apple computers. Here we will discuss some possible solutions to address a broken WiFi connection on a Mac.

Reasons for a broken WiFi connection

Before you go digging through your Mac’s menus and system files, don’t panic — a dropped or otherwise uncooperative Wi-Fi connection doesn’t necessarily mean something’s gone wrong. Your network carrier could be experiencing a temporary outage, or something might have caused your router to drop the connection. It’s possible that your Mac’s settings were changed, either due to another user’s actions or because of a recent update. A VPN could be causing some sort of conflict, or it may be as simple as your Wi-Fi settings trying to default to a different connection outside of your location. Regardless of the reason, there are several tips and tricks you can use to address your broken WiFi connection with a Mac. Some are simple, others take more advanced measures.

Try a different network

If you think it’s your provider or router, you can try connecting to a different WiFi network than the one you originally tried to use. Assuming an alternate is available and you have access, of course. Just remember you’ll need access to whichever network you’d like to try, whether that’s through a username and password, or connection through a guest key like at a hotel or coffee shop.

To connect to a different network:

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On your Mac, open the Apple menu and select System Preferences (or System Settings in macOS 13 Ventura).
Choose the Network menu (or Wi-Fi in Ventura) and look for another network to join.

Select the connection you wish to join and wait for your Mac to connect. Depending on the network you may also need to input a password.

Be very careful when selecting an alternate network to make sure it’s one you can trust (i.e. it belongs to a friend or family, or is an official network belonging to the building you’re in). Unless you have bad luck or the error is on your Mac’s end, you should be able to get back online fairly easily using this method. But if you try to join two or more networks and still can’t get it to work, you’ll probably need to dig a little deeper.

Restart your Mac

Restarting your Mac may take care of your connection problems. According to How to Geek, “If two devices on your network have the same IP address, or if your router doesn’t have an up-to-date public IP address, your connection might break. Restarting the router resets these IP assignments so things can start working again.”

To restart your Mac:

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Click the Apple icon in the top-left corner and choose Restart.
Confirm your choice by selecting Restart from the pop-up window. It will give you 60 seconds to decide before carrying out the function automatically.

Your Mac should reboot and take you back to the login screen.

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Alternately, you can also choose to shut down and turn it back on as well. As with restarting, you just select Shut Down from the Apple menu to confirm your choice. The reason a restart or a total shutdown will sometimes fix these types of connection issues is that it will force your Mac to assign itself a new IP address.


Reset the router

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The router itself may need a reset. If you suspect this to be the case, unplugging or restarting it should get things moving again.

To reset the router:

Either turn the router off using the power button (though not all

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