Do you know what WPS is? Do you know how it works? Which devices and operating systems provide support for WPS? Learn the answers to these questions and more, from this article:
What is WPS (Wi-Fi Protected Setup) all about?
WPS stands for Wi-Fi Protected Setup. It is a wireless network security standard that tries to make connections between a router and wireless devices faster and easier. WPS would not work on wireless networks that are using the deprecated WEP security, which can be cracked easily by any hacker with a basic set of tools and skills.
In a setup, Unless you know the network name (also known as SSID) and its password (WPA-PSK key), You can’t connect a wireless device to a wireless network. Let us assume that you want to connect a device, like your smartphone, to your wireless network. On your device, you must pick the network that you want to connect to first and then enter its security password. Without going through these process, you cannot connect to the WiFi network.
This is where the WPS comes in to simplify the connection process. Read on to learn how.
What can WPS do?
WPS can sometimes simplify the connection process. Here is how the WPS connections can be done:
- Press the WPS button on the router to make the discovery of new devices turn on. Then, go to your device and choose the network you want to connect to. The device will automatically connect to the wireless network without entering the network password.
- You may have devices like the printers(wireless) or the range extenders with their own WPS button that can be used for making quick connections. You can connect them to the wireless network by pressing the WPS button on the router and then on those devices. You do not have to input any data during this process. WPS will automatically send the network password, and these devices remember it for future use. They’ll connect to the same network in the future without you having to use the WPS button again.
- This involves the use of an eight-digit PIN. All routers with WPS enabled has an automatically generated PIN code, and it cannot be changed by users. The PIN is located on the WPS configuration page on your router.
- The fourth method involves using an eight-digit PIN. Some devices that do not have a WPS button but has a WPS support will generate a client PIN. You can then enter the PIN in your router’s wireless configuration panels, and the router will use it to add that device to the network
Where do I find WPS on my router?
Routers(wireless) are the ones that manage wireless connections through WPS, they are the most popular type of devices providing support for this network security standard. Almost all modern routers have WPS support. WPS is enabled by default on many routers. Manually enabling WPS is done either through the firmware of your router, and its administration user interface, or using a WPS button. On most routers, the WPS button is on the back of the router, alongside the Ethernet ports.
On other routers, other features are shared with the WPS button. For instance, on the TP-Link router below, there is a button for both WPS and turning WiFi on and off. When you press on the button for a short time it turns the WiFi on or off. Pressing the button for long for like three seconds, enables or disables WPS.
Routers(wireless) such as those manufactured by Linksys, have the WPS button on their back, but with no text to label it as such. They use the WPS symbol highlighted below instead.
Other routers have the WPS button on the front or one of the sides. You should see to your router’s manual and see where the WPS button is located and how it looks.
Which operating systems provide support for WPS and which don’t?
- Windows has had native support for WPS since 2007 when it was first implemented in Windows Vista. Windows 10, Windows 7, and Windows 8.1, all work with WPS.
- All subsequent versions of Android work with WPS.
Operating systems which do not have support for WPS are Apple’s OS X and iOS operating systems.