There are a couple of reasons to find out your MAC address. Maybe you are setting up a new router and want only to allow devices you recognize. If you are not setting up a new router, a MAC address is a nice thing to know for troubleshooting purposes, especially related to networking issues.
In this article, we will show you how to find out the MAC address for your Windows computer. Your MAC address will be the same wherever your computer is. Before we dive into the steps to discover your MAC address, let’s go over the basics first.
What is a MAC Address?
Despite the name, your computer’s MAC address does not have anything to do with Apple. Instead, MAC is an acronym for Media Access Control. Every device with Wi-Fi access has a MAC address, which tells your router to send the data it requests to that device. If devices didn’t have MAC addresses, your router would have no way of telling what device requested data from the Internet. The manufacturers assign these addresses, so there is no way to change them.
Each manufacturer of network connection cards gets there own identifier. For example, one of Apple’s identifiers is D49A20. Note that we said one of that is because big companies like Apple would go through all of their possibilities fairly quickly.
For those curious, it is improbable we will ever run out of MAC addresses. There are 281 trillion MAC addresses, so even at 10% of use, each person would get 4,000 devices. When MAC addresses were introduced in 1979, those engineers were forward-thinking and made an essentially future-proof system.
Method 1: Using the Command Prompt
This is the quickest way to find your MAC address, but it can be intimidating if you have never used the Command Prompt before.
1. Open Command Prompt
After it pops up in the search result, double-click on the icon to open up Command Prompt.
2. Type ipconfig/all and Press Enter
Now that you have Command Prompt open, you should see a black box with white text. The third line should say C:\ Users\ *Your Username*> after this, type in ipconfig/all and press the Enter key. This will display your network configuration
3. Find your adapter’s physical address
After typing in that command, there will be quite a bit of information on the screen. But the line we are looking for is called Physical Address.
For some reason, Windows Command Prompt displayed the MAC address as a Physical Address.
Check out the video below to see exactly how this method works.
Method 2: Using Network Connection Settings
Instead of using Command Prompt, you can go through the graphical interface, which most of us are more used to seeing.
1. Search View network status and tasks
Search View network status and tasks using the search bar on your taskbar.
Alternatively, you can open it by Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center.
2. Click on Your Network Connection
After opening View network status and tasks, you will see your network connection details. For example, if you are using an ethernet connection, you will see the same thing shown in this screenshot, but if you are using Wi-Fi, you will see Wi-Fi and your network name in parenthesis.
3. Select Details
When you click on the internet connection, a small window that says Wi-Fi or Internet status will pop up.
4. Find the Physical Address
Like in the command prompt, Windows displays the MAC address as Physical Address. After you have located that line, move to the left, which is your MAC address.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Solomon203, CC BY-SA 4.0