Netgear Nighthawk R8500 SSID's


Netgear Nighthawk R8500 SSID's

I have segmented the 2.4 and 5GHz bands and named SSIDs RCR, butterfly and spectrebase.  RCR is for thekid, butterfly is for the Mrs. and spectrebase is me.

  • RCR is on 2.4 GHz
  • butterfly is on 5GHz-1 - channel 44
  • spectrebase on 5GHz-2  - channel 153
  • My devices: Dell Laptop and iPhone 6 are on my SSID
  • All SSIDs are hidden (not broadcast)

Question: When I power down my laptop and return hours/day later, it doesn't find and/or connect to spectrebase ... rather I find other SSIDs (visible) that I did not configure e.g. spectrebase2 or spectrebase3 (see imbedded image below).


Also in the Wi-Fi Access list is "Hidded Network" - which is spectrebase.  I'll auto connect to the newest version (today was spectrebase3) - I'll then manual disconnect and select 'Hidden Network' - type in spectrebase and the passcode.


What is going on? Why the new visible SSIDs (that I did not create) and autoconnect to the newest?





Model: R8000|Nighthawk X6 AC3200 Smart WIFI Router
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Re: Netgear Nighthawk R8500 SSID's


These are Windows Wi-Fi profiles, not SSIDs.  Profiles are usually given the same name as the SSID, but Windows will append a number if multiple profiles have the same SSID.


You can go to command prompt and issue netsh wlan show profiles name=ProfileName to display details of a profile.  You may be able to discern differences in each profile.  Perhaps Windows is creating a new profile each time you manually join spectrebase.  You can safely remove them, by either forgetting them from the GUI or by issuing netsh wlan delete profile name=ProfileName.


I recommend that you stop hiding the SSID.  While hiding the SSID is a popular security by obscurity practice, it really doesn't offer any real protection. When clients join a Wi-Fi network, they include the SSID name in the probe request, so the name is never truly hidden.  A patient hacker with the right, freely downloadable tools can sniff your network's SSID name without too much trouble.  Hiding the SSID violates the Wi-Fi protocol standards.  It's probably causing your duplicate Windows Wi-Fi profiles.


The key to a secure Wi-Fi network is a good, strong Wi-Fi password.  That's all you need.  So, go ahead and unhide your SSID.  

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