Whenever your computer connects to a new wireless network, it automatically creates a new profile for that wireless network. The profile contains the network name (SSID), the Pre-shared key (PSK), and other crucial security information necessary for the network.
But the process doesn’t always go smoothly. Sometimes it fails, resulting in the “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error. The error might also arise after the PSK has been altered when updating the router’s password.
So, what is the PSK of a network, and how do I change my PSK provided for network SSID? In this post, we answer these questions and more. We also share the various methods to fix the “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error.
What Is the PSK of a Network?
A Pre-Shared Key (PSK) is a long series of seemingly random letters and numbers automatically generated when a device joins a network via a Wi-Fi access point (AP). When a user logs into a Wi-Fi network using the SSID (network’s name) and password (or passphrase), your computer uses these details to create the PSK.
The PSK, in conjunction with other information, creates an even more complex encryption key to protect the data you send over the network.
Here’s what a PSK looks like:
SSID: Pira’s Home Network
The pre-shared key (PSK) is sort of a client authentication method that uses a super-long string (64 hexadecimal digits) to generate an encryption key for each wireless client. The PSK plays a significant role in the encryption process to help keep the network secure.
How Do I Find My Wi-Fi PSK?
Usually, the network administrator or the person who set up your network has access to the pre-shared key. If the wireless network was set up by your internet service provider (ISP), you can find the information in the documentation that came with your wireless device.
You can also find the PSK using these steps:
- Make sure your computer is connected to the wireless network.
- Launch your browser and enter the router’s IP address into the address bar. Most routers use 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.2.1. You can refer to your router’s user manual to access the correct IP address. Press Enter on your keyboard to display the router’s setup page.
- Input your login credentials for the router. If you haven’t altered the username and password, use the default login details provided in the user manual. If you can’t remember the password, press the small reset button located on the back of the router for around 10-20 seconds. This restores the router settings to factory default, and you can log in using the default values provided in the user manual.
- Once the setup page opens, look for “Wireless Settings”, “Security Settings” or “Wireless Security”. You should see the Pre-Shared Key on this page.
These steps and settings may vary depending on the type of router you’re using.
How Do I Fix the Incorrect PSK on my Network SSID?
As we’ve noted earlier, various reasons might cause the “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error on your computer.
One common cause for the error is if your router is using the default Windows adapter. The adapter treats the router as WPA2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access II) network as if it’s using WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) encryption (or vice versa). When this happens, the authentication fails, even if you input the correct password.
The error can also result due to a corrupt network driver or a wrong password. Issues in the network profile or faulty router or modem could also be to blame for this error.
Regardless of what might have triggered the “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error, here are the possible solutions to fix it.
Solution 1: Restart Your Modem/Router
Before we get technical, the first solution would be to restart your modem or router. If you’ve been using your network device nonstop for a long time, a restart might be a good idea. Simply turn off your modem/router and wait for at least three minutes to let it cool off.
Turn the device back on and wait for it to connect. Restarting your wireless device refreshes the internet connection, and hopefully, fixes the error.
Solution 2: Install the Latest Driver for Your Network
As we’ve mentioned above, if Windows is using the default adapter, the network device might fail to recognize the encryption mechanism. To resolve this, you’ll need to download and install a dedicated driver that will eliminate the incompatibility issue.
Since you can’t connect to your Wi-Fi, you can use an ethernet connection or hotspot. Alternatively, you can download the driver on another computer and transfer it to a USB drive that you’ll connect to your machine.
You have two options to update your network driver:
- Automatically using Auslogics Driver Updater
Option I: Manually update your network driver
You first need to establish your wireless adapter’s manufacturer and determine the model. Once you do:
- Head over to your router’s official manufacturer website and search for the latest available driver for your model.
- Download the driver, making sure it corresponds to your Windows version.
- Transfer the file into your USB drive (assuming you couldn’t connect to the internet via ethernet and used a different computer).
- Connect the USB to the computer that has issues and transfer the file to the desktop or any other location.
- Double-click on the file and follow the prompts to install the network driver.
Alternatively, if you manage to get your computer online, you can use Windows Update to install the latest driver for your network.
To do so:
- Launch Device Manager – right-click the Windows Key, or use the Win + X hotkeys and select Device Manager.
- Locate and expand the Network adapters option.
- Right-click your network adapter and choose Update driver. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the process.
Option II: Automatically update your network driver
If you don’t have the time or computer skills to update your network driver manually, or if using Windows Update doesn’t install the correct driver, we recommend using Auslogics Driver Updater.
Resolve PC Issues with Driver Updater
Unstable PC performance is often caused by outdated or corrupt drivers. Auslogics Driver Updater diagnoses driver issues and lets you update old drivers all at once or one at a time to get your PC running smoother
The program works by scanning your computer to look for all the installed drivers. It then identifies device drivers that are either outdated, damaged, or missing. Once the scan is complete, you’ll see all drivers with issues listed. Find your network driver and update it. Alternatively, click the Update drivers button to update all the outdated drivers at once.
Driver Updater will display the date you installed the driver and the date when the latest available driver for your device was released. The good thing about this software is that you’ll never run into driver-related hardware glitches, thanks to the scheduler, which activates automatic maintenance.
This ensures that whenever a new driver update is available, Driver Updater automatically installs it on your PC so you can enjoy a smoother performance.
Solution 3: Delete the Existing Wireless Network Profile
Usually, your computer will automatically create a new profile for a new wireless network that you connect to. Sometimes, the process fails, causing the “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error. In other cases, the profile and settings remain unchanged, even after altering the password, triggering the error.
To resolve this, you could try removing the existing wireless network profile from your computer. Here’s how:
- Right-click the Network icon in the Notification Area of the taskbar and click on Open Network & Internet Settings.
- On the Settings page, under Network & Internet tab, click on Wi-Fi > Manage known networks.
- Find the problematic network that you need to delete, click on it, and select Forget.
Now, try reconnecting to the network again to see if it works this time.
Solution 4: Connect to the Wireless Network Manually
If deleting the existing wireless network profile doesn’t fix the “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error, you can try to manually connect to the wireless network. You will do this from the Network and Sharing Center page in Control Panel.
Here’s the guide:
- Press the Windows logo on your PC, type control panel, and hit Enter.
- Set the View by option to Category and click on Network and Internet.
- On the next page, select Network and Sharing Center and click on Set up a new connection or network.
- Choose the option to Manually connect to a wireless network and click Next.
- Provide the information for the wireless network you want to add, making sure that you enter the correct network name. Next, set the Security type as WPA2-Personal and the Encryption type as AES.
- Enter the correct Security Key that you’re currently using for other devices.
- Click Next and choose Use the existing network.
Try opening a webpage to test if your network issue has been resolved.
Solution 5: Try Connecting to the Existing Wireless Network Profile Using Administrator Rights
If you can’t connect to the new wireless network that you just created, you can try your luck using an elevated Command Prompt. According to several users, this trick worked and is worth a try.
Here are the steps:
- Press the Win + R hotkeys, type cmdin the Run dialog box, and hit the Ctrl + Shift + Enter. This will open Command Prompt with admin rights.
- Execute the command: netsh wlan show profiles
- Find the network you want to connect to and execute the command: netsh wlan connect name= “network profile name”. Replace “network profile name” with the actual network profile name.
Check if the fix worked, and that you no longer encounter the “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error.
The “incorrect PSK provided for network SSID” error can be frustrating since it prevents you from connecting to the internet. We hope you find a solution that works for your case.