Connect to GovWifi using a Windows device

There are different instructions for Windows 8 and 10, and Windows 7.

If you do not know which version of Windows you're using, find out how to identify your operating system.

Windows 8 and 10

Once you have a GovWifi username and password, follow the steps below.

  1. Select the wifi icon in the system tray at the bottom right of your screen. You'll see all the nearby wifi networks.

  2. Select GovWifi.

  3. Select Connect.

    Screenshot of WiFi panel in Windows 8/10
  4. Enter the GovWifi username and password you received by email or text. Your password is case sensitive. It's 3 words without spaces. The first letter of each word is capitalised.

    Screenshot of Wifi panel with credentials open on Windows 8/10
  5. Select OK.

    If it says "Can't connect to network", forget the network and try again.

  6. When you see Continue connecting, select Show certificate details.

    Screenshot of Wifi panel confirmation on Windows 8/10
  7. Check that the Server thumbprint matches:

    AC 70 5D 2B 63 36 4B 3C A4 1D 13 8E 9B F7 11 E7 21 E9 E6 2A

  8. If it matches, select Connect. If it does not match, tell IT support and do not join the network.

You should now be connected to GovWifi.

Support

If you're having problems, contact IT support for the building you're in.

Forget the network

If your device says "Can't connect to network", it may be trying to use an incorrect GovWifi username and password. You need to tell it to forget that GovWifi connection and try again.

  1. Go to Settings, WiFi and select Manage known networks.

    Screenshot of WiFi Settings on Windows 8/10
  2. Select GovWifi.

    Screenshot of known networks panel on Windows 8/10
  3. Select Forget.

  4. Try to connect again. Make sure you’re entering your username and password exactly as shown in your text or email.

Windows 7

Once you have a GovWifi username and password, follow the steps below.

  1. Open the Control Panel, select Network and Internet and then 'Network and Sharing Center'.

  2. Select Set up a new connection or network.

    Screenshot of the Control Panel's network settings on Windows 7
  3. Select Manually connect to a wireless network.

    Screenshot of Connection Setup Wizard on Windows 7
  4. For the Network name, enter GovWifi and for the Security type, select WPA2-Enterprise. The network name is case sensitive so make sure you enter capital G and capital W.

    Screenshot of manual WiFi connection panel on Windows 7
  5. Select Next.

  6. Select Change connection settings.

    Screenshot of successfull WiFi addition on Windows 7
  7. Select the Security tab and select Settings.

    Screenshot of network properties dialog on Windows 7
  8. Tick the Connect to these servers box. In the text box below it, enter wifi.service.gov.uk.

    Screenshot of Protected EAP Properties dialog on Windows 7
  9. In the Trusted Root Certification Authorities list, select DigiCert Global Root CA. If you cannot see this option, follow these steps to download the root certificate.

  10. Tick Enable Identity Privacy and enter anonymous to prevent your device from broadcasting your GovWifi username.

  11. Select Configure.

  12. Untick Automatically use my Windows logon name.

    Screenshot of Identity Privacy settings on Windows 7
  13. Select OK, then OK again to go back to the GovWifi Wireless Network Properties window.

    Screenshot of network properties dialog on Windows 7
  14. Select Advanced settings.

  15. Select User authentication from the dropdown menu under Specify authentication mode, then select Save credentials.

    Screenshot of Advanced Connection Settings panel on Windows 7
  16. Enter the GovWifi username and password you received by email or text. Your password is case sensitive. It's 3 words without spaces. The first letter of each word is capitalised.

    Screenshot of Save Credentials dialog on Windows 7
  17. Select OK to close all windows.

  18. Select the wifi logo at the bottom right of your screen and select GovWifi.

You should now be connected to GovWifi.

Support

If you're having problems, contact IT support for the building you're in.

Download the root certificate

If you cannot see 'DigiCert Global Root CA' in the Trusted Root Certification Authorities list you might not have the right certificate installed on your device.

If you manage your own device, you can download it from the web. If you do not, ask your local IT team for help.

  1. In your web browser, navigate to: https://www.digicert.com/digicert-root-certificates.htm and select Download under 'DigiCert Global Root CA'. Save the file to the C: drive

  2. To install the certificate from the Command Prompt, go to your start menu, select 'Accessories' and right click on 'Command Prompt'. Choose 'Run as administrator'.

  3. Copy the text below:
    certutil -addstore -enterprise -f "Root" c:\DigiCertGlobalRootCA.crt

  4. Right click in the Command Prompt window and select 'Paste'. Press return.

  5. Follow the same steps for 'GeoTrust RSA CA 2018'. You can download it from https://www.digicert.com/digicert-root-certificates.htm#intermediates

  6. Try connecting to GovWifi again. You should now be able to select the right certificate.