Thursday 4 April 2013

Migrating Wireless settings between Windows 7/8 Machines


I have recently been given a new laptop from work, as part of the setup process I needed to copy over the large number of wireless networks that I connect to as part of my job.Windows provides an export using the netsh command

netsh wlan export profile folder=. key=clear

The code above will export all networks as individual xml files into the current working directory which is great, however the netsh command does not to my knowledge allow the import of all definition files in a directory in one go, so how to solve this problem? Our old friend PowerShell, after all we are batching a command and PowerShell is pretty good at not giving a damn about file names or how many items are in a folder.


So this post is going to be all about a PowerShell script which allows you to export your wireless settings and import them again elsewhere. The script itself is split into several functions and a few loops and is pretty simple and can probably be made much more elegant, however it does work Smile



We start by declaring or resetting our variables, always a good idea if we are running the code in the PowerShell ISE or PowerGui (My preference) in case any values remain from a previous run through

1 $path="D:\Wireless"
2 $menuanswer=$null
3 $pathready=$null

$path is the path we want to use to store the wireless xml files in, this can be edited to any folder we like (useful if you don’t have a d: drive like I do)

Now we need a few functions, the first will export our wireless connections to xml files

Export Profiles

1 function export_wifi_profiles{
2 #check for folder path
3 $pathready = Test-Path $path
4 if ($pathready -eq $false){
5 mkdir $path
6 }
7 cd $path
8 netsh wlan export profile folder=. key=clear
9 }

Line 3 is used to check whether the path we have specified earlier as available, if the path does not exist then the folder specified will be created before moving on, if it exists then the netsh command will be run which will dump all wireless networks as individual files into the path.


Import WIFI Profiles

1 function import_wifi_profiles{
2 #check default path, if not found prompt for location
3 do {
4 $pathready = Test-Path $path
5 if ($pathready -eq $false){
6 $path=Read-Host "Default import path not found, please enter the path your profiles are stored in"
7 }
8 } until ($pathready -eq $true)
10 $path | Get-ChildItem | ForEach-Object{
11 $filepath=$_.FullName
12 netsh wlan add profile filename=$filepath user=all
13 }
14 }

As with the export this function checks for the existence of the folder stated in the $path variable, if it does not exist then the user is prompted to enter the path to their network profiles, once a valid file path is provided the script collects all of the items found within (Get-ChildItem), it then copies the full file path and name into the $filepath variable, this is then used in the netsh command to do the actual import of the wireless profile.

The beauty of the Get-ChildItem | ForEach-Object code is that it doesn’t care whether you have 1 or 100 wireless profiles in the folder, it will work its way through each of them until it is done.


Create a Menu

1 function menu{
2 cls
3 Write-Host "1 Export Wireless Profiles"
4 Write-Host
5 Write-Host "2 Import Wireless Profiles"
6 Write-Host
7 Write-Host "0 Exit"
8 Write-Host
9 $menuanswer=Read-Host "Please make Your selection"
10 if ($menuanswer -eq 1){export_wifi_profiles}
11 if ($menuanswer -eq 2){import_wifi_profiles}
12 if ($menuanswer -eq 0){exit}
13 }

The code above create a simple menu with options 1,2 and 0 to exit, the users entry is saved into the $menuanswer variable and evaluated against the options in lines 10,11, and 12, if the entry matches any of the options then that function is called, the {exit} command will terminate the script and completely exit PowerShell.


Call the Menu until exit command used (0 Key)

1 do {menu} until ($menuanswer -eq 0)

This code will simply repeat the Menu function until the user enters 0, this allows the user to export and re-import the wireless profiles for testing purposes if that is required. It is the only real line of code which is run when you launch the script, the functions are called as needed.


Putting it all together


Copy and paste the contents of the next box and edit the $path variable at line 2 to suit your own needs, as I have said this is a basic script and can be made much more elegant but for my needs it was suitable, good luck.

1 #declare variables
2 $path="D:\Wireless"
3 $menuanswer=$null
4 $pathready=$null
6 #Declare functions
7 function export_wifi_profiles{
8 #check for folder path
9 $pathready = Test-Path $path
10 if ($pathready -eq $false){
11 mkdir $path
12 }
13 cd $path
14 netsh wlan export profile folder=. key=clear
15 }
17 function import_wifi_profiles{
18 #check default path, if not found prompt for location
19 do {
20 $pathready = Test-Path $path
21 if ($pathready -eq $false){
22 $path=Read-Host "Default import path not found, please enter the path your profiles are stored in"
23 }
24 } until ($pathready -eq $true)
25 $path | Get-ChildItem | ForEach-Object{
26 $filepath=$_.FullName
27 netsh wlan add profile filename=$filepath user=all
28 }
29 }
31 function menu{
32 cls
33 Write-Host "1 Export Wireless Profiles"
34 Write-Host
35 Write-Host "2 Import Wireless Profiles"
36 Write-Host
37 Write-Host "0 Exit"
38 Write-Host
39 $menuanswer=Read-Host "Please make Your selection"
40 if ($menuanswer -eq 1){export_wifi_profiles}
41 if ($menuanswer -eq 2){import_wifi_profiles}
42 if ($menuanswer -eq 0){exit}
43 }
44 #End Functions
46 #Begin main Program Block
47 do {menu} until ($menuanswer -eq 0)
48 #End main program block

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