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How to find your Wi-Fi password on a Chromebook

You're probably better off finding your Wi-Fi password via another device.
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Published onJanuary 1, 2024

As with any laptop, your Chromebook can sometimes be useful for tracking down networking info — say if you want to let friends or family connect, or set up smart home apps and accessories. Hunting for your Wi-Fi password on a Chromebook is different than it is on a Windows or Mac system, and unnecessarily complicated, if you ask us. It can be done however.

QUICK ANSWER

To find your Wi-Fi password on a Chromebook, you'll need to switch to Developer Mode and use a complex series of Crosh commands. Developer Mode wipes your existing data, but delivers control options essential to the process.

How to find your Wi-Fi password on a Chromebook

Split screen on Chromebook 6

Unfortunately, the only way to retrieve your Wi-Fi password from Chrome OS involves enabling Developer Mode. While this gains you deeper control over your Chromebook, it also means losing Verified Boot functions. More importantly, you’re effectively performing a factory reset — all your previous data will be wiped, which probably isn’t worth it if all you want is a password you have saved elsewhere too.

If want access to Developer Mode anyway or you’re already using it, follow the steps below. For the ones that involve typing commands, assume you need to hit Enter after each one.

  • Enable Developer Mode.
  • Open the Crosh (Chrome OS shell) interface by hitting Ctrl + Alt + T.
  • Type in shell.
  • Type in sudo su.
  • Type in cd home/root.
  • Type ls. You should three alphanumeric strings.
  • Copy the middle code string.
  • Type cd [code string], replacing the bracketed area with what you copied in the previous step.
  • Type in ls again.
  • Enter more shill/shill.profile.
  • Eventually, you’ll see a username appear. Scroll up in Crosh until you see the SSID (network ID) of your Wi-Fi router.
  • Copy the passphrase code (below the SSID, after the colon).
  • Type echo [passphrase] | tr ‘!-~’ ‘P-~!-O’.
  • Your Wi-Fi password should finally appear.