How To Change MAC Address on A Network Adapter on Windows

MAC address, stands for Media Access Control Address, is a unique identifier assigned to a network interface for communications on the physical network segment. You don’t need to change it at all to make your network working, nor does Microsoft provide you an easy way of doing so. But sometimes, you do have a need to change it temporarily to get around some situations that prevent you from accessing the network. And If that ever happens, you may this post useful.

Before we start, check out this post that explains how to find the MAC address on a local or remote Windows computer.

How to directly change the MAC address without 3rd party tool

Open Device Manager, expand the Network adapter section and double-click the network adapter that you want to manipulate to open its properties. Go to Advanced tab and select the Network Address in the Property box.

Network Adapter Advanced Properties in Device Manager

Then set the Value box to whatever you want in a validated format. Click OK to save the change.

If that’s cumbersome or there is no Network Address property on your network adapter, you will need the help from one of the following 2 tools.

Technitium MAC Address Changer

Technitium MAC Address Changer allows you to change (spoof) Media Access Control (MAC) Address of your Network Interface Card (NIC) instantly. It has a very simple user interface and provides ample information regarding each NIC in the machine.

Technitum MAC address changer

You can use this tool to change any of the available network adapters on your computer to a random MAC address when needed and easily restore back to the original when it’s done. It works on Windows 7 and above with both 32-bit and 64-bit editions supported.

MAC Address Changer

MAC Address Changer is another free tool that allows you to set a new MAC address to your network adapter, bypassing the original hard coded MAC address by the manufactory. The program’s interface is very simple, you just need to select the network adapter, click the button “Change MAC” and type a new MAC Address (or you can generate a randomized MAC Address with the appropriate button).

NoVirusThanks MAC Address Changer

Same as the other tool, MAC Address Changer works on all supported Windows systems with the support for both 32-bit and 64-bit editions.

Behind the scene, both tools just write a value into a registry key to trick the Windows to think this is the valid MAC address bounded to the adapter. When the Network Adapter Device is enabled, windows searches for the registry value ‘NetworkAddress‘ in the following key

 HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{4D36E972-E325-11CE-BFC1- 08002bE10318}\[ID of NIC e.g. 0001].

If a value is present, windows will use it as MAC address, if not, windows will use the hard coded manufacturer provided MAC address.

Registry - network

Lastly, remember to change the MAC address back to its original when you are done. Or, you may encounter some problems on other networks where someone else is already using the same MAC address.

 

Kent Chen

Microsoft MVP, IT Professional, Developer, Geek, and the co-founder of Next of Windows.

Last updated: 06/09/2016

Posted in: Tools
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