On a Mac, the default priority for Wi-Fi networks is usually set to connect to the network with the highest signal strength. Or the one you last connected to. This means that if you’re in range of more than one Wi-Fi network, your Mac will automatically connect to the one with the strongest signal or the one you were most recently connected to.
That’s why many people need to set up Wi-Fi networks independently. So your Mac will connect to that network first, even if other networks have a stronger signal available. If you have macOS Monterey 12, you can do this. But it works differently on macOS Ventura 13.
How to set Wi-Fi network priority on macOS Monterey 12?
MacOS Monterey 12 has a network priority setting feature. So you can easily do this, follow these steps:
- Click on the Apple menu icon in the top left corner of your screen.
- Select “System Preferences” from the drop-down menu.
- Click on the “Network” icon.
- You’ll see a list of your network connections in the left-hand sidebar. Click and drag the connection you want to prioritize to the top of the list.
- Your Mac will now prioritize that network connection over any other connections that are lower on the list.
- If you want to ensure your Mac always connects to a specific network, click the “Advanced” button in the bottom right corner of the Network window. Depending on your connection type, you can drag the preferred network to the top of the list in the “Wi-Fi” or “Ethernet” tab.
- Once you’ve made your changes, click “Apply” to save your new network priority settings.
This way, you can set the priority of your preferred Wi-Fi network. This can save you time, especially if you often move between different places where different Wi-Fi networks are available.
Can you set Wi-Fi network priority on macOS Ventura 13?
In the new macOS Ventura 13, the developers have removed the function to prioritize Wi-Fi networks on Mac. Now users can’t change this in the settings.
Apple explained that if macOS Ventura prioritizes networks based on security and selects one of them in the following order:
This is actually a significant disadvantage for many users, as it makes it difficult for many people to use the MacBook away from home.
Is there another way to prioritize Wi-Fi networks in macOS Ventura 13?
An alternative method in this situation is the “Ask to join networks” function. But this method will not allow you to prioritize Wi-Fi networks. But you can manually control the connection.
The “Ask to join networks” function on a Mac is a setting that allows you to control whether your computer automatically connects to Wi-Fi networks or prompts you to join a new network when one is available.
When this setting is enabled, your Mac will not automatically connect to any Wi-Fi networks, including those you’ve previously connected to. Instead, when you’re in range of a Wi-Fi network, you’ll be prompted with a notification asking if you want to join the network.
To enable this feature on your Mac, follow these steps:
- Click on the Apple menu in the top left corner of your screen.
- Select “System Settings.”
- Click on the “Network” section.
- Select the Wi-Fi section.
- Drag the Ask to join networks and Ask to join hotspots sliders to activate it.
Once you’ve enabled this feature, your Mac will prompt you to join new networks when available, allowing you to decide whether to connect.
Why prioritize Wi-Fi networks on Mac?
Prioritizing WiFi networks or using the “Ask to join networks” function on your Mac can be helpful for several reasons. First, prioritizing a faster Wi-Fi network can improve your Internet connection speed.
Also, a more stable Wi-Fi network can help prevent dropped connections or other connection problems. Some Wi-Fi networks may be less stable than others due to signal strength issues or interference, and prioritizing a more stable network can help ensure a reliable connection.
Using a reliable Wi-Fi network can help protect your data from potential threats. If you often connect to public Wi-Fi networks, prioritizing a network you know is secure can help minimize the risk of hackers or other cybercriminals intercepting your data.