Desktop Computer Can Use Wi-Fi | Uncover the Mystery

Do you ever wonder how desktop computers have the ability to use Wi-Fi?  We will uncover the mystery behind how a desktop computer can use Wi-Fi.  We’ll provide an overview as to how this technology can work, and what this means for you and your desktop.

You may be in an environment where you have a desktop, and you simply cannot run an ethernet cable to get your desktop connected to your network.  I know what that’s like, and have loved turning that desktop into a wireless device.

So not only is it possible, but it’s also pretty cool to see once you’ve pulled it off.

And you don’t need to be an expert in order to understand this or make it happen.  Even as a beginner, this article will make you look like a pro.  So let’s get started.

Benefits of a Wi-Fi Desktop

A Wi-Fi desktop computer can bring a range of benefits to your home or office.

The obvious one is that you can access the Internet on your desktop without the hassle of any wires.  You almost feel like you’re on a laptop, with the exception of a battery pack.  Who knows, that might be an option for desktops in the near future.

The reality is that a Wi-Fi desktop provides convenience.

You can set up your desktop computer virtually anywhere you want to in your office, and not have to worry about how long of an Ethernet cable you’re going to need as we did in the past.  I remember how much of an issue that was when setting up new desktop computers for clients.  We had to ensure that we had long enough ethernet cables to connect that desktop.

The other challenge there was to keep it all neat and clean.  Not so with a Wi-Fi desktop.

All you need is to get it connected to your Wi-Fi router or Access point like you would with any other wireless device, and you’re up and running on the Internet.  With just a few clicks of the mouse, you’ll be ready to go!

Install Wireless Adapter

Most desktop computers only come with an integrated Ethernet port that allows for a wired connection to get access to the Internet.  So in order to turn your desktop computer into a Wi-Fi machine, you’ll need to install and configure a Wi-Fi adapter.

There are two types of Wi-Fi adapters that you can install on your desktop, an external adapter or an internal adapter.  Let’s talk about each in-depth, so you can see which is the best option for you.

External Wireless Adapter

Desktop Computer Can Use Wi-Fi - Asus Wi-Fi Adapter

This option is the easiest one, and most people would probably choose this option for their desktops.  External wireless adapters are fairly inexpensive and can be purchased at your local electronic store or online at reasonable prices. 

Here are some suggestions on Amazon and Best Buy for external wireless adapters. 

To install an external wireless adapter to your desktop computer, all you need is an open USB port.  Once connected, this device will now grant you access to the internet via a secure Wi-Fi connection.  In most cases, they come equipped with some type of installation software to configure the device, so it can work effectively with your desktop computer.

In other cases, it can be as simple as a plug-and-play, and your computer’s Operating System will be able to detect it and install the appropriate drivers to make the device work.

The main benefits of using an external wireless adapter are, they’re usually very affordable and easy to install.  There are no technical skills required to install it, and you can be connected to the Internet wirelessly in a matter of minutes! 

Internal Wireless Adapter (Card)

Desktop Computer Can Use Wi-Fi - Wi-Fi Internal Card

This requires a little more tech savviness to pull off.

An internal wireless adapter requires you to open the CPU (Central Processing Unit) box of your desktop and install the wireless card.  Given that it has to be installed into the CPU box, it’s not an adapter at this point.  Now it’s referred to as a wireless card because it’s an internal installation.

In most cases, all you need to pull this off is a Phillips screwdriver, and an open PCIe (Peripheral Component Interconnect Express) slot on the desktop’s motherboard.  If you don’t already have a set of Phillips screwdrivers, you can pick one up pretty cheap online for under $20.00.

Here’s a quick video demonstrating installing a PCIe wireless network adapter/card.


Once the wireless card is installed properly, the computer should recognize it automatically and install the appropriate drivers.  Similarly to the external wireless adapter, an internal wireless card may also come with accompanying software to install and configure your wireless card properly.

Now all that’s needed after it’s installed, is to connect it to your Wi-Fi router.  This entire process should take you no longer than 30 minutes, at most 1 hour, if you’re a complete novice.

If however, you’re not interested in undergoing this procedure on your own, you can always reach out to a local tech company to assist you further.

Purchase a Desktop with Built-in Wi-Fi

Many manufacturers are building their desktops with built-in Wi-Fi capabilities.  It’s not a default configuration for a desktop to have built-in Wi-Fi like a laptop does, however, it’s very much an option request for your new desktop to come equipped with Wi-Fi technology.  It’s more common today than it was a decade ago.

Here are a few options for available desktop computers online.

Dell Inspiron Compact Desktop

Dell Inspiron - Desktop Computer Can Use Wi-Fi

The specs for this system are:

  • Intel 12th Generation Core i7
  • 16GB RAM
  • 512 GB SSD HDD
  • Intel UHD Graphics
  • Windows 11 home
  • Ethernet and Wi-Fi Connection

Get the full specs and price here.

Hp Envy Wi-Fi Desktop

Desktop Computer Can Use Wi-Fi - Hp Envy Desktop

The specs for this system are:

  • Intel 12th Generation Core i5
  • 12 GB RAM
  • 1 TB SSD HD
  • Intel UHD Graphics 730
  • Windows 11 Home
  • Ethernet and W-Fi Connection

Get the full specs and price here.

Dell Inspiron 27-Inch Touch Screen All-In-One

Desktop Computer Can Use Wi-Fi - Dell Inspiron 27 All in One

The specs for this system are:

  • Intel 12th Generation Core i7
  • 16 GB RAM
  • 1 TB SSD HDD
  • NVIDIA GeForce MX550 Graphics
  • Windows 11 Home
  • Ethernet and Wi-Fi Connection

Get the full specs and price here.

As you can see, there are several options that you can choose from, as far as desktop computers with built-in Wi-Fi.  Most, if not all major manufacturers are making this an option, as they know the demand for it is increasing.

Connecting Your Wi-Fi Desktop

This one may be pretty obvious to most, but there are some readers that may need some additional instructions to get their Wi-Fi desktop connected. 

Just like with any other wireless device, your Wi-Fi desktop should automatically pick up your wireless network.  Within Windows, this is usually at the bottom right corner of the screen, next to the time and date.

The wireless bracket is an indication that your desktop now has Wi-Fi capabilities.  Find your wireless signal from your router, and input your network password (assuming you have one and you know what it is), and you should now be up and running wirelessly from your Wi-Fi desktop!

Conclusion: Enjoy the Benefits of a Wi-Fi Desktop

So as you can see, a desktop computer can use Wi-Fi technology to connect to the Internet.  The main options you have are either to install an external or internal wireless adapter or card.  Or you can purchase a desktop with Wi-Fi already built in.

Most if not all of the major manufacturers today do provide the option to order a new desktop computer with a built-in Wi-Fi connection.

Like with any other wireless device, your wireless desktop will connect to your Wi-Fi router wirelessly, and you’ll be able to connect to the Internet without having to run a long Ethernet cable to be connected.

And you can move around your desktop however you want, without having to worry if your Ethernet cable is long enough.



Advanced-PCs, computer, Computer Solutions, Computer Support, Desktop, Internet, internet connection, Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi adapter, wireless connection

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