How to Remove and Disable the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter – MUO – MakeUseOf

How to Remove and Disable the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter – MUO – MakeUseOf

How to Remove and Disable the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter – MUO – MakeUseOf 0 0 Alan Dickson

Sometimes the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter can cause network connectivity issues. Here’s how to disable it or get rid of it altogether.
The Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter allows your PC to connect to another wireless device over the wireless network. Window 10 and 11 running systems use Wi-Fi Direct for the Project to This PC feature to wirelessly mirror your other devices to your PC.
That being said, the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter can cause issues with your external Wi-Fi adapters. It can also clutter your Device Manager view. If you need to get rid of the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter, here is how to remove and disable the virtual adapter in Windows 10 and 11.
The Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter is a virtual network adapter. Windows creates and activates the adapter if you use any app that may need to use the Wi-Fi Direct feature.
Wi-Fi Direct is useful to transfer large amounts of data, connect and mirror compatible devices to your PC, and more without a need for a wireless access point.
However, if you use an external Wi-Fi adapter, the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter can cause connectivity issues. This can eventually result in you needing to fix frequent Wi-Fi disconnections on Windows. It can also conflict with third-party apps and games.
To fix any issues triggered due to Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter, try to disable the Project to This PC option in Windows 10 and 11. If not, you can manually remove the virtual adapters via Device Manager, Registry Editor, and Command Prompt.
If the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter is causing issues with your external Wi-Fi adapter, you can disable the "Project to this PC" feature in Windows 11.
While Microsoft recommends and offers an option to keep the "Project to this PC" feature as always off, check if you have changed it to "Always available." If you have, reconfiguring the "Project to this PC" feature to "Always Off" should help you fix the issue.
To disable Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter:
That's it. With the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter disabled, you should be able to use your external Wi-Fi adapter without any issues.
To remove the virtual adapter permanently, uninstall the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter using the steps below.
Now that you have turned off Project to this PC, you can remove the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter using the Device Manager.
To uninstall the Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter:
If you need to enable the adapter again, right-click on Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter in Device Manager and select Enable device.
If you can't remove the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter from Device Manager, use the Command Prompt. You can use the Command Prompt to disable and stop the wireless hosted network's broadcasting and disable the Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter.
To disable the Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Driver using CMD:
If you need to enable the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter again, then execute the following commands:
To permanently remove the Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter, you will need to tweak your Windows Registry. Use this method if Windows keeps reinstalling the adapter on restarts.
Note that modifying your registry entries involves risk. Make sure to back up your Windows Registry and create a restore point. Once done, proceed with the below steps.
To permanently disable Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter via Registry Editor:
After the restart, open Command Prompt as administrator and execute the following command to verify Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter status:
If successful, Under Hosted network settings, the Mode will show as Not configured.
Removing Microsoft Wi-Fi Direct Virtual Adapter is straightforward via Device Manager. However, if Windows reinstalls the adapter after the restart, use the registry hack to remove the virtual adapters permanently.
That said, you could also disable the Project to this PC feature in Windows 11 and 10 to fix issues without removing the virtual adapter completely.
Tashreef is a developer and works as a technical writer at MakeUseOf. With a bachelor’s degree in Computer Applications, he has over 5 years of experience and covers Microsoft Windows and everything around it. When not looking for a missing semicolon or churning out text, you can find him trying FPS titles or looking for new animated shows and movies.
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