How to Setup a Linksys USB Wireless Adapter

Person holding gray video camera near green leaf plant during daytime.jpg

You can set up a Linksys USB wireless adapter manually -- by downloading the device’s drivers from the Linksys website -- or with the adapter’s setup CD. Installing a wireless adapter can add wireless functionality to your computer if it doesn’t have a built-in wireless adapter, or resume wireless connectivity if your computer’s adapter is malfunctioning. The Linksys USB wireless adapter offers the same standard features as a built-in wireless adapter, such as detecting available wireless networks and connecting your computer one.

1 Use the Setup CD

2 Inset the Setup CD

Inset the Setup CD in to the computer's disc drive, and then click "Tap to Choose What Happens With This Disc" on the Notification box.

3 Select the Run

Select the "Run..." option under "Install or Run Program From Your Media" to open the installation wizard.

4 Select the check box

Select the check box to agree to the End User License Agreement, and then click "Next."

5 Connect the USB adapter

Connect the USB adapter to the computer when prompted, and then click the "Next" button.

6 Select your wireless network

Select your wireless network on the "Connect to a Wireless Network" window, and then enter the network's password, if applicable.

7 Click Next

Click "Next," and then wait for the adapter to connect to the wireless network. The wizard displays a confirmation window after the connection is successful. Click "Close" to close the installation wizard.

8 Manually Install the Adapter

9 Insert the wireless USB adapter

Insert the wireless USB adapter in to an empty USB port on your computer.

10 Navigate to the Linksys Support website

Navigate to the Linksys Support website, and then enter your wireless USB adapter's model number in to the Search bar (see link in Resources).

11 Enter to view the adapter's

Press "Enter" to view the adapter's Support page, and then click the "Downloads" tab. Select your adapter's hardware version, and then click "Download" under the appropriate Windows version and system type, such as the 64-bit version of Windows 8.

12 Follow the instructions

Follow the instructions to download and save the driver file to your computer. If the adapter's driver is in a ZIP file, right-click on the file, and then select "Extract All" to extract the driver file.

13 Move your cursor

Move your cursor to the lower left corner of the screen, and then right-click. Choose "Device Manager" from the pop-up menu, and then double-click "Other Devices."

14 Right-click on the Linksys adapter

Right-click on the Linksys adapter, and then choose "Update Driver Software" from the pop-up menu. Click "Browse my Computer For Driver Software," and then click the "Browse" button to navigate to the extracted driver.

15 Select the driver

Select the driver, and wait for Windows to complete the driver installation. Windows displays a confirmation message after the successful installation of the wireless adapter.

16 Click the network icon

Click the network icon in the system tray to display the list of available networks. Select the network you want to connect to, and then click the "Connect" button. If prompted, enter the password to connect to the network.

  • Information in this article applies to a computer running Windows 8. Instructions may vary slightly or significantly with other versions of the operating system.
  • Launch a Web browser after the installation process is complete to test the Internet connection.

An avid technology enthusiast, Steve Gregory has been writing professionally since 2002. With more than 10 years of experience as a network administrator, Gregory holds an Information Management certificate from the University of Maryland and is pursuing MCSE certification. His work has appeared in numerous online publications, including Chron and GlobalPost.