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NetworkManager vs /etc/init.d/net scripts + wpa_supplicant
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luciano
Tux's lil' helper
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Joined: 18 Nov 2004
Posts: 117

PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:02 am    Post subject: NetworkManager vs /etc/init.d/net scripts + wpa_supplicant Reply with quote

Hi,

Just wondering what people's experiences are with networkmanager, which is available as part of gnome as a USE flag ... I currently just use the init scripts plus wpa_client. But I find these clumsy as this is on a laptop, so I'm often changing configurations wired/wireless, dhcp/no dhcp, proxy/no proxy, adding a new network temporarily for wifi hotspots etc. etc.

Can anyone answer the following:

- Does it replace the /etc/init.d/net scripts altogether? Or does it depend on these? What does it do/not do?
- Does it support fancy wireless configuration (like enterprise WPA2)?
- Does it also handle proxy configuration?
- Does it support setting dynamic MAC config like the /etc/init.d/net scripts?
- What other apps does it interface with?

I'd be interested to hear general opinions, and whether you think this is useful for a 'roaming' system like a laptop.

Thanks!
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Princess Nell
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Joined: 15 Apr 2005
Posts: 718

PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 11:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I finally gave it a go about two months ago and find it very handy. For a laptop, it's a definite recommendation, and my personal "killer" feature is vpn(c) support.
Useful links: http://www.gentoo-wiki.info/NetworkManager, http://en.gentoo-wiki.com/wiki/NetworkManager

It replaces the init.d/net.<if> scripts, except net.lo. You can keep conf.d/net for reference purposes. Yes, it supports "fancy" wireless options; I am using this at work with Ubuntu laptops, but I haven't had a chance to test it with Gentoo. Proxy configuration is not part of it. I *think* it supports MAC address setting, at least for wireless interfaces
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Rexilion
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, as the previous poster stated it supports all except the:

- Does it also handle proxy configuration?

Now I'm interested, how did you configure that? Can't you just use the connection menu in firefox for that? Or did you do it through iptables??
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luciano
Tux's lil' helper
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Joined: 18 Nov 2004
Posts: 117

PostPosted: Sun May 02, 2010 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm so I did have a look at it, but in the end decided to stick to the init scripts ... And setting it up isn't quite as easy as I expected - mainly due to the poor documentation. Some stuff not supported/I didn't have the patience to figure how to use (and part of the reason I stuck to init scripts in the end):

- MAC address changer
- Connection sharing by iptables masquerading

Also I couldn't figure out how to make connections persistent... or how the proxy settings tie in with this.

This does look like a promising bit of software, but I'm afraid it's a bit limited - works great if you want to set up internet access on one computer, but not so great for anything more complicated. To be fair I think this is what it aims at doing.

Also, as I said the documentation is pretty basic, compared to for example the detail we get in /etc/conf.d/net.example for configuring init scripts.
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luciano
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PostPosted: Sun May 02, 2010 12:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rexilion wrote:
that? Can't you just use the connection menu in firefox for that? Or did you do it through iptables??


The problem is that I need to be able to switch the proxy on/off based on the connection I'm using. So the wireless in my school requires a proxy, but at home I don't use one. My solution is to configure it directly in firefox. I also use a plugin 'quickproxy' to turn it on/off but this is a bit cumbersome. It would be nice to have some intelligence in nm that turns the proxy on/off based on the connection ...
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Rexilion
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PostPosted: Sun May 02, 2010 6:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, that is possible.

Code:
man NetworkManager


You need to place some shell-code inside /etc/NetworkManager/dispatcher.d/ whenever that script is called you match for example the ip-address you use in school (or DNS, or gateway or all of them) and then execute the proper actions.
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