NetworkManager - Do I need it?

Asked by Bruce M. on 2007-09-27

   First lets look at my old "Windozzz mind-set". I had and "icon" that allowed me to enable/disable my LAN card so the computer wasn't on the net when not required.
   Now I have Ubuntu (7.04) Desktop and in the upper right corner is NetworkManager beside the date and time. Out of "habit" I was disabling it when not using internet. But it doesn't do anything. For example it is disabled at the moment and obviously I am on the net.

   I am running the Desktop version without any special "networks", no bluetooth, no wireless connections. The only things I have connected to my computer are (USB) my Palm (JPilot), a digital Camera (haven't tried it with Ubuntu yet) and my Printer.

   Do I need NetworkManager running?
   How do I take it off the Menu Bar if not needed?

  Question 2: (maybe it should be a seperate Q)

   Is there a way to enable/disable LAN cards safely with Ubuntu so it's not connected to the net when my computer is on but I'm not physically doing something on the net?
   Or does it really matter?

Bruce Milmine

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Solved by:
Jim Hutchinson
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How are you disabling it?

You can right click network manager and untick "enable networking" to disable your connection to the net. And then re-tick it to reconnect. Although i fail to see why you would want to do this other than force of habbit.

I'd leave it connected. It's not doing an harm.

Bruce M. (canar-ciudad) said : #2

Hi Alan,

   That is what I am doing. Right Click > Enable/Disable
   Problem is it is NOT disabling at all.
   Like I said before, it is "disabled now" but I still have internet connection which means it is not addressing my LAN card.

   What is it "disabling"?

Bruce Milmine

Best Jim Hutchinson (jphutch) said : #3

NetworkManager does just that - it manages the network connections. It doesn't control the hardware. When you disable NM you are disabling it as the network controller. It does not prevent you from making network connections with other programs. There is probably a network daemon that controls overall networking. In fact, I know there is.

sudo /etc/init.d/networking stop

Will stop networking. I don't think it will prevent networking for starting the next you boot. You can also uninstall NM

sudo apt-get remove NetworkManager

I'm not sure if that could break other things or not.

Unless you are tying to save battery power there isn't much point is actually turning off the lan card. I'm not even sure it's possible. I know some laptops have a switch for turning off wifi but not sure about a ethernet port.

Bruce M. (canar-ciudad) said : #4

Hi Jim,

   Ok, now I'm confused and will have to do some "searching and reading"
   aahhhh!!!! (click - light goes on)
   NM - read "it" - as in: disabling "it" as the network controller.
   Things are falling into place here. (I'm new to this)

>> sudo apt-get remove NetworkManager

>> I'm not sure if that could break other things or not.

   Me neither, so I'll leave it alone until I do some "searching and reading"
   But I'll make this solved anyway as I'm not so worried about it now.

   Battery power is not an issue, it's a home desktop computer.

   Thanks Jim

Bruce Milmine

To disable NetworkManager but not uninstall it, see the relevant section at

NetworkManager is good to have, but for special cases such as disabling the Net connection on demand, it's difficult to tame.

Bruce M. (canar-ciudad) said : #6

Hi Simos

I read what you sent. But since I have NO wireless connections it's doing nothing anyway.
I'll just leave it alone.

Bruce Milmine

Anoar (mich2212001) said : #7

jim hutchison,
I think you mean
apt atitude remove network-manager network-manager-gnome (this action will remove all network management apps from your machine)
apt atitude network-manager network-manager-gnome remove ( this will disable all network managers)
once rebooted. $ sudo nano /etc/network/interfaces (you can use vim or gedit, i like nano)
you should see

auto lo
iface lo inet loopback
auto eth0
iface eth0 inet dhcp
if you don't see the last 2 lines, you can add them & save
then do $ sudo /etc/init.d/networking restart
If you get any error messages, please reboot.