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ConnMan (short for Connection Manager) is a network management service created by Intel, built with embedded use cases in mind. It is shipped by default on some desktop and mobile distributions however, such as Sailfish OS.


USE flags

USE flags for net-misc/connman Provides a daemon for managing internet connections

bluetooth Enable Bluetooth Support
debug Enable extra debug codepaths, like asserts and extra output. If you want to get meaningful backtraces see
doc Add extra documentation (API, Javadoc, etc). It is recommended to enable per package instead of globally
ethernet Enable ethernet support.
examples Install examples, usually source code
iptables Use net-firewall/iptables as firewall.
iwd Enable wifi support via net-wireless/iwd
l2tp Use net-dialup/xl2tpd for L2TP VPN support.
networkmanager Enable net-misc/networkmanager support
nftables Use net-firewall/nftables as firewall.
ofono Use net-misc/ofono for telephony support.
openconnect Use net-vpn/openconnect for VPN support.
openvpn Use net-vpn/openvpn for openvpn support.
policykit Enable PolicyKit (polkit) authentication support
pptp Use net-dialup/pptpclient for PPTP VPN support.
tools Enable testing tools.
vpnc Use net-vpn/vpnc for cisco VPN support.
wifi Enable wireless network functions
wireguard Enable WireGuard VPN support.
wispr Enable support for WISPr hotspot logins.

Make sure to enable the proper USE flags for planned use. For mobile data support, make sure to enable the ofono USE flag.


root #emerge --ask net-misc/connman



Having multiple network management utilities running at the same time (NetworkManager, dhcpcd, etc) is not a good idea. However, ConnMan can be configured to not touch WiFi/Ethernet so it can play nice with these other programs, see the bottom of this article.


To enable ConnMan at boot:

root #rc-update add connman default

To start ConnMan now:

root #rc-service connman start


To enable ConnMan at boot and start it now:

root #systemctl enable --now connman


connmanctl is an interactive CLI application that comes installed with ConnMan. Make sure connmand has been started, either manually or through the init system, or ConnMan will be unable to function.

connmanctl can be launched with no arguments to enter interactive mode, or a command can be specified after it (useful for scripting!)

Connecting to a network

Listing available technologies

user $connmanctl technologies

Should list the available networking technologies for ConnMan, such as /net/connman/technology/wifi (WiFi support). If desired technology isn't listed, make sure it was set in ConnMan's USE flags, and that support for the network interface is built into the device's kernel.

Powering on the selected technology interface

user $connmanctl enable wifi

Replace wifi with a network interface technology as desired.

Scanning wireless networks

user $connmanctl scan wifi

"Scan completed for wifi" should return when scanning is done.

Showing available services

user $connmanctl services

This outputs all available services, no matter if WiFi, Ethernet, or other. If the device is connected to the network, *AO is in the leftmost column, followed by the SSID in the next, and then followed by a unique identifier. This unique identifier is needed to connect to the network.

Enabling connecting to an encrypted network

user $connmanctl agent on

Configuring a VPN

Make sure connman was emerged with the necessary USE flag ("openvpn" for example).

In the case of openVPN, a working openvpn configuration can easily be used by editing /var/lib/connman-vpn/myvpnname.config and adding

FILE /var/lib/connman-vpn/myvpnname.config
Type = OpenVPN
Name = myVPNname
Host =
Domain =
OpenVPN.ConfigFile = /etc/openvpn/myvpnname.conf

Some connman GUI (see below) or Enlightenment's built in connman client can be used to connect to the VPN ("connmanctl connect" does NOT seem to work). It will show up as the string provided by "Name" in the above config file.

The connection is established as it should, but connman always sets the default route over the first service.

To not route the whole traffic over the VPN connection (or the openVPN server is only configured to route private networks), the order of the connections has to be changed (this does not seem to be documented anywhere!):

user $connmanctl

Use "move-after" or "move-before" to push the VPN down after local uplink.

Connect to a network

Tab completions are functional in interactive mode!
user $connmanctl connect your_unique_identifier

Fill in the unique identifier from what is after network name from services. If connecting to a wired or unsecured network, no further action is needed. If connecting to a network with a passphrase, enter it when prompted. Note: Double check password! ConnMan can often be annoying and not re-prompt for incorrect passwords.

Testing a connection

To reveal the connection to the Local Area Network (LAN):

user $connmanctl state

And of course to test connection to the internet:

user $ping

Graphical front-ends


CMST is a Qt graphical front-end for ConnMan, and comes with a system tray icon. See net-misc/cmst.


This is the GTK counterpart. The project (in portage) does not seem to be active anymore, but there is which has a few improvements.


EConnMan is the ConnMan UI that's part of the Enlightenment desktop environment. See net-misc/econnman.

This is deprecated and seems abandoned.

The package is not necessary for using connman, connecting to a network or entering a wifi passphrase. This all works out of the box. Connecting to a VPN is also supported, but advanced configuration options are not available through the UI. Use connmanctl or config files (as stated above for VPN connections) to configure these connections.


ConnMan is throwing some cryptic error I can't find a reference to online!

It's most likely lack of kernel support for the device's WiFi card. Make sure if built as a module it's loaded and that dmesg isn't complaining about a load error.

It is possible to try using Gentoo's distribution kernel to see if that gets the network card going. If so, run lsmod with and without the distribution kernel and diff the results to view the kernel drivers that were in use with the distribution kernel that weren't with whichever was running originally.

How to use ConnMan along with NetworkManager/dhcpcd?

FILE /etc/connman/main.conf
NetworkInterfaceBlacklist = usb,wlan

Obviously, change the interface names to those that are desired to be to blacklistd with ConnMan. This allows another service to manage those connections, while utilizing ConnMan for other network interfaces (ie, ofono, bluetooth). If connected via SSH, this should be done first to prevent ConnMan closing the SSH tunnel.

Error: no carrier

This can mean that there isn't proper firmware support for the technology. However, this error can also be caused by improper permissions. Try adding the user to the wheel and network groups, or run connmanctl as root.

See also