Network management

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This article lists network management software to establish and manage network connections.

Gentoo provides several tools for managing network connections. If you have emerged OpenRc without network support, i.e. with both USE flags netifrc and newnet disabled, you might need to set up a network manager such as net-misc/netifrc, net-misc/dhcpcd, net-misc/wicd, net-misc/networkmanager, or net-misc/badvpn. Or, you have the option of emerging openrc with the newnet use flag and configuring /etc/conf.d/network and /etc/conf.d/staticroute if you only use static interfaces.[1]

Available software

Important
The solutions listed here typically do not work together. Be sure only one of these services is running at a time. Starting more than one network management service will lead to unpredictable results!
Name Package Description
Connman net-misc/connman ConnMan is a command-line network manager designed for use with embedded devices
Netifrc net-misc/netifrc Gentoo's own network configuration scripts, split from OpenRC
Network management using DHCPCD net-misc/dhcpcd explains how to use dhcpcd for complete network stack management
NetworkManager net-misc/networkmanager a network management software for Ethernet, Wifi, DSL, dialup, VPN, WiMAX, and mobile broadband network connections
OpenRC[newnet] sys-apps/openrc The newnet USE flag enables the new network stack (experimental)
Wicd net-misc/wicd a network management software for managing Wifi and Ethernet network connections

The easiest to use is dhcpcd. It has perfect integration for wpa_supplicant and automatically switches between wired and wireless connections. In case of using dhcpcd as network manager, the USE flags netifrc and newnet may be deactivated in OpenRC.

FILE /etc/portage/package.useDisabling netifrc and newnet
sys-apps/openrc -netifrc -newnet

Gentoo's standard however for network management is using Gentoo net.* scripts aka netifrc.

Comparison table with wifi supplicant and modem managers

Here are some network packages, along with their capabilities, that are available in Gentoo:

Note
The solutions listed as "Network managers" usually make use of other software listed bellow, e.g. wpa_supplicant.
Gentoo provides several tools for managing your network connections.
Software Ethernet Wifi DSL Modem WiMAX 3G VPN GUI Boot time
Network managers
Netifrc Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Can use gui of wpa_supplicant
Yes
DHCPCD Yes Yes No No No No No Yes
See dhcpcd-ui article
Yes
NetworkManager Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Wicd Yes Yes No No No No No Yes No
Wifi supplicant
wpa_supplicant Yes Yes No No Yes No No Yes
qt5 use flag provides wpa_gui
Yes
Modem only
kde-apps/kppp No No No Yes No No No Yes No
net-dialup/wvdial No No No Yes No Yes No No No

See also

References