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So currently when my non-admin user tries to connect to a new WiFi network (e.g. at a cafe say) NetworkManager prompts for the admin user's password. Is there a way to turn this off and to allow the non-admin user to connect to whatever Wifi network they like?

EDIT: just to clarify, I really mean a new WiFi network never connected to prior by the computer, so clicking 'Available to all users' on an existing established connection will not solve the matter- as currently no issue with the non-admin user reconnecting as many times as they like to the home network.

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/etc/sudoers is the file to edit so it does not ask for passwords: – Rinzwind Jan 18 '13 at 9:30
I've used visudo before to allow the non-admin user to do a few things (like sudo apt-get upate for e.g.) but I am not sure what I would have to put in there to stop them being asked for a password on connecting to a new wifi network – fpghost Jan 18 '13 at 9:32
ha you got me there. I would have made it an answer if I knew that from memory (been searching for a bit but did not find it yet :D ) – Rinzwind Jan 18 '13 at 9:33
yeah, must be something of the form someUser ALL=(root)NOPASSWD:/path/to/somethingControllingWiFi I presume, if this is indeed the way to go. – fpghost Jan 18 '13 at 9:36
It sure is :) .. – Rinzwind Jan 18 '13 at 9:39

I found success with the following solution in Ubuntu 13.04:

Open /usr/share/polkit-1/actions/org.freedesktop.NetworkManager.policy with root/sudo privileges and search for the following line:

<message>System policy prevents modification of network settings for all users</message>

A few lines below that should be this:


Change it to:


Save the file and restart your computer.

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This isn't really the fix I was hoping for but one workaround I've found is just to disable NetworkManager all-together and instead use Wicd.

First stop NetworkManager from running at startup:

sudo gedit /etc/NetworkManager/NetworkManager.conf

then # out the managed line. Also # out #start on (local-filesystems and started dbus) from /etc/init/network-manager.conf . Then just to make double sure

sudo mv /etc/init/network-manager.conf /etc/init/network-manager.conf-disabled
sudo mv /etc/xdg/autostart/nm-applet.desktop /etc/xdg/autostart /nm-applet.desktop.disabled  

Now can just use Wicd and no password prompts needed it seems.

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You can also create a local policy for this

[Let user pupil modify system settings for network]

in a file called /etc/polkit-1/localauthority/50-local.d/10-network-manager.pkla.

The advantage here is this can be a single command and usable in a script!

printf "[Let user pupil modify system settings for network]\nIdentity=unix-user:pupil\nAction=org.freedesktop.NetworkManager.settings.modify.system\nResultAny=no\nResultInactive=no\nResultActive=yes" | sudo tee /etc/polkit-1/localauthority/50-local.d/10-network-manager.pkla

Reference: Ubuntu Manpage:pklocalauthority

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