In the 10.10 release, Unity on the netbook edition used ConnMan. As Unity is now moving to the desktop for 11.04, will that mean that ConnMan will replace NetworkManager on the default Ubuntu desktop as well?


5 Answers 5


The systray (old notification area) will go away in 11.04. NetworkManager is the most critical piece that still uses it. We have three options:

  • Move to the new indicator-network which uses Connection Manager as a backend,
  • Provide patches for NM-applet that enable it to use the AppIndicator framework, and
  • Hack the systray so it only supports NM-applet

The Ubuntu Platform team is working on the NM-applet-indicator option, and it's their decision which approach is taken in the final release.


No; the plan seems to be to enhance indicator-network / patch NM to use NM as a backend.

There's no blueprint yet, but the content of the Gobby document from UDS is here.

See Mark's answer for details.

  • Would this mean ditching NM-applet? Also, would it mean no longer being required a password every time you start your computer if you chose to login automatically?
    – Bou
    Oct 30, 2010 at 11:12
  • 1
    Updated my answer. The change doesn't have anything to do with the password prompt, as far as I know.
    – mgunes
    Oct 30, 2010 at 11:32
  • The Gobbyness you linked to says "patch the nm-applet, instead of extending indicator-network" - this seems to be the opposite of what you've said?
    – 8128
    Oct 30, 2010 at 11:35
  • Right; I had interpreted that as "do the patching in NM rather than indicator-network as much as possible"; apparently I missed the -applet bit. But I don't think the plan is to preserve nm-applet in any case, since that would mean keeping the notification area, which goes against the broader plans. The notes are rather brief, and I wasn't at the session; I'll ask someone who attended and edit my answer.
    – mgunes
    Oct 30, 2010 at 11:42

I second that, there is no plan to make the new connman-based network menu the default for Natty.


There are many reasons why indicator-network wasn't made default in the Natty release:

1) Doesn't support all encryption options (you already mentioned that in your question).

2) Hasn't been tested heavily (its a new project).

3) Ubuntu has been using nm-applet since quite some time, and hence it was much better for them to just port it to the indicator rather than start from scratch.

Probably indicator-network will become default in a future release of Ubuntu after it meets all of the above points. Good things take time to come by™.


Go to System - Preferences - Startup Applications. In there, search for Network Manager, select it, click Edit, and provide the following values:

  • Name: Network Manager applet
  • Command: /usr/bin/nm-applet
  • Check: Launch at login

The next time you log in, you should see the applet appear.

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