I am using Ubuntu 18.04 on an Asus laptop. The internal wifi does not recognize 5GHz channel so I purchased a TP-Link T9UH. I followed the first half of the answer found here How to compile TP-Link T9UH Wireless Driver without Internet Access? I'm running into issues (did not install dkms yet) and now the USB wifi seems to be working. My wifi settings show both wifi connections now and the new one sees and connects to 5GHz channel.

But using the GNOME wifi manager, it does not seem possible to turn off just 1 wifi connection. If you do, what it really does is just turn on Airplane mode which turns them both off.

Is there a way to manage the 2 wifi connections independently? Is command line the only option here? Thank you

EDIT2: I suppose ifconfig wlp3s0 down (or up) is the easiest way to do this and it does seem to work. however it bugs me that Network Manager still shows that the internal adapter is connected. maybe i misunderstand something? but it seems to me that I am not the first person wanting to do this so I am a little surprised Network Manager does not handle this. thx

EDIT: here is iwconfig output if useful in answering

wen@wen-1:~$ iwconfig
lo        no wireless extensions.

enp2s0    no wireless extensions.

wlx503eaa74d481  IEEE 802.11AC  ESSID:"SINGTEL(5G)-3461"  Nickname:"<WIFI@REALTEK>"
          Mode:Managed  Frequency:5.805 GHz  Access Point: E0:8E:3C:1E:34:67   
          Bit Rate:1.3 Gb/s   Sensitivity:0/0  
          Retry:off   RTS thr:off   Fragment thr:off
          Power Management:off
          Link Quality=84/100  Signal level=100/100  Noise level=0/100
          Rx invalid nwid:0  Rx invalid crypt:0  Rx invalid frag:0
          Tx excessive retries:0  Invalid misc:0   Missed beacon:0

wlp3s0    IEEE 802.11  ESSID:"SINGTEL-3461"  
          Mode:Managed  Frequency:2.437 GHz  Access Point: E0:8E:3C:1E:34:62   
          Bit Rate=144.4 Mb/s   Tx-Power=16 dBm   
          Retry short limit:7   RTS thr:off   Fragment thr:off
          Power Management:off
          Link Quality=70/70  Signal level=-23 dBm  
          Rx invalid nwid:0  Rx invalid crypt:0  Rx invalid frag:0
          Tx excessive retries:0  Invalid misc:241   Missed beacon:0

2 Answers 2


Identify your internal wireless interface first on the terminal using ip a, and then modifying /etc/network/interfaces and set it to iface wlan0 inet manual.

Then sudo service network-manager restart.


Use this command to turn Wi-Fi on:

sudo nmcli radio wifi on

and this to turn it off:

sudo nmcli radio wifi off

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