I just upgraded (fresh install) to the new Lubuntu 19.10. Same as in the previous versions, the nm-applet does not run on startup. The nm-applet is the GUI for the Network Manager and I need it to set up a VPN connection.
What I usually do is to start it manually using
sudo nm-applet and then I can proceed to set up my VPN connection.
Any ideas why this is happening? If you need any more information, just ask. This really is just a fresh install of 19.10. The problem was always present on every Lubuntu version 18.04 onward. I just always used the terminal to launch it manually. It works, but it's bothersome.
EDIT 19.11.19: I did, as described, perform a fresh installation with a bootable USB drive and the newest version of Lubuntu. Actually, I blanked the disk (HDD not SDD) before with DBAN because I was dealing with sensitive financial information. There was absolutely no trace left on the drive of the previous install.
I confirm the problem existed with 18.04 too. That was the first version of Lubuntu I tried and I always had to use "sudo nm-applet". I know for sure, because it gave me a headache to find out what was wrong. However I am not going to switch distro just because of this issue.
I am confident you can try Lubuntu 19.10 in your VM and have the same result. (nm-applet) not displaying/started. As a matter of fact, I just tested on my spare DELL notebook with another new install with the same result.