I accidentally removed dnsmasq-base following a tutorial without looking at the warnings in the comments. So what I want to know is, is there a way of getting my network manager back without losing any of my data?
You can use a chroot from a live cd to install a package from a non-bootable/no network system. Follow this guide up to step six (do step six, but NOT 7). I know the guide is for rearing grub but the chroot process is what we are interested in.
Once you have done that, you should be able to just do a
sudo apt-get install dnsmasq
You can download the removed packages from:
download also: network-manager-gnome (I cannot post 3 links)
Choose the right package according to your distro: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS:Precise Pangolin Ubuntu 12.10: Quantal Quetzal Ubuntu 13.04: Raring Ringtail
Copy those files to an USB stick. Start your Linux OS and copy the files of the USB stick to a folder.
Open terminal an go to the folder.
Then install using:
sudo dpkg -i <package name>
After that, restart network manager:
sudo service network-manager restart
I hope that helps!