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Thread: ifup vs Network manager

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    London
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    Default ifup vs Network manager

    Hi,

    For a while I have been using ifup instead of network manager; started so that I can use wireless when starting in runlevel 3.

    I have noticed my connection is faster and doesn't keep being lost and needing to be reconnected as it did with network manager and I wondered why this is?

    Also network manager used to crash quite often.

    Has anyone else had similar experiences, maybe the opposite?

    To me, network manager has become a thing of the past. Everything is so much smoother without it.

    Do we even need network manager? What does it do? Why is it so unstable?

    Regards,
    Barry.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Netherlands
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    29,804

    Default Re: ifup vs Network manager

    I can not tell you why a networkmanager has connection problems, but I can try to explain why networkmanagers exist.

    Originaly the network interface(s) were of course configured by root and they were started at reaching runlevel 3 (and above). When you have a system that has a fixed place (computerroom, on your desk, etc.) this still is the normal and stable way to work (wired or wireless). The end user has nothing to worry or to look for.

    BUT, they invented the laptop and people started moving around the thing. And it they want to connect it to a particular network when they are at a point in space and time. They do not want this to be done by a system manager (root), but they want an end-user interface to manage this. That is where network managers are invented for.

    So when your system is at a fixed place (well, you may move it around the house) and connects always to the same network, the so called "traditional method with ifup" is IMHO the "correct method".
    Henk van Velden

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Wellington, NZ
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    110

    Default Re: ifup vs Network manager

    I would agree with hcw and in the past have to say I found network manager a bit flaky. Being somewhat "old-school" I too figure "ifup" is the "proper" way to do it !

    But in the past few months I've had cause to be "network hopping" and found not only is it so much easier and quicker with network manager, but that network manager has delivered rock-solid stability. So now I've got lazy and use it all the time. SO actually I would say netwrok manager is now very useable and with portable devices also very useful. And isn't that the whole point? Stuff only has a use if it's ueful and useable !

    To address the reliability question, I guess that network manager is another layer between the user and the configuration and like with any process, as you add more layers, so you increase the potential for processes to not communicate properly. You write a config to a config file, that's it; you type the same information into a user interface and expect it will communicate through the OS to ultimately write that same config file...but maybe something gets missed in that communication process.

    Not a very technical analysis I know...

    IG

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Frisco, TX
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    1,235

    Default Re: ifup vs Network manager

    Barry Nichols wrote:
    > Hi,
    >
    > For a while I have been using ifup instead of network manager; started
    > so that I can use wireless when starting in runlevel 3.
    >
    > I have noticed my connection is faster and doesn't keep being lost and
    > needing to be reconnected as it did with network manager and I wondered
    > why this is?
    >
    > Also network manager used to crash quite often.


    Very true.

    >
    > Has anyone else had similar experiences, maybe the opposite?


    Yes.

    >
    > To me, network manager has become a thing of the past. Everything is so
    > much smoother without it.


    NetworkManager is the future... oddly enough.

    >
    > Do we even need network manager? What does it do? Why is it so
    > unstable?


    Poorly written? Makes horrible assumptions? Written to be
    "like" Microsoft? Who knows?

    There's also things like wicd that might be an alternative.

    If ifup works for you, at least it's easy to augment/change...

    I "think" ifup will stick around. I hate to think of trying
    to do anything serious with NetworkManager.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Kansas City Area, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    7,236

    Default Re: ifup vs Network manager

    cjcox wrote:
    > Poorly written? Makes horrible assumptions? Written to be
    > "like" Microsoft? Who knows?
    >
    > There's also things like wicd that might be an alternative.
    >
    > If ifup works for you, at least it's easy to augment/change...
    >
    > I "think" ifup will stick around. I hate to think of trying
    > to do anything serious with NetworkManager.


    Try roaming with ifup. NM is much more convenient than editing
    ifcfg-wlan0 or using the YaST GUI.

    NM is a work in progress; however, it does work. Note that it has no
    effect on signal strength of transmit/receive rates. That is a
    function of the driver and the MAC layer.

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