How does Fedora want "ordinary people" to manage mobile network computing?
Ed.Greshko at greshko.com
Tue Apr 25 04:40:37 UTC 2006
Paul Johnson wrote:
> I'm an "old hand" at Linux, and am able to make my wired & wireless
> connections work, but only with some difficulty. Yesterday I helped a
> young lady install linux on a laptop and found it darned-near
> impossible to explain to her how she is supposed to handle the problem
> of going for place-to-place, using different wired and wireless
> networks. So I wondered if the Gnome or KDE folks had worked this
Only have worked with wired networks...but in that case the key was
"Network Profiles". Couldn't find you any "Fedora" documentation on
this but have a look at
and the rest of that manual.
> Just for example, I need to have these devices configured
> 1. Wired home router: dhcp
> 2. Wired for office 1: static ip, gateway & /etc/resolv.conf
> 3. Wired for office 2: static ip, gateway & /etc/resolv.conf
> 4. Wireless for home router, SSID="home1" and 24 digit WEP key
> 5. Wireless in pizza restaurant, SSID="fred's pizza", but no WEP key
> 6. Wireless at school, SSID="JAYHAWK", no WEP key
> 7. Wireless at George's house, SSID="casa", 10 digit WEP key
> It is a bit of a pain to set all these up. system-config-network
> creates funny looking names for these like eth1:1 and if I turn on one
> wireless device, all of them of the same type say they are active. I
> have never figured out how "profiles" are supposed to simplify this.
> At home, sometimes I need the wire, sometimes I need one of the two
> wireless routers. Sometimes I cannot get system-config-network to
> work at all, and instead I have to hand edit one of the working files
> in /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts. Generally can make this work.
> There are 3 gotchas that kill me now and then.
> 1. DHCP will replace the dns setting in /etc/resolv.conf and when I go
> to a static IP, that value does not get reset and I have no internet
> unless I manually set the ip value.
> 2. The value of the "Gateway" is set by the wireled IP settings, and
> if I go to a place with dhcp, it DOES reset the dns values in
> /etc/resolv.conf, but sometimes the gateway is not reset.
> 3. If both eth0 (wire) and eth1 (wireless) happen to be active--as
> happens on her system by default after a suspend to RAM--then NEITHER
> ethernet interface works. THere is no wireless service until you type
> "/sbin/ifdown eth0" and there is no wire unless you type "/sbin/ifdown
> While trying to describe this to the new linux user, I was struck by
> how crappy it is. Just resetting the DNS number when going to a
> static IP seems like a strange thing to do. And in the end, we
> compromised and agree she will only be able to use her computer on one
> network, because it is too damn complicated to make it work in various
> places, all with different SSIDs and WEP keys.
> And don't even get started on the problem of scanning for available
> servers. But if a person cannot open a terminal and type
> "/sbin/iwlist scan", then he/she is likely to be totally screwed,
> because if you don't put in an SSID explicitly, it almost never finds
> a network. In fact, if you don't have the right channel, it often
> does not work.
> So, in conclusion, I can make this work but I am baffled to figure out
> what the Gnome people think these users new ought to do. Surely they
> are not expected to open a terminal, are they? I find that hard to
> believe in light of the fact that new Fedora/Gnome has disappeared the
> "open terminal here" from its default right-click menu and hidden that
> function away in the "nautilus-open-terminal" package.
> Paul E. Johnson
> Professor, Political Science
> 1541 Lilac Lane, Room 504
> University of Kansas
The next person to mention spaghetti stacks to me is going to have
his head knocked off.
-- Bill Conrad
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