Is it possible to get Network Manager working on Raspbian? It's easy to install with:

sudo apt-get install network-manager

but I couldn't get it to manage any of my connections. Unfortunately, it looks like only a old version of NM is available in the Debian repo.


I have found how to get NetworkManager (and systemd-resolved) working on Raspbian 9 (Stretch). NetworkManager is very useful when you need to manage multiple VPN connections with split DNS, wifi networks and other advanced network settings directly from the Pixel Desktop.

Here is how to do it:

  1. Install the needed packages with the following command:

    sudo apt install network-manager network-manager-gnome openvpn \
    openvpn-systemd-resolved network-manager-openvpn \
  2. Remove unneded packages:

    sudo apt purge openresolv dhcpcd5
  3. Replace /etc/resolv.conf with a symlink to /lib/systemd/resolv.conf :

    sudo ln -sf /lib/systemd/resolv.conf /etc/resolv.conf
  4. Now go to the top of your screen and reconfigure the panel: open "Panel Settings" -> "Panel Applets": remove "Wireless & Wired Network". The network manager applet should appear after a reboot.

  • 1
    Thank you! The purge step was vital. Without that, nmcli showed all my devices as "unavailable" and it couldn't control them. – Luke Nov 5 '17 at 6:31
  • You don't actually need openvpn. – Zimano Jul 20 '18 at 9:13
  • I had a problem where my raspberry wouldn't connect to the internet through Ethernet. I had to undo step 3 (I kept backup), and then everything worked perfectly - Thanks – loxaxs Aug 31 '18 at 11:36
  • I plugged my laptop (Ubuntu 14) to my RPi 3 (Raspbian Stretch) via ssh over an Ethernet cable. Doing nmcli dev wifi on the laptop gives me a whole bunch of networks. Typing the same command on the R Pi gives me no network at all. I went through the steps you decribed (without error message or anything suspicious along the way)... but nmcli still doens't detect anything. Any idea why? Could it have to do with the ethernet connection? – hartmut Dec 6 '18 at 15:59
  • @luke The purge step isn't vital at all. NetworkManager just doesn't touch managed devices (like those configured in /etc/interfaces) – Zimano Dec 18 '18 at 14:56

Try using wicd:

sudo apt-get install wicd

Wicd is a network manager application (wireless and wired), it a good alternative to Network Manager

  • 5
    It would be helpful to at least try to explain how wicd is going to help the OP. Feel free to edit your post accordingly. – Ghanima Apr 20 '15 at 17:18
  • raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/a/9750/894 WICD curses exaplined – Piotr Kula Dec 17 '15 at 13:08
  • 2
    This does not attempt to answer the question, the OP asked how to install NetworkManager (not "a network manager") on Raspbian. wicd presents an easy TUI for managing networking, but so does nmtui that comes with NetworkManager. I don't see how acknowledging that wicd can be used for managing networks relates to the question of how to install NetworkManager. – Zimano Jul 20 '18 at 12:00

If you want some graphical interface to manage network connections, try wicd-curses. http://blog.ubidots.com/setup-wifi-on-raspberry-pi-using-wicd provides a tutorial.

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