Networkmanager GUI for bridging / bonding

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Hi Christian,

do you recall BZ 465345, NetworkManager GUI for bonding / bridging? This feature has now been in Fedora for some time, and I am desperately trying to get it to work on my laptop. But either the implementation is totally broken, or I'm too dumb to set it up correctly. Unfortunately I can't give precise error descriptions, because the systems behaves erratically.

1) NM presents "wired" and "bridge" interfaces. Is it necessary to delete the "normal" wired interfaces when briding is intended to be used? What if the user wants bridging sometimes, but not always? Btw deleting an interface profile doesn't seem to be possible through the GNOME GUI, at least not as non-root user.

2) GNOME nm-applet does not recogize the bridge - if only the bridge is up, it considers the system "offline" (offline symbol in GNOME panel).

If you have time, could you experiment with this a little? I'm just too confused to write a bug report on this.

Regards
Martin

Responses

Hi Martin,

welcome to the public discussion areas of the Customer center :D
I think you are on latest Fed19 writing the above. I am happy only having to touch nm-connection editor to enter wlan passphrases.

1) I was playing with this a bit for the RHEL6.5 implementation with bonding. I think its ok to leave the "underlying devices" around, and just then setup things ontop. Might even hurt removing them, in case really ifcfg-files get then removed. Hm.. no logic seems here clearly communicated with the user, indeed.
2) From the RHEL bz's regarding this I recall that it might make a difference if the bridge was also created by nm-connection-editor.

I know from the 6.5 bugzillas that playing with this seems to be indeed a system with many variables (having something else [which one is not aware of] leads to different results). I hope for RHEL7 to implement a commandline utility which offers the complete functionality of nm-connection-editor .

Let me try to get other eyes here on this.

cheers, Christian

Hi Martin,

some thoughts from a specialist. While he was considering this for RHEL, I think it also applies to Fedora.


In any case, I'll assume you are using RHEL6, but you should be using
RHEL 6.5 since we've done a lot of fixes to bridging/bonding there.
Obviously 6.5 was just released Wednesday so you may not already have it.

Some points of note:

You need to have NM_BOND_BRIDGE_VLAN_ENABLED=yes set
in /etc/sysconfig/network before NM will handle these devices, since in
RHEL6 (but not Fedora/RHEL7) NetworkManager may step on other tools like
libvirt. Then 'service NetworkManager restart' to recognize the change.

It's fine to have multiple connections for eth0; one can be a normal
wired connection, and the other a bridge port, and even a third for a
bond slave profile. You just have to be careful with "Connect to this
network automatically", because only one of them should have that option
checked for the same interface. Yes, if you delete things here, the
ifcfg files get removed.

Once NM_BOND_BRIDGE_VLAN_ENABLED is set, then NetworkManager will
recognize the interfaces, and then the GUI applet will see them. Note
that there isn't yet support for bridging configuration in
nm-connection-editor, which there is a bug for (#902820).

You can configure bridges and ports as normal through ifcfg files and a
text editor, and NetworkManager will pick them up. They will also show
up in 'nmcli dev', and nmcli can be used to start and stop bridges and
their ports (eg, "nmcli con up id bridge0", assuming you have an
ifcfg-bridge0, and "nmcli con up id bridge0-port0" assuming you have an

ifcfg-bridge0-port0).

cheers,
Christian

I'm not using RHEL6. I am using F19, assuming the RHEL7 experience will be similar.
NM_BOND_BRIDGE_VLAN_ENABLED is not necessary there, correct?

NM_BOND_BRIDGE_VLAN_ENABLED is not necessary there, correct?
Correct, just verified with the oldish alpha3 here in a VM.
We had quite some exchanges around NM_BOND_BRIDGE_VLAN_ENABLED in the bugzillas of RHEL6, with the NM features that got implemented in RHEL6.5. IIRC, we had to add it at some point to not break existing installations while providing the new features. RHEL7 has not to fear to break things, its a start on a new plate in that regards.
BTW, to my knowledge one will also still be able to disable NM in RHEL7 (thats no promise, just my knowledge as per now). In RHEL6 disabling NM is explicitly required when RH cluster is used.