F12: NetworkManager-Firefox: Firefox is currently in offline mode and can't browse the Web

Dan Williams dcbw at redhat.com
Tue Dec 1 07:50:15 UTC 2009

On Mon, 2009-11-30 at 19:52 +0000, Terry Barnaby wrote:
> On 11/30/2009 06:12 PM, Dan Williams wrote:
> > On Mon, 2009-11-30 at 09:55 +0000, Terry Barnaby wrote:
> >> On 11/29/2009 11:30 PM, Dan Williams wrote:
> >>> On Sat, 2009-11-28 at 09:10 +0000, Terry Barnaby wrote:
> >>>> On 11/28/2009 08:35 AM, Rakesh Pandit wrote:
> >>>>> 2009/11/28 Terry Barnaby wrote:
> >>>>>> If the NetworkManager service is running, but not managing the current
> >>>>>> network connection, then Firefox starts up in offline mode.
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>> Is this a bug in NetworkManager or Firefox ?
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>> This is odd behaviour and needs to be fixed. I would suggest open up a
> >>>>> bug against firefox. I know one can change
> >>>>> toolkit.networkmanager.disable preference, but it is a PITA for our
> >>>>> users. One of use cases is: Sometime network manager does not connect
> >>>>> me via my CDMA usb modem (in case signal is weak), but wvdial does and
> >>>>> once I switch from NM to wvdial, my firefox gets to offline mode,
> >>>>> which I don't expect it to as I am connected.
> >>>>>
> >>>> Ok, filed as: 542078
> >>>
> >>> NetworkManager is intended to control the default internet connection.
> >>> If NetworkManager cannot control the default internet connection, then
> >>> you may not want to use NetworkManager.
> >>>
> >>> In your case, you're using a mobile broadband device.  The real bug here
> >>> is that for whatever reason, NM/MM aren't connecting your modem, and we
> >>> should follow up on that bug instead.
> >>>
> >>> Dan
> >>>
> >> I am not using a mobile broadband device. The network connection my systems
> >
> > My mistake.  I guess it was Rakesh Pandit who was using a CDMA 3G
> > connection.
> >
> >> use is not just the Internet it is a local network LAN connection that also
> >> serves the internet. Most of my systems use a local network server which
> >> provides NIS, /home and /data using NFS and VPN etc. I normally use the
> >> service "network" to bring up wired or wireless networking for this. Fedora,
> >> by default, uses NetworkManager to manage all network devices though. I use
> >> the service "network" as, for some reason, the NetworkManager service is
> >> started after the netfs and other services are started. Is there a reason
> >> for this ??
> >
> > No particular reason, in fact that looks like a bug.  NM no longer
> > depends on HAL, but that dependency is still in the initscript, which
> > looks like it pushes NM later than netfs.
> >
> > But in reality, you're looking for a dependency based initsystem which
> > we don't quite yet have.  There are already scripts that kick netfs to
> > mount stuff when NM brings the network up
> > (/etc/NetworkManager/dispatcher.d/05-netfs), so you get asynchronous
> > bootup *and* your mounts.  The rest of the system, if it requires
> > something from the mounted directories, needs to be smart enough to know
> > that.
> >
> > If you need to, you can set NETWORKWAIT=yes in /etc/sysconfig/network,
> > which causes the NetworkManager initscript to block until a network
> > connection is brought up, or 30 seconds have passed.
> >
> >> I can obviously turn of the NetworkManager service, which I have done on the
> >> desktop systems. However, I also have a few Laptops that can roam. In F11 and
> >> before I have used the network and NetworkManager services. When the laptop
> >> boots away from home, the "network" service fails and I can then use the
> >> NetworkManager service to connect to whatever wireless network or G3 network is
> >> available.
> >>
> >> It does seem sensible to me that the "system" provides applications with info
> >> on if the network is up (not just the Internet). The NetworkManager service
> >> seems the place to do this and it looks like the applications are starting
> >> to use it for this purpose.
> >> So maybe a generic NM "isNetworkUp()" API call is called for ?
> >
> > See the other mail; the problem with a generic isUp() is that it simply
> > says hey, is there a connection?  It doesn't provide enough information
> > about the networking state of the system for anything to make an
> > intelligent decision about anything.  It's a "hey I'm connected to
> > something" but there's no information about *what* you're connected to;
> > whether it's a secure home network, whether it's a slow 3G network,
> > whether it's billed by the  minute or the hour or unlimited, etc.
> >
> > Dan
> >
> Hi, Thanks for the info.
> I would have thought that a generic isUp() is good enough for the likes
> of Firefox and Pidgen though to decide if to start offline. Being connected to a 
> Network is probably all you need, you may be accessing an Intranet as all
> my systems Firefox home pages do ...
> Anyway, following your email (And notes in Bugzilla) I thought I'd try and
> use NM properly for my config. However I have a problem, which may be
> a bug. I have turned off the Network services and turned on NetworkManger.
> I have two main network interfaces eth0 (wired) and eth1 (Wifi), both are
> set to be managed by NM and to start at boot. I have also added
> NETWORKWAIT=yes in /etc/sysconfig/network.
> When I boot with this the network (eth1 (eth0 is disconnected)) does not
> come up at boot. There is a message stating a failure on the line
> where it is waiting for the network to come up. When I log in as a
> local user the network then comes up ...
> I also note that, before the user is logged in, I cannot start the network
> with "service network start" and the WiFi light is off. It looks like
> NM has done something like powered down my WiFi chip ?
> (Intel Corporation PRO/Wireless 2915ABG IBM Thinkpad R52)
> Another thing, I would need NETWORKWAIT=yes as I have ypbind enabled.
> Maybe ypbind should be modified to not start when the network is down and
> also added to /etc/NetworkManager/dispatcher.d ?

NM has two types of connection: system and user (see
http://live.gnome.org/NetworkManagerConfiguration ).  NM treats ifcfg
files as system connections and thus they are available at boot time and
before login.  I had assumed that since your connection was working
correctly with the 'network' service that it was also a system
connection.  What is the result of
'ls /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-*' and what are the contents
of /var/log/messages when the device is not correctly connected on

Before logging in, can you also drop to a VT, log in, and run 'nm-tool'
for me?


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