Network Panel Improvements

Status: In progress


GNOME 3.0 introduced a new control-center panel for networking. It works with NetworkManager and shows available network devices, as well as basic information about current connections. Currently, for detailed connection information, we launch nm-connection-editor.

There are a number of problems with the current design. Launching nm-connection-editor is not a great way to handle extra information. Another problem is that the button to do so is only available if you have a connection - which is problematic for first-time setup. Another thing that has come up repeatedly is the inability to 'forget' a connection.

Gnome-shell has a network menu which offers quick access to available networks. The password dialogs that are sometimes necessary when connecting to a protected network have been moved into gnome-shell in GNOME 3.2, but in some cases, such as VPN, we still fall back to using the 'traditional' GTK+ dialogs that nm-applet has.

A number of problems with the network menu and with new password dialogs have been recorded in bugzilla

Finally, to make the network experience in GNOME 3 better, we really need to have a simple 'am I online ?' api, ideally in GIO. This is being worked on in bug 620932.


Richard Hughes

Involved Parties

Affected modules: gnome-control-center, gnome-shell, nm-applet, NetworkManager, GIO

Dan Williams for NetworkManager, Dan Winship for libsoup, GIO and gnome-shell

Current Status

An redesign of the network panel to address some of these issues has been started during the 3.2 cycle, but it was not completed and has not been implemented yet. The redesign is now nearing completion, and Richard has begun to update the control-center code to match.

The 'am I online ?' API has been included in GLib 2.31.4 as GNetworkMonitor.

The 'airplane mode' switch has been moved to the top, according to the new design.

A 'Forget network' button has been added to remove connections that are no longer wanted.

Vpn and similar network-related password dialogs have been ported to gnome-shell bug 658484

How to Help

Contact any of the involved parties. Improve the network awareness in applications by using the above-mentioned API.

ThreePointThree/Features/NetworkPanel (last edited 2012-03-08 22:48:28 by MatthiasClasen)