[CentOS] NetworkManager on servers

Mon Feb 10 13:38:57 UTC 2020
Stephen John Smoogen <smooge at gmail.com>

On Mon, 10 Feb 2020 at 02:55, Nicolas Kovacs <info at microlinux.fr> wrote:

> Hi,
> I'm currently reading the upstream "Considerations in adopting RHEL 8"
> document. The chapter about networking states that traditional networking
> scripts (shipped with the network-scripts package) are considered obsolete.
> I bluntly admit I don't see the point in this. As far as I'm concerned,
> I've
> been a happy user of NetworkManager since the early days (when folks used
> to
> call it NotworkManager :oD). It's one of those nifty pieces of software
> that
> brought the Linux desktop to the masses - or at least a bit nearer to them
> -
> since it allows managing wireless and wired interfaces transparently and
> easily
> on a laptop or any computer with a wireless card.
> On servers though, one of the first post-installation steps I performed
> was to
> get rid of Network-Manager and all its components. The servers I'm working
> on
> are relatively small-scale and have from one to four network interfaces.
> Each
> interface has a corresponding configuration in
> /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts,
> and that's it. From there, I rarely - if ever - touch it. In all my
> setups,
> NetworkManager is merely a useless layer of abstraction, and I like
> sticking to
> the KISS principle and shave off useless layers.
> Maybe there's a reason to make NetworkManager more or less mandatory from
> now
> on, but I don't see it. So I thought I'd rather ask on this list.
The reason is that having 1 way to configure networks makes it so the
developer and tech support only have to diagnose issues from 1 set of tools
versus two different ones (and occasionally 2 competing ones if both are
trying to do their job at the same time). Basically network-scripts has
been on the backburner for 10+ years and has to be dusted off every now and
then to add a new networking corner case or some other item. For the
developer it usually means context swapping back from python (or whatever
language they prefer) to bash and then figure out what the problem is..
cause a couple of new ones they then have to fix and then get it right. Or
they could do that work in 1 language they know and get it done.

Does it makes sense to us as sysadmins who are happy with a working set of
scripts and configs we have to know possibly rewrite? No it doesn't.. but
unless one of us takes over the network-scripts and puts in the work to
make it work in all the different layers (or pay someone to do so).. we get
what the soup kitchen serves :).

Stephen J Smoogen.