Get online with your brand-new Linux installation


© Lead Image © Rita Melville,

© Lead Image © Rita Melville,


What good is a laptop or desktop that's not connected to the Internet? Sure, you could do a few things with it, but these days a machine that's not online might as well be a paperweight.

Once you have Fedora installed, the very next thing that you probably want to do is get online. Odds are, much of this process "just works" right out of the box. If so, great! But, in case things are slightly amiss or you want to make some tweaks, I'll walk through the utilities and tools to make it happen.

Are You Connected?

The utility that works behind the scenes to handle network configuration and operation is NetworkManager. Gnome and LXDE have GUI utilities that work with NetworkManager. In Gnome, it's part of the Settings applet. In LXDE, you'll work with NetworkManager via the Network Connections applet. Note that NetworkManager has a command-line interface (CLI) utility (currently, nmcli), but I'm not going to delve into that here, because there are handy GUI utilities to do the grunt work.

I'll start with Gnome. (Folks using LXDE should skip ahead to the "Using LXDE" section.) In Gnome 3, the network status is displayed in the upper right-hand corner of your desktop. If you set up a wireless or a wired connection during the installation, you should see a WiFi icon that displays the signal strength and indicates that the connection is on. If you click on the icon, it will produce a drop-down menu that shows the status of your network connections (it should say "Connected") and things like screen brightness, user status, power, and so forth.


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