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NetworkManager 1.16


NetworkManager will be rebased from version 1.12 to version 1.16. The new version notably adds support for being run on early boot from initial ramdisk to support network booting.


Current status

  • Targeted release: Fedora 30
  • Last updated: 2018-11-27
  • Tracker bug: <will be assigned by the Wrangler>

Detailed Description

NetworkManager 1.16 is will be a new major release of NetworkManager. It provides a couple of changes that are self-contained:

  • Support for 802.15.4 radios and 6LowPAN
  • Separate connectivity checking per-device and address family (IPv4 and IPv6)
  • Better support for offload features
  • SR/IOV support

Aside from that, it adds support from being run from the inital ramdisk. There's a dracut module that utilizes the functionality for mounting the root over the network.

Benefit to Fedora

Fedora will be able to use the new NetworkManager features.

Notably, Fedora will be able to utilize NetworkManager on early boot to configure networking prior to mounting the root filesystem over the network. This removes the need for a separate network-configuration tooling, leveraging all the flexibility of NetworkManager to configure the network, simplifying the network booting process and removing the redundancy.

Fedora CoreOS will be able to bring up networking with NetworkManager before mounting a stateless image.


  • Proposal owners: Make sure all affected changes are included in the packages.

  • Other developers: Make sure that the tooling that is involved in constructing the initramfs images includes NetworkManager
  • Policies and guidelines: N/A (not a System Wide Change)
  • Trademark approval: N/A (not needed for this Change)

Upgrade/compatibility impact

The feature shouldn't have any impact up upgrades.

The newly-constructed initramfs images for network-booted installations should include NetworkManager and retain compatibility with previous releases.

How To Test

  • The installer needs to be able to be started over a network (fetch the stage2 from network)
    • Configured from the kickstart
    • Configured from the command line ("ip=.... repo=...")
  • The installer needs to be able to create a bootable installation in an iSCSI target
    • Also using iBFT
      • With an offload hardware?
  • The distribution needs to be able to boot with a root volume on
    • NFS
    • NFS4
    • CIFS
    • NBD
    • iSCSI
  • Root on an Ethernet, Bond, Bridge
    • VLAN on top of each

User Experience


N/A (not a System Wide Change)

Contingency Plan

  • Contingency mechanism: We're keeping the legacy/traditional dracut module in place for now. Dracut enables the network-manager plugin if it sees a NetworkManager configuration generator in initrd. The NetworkManager maintainers would remove the binary to restore the old behavior.
  • Contingency deadline: Beta Freeze
  • Blocks release? No, we can disable the functionality.
  • Blocks product? Fedora CoreOS


Release Notes