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NMCLI(1) General Commands Manual NMCLI(1)


nmcli - command-line tool for controlling NetworkManager


nmcli [ OPTIONS...] {help | general | networking | radio | connection | device | agent | monitor} [ COMMAND] [ARGUMENTS...]


nmcli is a command-line tool for controlling NetworkManager and reporting network status. It can be utilized as a replacement for nm-applet or other graphical clients. nmcli is used to create, display, edit, delete, activate, and deactivate network connections, as well as control and display network device status.
Typical uses include:
•Scripts: Utilize NetworkManager via nmcli instead of managing network connections manually. nmcli supports a terse output format which is better suited for script processing. Note that NetworkManager can also execute scripts, called "dispatcher scripts", in response to network events. See NetworkManager(8) for details about these dispatcher scripts.
•Servers, headless machines, and terminals: nmcli can be used to control NetworkManager without a GUI, including creating, editing, starting and stopping network connections and viewing network status.


-t | --terse
Output is terse. This mode is designed and suitable for computer (script) processing.
-p | --pretty
Output is pretty. This causes nmcli to produce easily readable outputs for humans, i.e. values are aligned, headers are printed, etc.
-m | --mode {tabular | multiline}
Switch between tabular and multiline output:
Output is a table where each line describes a single entry. Columns define particular properties of the entry.
Each entry comprises multiple lines, each property on its own line. The values are prefixed with the property name.
If omitted, default is tabular for most commands. For the commands producing more structured information, that cannot be displayed on a single line, default is multiline. Currently, they are:
•nmcli connection show ID
•nmcli device show
-c | --colors {yes | no | auto}
This option controls color output (using terminal escape sequences). yes enables colors, no disables them, auto only produces colors when standard output is directed to a terminal. The default value is auto.
-f | --fields {field1,field2... | all | common}
This option is used to specify what fields (column names) should be printed. Valid field names differ for specific commands. List available fields by providing an invalid value to the --fields option. all is used to print all valid field values of the command. common is used to print common field values of the command.
If omitted, default is common. The option is mandatory when --terse is used. In this case, generic values all and common cannot be used. This is to maintain compatibility when new fields are added in the future.
-e | --escape {yes | no}
Whether to escape : and \ characters in terse tabular mode. The escape character is \.
If omitted, default is yes.
-a | --ask
When using this option nmcli will stop and ask for any missing required arguments, so do not use this option for non-interactive purposes like scripts. This option controls, for example, whether you will be prompted for a password if it is required for connecting to a network.
-s | --show-secrets
When using this option nmcli will display passwords and secrets that might be present in an output of an operation. This option also influences echoing passwords typed by user as an input.
-w | --wait seconds
This option sets a timeout period for which nmcli will wait for NetworkManager to finish operations. It is especially useful for commands that may take a longer time to complete, e.g. connection activation.
Specifying a value of 0 instructs nmcli not to wait but to exit immediately with a status of success. The default value depends on the executed command.
Instead of conducting the desired action, nmcli will list possible completions for the last argument. This is useful to implement argument completion in shell.
The exit status will indicate success or return a code 65 to indicate the last argument is a file name.
NetworkManager ships with command completion support for GNU Bash.
-v | --version
Show nmcli version.
-h | --help
Print help information.


nmcli general { status | hostname | permissions | logging} [ ARGUMENTS...]
Use this command to show NetworkManager status and permissions. You can also get and change system hostname, as well as NetworkManager logging level and domains.
Show overall status of NetworkManager. This is the default action, when no additional command is provided for nmcli general.
hostname [hostname]
Get and change system hostname. With no arguments, this prints currently configured hostname. When you pass a hostname, it will be handed over to NetworkManager to be set as a new system hostname.
Note that the term "system" hostname may also be referred to as "persistent" or "static" by other programs or tools. The hostname is stored in /etc/hostname file in most distributions. For example, systemd-hostnamed service uses the term "static" hostname and it only reads the /etc/hostname file when it starts.
Show the permissions a caller has for various authenticated operations that NetworkManager provides, like enable and disable networking, changing Wi-Fi and WWAN state, modifying connections, etc.
logging [level level] [domains domains...]
Get and change NetworkManager logging level and domains. Without any argument current logging level and domains are shown. In order to change logging state, provide level and, or, domain parameters. See NetworkManager.conf(5) for available level and domain values.


nmcli networking { on | off | connectivity} [ARGUMENTS...]
Query NetworkManager networking status, enable and disable networking.
on, off
Enable or disable networking control by NetworkManager. All interfaces managed by NetworkManager are deactivated when networking is disabled.
connectivity [check]
Get network connectivity state. The optional check argument tells NetworkManager to re-check the connectivity, else the most recent known connectivity state is displayed without re-checking.
Possible states are:
the host is not connected to any network.
the host is behind a captive portal and cannot reach the full Internet.
the host is connected to a network, but it has no access to the Internet.
the host is connected to a network and has full access to the Internet.
the connectivity status cannot be found out.


nmcli radio { all | wifi | wwan} [ARGUMENTS...]
Show radio switches status, or enable and disable the switches.
wifi [on | off]
Show or set status of Wi-Fi in NetworkManager. If no arguments are supplied, Wi-Fi status is printed; on enables Wi-Fi; off disables Wi-Fi.
wwan [on | off]
Show or set status of WWAN (mobile broadband) in NetworkManager. If no arguments are supplied, mobile broadband status is printed; on enables mobile broadband, off disables it.
all [on | off]
Show or set all previously mentioned radio switches at the same time.


nmcli monitor
Observe NetworkManager activity. Watches for changes in connectivity state, devices or connection profiles.
See also nmcli connection monitor and nmcli device monitor to watch for changes in certain devices or connections.


nmcli connection { show | up | down | modify | add | edit | clone | delete | monitor | reload | load | import | export} [ARGUMENTS...]
NetworkManager stores all network configuration as "connections", which are collections of data (Layer2 details, IP addressing, etc.) that describe how to create or connect to a network. A connection is "active" when a device uses that connection's configuration to create or connect to a network. There may be multiple connections that apply to a device, but only one of them can be active on that device at any given time. The additional connections can be used to allow quick switching between different networks and configurations.
Consider a machine which is usually connected to a DHCP-enabled network, but sometimes connected to a testing network which uses static IP addressing. Instead of manually reconfiguring eth0 each time the network is changed, the settings can be saved as two connections which both apply to eth0, one for DHCP (called default) and one with the static addressing details (called testing). When connected to the DHCP-enabled network the user would run nmcli con up default , and when connected to the static network the user would run nmcli con up testing.
show [--active] [--order [+-]category:...]
List in-memory and on-disk connection profiles, some of which may also be active if a device is using that connection profile. Without a parameter, all profiles are listed. When --active option is specified, only the active profiles are shown.
The --order option can be used to get custom ordering of connections. The connections can be ordered by active status (active), name (name), type (type) or D-Bus path (path). If connections are equal according to a sort order category, an additional category can be specified. The default sorting order is equivalent to --order active:name:path. + or no prefix means sorting in ascending order (alphabetically or in numbers), - means reverse (descending) order. The category names can be abbreviated (e.g. --order -a:na).
show [--active] [id | uuid | path | apath] ID...
Show details for specified connections. By default, both static configuration and active connection data are displayed. When --active option is specified, only the active profiles are taken into account. Use global --show-secrets option to display secrets associated with the profile.
id, uuid, path and apath keywords can be used if ID is ambiguous. Optional ID-specifying keywords are:
the ID denotes a connection name.
the ID denotes a connection UUID.
the ID denotes a D-Bus static connection path in the format of /org/freedesktop/NetworkManager/Settings/ num or just num.
the ID denotes a D-Bus active connection path in the format of /org/freedesktop/NetworkManager/ActiveConnection/ num or just num.
It is possible to filter the output using the global --fields option. Use the following values:
only shows static profile configuration.
only shows active connection data (when the profile is active).
You can also specify particular fields. For static configuration, use setting and property names as described in nm-settings(5) manual page. For active data use GENERAL, IP4, DHCP4, IP6, DHCP6, VPN.
When no command is given to the nmcli connection, the default action is nmcli connection show.
up [id | uuid | path] ID [ifname ifname] [ap BSSID] [passwd-file  file]
Activate a connection. The connection is identified by its name, UUID or D-Bus path. If ID is ambiguous, a keyword id, uuid or path can be used. When requiring a particular device to activate the connection on, the ifname option with interface name should be given. If the ID is not given an ifname is required, and NetworkManager will activate the best available connection for the given ifname. In case of a VPN connection, the ifname option specifies the device of the base connection. The ap option specify what particular AP should be used in case of a Wi-Fi connection.
If --wait option is not specified, the default timeout will be 90 seconds.
See connection show above for the description of the ID-specifying keywords.
Available options are:
interface that will be used for activation.
BSSID of the AP which the command should connect to (for Wi-Fi connections).
some networks may require credentials during activation. You can give these credentials using this option. Each line of the file should contain one password in the form:
setting_name.property_name:the password
For example, for WPA Wi-Fi with PSK, the line would be
For 802.1X password, the line would be
802-1x.password:my 1X password
nmcli also accepts wifi-sec and wifi strings instead of 802-11-wireless-security. When NetworkManager requires a password and it is not given, nmcli will ask for it when run with --ask. If --ask was not passed, NetworkManager can ask another secret agent that may be running (typically a GUI secret agent, such as nm-applet or gnome-shell).
down [id | uuid | path | apath] ID...
Deactivate a connection from a device without preventing the device from further auto-activation. Multiple connections can be passed to the command.
Be aware that this command deactivates the specified active connection, but the device on which the connection was active, is still ready to connect and will perform auto-activation by looking for a suitable connection that has the 'autoconnect' flag set. This includes the just deactivated connection. So if the connection is set to auto-connect, it will be automatically started on the disconnected device again.
In most cases you may want to use device disconnect command instead.
The connection is identified by its name, UUID or D-Bus path. If ID is ambiguous, a keyword id, uuid, path or apath can be used.
See connection show above for the description of the ID-specifying keywords.
If --wait option is not specified, the default timeout will be 10 seconds.
modify [--temporary] [id | uuid | path] ID { option value | [+|-] value}...
Add, modify or remove properties in the connection profile.
To set the property just specify the property name followed by the value. An empty value ("") removes the property value.
In addition to the properties, you can also use short names for some of the properties. Consult the PROPERTY ALIASES section for details.
If you want to append an item to the existing value, use + prefix for the property name. If you want to remove just one item from container-type property, use - prefix for the property name and specify a value or an zero-based index of the item to remove (or option name for properties with named options) as value. The + and - modifies only have a real effect for multi-value (container) properties like ipv4.dns, ipv4.addresses, bond.options, etc.
See nm-settings(5) for complete reference of setting and property names, their descriptions and default values. The setting and property can be abbreviated provided they are unique.
The connection is identified by its name, UUID or D-Bus path. If ID is ambiguous, a keyword id, uuid or path can be used.
add [save {yes | no}] {option value | [+|-]  value}...
Create a new connection using specified properties.
You need to describe the newly created connections with the property and value pairs. See nm-settings(5) for the complete reference. You can also use the aliases described in PROPERTY ALIASES section. The syntax is the same as of the nmcli connection modify command.
To construct a meaningful connection you at the very least need to set the connection.type property (or use the type alias) to one of known NetworkManager connection types:
The most typical uses are described in the EXAMPLES section.
Aside from the properties and values two special options are accepted:
Controls whether the connection should be persistent, i.e. NetworkManager should store it on disk (default: yes).
If a single -- argument is encountered it is ignored. This is for compatibility with older versions on nmcli.
edit {[id | uuid | pathID | [ type type] [con-name name] }
Edit an existing connection or add a new one, using an interactive editor.
The existing connection is identified by its name, UUID or D-Bus path. If ID is ambiguous, a keyword id, uuid, or path can be used. See connection show above for the description of the ID-specifying keywords. Not providing an ID means that a new connection will be added.
The interactive editor will guide you through the connection editing and allow you to change connection parameters according to your needs by means of a simple menu-driven interface. The editor indicates what settings and properties can be modified and provides in-line help.
Available options:
type of the new connection; valid types are the same as for connection add command.
name for the new connection. It can be changed later in the editor.
See also nm-settings(5) for all NetworkManager settings and property names, and their descriptions; and nmcli-examples(7) for sample editor sessions.
clone [--temporary] [id | uuid | path] ID new_name
Clone a connection. The connection to be cloned is identified by its name, UUID or D-Bus path. If ID is ambiguous, a keyword id, uuid or path can be used. See connection show above for the description of the ID-specifying keywords. new_name is the name of the new cloned connection. The new connection will be the exact copy except the ( new_name) and connection.uuid (generated) properties.
The new connection profile will be saved as persistent unless --temporary option is specified, in which case the new profile won't exist after NetworkManager restart.
delete [id | uuid | path] ID...
Delete a configured connection. The connection to be deleted is identified by its name, UUID or D-Bus path. If ID is ambiguous, a keyword id, uuid or path can be used. See connection show above for the description of the ID-specifying keywords.
If --wait option is not specified, the default timeout will be 10 seconds.
monitor [id | uuid | path] ID...
Monitor connection profile activity. This command prints a line whenever the specified connection changes. The connection to be monitored is identified by its name, UUID or D-Bus path. If ID is ambiguous, a keyword id, uuid or path can be used. See connection show above for the description of the ID-specifying keywords.
Monitors all connection profiles in case none is specified. The command terminates when all monitored connections disappear. If you want to monitor connection creation consider using the global monitor with nmcli monitor command.
Reload all connection files from disk. NetworkManager does not monitor changes to connection files by default. So you need to use this command in order to tell NetworkManager to re-read the connection profiles from disk when a change was made to them. However, the auto-loading feature can be enabled and then NetworkManager will reload connection files any time they change (monitor-connection-files=true in NetworkManager.conf(5)).
load filename...
Load/reload one or more connection files from disk. Use this after manually editing a connection file to ensure that NetworkManager is aware of its latest state.
import [--temporary] type type file  file
Import an external/foreign configuration as a NetworkManager connection profile. The type of the input file is specified by type option.
Only VPN configurations are supported at the moment. The configuration is imported by NetworkManager VPN plugins. type values are the same as for vpn-type option in nmcli connection add. VPN configurations are imported by VPN plugins. Therefore the proper VPN plugin has to be installed so that nmcli could import the data.
The imported connection profile will be saved as persistent unless --temporary option is specified, in which case the new profile won't exist after NetworkManager restart.
export [id | uuid | path] ID [file]
Export a connection.
Only VPN connections are supported at the moment. A proper VPN plugin has to be installed so that nmcli could export a connection. If no file is provided, the VPN configuration data will be printed to standard output.


nmcli device { status | show | set | connect | reapply | modify | disconnect | delete | monitor | wifi | lldp} [ARGUMENTS...]
Show and manage network interfaces.
Print status of devices.
This is the default action if no command is specified to nmcli device.
show [ifname]
Show detailed information about devices. Without an argument, all devices are examined. To get information for a specific device, the interface name has to be provided.
set [ifname] ifname [autoconnect {yes | no}] [ managed {yes | no}]
Set device properties.
connect ifname
Connect the device. NetworkManager will try to find a suitable connection that will be activated. It will also consider connections that are not set to auto connect.
If --wait option is not specified, the default timeout will be 90 seconds.
reapply ifname
Attempt to update device with changes to the currently active connection made since it was last applied.
modify ifname {option value | [+|-] value}...
Modify the settings currently active on the device.
This command lets you do temporary changes to a configuration active on a particular device. The changes are not preserved in the connection profile.
See nm-settings(5) for the list of available properties. Please note that some properties can't be changed on an already connected device.
You can also use the aliases described in PROPERTY ALIASES section. The syntax is the same as of the nmcli connection modify command.
disconnect ifname...
Disconnect a device and prevent the device from automatically activating further connections without user/manual intervention. Note that disconnecting software devices may mean that the devices will disappear.
If --wait option is not specified, the default timeout will be 10 seconds.
delete ifname...
Delete a device. The command removes the interface from the system. Note that this only works for software devices like bonds, bridges, teams, etc. Hardware devices (like Ethernet) cannot be deleted by the command.
If --wait option is not specified, the default timeout will be 10 seconds.
monitor [ifname...]
Monitor device activity. This command prints a line whenever the specified devices change state.
Monitors all devices in case no interface is specified. The monitor terminates when all specified devices disappear. If you want to monitor device addition consider using the global monitor with nmcli monitor command.
wifi [list [ifname ifname] [bssid  BSSID]]
List available Wi-Fi access points. The ifname and bssid options can be used to list APs for a particular interface or with a specific BSSID, respectively.
wifi connect (B)SSID [password password] [ wep-key-type {key | phrase}] [ifname ifname] [ bssid BSSID] [name  name] [private {yes | no}] [hidden {yes | no}]
Connect to a Wi-Fi network specified by SSID or BSSID. The command creates a new connection and then activates it on a device. This is a command-line counterpart of clicking an SSID in a GUI client. The command always creates a new connection and thus it is mainly useful for connecting to new Wi-Fi networks. If a connection for the network already exists, it is better to bring up (activate) the existing connection as follows: nmcli con up id name. Note that only open, WEP and WPA-PSK networks are supported at the moment. It is also supposed that IP configuration is obtained via DHCP.
If --wait option is not specified, the default timeout will be 90 seconds.
Available options are:
password for secured networks (WEP or WPA).
type of WEP secret, either key for ASCII/HEX key or phrase for passphrase.
interface that will be used for activation.
if specified, the created connection will be restricted just for the BSSID.
if specified, the connection will use the name (else NM creates a name itself).
if set to yes, the connection will only be visible to the user who created it. Otherwise the connection is system-wide, which is the default.
set to yes when connecting for the first time to an AP not broadcasting its SSID. Otherwise the SSID would not be found and the connection attempt would fail.
wifi hotspot [ifname ifname] [con-name  name] [ssid SSID] [band {a | bg}] [ channel channel] [password password]
Create a Wi-Fi hotspot. The command creates a hotspot connection profile according to Wi-Fi device capabilities and activates it on the device. The hotspot is secured with WPA if device/driver supports that, otherwise WEP is used. Use connection down or device disconnect to stop the hotspot.
Parameters of the hotspot can be influenced by the optional parameters:
what Wi-Fi device is used.
name of the created hotspot connection profile.
SSID of the hotspot.
Wi-Fi band to use.
Wi-Fi channel to use.
password to use for the created hotspot. If not provided, nmcli will generate a password. The password is either WPA pre-shared key or WEP key.
Note that --show-secrets global option can be used to print the hotspot password. It is useful especially when the password was generated.
wifi rescan [ifname ifname] [ssid SSID...]
Request that NetworkManager immediately re-scan for available access points. NetworkManager scans Wi-Fi networks periodically, but in some cases it can be useful to start scanning manually (e.g. after resuming the computer). By using ssid, it is possible to scan for a specific SSID, which is useful for APs with hidden SSIDs. You can provide multiple ssid parameters in order to scan more SSIDs.
This command does not show the APs, use nmcli device wifi list for that.
lldp [list [ifname ifname]]
Display information about neighboring devices learned through the Link Layer Discovery Protocol (LLDP). The ifname option can be used to list neighbors only for a given interface. The protocol must be enabled in the connection settings.


nmcli agent { secret | polkit | all}
Run nmcli as a NetworkManager secret agent, or polkit agent.
Register nmcli as a NetworkManager secret agent and listen for secret requests. You do usually not need this command, because nmcli can handle secrets when connecting to networks. However, you may find the command useful when you use another tool for activating connections and you do not have a secret agent available (like nm-applet).
Register nmcli as a polkit agent for the user session and listen for authorization requests. You do not usually need this command, because nmcli can handle polkit actions related to NetworkManager operations (when run with --ask). However, you may find the command useful when you want to run a simple text based polkit agent and you do not have an agent of a desktop environment. Note that running this command makes nmcli handle all polkit requests, not only NetworkManager related ones, because only one polkit agent can run for the session.
Runs nmcli as both NetworkManager secret and a polkit agent.


Apart from the property-value pairs, connection add, connection modify and device modify also accept short forms of some properties. They exist for convenience. Some aliases can affect multiple connection properties at once.
The overview of the aliases is below. An actual connection type is used to disambiguate these options from the options of the same name that are valid for multiple connection types (such as mtu).
Table 1. Options for all connections
Alias Property Note
type connection.type This option also accepts values of bond-slave, team-slave and bridge-slave. They create ethernet connection profiles. Their use is discouraged in favor of using a specific type with master option.
con-name When not provided a default name is generated: <type>[-<ifname>][-<num>]).
autoconnect connection.autoconnect  
ifname connection.interface-name A value of * will be interpreted as no value, making the connection profile interface-independent. Note: use quotes around * to suppress shell expansion. For bond, team and bridge connections a default name will be generated if not set.
master connection.master Value specified here will be canonicalized. It can be prefixed with ifname/, uuid/ or id/ to disambiguate it.
slave-type connection.slave-type  
Table 2. PPPoE options
Alias Property
username pppoe.username
password pppoe.password
service pppoe.service
Table 3. Wired Ethernet options
Alias Property
mtu wired.mtu
mac wired.mac-address
cloned-mac wired.cloned-mac-address
Table 4. Infiniband options
Alias Property
mtu infiniband.mtu
mac infiniband.mac-address
transport-mode infiniband.transport-mode
parent infiniband.parent
p-key infiniband.p-key
Table 5. Wi-Fi options
Alias Property
ssid wireless.ssid
mode wireless.mode
mtu wireless.mtu
mac wireless.mac-address
cloned-mac wireless.cloned-mac-address
Table 6. WiMax options
Alias Property
mac wimax.mac-address
Table 7. GSM options
Alias Property
apn gsm.apn
user gsm.username
password gsm.password
Table 8. CDMA options
Alias Property
user cdma.username
password cdma.password
Table 9. Bluetooth options
Alias Property Note
addr bluetooth.bdaddr  
bt-type bluetooth.type Apart from the usual dun and panu options, the values of dun-gsm and dun-cdma can be used for compatibility with older versions. They are equivalent to using dun and setting appropriate gsm.* or cdma.* properties.
Table 10. VLAN options
Alias Property
dev vlan.parent
flags vlan.flags
ingress vlan.ingress-priority-map
egress vlan.egress-priority-map
Table 11. Bonding options
Alias Property Note
mode bond.options Setting each of these adds the option to bond.options property. It's equivalent of using the +bond.options 'option=value' syntax.
Table 12. Team options
Alias Property Note
config team.config Either a filename or a team configuration in JSON format. To enforce one or the other, the value can be prefixed with "file://" or "json://".
Table 13. Team port options
Alias Property Note
config team-port.config Either a filename or a team configuration in JSON format. To enforce one or the other, the value can be prefixed with "file://" or "json://".
Table 14. Bridge options
Alias Property
stp bridge.stp
priority bridge.priority
forward-delay bridge.forward-delay
hello-time bridge.hello-time
max-age bridge.max-age
ageing-time bridge.ageing-time
multicast-snooping bridge.multicast-snooping
mac bridge.mac-address
priority bridge-port.priority
path-cost bridge-port.path-cost
hairpin bridge-port.hairpin-mode
Table 15. VPN options
Alias Property
vpn-type vpn.service-type
user vpn.user-name
Table 16. OLPC Mesh options
Alias Property
ssid olpc-mesh.ssid
dhcp-anycast olpc-mesh.dhcp-anycast-address
Table 17. ADSL options
Alias Property
username adsl.username
protocol adsl.protocol
password adsl.password
encapsulation adsl.encapsulation
Table 18. MACVLAN options
Alias Property
dev macvlan.parent
mode macvlan.mode
tap macvlan.tap
Table 19. VxLAN options
Alias Property
remote vxlan.remote
dev vxlan.parent
local vxlan.local
source-port-min vxlan.source-port-min
source-port-max vxlan.source-port-max
destination-port vxlan.destination-port
Table 20. Tun options
Alias Property
mode tun.mode
owner tun.owner
pi tun.pi
vnet-hdr tun.vnet-hdr
multi-queue tun.multi-queue
Table 21. IP tunneling options
Alias Property
mode ip-tunnel.mode
local ip-tunnel.local
remote ip-tunnel.remote
dev ip-tunnel.parent
Table 22. IPv4 options
Alias Property Note
ip4 ipv4.addresses ipv4.method This option can be specified multiple times. It's equivalent of using +ipv4.addresses syntax and setting ipv4.method to manual.
gw4 ipv4.gateway  
Table 23. IPv6 options
Alias Property Note
ip6 ipv6.addresses ipv6.method This option can be specified multiple times. It's equivalent of using +ipv6.addresses syntax and setting ipv6.method to manual.
gw6 ipv6.gateway  
Table 24. Proxy options
Alias Property Note
  proxy.pac-script Read the java script pac-script from file or pass it directly on the command line. Prefix the value with "file://" or "js://" to force one or the other.


nmcli's behavior is affected by the following environment variables.
If set to a non-empty string value, it overrides the values of all the other internationalization variables.
Determines the locale to be used for internationalized messages.
Provides a default value for the internationalization variables that are unset or null.


Be aware that nmcli is localized and that is why the output depends on your environment. This is important to realize especially when you parse the output.
Call nmcli as LC_ALL=C nmcli to be sure the locale is set to C while executing in a script.
LC_ALL, LC_MESSAGES, LANG variables specify the LC_MESSAGES locale category (in that order), which determines the language that nmcli uses for messages. The C locale is used if none of these variables are set, and this locale uses English messages.


nmcli exits with status 0 if it succeeds, a value greater than 0 is returned if an error occurs.
Success – indicates the operation succeeded.
Unknown or unspecified error.
Invalid user input, wrong nmcli invocation.
Timeout expired (see --wait option).
Connection activation failed.
Connection deactivation failed.
Disconnecting device failed.
Connection deletion failed.
NetworkManager is not running.
Connection, device, or access point does not exist.
When used with --complete-args option, a file name is expected to follow.


This section presents various examples of nmcli usage. If you want even more, please refer to nmcli-examples(7) manual page.
nmcli -t -f RUNNING general
tells you whether NetworkManager is running or not.
nmcli -t -f STATE general
shows the overall status of NetworkManager.
nmcli radio wifi off
switches Wi-Fi off.
nmcli connection show
lists all connections NetworkManager has.
nmcli -p -m multiline -f all con show
shows all configured connections in multi-line mode.
nmcli connection show --active
lists all currently active connections.
nmcli -f name,autoconnect c s
shows all connection profile names and their auto-connect property.
nmcli -p connection show "My default em1"
shows details for "My default em1" connection profile.
nmcli --show-secrets connection show "My Home WiFi"
shows details for "My Home WiFi" connection profile with all passwords. Without --show-secrets option, secrets would not be displayed.
nmcli -f active connection show "My default em1"
shows details for "My default em1" active connection, like IP, DHCP information, etc.
nmcli -f profile con s "My wired connection"
shows static configuration details of the connection profile with "My wired connection" name.
nmcli -p con up "My wired connection" ifname eth0
activates the connection profile with name "My wired connection" on interface eth0. The -p option makes nmcli show progress of the activation.
nmcli con up 6b028a27-6dc9-4411-9886-e9ad1dd43761 ap 00:3A:98:7C:42:D3
connects the Wi-Fi connection with UUID 6b028a27-6dc9-4411-9886-e9ad1dd43761 to the AP with BSSID 00:3A:98:7C:42:D3.
nmcli device status
shows the status for all devices.
nmcli dev disconnect em2
disconnects a connection on interface em2 and marks the device as unavailable for auto-connecting. As a result, no connection will automatically be activated on the device until the device's 'autoconnect' is set to TRUE or the user manually activates a connection.
nmcli -f GENERAL,WIFI-PROPERTIES dev show wlan0
shows details for wlan0 interface; only GENERAL and WIFI-PROPERTIES sections will be shown.
nmcli -f CONNECTIONS device show wlp3s0
shows all available connection profiles for your Wi-Fi interface wlp3s0.
nmcli dev wifi
lists available Wi-Fi access points known to NetworkManager.
nmcli dev wifi con "Cafe Hotspot 1" password caffeine name "My cafe"
creates a new connection named "My cafe" and then connects it to "Cafe Hotspot 1" SSID using password "caffeine". This is mainly useful when connecting to "Cafe Hotspot 1" for the first time. Next time, it is better to use nmcli con up id "My cafe" so that the existing connection profile can be used and no additional is created.
nmcli -s dev wifi hotspot con-name QuickHotspot
creates a hotspot profile and connects it. Prints the hotspot password the user should use to connect to the hotspot from other devices.
nmcli dev modify em1 ipv4.method shared
starts IPv4 connection sharing using em1 device. The sharing will be active until the device is disconnected.
nmcli dev modify em1 ipv6.address 2001:db8::a:bad:c0de
temporarily adds an IP address to a device. The address will be removed when the same connection is activated again.
nmcli connection add type ethernet autoconnect no ifname eth0
non-interactively adds an Ethernet connection tied to eth0 interface with automatic IP configuration (DHCP), and disables the connection's autoconnect flag.
nmcli c a ifname Maxipes-fik type vlan dev eth0 id 55
non-interactively adds a VLAN connection with ID 55. The connection will use eth0 and the VLAN interface will be named Maxipes-fik.
nmcli c a ifname eth0 type ethernet ipv4.method disabled ipv6.method link-local
non-interactively adds a connection that will use eth0 Ethernet interface and only have an IPv6 link-local address configured.
nmcli connection edit ethernet-em1-2
edits existing "ethernet-em1-2" connection in the interactive editor.
nmcli connection edit type ethernet con-name "yet another Ethernet connection"
adds a new Ethernet connection in the interactive editor.
nmcli con mod ethernet-2 connection.autoconnect no
modifies 'autoconnect' property in the 'connection' setting of 'ethernet-2' connection.
nmcli con mod "Home Wi-Fi" wifi.mtu 1350
modifies 'mtu' property in the 'wifi' setting of 'Home Wi-Fi' connection.
nmcli con mod em1-1 ipv4.method manual ipv4.addr ",,"
sets manual addressing and the addresses in em1-1 profile.
nmcli con modify ABC +ipv4.dns
appends a Google public DNS server to DNS servers in ABC profile.
nmcli con modify ABC -ipv4.addresses ""
removes the specified IP address from (static) profile ABC.
nmcli con import type openvpn file ~/Downloads/frootvpn.ovpn
imports an OpenVPN configuration to NetworkManager.
nmcli con export corp-vpnc /home/joe/corpvpn.conf
exports NetworkManager VPN profile corp-vpnc as standard Cisco (vpnc) configuration.


nmcli accepts abbreviations, as long as they are a unique prefix in the set of possible options. As new options get added, these abbreviations are not guaranteed to stay unique. For scripting and long term compatibility it is therefore strongly advised to spell out the full option names.


There are probably some bugs. If you find a bug, please report it to — product NetworkManager.


nmcli-examples(7), nm-online(1), NetworkManager(8), NetworkManager.conf(5), nm-settings(5), nm-applet(1), nm-connection-editor(1).
NetworkManager 1.6.2