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I was wondering how to connect to wireless in a Linux command line environment -> I'm looking for a ncurses like program to do this, not a bunch of commands and files to edit. Is there one?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

You could use wicd rather than network manager to control your network interfaces. It has an ncurses GUI available.

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Thanks dude, just what I was looking for. – kylehotchkiss Jul 25 '10 at 21:01

Your question is a bit unclear. Do you want to connect to a wireless network? There's a standard tool for this on Ubuntu, the Network Manager. See e.g. for details.

If you cannot use X (which Network Manager needs), you should also be able to set up networking manually, the way Debian does it. Debian offers several mechanisms to do this. The easiest is to just put a block for your interface into /etc/network/interfaces. Sample block for a WLAN network interface:

iface wlan0 inet dhcp
        wpa-ssid MyNetWork
        # plaintext passphrase
        wpa-psk plaintextsecret

Using the config above, you can then type (as root)

ifup wlan0

to activate the interface (ifdown wlan0 to deactivate).

See for more information.

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Just to clarify -- NM does not need X. nm-applet needs X. You can easily run NM with just the daemon and it will connect to any system connections it has defined. There are also a few CLI tools for interacting with NM – Daenyth Jul 25 '10 at 19:59
@Daenyth: Thanks; I wasn't aware of this. – sleske Jul 25 '10 at 20:04
Why the downvote? The answer is correct (though it may not be the best way to go). – sleske Jul 26 '10 at 13:15

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