I'm trying to setup two network profiles in Centos. One for at home, one for at work. The home profile has a fixed IP address, fixed gateway and DNS server addresses. The work profile depends on DHCP.

I've created a 'home' and a 'work' directory in /etc/sysconfig/networking/profiles. Each has the following files containing the proper configuration:

> -rw-r--r-- 2 root root  422 Apr 17 20:17 hosts
> -rw-r--r-- 5 root root  223 Apr 17 20:18 ifcfg-eth0
> -rw-r--r-- 1 root root  101 Apr 17 20:17 network
> -rw-r--r-- 2 root root   73 Apr 17 20:18 resolv.conf

There was already a 'default' profile, which contains the same files.

Then I issued these commands:

system-config-network-cmd --profile work --activate
service network restart

I was expecting these files to get copied from the profiles/work directory to /etc/sysconfig/ and /etc/sysconfig/networking-scripts. And most files do get copied, except for ifcfg-eth0.

Stangely enough that files seems to be overwritten with the current settings when I issue system-config-network-cmd. The other files are also touched, but there contents stays in tact.

The system is Centos 5.7 running on a virtual pc within a windows 7 machine. Here is the output for ifconfig:

# ifconfig
eth0      Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 00:03:FF:6F:2E:AB
          inet addr:  Bcast:  Mask:
          inet6 addr: fe80::203:ffff:fe6f:2eab/64 Scope:Link
          RX packets:4199761 errors:7 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:1733750 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000
          RX bytes:2316624688 (2.1 GiB)  TX bytes:415533386 (396.2 MiB)

Can someone tell what I'm missing here?

  • What version of CentOS is this? Are both home/work connections wired/wireless/one of each?
    – George M
    Commented Apr 19, 2012 at 13:40
  • Centos 5.7 final. Both are wireless connections in reality but the system is running on a virtual machine hosted on windows 7 so the adapter may in fact be mapped to a wired virtual adapter, I'm not sure. I've added ifconfig output to the original post, maybe that helps?
    – Leven
    Commented Apr 20, 2012 at 9:18
  • 1
    What VM are you using (vmware, virtual pc etc) and what have you got the virtual adapter set to (bridged, NAT, Host only etc)?
    – user17841
    Commented May 24, 2012 at 16:03

2 Answers 2


As it follows from the RedHat's documentation on networking profiles, you should not use base interface name (eth0) for profile interfaces, but have one called as eth0_work and so on. BTW, you don't need to restart network configuration, since profile switching handles it by its own. An example:

# system-config-network-cmd --profile foobar --activate
Network device deactivating...
Deactivating network device eth0, please wait...
Network device activating...
Activating network device eth0_foobar, please wait...

Why use profile here ?

Suppose eth0 was the home line , static IP , edit:



And for the other work line , use DHCP , edit:



And ensure the network service starts on boot.

e.g if you run the service at level 2 , 3 , you can do:

chkconfig --level 23 network on

Reboot to see changes.

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