I am working on an application that sends a reconfiguration command to its access point. The access point should reconfigure itself from being protected by WPA2 to being an open network. The access point must reboot itself in order for the configuration to take.

My issue is that after the AP has rebooted, no matter what I do NetworkManager still shows the AP as having WPA2 security. I know that it does not because I can connect to it without entering a password. I have also confirmed in the configuration of the AP that it is not using any security. The only way I have been able to resolve this is by either bringing the radio down and then up and reissuing a scan through nmcli or by restarting NetworkManager.

Both of these options are less than ideal in my application. I have reissued a scan in iwlist scan and wpa_cli scan and it does show the AP without security.

I see this in my VM which is running Ubuntu 16.04 and my Debian Stretch dev machine.

I am trying to understand where NetworkManager is receiving it's list of APs, assumed it was iwlist or wpa_cli, and why it seems to be caching that security type.

1 Answer 1


NetworkManager obtains its scanlist from wpa_sypplicant and caches it. Depending on circumstances, it however only scans infrequently or when a client requests it. The reason is that scanning degrades your WiFi throughput and latancy.

Try trigger a rescan, for example via nmcli device wifi rescan.

The same is of course possible via D-Bus directly or libnm API.

  • I did try issuing the nmcli device wifi rescan without success. I had to resort to toggling the radio on and off for this issue. I ssuspect a deeper issue possibly with wpa_supplicant or the driver for the r8723bs.
    – Matt Minga
    Oct 1, 2018 at 18:41

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