Ubuntu is not seeing my dial-up connection as a network connection
I am using Ubuntu 12.04, and I connect to the internet via a dial-up connection (using Gnome PPP). Everything is working fine for browsing the web. However, I have noticed that the system doesn't think that I am connected to a network. As I mentioned, this is not a problem for browsing. But some programs, notably Evolution and Empathy, apparently look to the system for a network connection and Ubuntu is telling them there is none. What I am trying to say is that, for example, Evolution thinks that I am offline when I am actually online through the PPP connection.
Also, the update manager itself thinks that there is no network connection because it has a message that says I cannot download updates because I am not connected to a network. However, this is not a problem because if I click install it goes ahead and downloads the updates. But I cannot get Evolution or Empathy to work.
My question is this: Is there any way to make the system understand that I am connected to a network? Is there any way to link my dial-up connection to one of the other types of network connections that Ubuntu recognizes? It seems that there must be a way somehow to do this.