Combining two ISPs in one router (or two)?

I don't know anything about routers where we have two ISP's one of which sucks most of the time but their power stays on strong when the PG&E power goes off (which is a LOT in the Santa Cruz Mountains of California).

The other ISP is great most of the time, but he doesn't have battery backup so when the power goes off, their relative strengths cross.

Meanwhile if I subscribe to both, I kind of want to have both when all is well in PG&E land. There are others in the same boat, so that's why I ask.

My question is if I add the second ISP, folks tell me I should set up two separate routers, or, get a dual-wan router.

How well does the dual wan router setup work? Does it combine the bandwidth or just one at a time?

Which would you choose if you have the choice of two routers or a dual-wan router (or does it not matter)?

Any experience you can share?

Reply to
Robin Goodfellow
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I know you don't read my posts, but I'll still put this out there.

There are commercial products that work, but I would recommend a homebrew solution based on pfSense. You can set up dual WAN connections, each to its own ISP, where both ISPs are used as long as both are available, but if either ISP goes down pfSense will automatically use the one remaining ISP. Each ISP is monitored, via ping to a WAN IP, so if ping is successful the ISP is assumed to be available.

Note that, due to the nature of TCP connections, WAN failover won't always be entirely seamless, so expect to reestablish a connection in some cases.

To get started, you need a PC with 3 NICs, two for WAN and one for LAN, and the free pfSense software. One example of the dual-WAN configuration is here:

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TIP: You can configure "dual-WAN + 1 LAN" with just two NICS or even with just one NIC, but the config guide above is written with 3 NICs in mind. Separate NICs for each of the 3 networks will be easier to set up.

Reply to
Char Jackson

IMHO the simplest and most reliable way to do this is to just get an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) for your non-battery router.

I've been doing this for years and it's quite reliable.

A cheap 350VA is plenty good.

Reply to

And if the ISP's kit in the street loses power, what does your router talk to?

Reply to
Andy Burns

Exactly. A UPS doesn't solve the problem.

In 2004-2006 I had 6 WAN connections, two each to three ISPs, but I didn't have link monitoring or automatic failover configured at the time. I was only doing it to get additional download bandwidth. For that, it worked very well.

Reply to
Char Jackson

Andy Burns asked

I asked some neighbors who sent me the following information. What do you think of this added set of suggestions from two neighbors?

Neighbor 1: I use the Peplink Balance Pro 30.

I did have two units fail and replaced under RMA. Not something I would expect in this price/quality range. The third one is going on a year plus and has not had an issues.

I currently have 3 WAN connections. It works as advertised. The failover takes up to 10 seconds and is annoying, but does fail over.

Banding of the WAN connections is not available w/o a similar router at the other end (useful for office to office comms, but not particularly for a homeowner).

Neighbor 2: Actually, i believe you can bond them via the SpeedFusion feature with the Peplink Balance 30. It's an add'l license you have to purchase.

Also, in the Peplink Balance 30, you can adjust the failover time AND you can also set up alerts so you get an email when one of the connections goes offline.

Here is the link about SpeedFusion:

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Reply to
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