Ubuntu – How to merge multiple Internet connections into one


My PC has a total of 4 NICs, 2 wired Gigabit Ethernet network cards and also 2 wireless network cards. (One Broadcom with proprietary drivers and Ralink with open source software, which works much better than Broadcom.)

My cellphone can share its connection wirelessly to my PC, but I also have a wired Internet connection. So I have multiple Internet connections to access the Internet. How can I merge 2 or more connections together and balance them to enjoy one unified Internet experience that it is the sum of all Internet connections connected to it.

For example if I have a modem with an Internet connection of 1024kB/s and another one that offers 512kB/s and one small one that offers 128kB/s, after load balancing and merging all connections (Bonding or Teaming), I could download at a speed of 1664kB/s using all 3 Internet connections as one for example.

This question has always intrigued me.

Best Answer

I do something like that at work using Ubuntu 11.04. We run the Shorewall firewall configuration tool, which besides being excellent at its job, provides some rudimentary multiple ISP routing tools which might fit your needs. You can find some docs about it here: http://www.shorewall.net/MultiISP.html

What it comes down to though, is you can't use multiple ISPs for a single connection... things aren't that simple. The best you can do is try to direct new connections evenly between the different providers.

It is a complex problem. You will probably end up beating your head against the wall (I certainly did) before you are done debugging every problem. So, as other posters have suggested, you might be wise to carefully consider how strong your desire is.

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