Open Thinkering


Tag: load balancer

Successfully combining home VDSL and 4G+ connections

This is an addendum to my previous post documenting my attempts to replace VDSL home broadband with a 5GEE router. I’ve spent the last month tinkering with our home network, which has infuriated the other three members of my family. Now, however, I think I’ve cracked it. I’m combining VDSL and 4G+ using a load balancer.

VDSL and 4G+ connected to load balancer, in turn connected to mesh network router with satellites.

After trying two other not so good LTE routers, I’m now using a ZTE MF286D with a SMARTY unlimited data SIM card in it. (As SMARTY runs on the 3 network, there’s no CGNAT to have to work around.)

Our existing VDSL connection (A&A) uses a Draytek Vigor 130 modem. So I’m connecting both it and the ZTE 4G+ router to a TP-Link TL-R480T+ load balancer. This, in turn, is connected to our existing Netgear Orbi mesh network with three satellites. I’m running that in access point mode.

I have no qualifications in networking, nor do I really understand what I’m doing. Instead, I’m cobbling together bits of information from forum posts, technical articles, and product reviews. That’s why it’s taken a month.

Where we’ve ended up, though, is with a connection that has a ping of less than 20ms, a download speed of around 90Mbps, and an upload speed of around 40Mbps. For context, that means the ping has stayed the same while the download and upload speed have doubled.

I’m happy. Could I get a faster connection? Probably. And altogether I’m paying £70/month for the privilege of a connection that’s slower than some people get for half the price. But a good internet connection is important for two home workers Chez Belshaw, and I can only do what I can do. So, for now at least, I’m stopping my network experimentation here!