Which MPTCP/MLVPN/similar tech Routers Exist?

I am looking to aggregate per-TCP connection throughput across a variety of uplinks, from VDSL to Starlink to LTE.

A hard requirement is that the necessary offsite high-throughput aggregation server runs on my own hardware under my sole administrative control. No cloud-based solutions are under consideration. In addtion, I want a GUI. No futzing with obscure config files.

Until a few hours ago, I was aware of only one technical solution that would meet my requirements. Multipath TCP (MPTCP) as specfied in RFC8684.

I am aware of only one GUI-based router project that implements MPTCP: the aptly-named OpenMPTCProuter.

One big plus in my book is that the GitHub stats show this project is exceedingly actively maintained and for quite a while already.

One minus is that I’ve been a pfSense user since pfSense forked from Monowall. pfSense is the only router/firewall that I feel somewhat reasonably qualified to administer. OpenMPTCProuter is based on OpenWrt. I am not eager to learn administering a different type of router, given how long it took me to get reasonably proficient with pfSense and the likely complexity of a migration.

The second technology that at first glance appears to have similar goals as MPTCP is MultiLink Virtual Public Network (MLVPN), which I first heard mentioned today and so far know nothing about.

Until a few hours ago, my plan had been to wait for pfSense to implement MPTCP and then use the pfSense implementation. Alas, I misread the pfSense roadmap and erroeously believed that the MPTCP feature is scheduled for inclusion in pfSense 2.6. That is not the case.

My questions therfore are:

  • Are there other technologies in addition to MPTCP and perhaps MLVPN that I am not yet aware of that I should look at that can give me remote site-to-aggregator control on my own hardware?
  • Are you aware of any other products than OpenMPTCProuter that implement MPTCP or equivalent in a open source format?

I am always willing to financially contribute to an open source project from which I benefit significantly. Signing up for tech support for critical items, such as my router, would fall into that category and indeed I am paying for a pfSense tech support subscription today.

For smaller conveniences, I will at least send the project a few bucks. I am happy being generous. But I won’t be held hostage. I would not consider a closed source or mandatory subscription solution.

Suggestions/alternative solutions to look at /any advice at all is much appreciated.

Thanks,
–Lucky

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Can’t really offer anything useful here other than to say i’ve tried something vaguely similar to this once? I read this and remembered the time I tried it.

I wanted multi-wan access with either channel bonding or at least load balancing at a time when that sort of thing was out of reach, basically I was looking to go beyond the limits of local DSL or cable but couldn’t afford a T1-T3 line and (those didn’t exist locally either) but I could afford multiples of either ADSL or Cable.
Load balancing across multi-wans with TCP connections presented some challenges that proved to be out of reach for my use-case.

Anyway this seems complex enough you ought to consider hiring Lawrence to at least do a consult. :slight_smile:

https://multipath-tcp.org/pmwiki.php/Users/ConfigureRouting

OpenWRT mentions some possible MPTCP around 2018 but said it wasn’t part of the official at the time of posting. I’m not really a fan of this platform.

MPTCP is either integrated into the linux kernel or is offered as an option but not active by default if already in there. I’m sure you are aware of this.

Well, OpenMPTCProuter claims to cover the use cases you and I have in mind. Looking at the sheer number of GitHub checkins by the author, this is a serious project. I emailed him asking him if he offers paid suppport or knows of someone qualified who does. No on both fronts. He is set with his day job.

I don’t know the first thing about OpenWrt. Been a pfSense guy throughout. Switching to a different router platform that I know nothing about and given the complexity of my existing setup seems daunting. But I do want MPTCP very badly and pfSense isn’t going to give it to me in any defined future.

@LTS_Tom, is this your outfit’s kind of gig? I suspect the answer is no, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.

–Lucky

We don’t do coding for this or have any interest in the project. Aggregating bandwidth requires the extra setup of having a cloud server somewhere to unite the pipe back together making it a less than ideal solution cost wise which is probably why it’s not a more popular implementation.

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Thanks for the quick response. I didn’t expect this to be your cup of tea.

I already have two hobby servers with ample specs racked at two coop colos with fast uplinks, so stiching the TCP connection together at an aggregation site comes at no cost to me. Making the conept quite attractive given the mediocre to poor connectivity and reliability of the various uplinks at my house. Funny enough, the Starlink beta that I just joined performs the best out of the mix, which I was not expecting.

Your up-time and bandwidth on starlink will vary.

You could always combine OpenMPTCProuter and pfSense, but depending on your requirements the project might not be quite production ready yet.

OMR and pfSense

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