Merge Two Internet Connection from Different ISP


This document describes a configuration for a Cisco IOS® router to connect a network to the Internet with Network AddressTranslation (NAT) through two ISP connections. The NAT of the Cisco IOS Software can distribute subsequent TCP connections and UDP sessions over multiple network connections, if equal-cost routes to a given destination are available.



This document assumes you start to work with LAN and WAN connections, and does not provide configuration or troubleshooting background to establish initial connectivity. This document does not describe a mechanism to differentiate between the routes; thus, there is no way to prefer a more-desirable connection over a less-desirable connection.

Components Used

This configuration was developed with the use of a Cisco 1811 router with Cisco IOS Software Release 12.4(15)T3 Advanced IP Services software. If a different software version is used, some features are possibly not available, or the configuration commands cab differ from those shown in this document. Similar configuration should be available on all Cisco IOS router platforms, although the interface configuration likely varies between different platforms.
The information in this document was created from the devices in a specific lab environment. All of the devices used in this document started with a cleared (default) configuration. If your network is live, make sure that you understand the potential impact of any command.
Refer to Cisco Technical Tips Conventions for more information on document conventions.
You need to add policy-based routing for specific traffic to be sure that it always uses one ISP connection. Examples of traffic that require this behavior include IPsec VPN clients, VoIP telephony traffic, and any other traffic that should always use only one of the ISP connection options to prefer the same IP address, higher speed, or lower latency on the connection.
In this section, you are presented with the information to configure the features described in this document.
Note: Use the Command Lookup Tool ( registered customers only) in order to find more information on the commands used in this document.

Network Diagram
This document uses this network setup:

This configuration example describes an access router that uses a DHCP-configured IP connection to one ISP, which is shown by FastEthernet 0, and a PPPoE connection over the other ISP connection. The connection types have no particular impact on the configuration, although some connections types can hinder the usability of this configuration in specific failure scenarios, particularly in cases where IP connectivity over an Ethernet-connected WAN service is used, for example, a cable modem or DSL services where an additional device terminates the WAN connectivity and provides Ethernet hand-off to the Cisco IOS router. In cases where static IP addressing is applied, as opposed to DHCP-assigned addresses or PPPoE, and a WAN failure occurs such that the Ethernet port still maintains the Ethernet link to the WAN connectivity device, the router continues to attempt to load-balance connectivity across both the good and bad WAN connections. If your deployment requires that inactive routes be removed from load-balancing, refer to the configuration provided in the document, IOS NAT Load-Balancing with Optimized Edge Routing For Two Internet Connections, that describes the addition of Optimized Edge Routing in order to monitor route validity.

This document uses this configuration:

interface FastEthernet0
 ip address dhcp
 ip nat outside
 ip virtual-reassembly
interface FastEthernet1
 no ip address
 pppoe enable
 no cdp enable
interface FastEthernet2
 no cdp enable
interface Vlan1
 description LAN Interface
 ip address
 ip nat inside
 ip virtual-reassembly
 ip tcp adjust-mss 1452
!---Define LAN-facing interfaces with "ip nat inside".
Interface Dialer 0
 description PPPoX dialer
 ip address negotiated
 ip nat outside
 ip virtual-reassembly
 ip tcp adjust-mss
!---Define ISP-facing interfaces with "ip nat outside".
ip route dialer 0 track 123
ip nat inside source route-map fixed-nat interface Dialer0 overload
ip nat inside source route-map dhcp-nat interface FastEthernet0 overload
!--- Configure NAT overload (PAT) in order to use route-maps.
access-list 110 permit ip any
!--- Define ACLs for traffic that are NATed to 
!--- the ISP connections.
route-map fixed-nat permit 10
 match ip address 110
 match interface Dialer0
route-map dhcp-nat permit 10
 match ip address 110
 match interface FastEthernet0
!--- Route-maps associate NAT ACLs with NAT outside on 
!--- the ISP-facing interfaces.


Use this section in order to confirm that your configuration works properly.
The Output Interpreter Tool ( registered customers only) (OIT) supports certain show commands. Use the OIT to view an analysis of show command output.
  • show ip nat translation—Displays NAT activity between NAT inside hosts and NAT outside hosts. This command provides verification that inside hosts are being translated to both NAT outside addresses.
    Router#show ip nat translation
    Pro Inside global      Inside local       Outside local      Outside global
  • show ip route—Verifies that multiple routes to the Internet are available.
    Router#show ip route
    Codes: C - connected, S - static, R - RIP, M - mobile, B - BGP
           D - EIGRP, EX - EIGRP external, O - OSPF, IA - OSPF inter area 
           N1 - OSPF NSSA external type 1, N2 - OSPF NSSA external type 2
           E1 - OSPF external type 1, E2 - OSPF external type 2
           i - IS-IS, su - IS-IS summary, L1 - IS-IS level-1, L2 - IS-IS level-2
           ia - IS-IS inter area, * - candidate default, U - per-user static route
           o - ODR, P - periodic downloaded static route
    Gateway of last resort is to network
    C is directly connected, Vlan1 is subnetted, 2 subnets
    C is directly connected, FastEthernet4
    C is directly connected, Vlan106
    S* [1/0] via
                   [1/0] via

Use this section to troubleshoot your configuration.
After you configure the Cisco IOS router with NAT, if the connections do not work, be sure that:
  • NAT is applied appropriately on outside and inside interfaces.
  • NAT configuration is complete, and ACLs reflect the traffic that must be NATed.
  • Multiple routes to the Internet/WAN are available.