Help choosing a device

I have a vacation home (where I try to get work done) in rural Maine; I’ve been suffering with semi-reliable slow DSL for about 10 years. Good latency but we get about 700k down and 100-200K up. I’m 18000 feet from the telco equipment.

We just got Starlink and when it’s running it’s fantastic, but there are a lot of dropouts.

Right now I’ve got my Mitel IP phones going to the DSL (using a Sonicwall rule) and all other traffic on Starlink. Unfortunately I get drops in the DSL connection. One day I can be on the phone calls all day with no problems, the next day I’m getting dropped every 3rd call.

On the otherside, Streaming with Starlink is great for 20/40/50 minutes, then it stops for 30 seconds and then comes back. It seems like something like a Peplink device would fix this, I just can’t figure out which one and what services and what the cost would be. Ideally I’d like to get rid of the DSL but I think it’s good to have the backup.

Any help would be appreciated.

Here’s what I do, also in rural Maine (Waldo county - Hi, neighbor) using Starlink and a local WISP:

I use a Balance 30 LTE running the special “Starlink firmware” 8.1.1S118, Build 5100, with Starlink as the primary WAN, and Redzone as WAN2 (your DSL would go here). Both are set to "Always On / Priority 1.

I use SpeedFusion Cloud to bond these two connections together, using the New York location. I set SpeedFusion Cloud to be active only for Teams and Zoom, as we use the MS phone system over Teams as our company phone system across several locations. You would need to make sure your VOIP phone is set to use SpeedFusion Cloud, in your case (perhaps active for that IP address on the LAN). BTW, I purchased only 500GB (the $20 plan) and it has lasted since March, easily.

With this system, I can go weeks without dropping a call, using Teams or Zoom for hours most weekdays. The only change I would recommend is that a Balance20X might be a better choice than my Balance 30LTE, which I purchased before we had Starlink, when I needed a cellular backup. That’s now not needed at all, as our reliability is better than my employees in other states who use Fios and Verizon’s stock equipment.

One thing I would not do is have SFC active all the time, for your work machine, unless your Starlink is really having lots of interruptions that last more than a few seconds. That would eat through your SFC data, and SFC is nit really needed for anything but VOIP and Teams/Zoom, for Starlink systems that have few obstructions.

Good luck with your system. I think you’ll find that Starlink with a decent “other” backup is a great connection that enables living where we love to live, while still working in an information-based world.

I’m in Stow, near New Hampshire (Fryeburg/Lovell, Kezar Lake). Can I use the Balance 20 between my sonicwall and the WAN so I still have the VPN to my office and all the rules? I need two WAN ports since they are both on ethernet. Does it have that.

How would I set the Mitel phones to use the cloud connection if they are behind the Sonicwall? Perhaps I create a network and leave them off the Peplink, then keep the sonicwall for my work devices and the rest of the house.

Can the SpeedFusion help me traverse back into the house with port forwarding? I’m playing around with ngrok for that right now.

In a perfect world I think I would just put the Peplink in front of the Sonicwall and have it take care of all of the traffic so my VPN to the office would work better (downloaded a large file takes forever on the DSL and drops all the time). Right now we aren’t here for more than 3-5 weeks in a year, and I was paying nearly $150/week with my old Hughes connection.

The Balance 20x does allow for two WAN connections. As for the rest…

Sorry, but I don’t know anything about Sonicwall devices and am rather unintelligent when it comes to network configuration. In fact, my first call this morning is to my IT consultant to have home configure a new Unifi switch (bought it from him and regretting it, at this point, wishing I had stayed with Peplink for that, but he had it on hand when I needed it). Others here can likely help, though. I’d create a new thread with a descriptive title about the sonicwall-Balance 20x configuration.