How to forcefully mark down pfSense Gateway as down

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I have two internet connections (fiber and 4G LTE) configured in load balanced mode using pfSense FreeBSD based firewall. One of my wan connection is running out of bandwidth quota. How can I force and turn off this interface to save bandwidth until month end and enable it again from next billing cycle?

You can force gateway to be considered down and removed temporarily from load balanced internet connection. You do not have to make any other changes to the firewall. This feature is inbuilt directly into pfSense itself.


Mark Gateway as down in pfSense

First, login to your admin interface.

Next visit System > Routing

Fig.01: Routing
Fig.01: Routing

Click on Edit gateway icon for “A_4G_WAN” (4G LTE gateway which is running out of bandwidth) > scroll down and select “Mark Gateway as Down” option:

Fig.02: Mark Gateway as Down
Fig.02: Mark Gateway as Down

Click on the “Save” button > Apply changes.

That is all. Now your 4G internet connection disabled, and your firewall should work in failover mode over other internet connection. To verify new settings click on Status > Gateways:

Fig.03: Gateways status
Fig.03: Gateways status

You can reverse force state gateway anytime and bring back the internet interface into production again by visiting System > Routing > Edit Gateways button > Remove “Mark Gateway as Down” option > Save > Apply changes.

I hope this simple technique may help someone to save money or some other purposes as per your local requirements without removing load-balanced links.

Related: How to configure pfSense as multi wan (DUAL WAN) load balance failover


Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.

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