Upgrade from 2.3.5 to 2.4.4 borked PPoE connection with CenturyLink

  • Hardware: SG-4860-1U

    No problem pfSense 2.4.x PPPoE connection to CenturyLink for past 1.5 years. Upgrade to 2.4.4 and reboot now results in an endless cycle of messages in Status/System Logs/PPP as follows (in ascending order)

    [wan_link0] Link : reconnection attempted 38 in 4 seconds
    [wan_link0] LCP: Down event
    [wan_link0] Link : DOWN event
    [wan_link0] Link : PPPoE connection timeout after 9 seconds
    [wan_link0] Link : PPPoE: Connecting to ‘’

  • Workaround : Go to Interfaces/PPPs/Edit. Deselect “Configure NULL service name”. Wait about 4 minutes while the firewall applies the change. After that, the PPPoE connection works again.

    [UPDATE] - Well, the workaround worked for an hour or so. Woke up this morning with a down production system with same failure of PPP unable to connect whether or not I enable or disable "Configure NULL service name". Opened ticket #INC-12767 at go.netgate.com to track this problem.

  • This post is deleted!

  • @chase

    Has there been an update on your ticket with netgate? I'm having the exact same issue and it's driving me crazy. Then people start yelling about the network being down and things get even louder!


  • I was unable to replicate the CenturyLink PPoE issue with a vanilla install of pfSense 2.4.4, or upgrading a vanilla 2.3.5 to a 2.4.4 system. Ultimately, I moved ahead by installing a vanilla 2.4.4 system, followed by manually entering my configuration settings from the earlier 2.3.5 system. Result: CenturyLink PPoE works without a hitch on 2.4.4.

    Summary : I have a working 2.4.4 system having started with vanilla install rather than upgrading. I still have no idea what configuration settings in my earlier 2.3.5 system that, when upgraded to 2.4.4, resulted in a failure to work with CenturyLink PPoE.

  • Thanks for the update! I'm glad it's working for you and gives me something to try. I'm curious what type of Centurylink service and modem you have though to compare notes?

    I'm currently on a 120 down/20 bonded pair using a C2100T modem in transparent bridging mode.

    Would you mind sharing some details of how you have PPPoE configured? There just seems to be a lack of posts regarding issues like this and you've had the exact same issue I've intermittently experienced.

  • Same -- ActionTech C2100T for CenturyLink -- with 1gbps up/down. PPoE Interface in pfSense is configured to use VLAN 201.

    My configuration setup was initially based upon KDemaria CenturyLink setup guide

  • @chase Fiber?

    Ive never had to use a VLAN in pfsense on Centurylink. My modem was set for 201 and in bridge mode. I was on bonded VDSL.

    I don't have that connection anymore so can't bring up the page to look either..

    1gbps up and down makes me ask my first question.. If that is the case your modem would be used as a router only and unless your using their VOIP or TV service you shouldn't even need it.

  • I wanted to give an update since this happened to me again. I've given up and gone back to using my Asus-A68U and haven't had any trouble.

    When I switched from the Asus to Pfsense, I literally unplugged the cat6 cables from my modem and switch from the Asus to the Pfsense box, and this issue started within a few weeks. I understood that Pfsense would entail a learning curve but I never had the connectivity drops (sometimes all day!) with the Asus. Not to mention getting PPPoE to reconnect seemed to be just dumb luck with Pfsense.

    When I moved those very same cables over and restored the Asus configuration from before (converted it to an AP when using Pfsense) it picked up the PPPoE connection without having to cycle anything else.

    Unfortunately for me the extra settings and features can't outweigh the reliability I need from my router to maintain connectivity, even after using a spare Android phone as a failover connection on Pfsense.

    This issue started on 2.3.5, and persisted across multiple updates.

    Thanks for everyone's input and help!

  • @radenthefridge

    Still curious though.. Is this DSL or Fiber?

  • @chpalmer
    Guess I didn't explicitly say but DSL. Bonded pair getting 120 down/ 20 up.

  • @radenthefridge

    Got it. Ive never had to do a VLAN past the modem on any incarnation of DSL Ive used from Centurylink. Includes the MLPPP setup we had with a 3rd party ISP up to the last bonded connection using the actiontec C2000 in bridge mode.

    I followed this guide from Centurylink https://www.centurylink.com/home/help/internet/modems-and-routers/technicolor-c2000t/advanced-setup/wan-settings.html and then set up my pppoe credentials on my wan interface.

    Before this modem I was using two Zoom 5715 (bridge only) modems.

    Good Luck!