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I want to use the phone as a backup line for my Linux server. Can I do this by using the ADB? I mean, forward everything to a socket and route the traffic there.

I also need some port forwarding, would be great if it could be transparent. Or do I have to use the tether option on the phone and configure an interface?

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First, you need to make sure that your phone has a public IP so that it's accessible from the internet (which is usually not the case). Otherwise, port forwarding doesn't make sense. See How to connect to Android over 3G/4G public IP?

Using an Android phone as a USB modem + router is rather simple. That's what we do by turning on the WiFi hotspot or USB tethering. On rooted phones, port forwarding works by adding DNAT firewall rules. On non-rooted phones, you can use adb or netcat or apps like Fwd (ports under 1024 cannot be forwarded though). For details, see How to port-forward internet using Android Hotspot to PC?

However, transparently forwarding all traffic (and not specific ports) to a Linux server - using Android as USB modem only - is complex (it won't work without root access). It works by manipulating network routing (tables and RPDB) on Android and optionally on a connected host. See How to assign Mobile Data's public IP to a host connected on a hotspot?

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