DD-WRT running on WRT54G version 5


With version 5 of the WRT54G, Linksys decided to dump Linux and start using VxWorks. This made buying a WRT a gamble if you wanted one with Linux. DD-WRT recently released a micro version that supports version 5. You’ll need a JTAG cable to install it since very little is known about VxWorks bootloader. Even with this new firmware it’s hard to ignore that the router is underpowered and you’d be better off with something else.

[via Digg]

Comments

  1. joel says:

    very interesting, might help future mods.

  2. t3h says:

    Yeah, the v5 is underpowered. Only 2MB of storage (others had 4 and 8)…

  3. nbd says:

    CRAP! CRAP! CRAP!
    When are people going to stop buying this overpriced underpowered shit?

  4. mac cody says:

    Seems to me it would be better to make something that more people will buy, even if some (a small minority) will hack it, rather than make something that can’t be hacked that fewer people will buy. I guess Linksys figures that people will buy “the brand name” even if the new version is an inferior product. I’m sure that they won’t reduce the price of the product even though they’ve reduced the performance and features.

  5. tiuk says:

    #4 – Of course they won’t reduce the price! In fact, they’ve released the WRT54GL, which still has linux (hence the “l” in the name), but costs MORE.

  6. _max_ says:

    the -L version costs 1/5’th less in sweden, and has the old v.2 specs with 16/32 ram.

  7. henry says:

    For the vast majority (>99.9%) of consumers the new WRT54G performs identically to the others. It is significantly cheaper for linksys to produce, therefore it’s a sound business decision for them. This isn’t some conspiracy to stop hacks.

  8. Tillin9 says:

    I understand that 2MB flash/8 MB RAM chips are somewhat cheaper than their 4/16 counterparts, but at the volume Linksys purchases, I doubt it really makes a difference.

    I run OpenWRT(RC3) on my GS and am currently using 1.5MB flash, and 4MB of RAM, with many user programs and admin tools installed. A build without such things could be even smaller. There is no reason the V5 couldn’t run Linux and have the 2/8 configuration. DD-WRT proved this.

    My guess is that it isn’t about preventing hacks, or even the cost of chips, but maintaining the Linux branch for the routers. The official firmware was always behind (i.e. security patches not applied) main tree releases and that paying VxWorks to maintain the OS is probably cheaper than doing it in house. Plus, since its closed source, nobody sees their screw-ups.

  9. Liam says:

    >I understand that 2MB flash/8 MB RAM chips
    >are somewhat cheaper than their 4/16
    >counterparts, but at the volume Linksys
    >purchases, I doubt it really makes a
    >difference.

    I think you answered your own question there, mate…. if LS manufacture a run of tens, even hundreds of thousands of these routers and gain a net saving of, say, a dollar on each one, then that amounts to a saving that could run into hundreds of thousands of dollars to provide a product that will be essentially identical to 90% of their customer base. It may seem petty, but tiny amounts of cost-shaving can make or break a company.

  10. Eric says:

    Hey, shameless plug here but I have a WRT54GS version 1 (fully firmware upgradeable and everything) on ebay now, item 9710971308 — just in case anybody is interested… Sorry about the plug I am just a poor hack-a-day reader that happened upon this article relating to my auction!

  11. Joe says:

    You can do alot with these routers.

    I’ve got one running as an IPTables firewall, as well as providing free wireless access.

  12. Marc says:

    They have found a way to get the micro version of the DD-WRT firmware onto the V5’s without using the JTAG cable. http://www.bitsum.com/openwiking/owbase/ow.asp?WRT54G5%5FCFE

  13. Yvette says:

    Fortunately enough, I discovered your blog DD-WRT running on WRT54G version 5 – Hack a Day , while surfing the net. Congratulations on your helpful article. Looks good to me. I have checked out a few of your other posts and found some great information too. Just wanted to say that it is so much garbage out there and it is nice to know some people still put time into managing their sites. Thanks for sharing your knowledge!

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