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Thread: Linksys Reviving The WRT54G Router In 802.11AC Form

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  1. #1
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    Default Linksys Reviving The WRT54G Router In 802.11AC Form

    Phoronix: Linksys Reviving The WRT54G Router In 802.11AC Form

    Many Phoronix readers likely recall the glory years of the open-source-friendly Linksys WRT54G router that for some is still a great device and there's still the thriving OpenWRT community. Good news out of CES today is that Linksys is letting the WRT54G live-on in the form of the 802.11ac-based WRT1900AC...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTU2MTg

  2. #2
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    Way too expensive.

    Also the old Linksys was owned by Cicso.
    Nowadays it is owned by Belkin which I trust much less.

  3. #3

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    This should be about the WRT54GL? The WRT54GL is the router with Linux based firmware that can be easily used with DD/Open WRT (i use one right now with DD-WRT). Some of the G/GS variants arent that OSS friendly AFAIK.

  4. #4
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    For $300 I'd build a computer and stick a bunch of network adapters in it.

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    "the open-source-friendly Linksys WRT54G"? You must be joking. As mentioned above the WRT54GL was the one that made it at least a bit opensource-friendly. The required Broadcom chip driver was still closed source and using it required running a 2.4x kernel. There were reverse enigeneering efforts like brcm47xx but in the time a ran OpenWRT on the WRT54GL 2.6 based brcm47xx has never been stable enough to be usable. It was a great device per specs, but the lack of opensource-friendlyness was actually the main reason why I replaced mines with some Buffalo WZRsomething later.

    On some other news page the wording in regards to OpenWRT-compatibility was "they are going to port OpenWRT to it" which sounds rather awkward, given OpenWRT uses a Linux kernel with a minimum possible amount of patches. So, does Linux now run on hat new thing out of the box, or will OpenWRT devs be required to maintain a package for some binary driver blob sh*t yet again and Linksys will just work with them to get things (resp: the mess) started?

  6. #6
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    They miss the point of the WRT54G that was taking cheap common hardware and doing nice things with it.
    For that kind of money, just glue a 802.11ac router to an arm board or something...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dukenukemx View Post
    For $300 I'd build a computer and stick a bunch of network adapters in it.
    Or just use an old PC. Pretty much anything - even from 10 years ago - still has a better CPU than your typical SOHO router. Though at least Linksys routers are better than most. I've seen some from Dlink and Belkin and I really can't describe those devices without using the word "scam".

  8. #8
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    Default Forgetting the important part

    Quote Originally Posted by prodigy_ View Post
    Or just use an old PC. Pretty much anything - even from 10 years ago - still has a better CPU than your typical SOHO router. Though at least Linksys routers are better than most. I've seen some from Dlink and Belkin and I really can't describe those devices without using the word "scam".
    I've got a routerboard that has an approximately 650 Mhz MIPS, and 256MiB of Ram, definitely an old PC could do that performance no problem.... But a router isn't like a PC in power draw, AND it's not even close when comparing an old PC. The amount of draw to keep old processors, and their fans, running would eat away any saved money on hardware. An old PC, single socket dual/quad core could chew 100watts just moving packets half idle. Not to mention the power of any add-in NICs. Compared to my router's 3-4 Watts normal draw, that's HUGE. Considering they would both run OpenWRT, we're not even talking about any added benefits.


    Now on the flip-side, IF you spent approx 200 on a new low power Mini-ITX + CPU/RAM.... you'd be in semi-acceptable territory... but still at least 25 watts, maybe more depending, but acceptable nonetheless. It would still be 5-8 times the power draw,The only thing you get is not having to work on an embedded platform.

    Compared to a semi-inexpensive proper board ... which would be 150$ including case, i'd guess for wireless... Seems like being glued to x86 is a net disadvantage.
    Last edited by techzilla; 12-27-2014 at 06:53 PM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by gradinaruvasile View Post
    This should be about the WRT54GL? The WRT54GL is the router with Linux based firmware that can be easily used with DD/Open WRT (i use one right now with DD-WRT). Some of the G/GS variants arent that OSS friendly AFAIK.
    The g/gs came before them and are very functional with dd/open wrt. I have one but recently it has been straining to provide the bandwidth I need and coverage. Mainly because I moved to an area where every channel is used by more than one person so even pumping up the output is not working.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by uid313 View Post
    Way too expensive.

    Also the old Linksys was owned by Cicso.
    Nowadays it is owned by Belkin which I trust much less.
    But that's the advantage of open source software: the amount of trust to still have a working system is much lower. Broadcom is the real question -- even their newer wl driver only works in special situations. I believe an embedded Intel 802.11ac system would be best (no first hand experience, just smallnetbuilder benchmarks). Qualcomm Atheros would be my second choice and Buffalo will probably do it and cheaper too.

    I have a WRT54GL and switched it to a WZR-HP-G300NH because of this issue -- I _really_ wanted fq_codel but it isn't on the older kernels. Note you can install a modern openWRT on the WRT54GL but the system memory can't handle it.

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