I seem to be carving out a nice little niche of repairing still-useful devices. Most recently, a friend said they wanted to turn a lower end router into a fileserver- which makes sense, really. Long gone are the necessities of hot and power hungry hardware to stream, save, and share.

I’ve got a WNR3500Lv2- and it had bad firmware flashed onto it. As usual, I broke out the PL2303 USB->TTL adapter, and was pleasantly surprised to find actual headers populated. Nice.

Not so nice is just how neutered the CFE build is. Even for NetGear, this is pretty bad. I performed a nvram erase, set a new board id, and reset it.. and lo and behold, there’s the missing NIC!

CFE for WNR3500Lv2 version: v1.0.9
Build Date: Fri May 6 11:54:17 CST 2011
Init Arena
Init Devs.
Boot partition size = 262144(0×40000)
NFLASH Boot partition size = 524288(0×80000)
et0: Broadcom BCM47XX 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet Controller 5.60.136
CPU type 0×19749: 480MHz
Tot mem: 131072 KBytes

Device eth0: hwaddr 10-DA-43-90-1C-E2, ipaddr 192.168.1.1, mask 255.255.255.0 gateway not set, nameserver not set
Startup canceled
CFE> ^C

Now that it has network functionality, I TFTP’d over the most recent firmware offered by NetGear, fed it a DD-WRT CHK enabled binary, then upgraded from there.

Every time Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves of London” is on the radio (which is surprisingly at least weekly-when I have the radio on) I find myself remembering a question posed to me “What does a tailor have to do with ripping someone’s lungs out?”

It always just made sense to me that a tailor- who takes rather intimate measurements would have to be incredibly willful to take those of a werewolf. Warren has been gone over a decade now, so it’s far too late to ask.

[    0.000000] Linux version 4.4.61 (shawn@stinky.workgroups.win) (gcc version 5.4.0 (LEDE GCC 5.4.0 r4132-f7fd2abf25) ) #0 SMP Mon May 15 02:39:15 2017
[    0.000000] SoC Type: MediaTek MT7621 ver:1 eco:3
[    0.000000] bootconsole [early0] enabled
[    0.000000] CPU0 revision is: 0001992f (MIPS 1004Kc)
[    0.000000] MIPS: machine is ZBT-WE1326
[    0.000000] Determined physical RAM map:
[    0.000000]  memory: 1c000000  00000000 (usable)
[    0.000000]  memory: 04000000  20000000 (usable)
[...]
[    2.270000] MediaTek Nand driver init, version v2.1 Fix AHB virt2phys error
[    2.270000] spi-mt7621 1e000b00.spi: sys_freq: 50000000
[    2.280000] m25p80 spi32766.0: using chunked io (size=32)
[    2.290000] m25p80 spi32766.0: w25q128 (16384 Kbytes)
[    2.290000] 4 ofpart partitions found on MTD device spi32766.0
[    2.300000] Creating 4 MTD partitions on "spi32766.0":
[    2.300000] 0x000000000000-0x000000030000 : "u-boot"
[    2.310000] 0x000000030000-0x000000040000 : "u-boot-env"
[    2.310000] 0x000000040000-0x000000050000 : "factory"
[    2.320000] 0x000000050000-0x000001000000 : "firmware"
[    2.360000] 2 uimage-fw partitions found on MTD device firmware
[    2.360000] 0x000000050000-0x0000001c77ae : "kernel"
[    2.370000] 0x0000001c77ae-0x000001000000 : "rootfs"
[    2.380000] mtd: device 5 (rootfs) set to be root filesystem
[    2.380000] 1 squashfs-split partitions found on MTD device rootfs
[    2.390000] 0x0000006f0000-0x000001000000 : "rootfs_data"
[    2.400000] netif_napi_add() called with weight 128 on device eth%d
[    2.420000] libphy: mdio: probed
[    3.820000] mtk_soc_eth 1e100000.ethernet: loaded mt7530 driver
[    3.820000] mtk_soc_eth 1e100000.ethernet eth0: mediatek frame engine at 0xbe100000, irq 10
[    3.830000] mt7621_wdt 1e000100.wdt: Initialized

The Domino Team (GL-Inet) LEDE 17.01.1 release.

I’ve been a big fan of GL-Inet’s skinning and additions to OpenWRT, and after asking them a bit over a month ago about their progress with LEDE, well- here it is.

It’s been a spell between 17.01.1, and support for the ZBT WE1326. I’m hoping that the mt76 driver will be fairly trivial to mesh would take longer to type this than to update, even though it didn’t..

Having 802.11ac hardware, a stronger processor, and double RAM with the Domino interface? I’d but it!

This is not the saltwater that crabrouter was looking for!

Why is it “crabrouter”? It is not very happy taking non-Ralink SDK built kernels, among other, more obvious reasons. Sadly, the 2.4Ghz spectrum on this is still fairly unreliable when using the mt76 open source driver. It was sitting here on my kitchen table non-office transient workplace, and I had just been listening to Chicane (I have been looking to replace this CD for years- and find it at a thrift shop in rural Nevada of all places).. then frustpiration hit (frustration+inspiration): CRABROUTER CRUSH PUNY CASE– NO SEE SALTWATER HERE.

Thanks to a couple good resources, I was able to obtain a build of mt76 which isn’t in LEDE, and is behind a handful of revisions, but has many more features than it. I’ll probably merge the two and see how difficult it would be to get docs for the freakin’ chipset- but I have more pressing tasks, first!