[Gllug] Routers for OpenWRT

Philip Hands phil at hands.com
Wed Jan 19 10:16:51 UTC 2011

On Wed, 19 Jan 2011 09:35:05 +0000, John Hearns <hearnsj at googlemail.com> wrote:
> In another thread, Jason mentions OpenWRT
> I would quite like to try this out - main reason being I use the
> Openconnect software on Linux which will connect
> with a Cisco VPN. Doign some googling, it looks liek you can install
> Openconnect on the router itself, which is
> what OpenWRT is all about - being able to customise your router.
> Can anyone recommend a mode which is:

Hi John,

I assume you mean 'modem', and that by that you mean ADSL Modem + Router
in a box.

The problem with that is that most routers that include a built-in ADSL
modem are based on the AR7, which tends to bet you involved in this sort
of nonsense:


which requires that you first patch the boot loader on the thing, and
folks like netgear have a tendency to use the same model number, for
things with completely different chipsets, just bumping the version
number from v3 to v4, say.  Oh, and the wifi on AR7 routers tends not to

The alternative approach, which I've been reasonably happy with, was to
buy a Buffalo Router that came with an external ADSL modem, although
that does feel like fixing the black-box problem by getting a slightly
smaller black-box.  Additional down-sides to that are that the external
modem eventually packed up (I'm now using another router/modem in bridge
mode, so that I can continue using OpenWRT on the Buffalo) and that the
Buffalo's seem to have a slight tendency to react to attempts to write
to the overlay file system by deciding that it should discard its
configuration and go back to OpenWRT's defaults.

That being the case, if you're planning on running a server 24/7 anyway,
you might be better off just having any old ADSL Modem/Router, setting
it in bridge mode, and running PPPoE on the real server, so that you're
not limiting yourself to the crappy hardware you're running OpenWRT on.

Having said that, I'm running OpenWRT on all the routers I can, and the
only one that's not is acting just as a dumb modem, but perhaps I have
too much time on my hands ;-)

Cheers, Phil.
|)|  Philip Hands [+44 (0)20 8530 9560]    http://www.hands.com/
|-|  HANDS.COM Ltd.                    http://www.uk.debian.org/
|(|  10 Onslow Gardens, South Woodford, London  E18 1NE  ENGLAND
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