Linksys WRT54G [Archive] - Glock Talk


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11-22-2005, 10:11
Well, I finally made the jump into the DSL world and figured I'd go ahead and get a router to wire my desktop and WiFi my laptop. I purchased the WRT54G from Newegg at a pretty good price.

Here's the catch. It seems Linksys has made their firmware Open Source and there are some great things that people have been doing patching the Open Source Linux firmware. However, the newest version of this router (v5) no longer uses Linux, but something called Vxworks. It also has less RAM, so it's probably not capable of running the Linux firmware.

What would you do? Should I just be happy if my new router works out of the box? Or should I return to NewEgg, swallow the restocking fee and find an older version of the router (or the newly re-branded WRT54GL) so that I can flash the firmware for these enhanced features (which, BTW, I don't fully understand yet)?

Any thoughts?


11-22-2005, 10:21
BTW, a list of some of the capabilities that could be enabled by patching the firmware that I don't understand yet includes:
Feature Addtions

Client/Bridge mode for multiple clients
Adhoc mode
WDS/Repeater mode
WPA over WDS links
Web based wireless statistics
Remote NTOP statistics
Captive portal
Extensive firewall enhancements
- track/block P2P, VoIP, IM, many other services by protocol
- 99% of available iptables filters included
VPN client and server (PPTP in all versions, IPsec as a compile-time option)
DHCP static IP assignment to specific MAC addresses
Wake-On-LAN functions with scheduling
OSPF routing
OSPF load balancing
Multi-level bandwidth management (Premium, Express, Standard, Bulk)
- manage P2P, VoIP, IM connections
- also by ports, IP addresses, and/or MAC addresses
Hardware QoS for the 4 LAN ports
Power boost to 251 mw
Afterburner Support (GS models)
SSH server and client
Startup, firewall, and shutdown scripts
Safe backup and restore
VLAN support
Clone Wireless MAC
Reset router on upgrade

External Program Support
Firewall Builder

11-23-2005, 09:10
Look around. I picked up a WRT54G at MicroCenter two weeks ago and it was v4. They're still in the pipeline.

11-23-2005, 09:21
I don't think the factory firmware was ever open source.I think some open source/Linux firmware was developed for it that replaced the factory firmware.Not all areas have Micro Center.A friend in Florida says there aren't any there.They do sell by internet though.

11-23-2005, 09:22
How do you tell the difference between the older ones and the newer version?Is it the "L"?

11-23-2005, 09:30
The first four characters of the S/N, which is visible on the outside of the box, should tell you.

CDF0 = WRT54G v1.0
CDF1 = WRT54G v1.0
CDF2 = WRT54G v1.1
CDF3 = WRT54G v1.1
CDF5 = WRT54G v2.0
CDF7 = WRT54G v2.2
CDF8 = WRT54G v3.0
CDF9 = WRT54G v3.1
CDFA = WRT54G v4.0
CDFB = WRT54G v5.0 (runs VxWorks, not Linux)


11-23-2005, 09:39
I actually went out and found a v4 at WalMart last night for $49. I bought it figuring that I can always return it unopened if I decide not to pay the NewEgg restocking fee.

You can tell the version by the Serial Number which is printed on the outside of the box, next to the UPC.

And, according to this article ( Linksys had to release the firmware source due to the Linux GPL. In fact, go into the Linksys support section and click on "GPL Code Center" ( and you can download the actual source of there firmware. I'm guessing that's why they stopped using Linux with v5.

Thanks for the input.


11-23-2005, 12:14
I doubt that's a reason they changed.Most likely an update in hardware.Thanks for the info.I was going to try one but I have some older PC's I made into routers for use at home.We don't have Wal-Mart here but there is a Micro Center not far so I might check on one.They used to be about $100 but I know everything has gotten cheaper.My "router" is a $3500 333Mhz Dell. ;f