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Maximum number of router flashings

Discussion in 'Tomato Firmware' started by jorotg, Nov 2, 2007.

  1. jorotg

    jorotg LI Guru Member

    Hi pals! I'm wondering If there's any problem flashing my Buffalo WHR-HP-G54 every time a new release of Tomato firmware comes out??? Some soft of maximum number of flashes per router??? Thank you in advance.:confused:
     
  2. mstombs

    mstombs Network Guru Member

    Flash usually has an expected life of 400,000 write cycles, so I wouldn't worry too much about flashing firmware, the bit that will wear out first is the nvram section - gets re-written on every "nvram commit" which happen on every GUI settings change and various other events. There is a switch in the GUI to disable this as much as possible if you are doing a lot of experimenting. Some things such as DDNS renewal IP/Datestamp you do want stored in case of power failure, so it has to be stored in flash.

    Note that 400,000 seems a lot - but it is less than 5 days if writing to the same bit every second, which is why you are not encouraged to write logfiles to jffs! Proper flash file systems even out the flash wear by not using the same bit till all others exercised - but I doubt if nvram can do this. There are also already sob stories with people using usb flash pen drives on public computers and losing a year's work - in their wisdom Microsoft Word uses a temp file in the same directory as the source document!
     
  3. guillaumy

    guillaumy LI Guru Member

    I think the OP poses an interesting practical question.

    I remember a particular unit (a 3-year old WRT54Gv2) which would totally screw up (even losing web GUI and pings) when there was an NVRAM commit or sometimes for no apparent reason. This happened with stock firmware, DD-WRT, Tomato etc. and after repeated hard resets and even when the unit was disassembled and cleaned.

    I tried to see if it was an electrical fault but that turned up nothing. I was inclined to suspect the NVRAM or the associated circuitry. Apparently the user had been experimenting quite a bit with different flavors of firmware.
     
  4. mraneri

    mraneri LI Guru Member

    Yeah, use JFFS with caution, but flash firmware updates at you wish. You are not materially wearing out the flash in this case. Keep in mind, there's a little risk whenever you flash firmware. If you lose power, or maybe even have some sort of power disruption (spike), or your PC crashes, you could end up with a dead router. Sometimes they're recoverable, sometimes they may not be.

    So don't go crazy, but you generally don't have to worry about the flash "going bad" because of firmware upgrades. (Of course, like guillaumy, you could have some other defect in the router (flash or otherwise) which could cause a problem.)

    Don't worry about it too much.
     
  5. guest

    guest Network Guru Member

    How does the option "Log Internally" impact Flash writes. There is no clear distinction in the wiki quoted below as to whether "internal memory" = NAND Flash or RAM. Are logs kept in volatile storage (RAM) and only occasionally written to NAND Flash or is logging only written to NAND Flash? If the answer is the later, wouldn't it be beneficial to disable internal logging?


    Assuming a minimum of one Flash write every 60 minutes equals...

    One day .......... 24
    One week ......... 168
    One month ........ 672-744 (28-31 days)
    One year ......... 8760


    Default settings on a new Tomato flash


    Administration ---> Logging ---> Syslog

    Log Internally ........................ checked
    Log to Remote System .................. unchecked
    Mark Interval ......................... 60 (minutes / 0 to disable)
    Events Logged .........................
    --Access Restriction De/Activiation ... unchecked
    --Cron ................................ unchecked
    --NTP ................................. unchecked
    Connection Logging ....................
    --Inbound Connection .................. Disabled
    --Outbound Connection ................. Disabled
    --Limit Logging ....................... 60 (messages per minute / 0 for unlimited)


    http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Tomato_Firmware#Logging
     
  6. mraneri

    mraneri LI Guru Member

    It doesn't. Logging internally keeps the log in RAM. You would have to do some scripting to do something else with it.

    Or, you can enable remote logging, and send log entries as they happen to some other IP address.

    Tomato does not directly include any facility to store logs in NVRam.
     
  7. guest

    guest Network Guru Member

    Thank you for clarifying this question :)
     

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