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Tolly Group Report: The WRV54G is an "F'ing Monster!&a

Discussion in 'Cisco Small Business Routers and VPN Solutions' started by DocLarge, Mar 13, 2006.

  1. DocLarge

    DocLarge Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    Oh yes,

    make room. The WRV54G is everything as advertised, however, it seems fair to go ahead and say it: somebody in the Cisco/Linksys camp is "point shaving." Thanks to eric_stewart for dropping the bomb about the tolly group report or I never would have gone looking for it:

    The Tolly Group Test Summary of 802.11 Broadband Routers inc WRV54G

    It would appear that the WRV54G has "all the muscle" it's been advertised as having, but "shitty" firmware is keeping it from basking in its true potential. Damn what you've heard; this device "is" a cisco competior outright; it's just that the same parent company is not letting it "be all it can be."

    I, for one, am now more than sold on getting new official firmware for the WRV54G.

    As an update, Toxic and Jdepew are hitting all of their stateside contacts to enlist some more support. Additionally, since this morning, a writer for one of the Linux magazines has pretty much gotten his magazine to look at doing a follow up on this issue.

    All I'm asking is if you can read this thread, take second to "bang" the following linksys/cisco email addresses and let them know the WRV54G is needing a new official firmware update:

    support@linksys.com, tac@cisco.com,
    linksys@mailca.custhelp.com, firmware@linksys.com

    If you want to "at least" make the effort to get some new firmware, "hit 'em up!"

    Doc
     
  2. chris547

    chris547 Network Guru Member

    Have you checked out the openixp project? I've found out the WRV54G does have all the mussles (aka built in encryption hardware), the brain power (aka the processor) but so so small manhood! (aka memory) :rofl:

    It's a poser looks good but lacking in vital area's :D

    With 8MB flash it's hardly anything to play with, the other routers you've mentioned in other threads have far more flash and thus can have extra functionality. The flash size of the WRV54G seems to be a oversite by Linksys and seems to limit future expansion.
     
  3. DocLarge

    DocLarge Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    ARRgh!! Dlink supporter!! :)

    Hey, I've always been a fan of the "Little Engine That Could."

    I'm all for letting the actual developers prove us all wrong with what's capable of being put inside of 8 meg of memory.

    Besides, me defending my position/views all over the internet serves no purpose other than to demonstrate I don't like being wrong *hint* *hint* (Are you following me?) :D

    NOTE: See Doc's other posts to confirm this phenomenon

    Doclarge signing off!!

    Doc
     
  4. Toxic

    Toxic Administrator Staff Member

    dont suppose you could do a hardware mod and install a SDRAM card like the WRT54G :) then compile your own firmware:)
     
  5. vincentfox

    vincentfox Network Guru Member

    What exactly is the barrier to alternate firmware on this device?

    There are tarballs in the Linksys GPL Code center for it. It's been out quite a while. Has no one attempted porting, or is there something difficult about it?

    Has anyone donated a WRV54G to a project? I mean after all you can't expect group working on open-source code, to also buy the hardware themselves.
     
  6. eric_stewart

    eric_stewart Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    Lot's of great info at seattlewireless.net, including a hardware autopsy and (drum roll) how to flash a filesystem using the RG (Residential Gateway) boot loader.

    http://www.seattlewireless.net/index.cgi/LinksysWrv54g

    There's enough info such that an enterprising soul with a bit of time on their hands could probably flash the latest Jungo (devlopers of the firmware) OpenRG image to the box.

    www.jungo.com <--excellent site, describing various firmware projects

    Production ready, free, bootable Intel XScale IXP425 reference designs at:
    http://www.jungo.com/openrg/reference_designs_intelixp425.html

    Eric
     
  7. chris547

    chris547 Network Guru Member

    We've actually come a bit farther since the seattlewireless.net article. As mentioned on Yahoo groups the GPL code has been compiled and a kernel image produced. There's still problems making a image but I stopped working on it for a import reason.

    Mainly on investigation it was found that the Linksys GPL code seems to contain extra code, I assume these are stubs for Quickvpn since they deal in a similar manner to altering the IP address of the connecting client. Unfortunately these codes seem to be incompatible with the NAT-T patch and it's probably best to start from scratch.

    Luckly this is what they've done at http://openixp.phj.hu/cgi-bin/trac.cgi. Although their motive seems to be more to see what other things can run on the WRV54g and thus needs just a bit more work before it's has all the Linksys functionality.

    Ps. Haven't tried adding a SD card but have thought about adding NFS support and mounting a remote directory.
     
  8. DocLarge

    DocLarge Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    Guys,

    all things aside, Chris has been quit pursuant in compiling a proper image for the WRV54G over the last 8 months. He'd definitely be an asset as far as image production goes, should you guys decide to roll your sleeves up and get into it (hint dropping...) :thumb:

    Jay
     
  9. chris547

    chris547 Network Guru Member

    Jay

    Have a look at http://openixp.phj.hu/cgi-bin/trac.cgi it's a derivative of openwrt, they've done a excellent job, actually all the functions that are needed on the wrv54g are already built, openswan with nat-t, gre, pptd etc.

    Just a few things lacking some of them are a web interface, a easy route back to Linksys code and complete ipv6 support.

    I wouldn't advise anybody without linux and basic soldering experience to install it as I've needed the serial interface a few times since loading it.

    Chris
     
  10. eric_stewart

    eric_stewart Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    Very cool (and) good catch! Alas, I've sold my WRV54G but I have all the same functionality (but not hardware-accelerated encryption) in my Cisco PIX 501.

    I'll wait and see. If I see significant movement on Linksys's part or a user-friendly 3rd party build, I might just snap one up again to play with it. For now I will just have the vicarious thrill of having one installed at a customer site as an endpoint in a site-to-site VPN. It's been rock-solid and problem free for *that* use.

    Shame on Cisco-Linksys for their egregious lack of support on a box with so much promise!

    /Eric
     
  11. DocLarge

    DocLarge Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    That's why we're mounting this effort, eric :thumb:

    We're going to try and get some justice because these likys/cisco boys have had their "hands in my pockets" yet left me without service!

    Doc
     
  12. ShoNuff

    ShoNuff Network Guru Member

    Ever since I traced the problems with my router to Windows XP firewall, I haven't had a problem with the router. I have no problems connecting to the router in Houston from Japan using QuickVPN. However, I didn't want to have to "log in " to the router whenever I wanted to connect to my Sling Box at my mom's house. So I bought a DLink DI-808HV router here in Japan to connect to the WRV54G in my mom's house. The DLink router only establishes a VPN connection when it is needed. Not only that, but it works very well and is supported with frequent firmware upgrades.
    The main reason I will shun Linksys from now on is because of the poor support for the WRV54G. Until their support improves, Linksys is a four-letter word in my house.
     

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