Linksys Cisco ea6700

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RegorTheGreat
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 18 Dec 2018
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 22:58    Post subject: I think this is the connector you're looking for... Reply with quote
Ok, I'm pretty sure I've found the cable/connector that is supposed to be used there. It's a JST-GH or JST-SH 6pin connector.

Here's an image of the JST-SH 6pin Connector:
https://cdn.sparkfun.com//assets/parts/4/8/1/3/10361-02.jpg

Here's an all-in-one package for a universal usage of using the JST-GH (but is the 100mm size, and I'm not exactly sure the fitting size needed for your board):
https://store.mrobotics.io/USB-FTDI-Serial-to-JST-GH-p/mro-ftdi-jstgh01-mr.htm
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Pastorbrendad
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 18 Apr 2019
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:59    Post subject: Flashing in Newer Firmware Reply with quote
So I’ve had an EA6500v2 running DD-WRT for a long time, and recently upgraded it to the current stable Kong build which is listed as supporting the EA6700. It works great!

Anyway, I needed a repeater for a different network, and found the EA6700 refurbished on Amazon for $40. I figured it would be easy to set up with DD-WRT, since I was used to the quirks of the 6500v2 and apparently they’re very similar hardware-wise.

Boy, was I wrong. As documented by others, the newer firmware makes it VERY difficult to install anything but the latest update of the stock firmware. The GUI only accepts that one file, and rejects any others (including older, valid versions of the Linksys firmware.)

Additionally, the router boots the stock firmware super quick, making it difficult to TFTP anything in. Even if you do get something through, it won't actually boot it as the firmware.

All in all, it's been a huge pain, but I wanted to document my steps in case anyone else tries this or still needs help.

1. My router came with stock firmware 1.1.40.172250, which apparently has some issues of it's own. I updated to the latest Linksys firmware 1.1.41.183833 which I found here.

2. I then uploaded Linksys firmware 1.1.40.160989 via TFTP, which was also available at the link above when I wrote this. I'm on a Mac, and the native TFTP client wouldn't work for some reason. I ended up using Wine to run TFTP2.exe which I found at this link in the Wiki.

3. When the router booted up, it still showed the most recent Linksys firmware. I clicked Revert to Previous Firmware (I think it was under Troubleshooting ->Diagnostics in the settings.) This rebooted the router with firmware 1.1.40.160989.

4. That firmware must predate whatever method the new firmware uses to check the files, because it LETS YOU FLASH DD-WRT FROM THE GUI!!!!!! I loaded BS build 23204 that was recommended for the 6500v2 here. WE HAVE DD-WRT

5. Then I ran the code (also detailed in that post above) that cleans up the NVRAM and added it to the startup. This keeps the stupid 32k bug from getting in the way of moving to a newer version of dd-wrt.

6. Then I flashed BS build 34610 from the GUI. (I tried to go straight from the old build to Kong, but it wouldn't work.)

7. I uploaded to the most recent, stable kongac (found here) via the GUI and BAM! Running the build I wanted on my $40 router. WOOOOOO!

P.S. These 7 steps did not originally occur in a neat sequential order. There was a lot of trial and error. It took me about 6 hours of annoying reboots to finally get out of the stock firmware. So I can't guarantee that if you start where I started and do these steps in order, it'll go perfectly smoothly. But I've listed each step that worked for me, in the order I got them to work. Hope this is helpful!

Edit: Fixed a link.
aPpYe
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 26 Sep 2019
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2019 21:57    Post subject: Reply with quote
Okay. I am about to purchase this router from Amazon for $35. There seems to be a lot of hoops to jump through to get it going with DD-WRT.

Perusing this thread, I see a lot of stuff about flashing a different "CFE" rom in addition to the DD-WRT firmware. This is to cure the 32kb NVRAM limit, correct? I guess I will have to figure things out more when I get the router on Friday.

I do see reports of various flavors of Tomato running on this router without nearly so much fuss. I may just try FreshTomato ...
Pastorbrendad
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 18 Apr 2019
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2019 22:53    Post subject: Reply with quote
aPpYe wrote:
Okay. I am about to purchase this router from Amazon for $35.


Are you buying a refurbished EA6700? I’ve bought 3 of them and they’re all running excellently. Here’s a link to a revised step-by-step process to get them to run dd-wrt:

https://forum.dd-wrt.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=320463&highlight=

The reason it’s so complicated is the FCC started requiring that manufactures make it much harder for us to install 3rd-party firmware. I’d imagine you’ll have just as much trouble getting Advanced Tomato on it as I originally did with dd-wrt. The workaround is to downgrade to an earlier version of the stock firmware that doesn’t have the restrictions on loading 3rd-party firmwares built in.

Additionally, some of the extra steps are to run some code in the command line and save it to run on startup that takes care of it the 32MB bug so you don’t have to mess with the CFE.

It all seems like a lot, but once you get everything downloaded and know the steps it only takes about 30-60 minutes depending on your skill level and how cooperative your particular router and computer decide to be.
aPpYe
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 26 Sep 2019
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2019 23:53    Post subject: Reply with quote
Yep, the refurb on amazon. EA6700-RM2.

... So you recommend doing the NVRAM clearing startup command thing rather than flashing the CFE thing then? Why is this preferred?

I am honestly not all that adept at networking stuff, but I do have a competent enough skill level to flash DD-WRT on there.

Once the router is flashed and working, I will probably just leave it alone, perhaps flashing it every once in a while to maintain security updates, etc. That being said, is the latest BS build a good place to start for the final flash? the Kong builds are no longer available.


Last edited by aPpYe on Thu Oct 03, 2019 0:11; edited 1 time in total
Pastorbrendad
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 18 Apr 2019
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 0:03    Post subject: Reply with quote
Edit: sorry, I screwed something up somehow. Here’s what I meant to say:
aPpYe wrote:
... So you recommend doing the NVRAM clearing startup command thing rather than flashing the CFE thing then? Why is this preferred?

...

Once the router is flashed and working, I will probably just leave it alone, perhaps flashing it every once in a while to maintain security updates, etc. That being said, is the latest BS build a good place to start for the final flash? the Kong builds are no longer available.


1. The NVRAM solution has always worked for me and seemed like a simpler solution than messing with the CFE, so I’ve just stuck with it. That code just deletes empty NVRAM variables.

2. I still really like Kong’s builds. Eventually I’m sure I’ll have to move back to BS since Kong left the dd-wrt game, but as of right now his last release (July of 2019) still seems up to date in terms of security, etc. Here’s a cloned repository of his builds:

http://ddwrt-kong.clonevince.fr/
aPpYe
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 26 Sep 2019
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 0:17    Post subject: Reply with quote
Pastorbrendad wrote:
1. The NVRAM solution has always worked for me and seemed like a simpler solution than messing with the CFE, so I’ve just stuck with it.


I will probably do the same thing then. At least for now. I figured I would do a scheduled reboot of the router once in a while so the NVRAM gets cleared periodically.

Pastorbrendad wrote:
2. I still really like Kong’s builds.


I will probably just go with the latest BS build for now, but if I run into issues, then I will go for the build you recommend in your post.

Thanks for responding! I might bug you again once I get the router in a couple days ... I did notice you said that you are on a mac and that the native TFTP did not work for you. Perhaps something similar to what needs to be done on Debian is needed:

Code:
~$: tftp 192.168.1.1
tftp> mode binary
tftp> rexmt 1
tftp> timeout 60
tftp> put $FILE


I pulled this from the WRT54G V.8 wiki entry ... Of course, I don't know if this applies to a mac OR if it is going to be fast enough to do this. There is only a short window of time where TFTP can be used isn't there? Perhaps I can use a Windows VM. Or I can take my work laptop home ...


Last edited by aPpYe on Thu Oct 03, 2019 0:26; edited 1 time in total
Pastorbrendad
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 18 Apr 2019
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 0:24    Post subject: Reply with quote
aPpYe wrote:
Thanks for responding! I might bug you again once I get the router in a couple days ...


No problem, man! dd-wrt has been such an awesome solution for me, and when I figured out how to get it working on a $35 router with 802.11ac speeds way faster than most American’s internet speeds, I wanted to make sure I shared my results!

If you need anything else or get stuck anywhere in the process let me know! I’m no expert, but I love to help as much as I can!
aPpYe
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 26 Sep 2019
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 0:27    Post subject: Reply with quote
Heh ... check out the edit I just made to my post above about the TFTP stuff ... Maybe that is useful?

Anyway. I am headed off to click refresh on the tracking info for my router!
Pastorbrendad
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 18 Apr 2019
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 0:51    Post subject: Reply with quote
aPpYe wrote:


Code:
~$: tftp 192.168.1.1
tftp> mode binary
tftp> rexmt 1
tftp> timeout 60
tftp> put $FILE




I’ve had mixed results! Sometimes it seems like I need to use TFTP2 through Wine, and sometimes going through Macs command line has worked fine! That is the right code to make it work! You have to have the firmware file in your main library directory (like the one that has a house and is named after your name or whatever).

But you definitely want to hit send about 5 seconds after you power up the router when the ttl=100 on your ping, It’s a narrow window for sure!
aPpYe
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 26 Sep 2019
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 1:18    Post subject: Reply with quote
Very cool! I ended up following your "official" walkthrough at your other thread (more or less) and everything went smoothly. I originally followed a walkthrough for tomato because I wanted to try it out, specifically FreshTomato. I did end up using the 1.1.40.160989 Linksys firmware you suggested, as the old DD-WRT firmware they suggested was too large to flash via TFTP2 in time. This may have something to do with the CTCP feature I have seen mentioned elsewhere. I had a Win10 laptop I brought from work to do this, and I didn't want to spend a lot of time adapting the walkthrough to Linux.

I ended up not really liking the interface for FreshTomato, so I went back to DD-WRT. I am now running the October 1 trailed build and there don't seem to be any issues so far. Everything seems rock solid, though it "only" shows an uptime of 18:16 as i write this.

... As a result of following that walkthrough, I did the CFE fix as it was posted there. I now have NVRAM of 64K. Yay. Anyway, I did go ahead and run that NVRAM clearing command and it deleted a bunch of unset lines. Curiously, it returned an error:

Code:
for line in `nvram show | grep =$ `; do var=${line%*=}; nvram unset $var; done

sh: eval: line 2: syntax error: unexpected end of file (expecting "done")


My router wanted an extra semicolon at the end of the line and it was happy ... I went ahead and added it to the startup, though I would guess this is unnecessary with the CFE patch in place. The router is now sitting at 26 KB / 64 KB for NVRAM. It was at 33 KB before clearing the entries ...

Thanks for your help!
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