Reset And Reboot

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Revision as of 23:53, 7 October 2006 by AycheKay (Talk | contribs)
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This page is an attempt to clarify the different resets and reboots.


Hard Reset

A hard reset sets the router back to the firmware's defaults (clears the nvram), thus it will clear all the settings you have configured in the router. Here are some of the different ways that users are doing hard resets.

  • (1) The standard description of a hard reset is to press and hold the reset or init button, usually located on the back of the router, for 30 seconds, with the router powered on.
  • (2) One way of seeing what's happening while holding in the reset button is to leave a network cable plugged in to your computer and the router, then watch the screen on your computer. After the network has lost a connection for the second time, the router should be reset back to firmware defaults.
  • (3) Some users have put their bricked or non-responsive router in the freezer for a while, then did a hard reset while cold, which then unbricked their router.
  • (4) As one user posted in the forum:
to do a "hard reset for anyone not knowing OP or otherwise, simply unplug the linksys router, hold the red button in the back for 30 seconds while still holding it in plugin the power again and keep holding the reset button for an additional 10-20 seconds. This will wipe the nvram out). Keep in mind with hard resets the linksys routers can be touchy I had to do it three times till it fully cleared out the nvram on mine"
  • (5) A fifth method of doing a hard reset has been reported. Some users are unable to get their router set back to firmware defaults until they try this one. With the router unplugged, push in and hold the reset button, then plug the router in and stop pushing in the reset button 1 second afterwards. Users report that it may take 20 or 30 trys to actually clear the nvram.

Cold Reboot

A cold reboot is no different than a plain reboot or a power cycle. It does not, or shall we say, should not, clear the nvram (set the router back to factory/firmware defaults). A cold reboot can be achieved 4 different ways. All fours ways accomplish exactly the same thing.

  • (1) Unplug the power cord from the router and plug it back in.
  • (2) Press the reset button for less than 5 seconds.
  • (3) Click on the "Reboot Router" button inside the Web Interface. "Administration" > "Management"
  • (4) Run a reboot command from Telnet, SSH, or the command box in the Web Interface.

Clearing The nvram

"To clear or wipe out the nvram" means the same things as resetting the router back to the firmware's defaults. Many users say that this resets the router back to "factory defaults", but in reality it just resets the router back to DD-WRT's defaults, if you have DD-WRT installed. That's why it's more proper to say that it sets the router back to "firmware defaults".

Power Cycling

Some users refer to "power cycling" a router. Power cycling is simply rebooting the router, but usually by unplugging the router for about 15 seconds and then plugging the router back in. Some users claim to get different results by leaving the router "unplugged for a while". Other users talk about plugging the router back in while holding in the reset button. I believe in some cases this actually clears the nvram, which is maybe what you are trying to achieve.

What Are Firmware or Factory Defaults?

DD-WRT firmware default settings (sometimes called factory defaults) are stored in nvram. For more information, see Factory Defaults.