10 September 2008

Alternate Firmware for Your Routers

Have you ever got the feeling that your routers don't give you enough power to give you all the goodies that a network can offer though you've spent a quite good amount of money on them?

Or maybe you just want to do something else interesting with your routers, not just leave them there doing all the routing for you.

Well, routers, typically with the linux based OS can be upgraded using a third party or alternate firmware.
Those routers including the picture I show you, the WRT54G series that are often used for home local area network.

Of course you only want to replace the firmware of your home routers, not your Cisco routers sengihnampakgigi.

With alternate firmware you can do some cool stuff, such as
  • Firewall feature
  • IPv6 feature
  • Site survey using your router
  • Syslog support
  • QoS (Quality of Service)
  • some even support VLAN
  • and many other good stuff
There are many alternate firmware available in the internet, the paid and free ones, some of the good ones:
Tomato Firmware

Each of the firmware is unique, they have different features and support many different routers like linksys, buffalo, belkin, corega, asus, and pretty much all home usage routers in the market.

Just make sure your router is listed in the supported hardware of the alternate firmware, and it has the specifications required to run the firmware, such as the flash memory, ram, etc.

Some firmwares offer graphical interface for the configuration and some others provide only the command line style configuration.

So if you need more features on your routers and geek enough to do it, upgrading the firmware to alternate firmware is awesome.
Is it safe to do this, I would not say it is, but firmware like this is supported by many developers and used by many people, try research first before deciding to upgrade.