[ 386.4 alpha Build(s) ] Testing available build(s)

Status
Not open for further replies.

mister

Regular Contributor
Seems like the Merlin story is coming to an end - just like OpenWRT.

I’m now in Australia and forced to go with the nascent 5G rollout here - because anything associated with the NBN is outdated and way over-priced.

No Asus 5G routers. Wouldn’t be supported by Merlin anyway.
Of course I also longingly expect a newer version, but as far as I know Merlin does it in his free- time. I really appreciate his work and sometimes it takes a little longer.
But I can only thank him, because without him I couldn't use as many great functions of the router as I currently do.

In another post few days ago he had written to me that he will update his SHA256 fix in the OVPN server in the next version - so I am very hopeful that he will continue his work :).
I'm looking forward to testing and maybe he'll give us a Christmas present .....

Hugo
 

Smokey613

Very Senior Member
If it were not for Merlin‘s firmware, I doubt I would be so committed to Asus routers. Once you go Merlin, it is hard to go back to “plain” AsusWRT. My recent foray into an XT8 solution confirmed that for me. I sent the pair back to Amazon. I did not realize how dependent I had become on the Merlin features. Sure, I have replicated Merlin functionality with other solutions but I keep coming back to Asus/Merlin setup due to it’s simplicity. My new RT-AX86U is arriving today and my trusty AC86U will be saved for other duties.
 

hancox

Regular Contributor
Seems like the Merlin story is coming to an end - just like OpenWRT.

I’m now in Australia and forced to go with the nascent 5G rollout here - because anything associated with the NBN is outdated and way over-priced.

No Asus 5G routers. Wouldn’t be supported by Merlin anyway.

Uh, why would anyone come to this conclusion, when Merlin has communicated otherwise ? (He's waiting on new GPL that ASUS is having issues with).
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
Uh, why would anyone come to this conclusion, when Merlin has communicated otherwise ? (He's waiting on new GPL that ASUS is having issues with).
Quite frankly, I'm about to give up there. This has been going on for over 4 months now, with the last official GPL being from last spring. I asked once again yesterday for an update following the last communication I had received three weeks ago that was another "almost there, but still more work to do", and got another "still more work to do", without any form of ETA. So, I told Asus that this had become seriously problematic, as I can't expect all users to wait 2-3 months every time to get access to publicly revealed security fixes. I haven't heard back from them yet.

So yeah, there is a distinct possibility that this project might have to get shelved indefinitely at this point unless something changes. I'm back at the same situation that I was last year when the 384 releases were all over the place, with some models not getting updated code for a long time. This project simply cannot survive without updated code from Asus, as too much of the code relies on their closed source portions.
 

heysoundude

Part of the Furniture
So yeah, there is a distinct possibility that this project might have to get shelved indefinitely at this point unless something changes. I'm back at the same situation that I was last year when the 384 releases were all over the place, with some models not getting updated code for a long time. This project simply cannot survive without updated code from Asus, as too much of the code relies on their closed source portions.
the real question, in my mind, is why are Asus NOT moving forward with more incremental releases if that's the best they can do at the moment?
is it that they are working on what's next to the detriment of what's now in terms of the hardware? do they simply not care to support the networking part of their business any further?
do they want Merlinites (I'm pretty sure we account for a not insignificant portion of their sales for routers) to simply disappear so that they don't have to contend with our "noise?"

Please keep on them, @RMerlin and keep your chin up.
 

jsbeddow

Senior Member
Quite frankly, I'm about to give up there. This has been going on for over 4 months now, with the last official GPL being from last spring. I asked once again yesterday for an update following the last communication I had received three weeks ago that was another "almost there, but still more work to do", and got another "still more work to do", without any form of ETA. So, I told Asus that this had become seriously problematic, as I can't expect all users to wait 2-3 months every time to get access to publicly revealed security fixes. I haven't heard back from them yet.

So yeah, there is a distinct possibility that this project might have to get shelved indefinitely at this point unless something changes. I'm back at the same situation that I was last year when the 384 releases were all over the place, with some models not getting updated code for a long time. This project simply cannot survive without updated code from Asus, as too much of the code relies on their closed source portions.
Hmmm... I almost reached for the "Like" button, but that didn't seem appropriate at all in this case as this can hardly be interpreted as good news, but I wanted to acknowledge reading it nevertheless.

I can only echo what @heysoundude wrote about keeping your (@RMerlin) chin up, and as a group that we try to remain optimistic that GPL releases will resume "soon". It would be a mistake on Asus's part to cut off the users that have to account for a fairly significant portion of their networking sales.
 

Vexira

Part of the Furniture
Re NBN, I feel your pain.:confused:
I’m on FTTP, so I guess I’m better off than some…….but as you say, the price!
How is fttp I'm still waiting on a planned upgrade for my area, I'm on fttn my ping for the most part is ok, the only upside is that I've got an old plan with Optus so the price is relatively affordable.
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
the real question, in my mind, is why are Asus NOT moving forward with more incremental releases if that's the best they can do at the moment?
The problem is that GPL releases are all-or-nothing. They were asked to pull off existing archives due to licensing reasons, and they can't publish any further GPL archive until all licensing issues are resolved to the satisfaction of the complainee. So far, every time Asus thinks that they have sorted out all issues, they are told that there are still unresolved issues, so they have to go back to it to address them. Until all issues are resolved to the satisfaction of that other party, they can't release anything.

do they want Merlinites (I'm pretty sure we account for a not insignificant portion of their sales for routers) to simply disappear so that they don't have to contend with our "noise?"
Definitely not. The past year has shown that at least some people at the management level look at the Asuswrt-Merlin project as an asset, as they have regularly tried to push me toward supporting this or that new model. I have a number of unsupported models gathering dust on my shelves as I can't start looking at them until I get actual source code to work on them. The RT-AX86S is pretty much ready to go on my end as soon as I get updated GPL code. Same with the RT-AC68U_V4 (initial support was completed last spring for that model using beta code, I just need up-to-date code to officially support it). And a few other models that I haven't started evaluating/working on yet, due to complete lack of code.

The specific hurdle that's blocking everything there isn't Asus themselves, it's that upstream party that has yet to be satisfied enough for Asus to be able to resume providing GPL archives. Maybe Asus has a portion of the blame for not getting this resolved faster, but ultimately, the green light has to come from that other party.
 

Simon W

Regular Contributor
The past year has shown that at least some people at the management level look at the Asuswrt-Merlin project as an asset,
Let's hope said enlightened Asus management folk have joined the dots: ongoing delays in releasing updated GPL puts the Asuswrt-Merlin project in jeopardy - while it may be an upstream blocker and not Asus themselves, like anything in business, throw enough resource at it and/or engage in some high(er) level conversations between parties and the problem will be unpicked soon enough.

Fingers crossed for some timely common sense.
 

elorimer

Very Senior Member
I take it the "other party" is confidential. Is there a way of mobilizing your base to lean on them?

Or lean on Asus? They might find it helpful to have friendly pressure on them as a way to demonstrate to the other party the importance of what they are asking for.
 

shabbs

Very Senior Member
Well this thread took a dark turn.

We (Asuswrt-Merlin fans) will have to keep being patient as the "higher ups" sort it out and as RMerlin indicated, he's at the mercy of that process that will ultimately drive the next GPL release.

Not lost on me though is great additions that @RMerlin has introduced outside of GPL drops like the VPN director, QR code scanner etc...

Just keep riding that uptime.
 

dave14305

Part of the Furniture
I take it the "other party" is confidential. Is there a way of mobilizing your base to lean on them?
I’m reading between the lines that it’s Broadcom. They ruin most things they touch (who could have thought you could make Symantec worse than it was already?). They don’t care about a small group of enthusiasts on a forum.

These companies are probably worried about real things like chip shortages, and meeting the terms of the GPL is probably way down on the list.

Be patient, or vote with your wallet.
 

John Fitzgerald

Senior Member
I’m reading between the lines that it’s Broadcom. They ruin most things they touch (who could have thought you could make Symantec worse than it was already?). They don’t care about a small group of enthusiasts on a forum.

These companies are probably worried about real things like chip shortages, and meeting the terms of the GPL is probably way down on the list.

Be patient, or vote with your wallet.

With all the complaints in this forum with regards to poor wifi signals from release to release, and they are substantial, I would say Broadcom has to clean their own house first.

If B's proprietary closed source drivers are broken then they should not be holding up the works for ASUS. Seems counter-intuitive.
 

JGrana

Very Senior Member
I’m reading between the lines that it’s Broadcom. They ruin most things they touch (who could have thought you could make Symantec worse than it was already?). They don’t care about a small group of enthusiasts on a forum.

These companies are probably worried about real things like chip shortages, and meeting the terms of the GPL is probably way down on the list.

Be patient, or vote with your wallet.
If it is indeed Broadcom (and I tend to agree with you), they likely don’t care about a small group of consumers. They sell into the OEM market and as such are well insulated. Even if Asus wanted to try to push hard - what are their alternatives? Broadcom is essentially a monoply - even the US FTC agrees


Unfortunatly Asus has realisticly nowhere to turn for WiFi silicon.

As far as voting with our wallets. Very difficult. Apples iPhones and Samsungs Galaxy series all use Broadcom chips. AT&T, Verizon, Charter, Spectrum - all customers and the list goes on.
And I speak from experience… Broadcoms NDA’s and license documents are lengthy, complex, severe penalties and very much slanted to them.

Lets let Asus work through this themselves. There is not much we (as a small group) can do and in fact could cause more harm than good.
 

maxbraketorque

Very Senior Member
One thing that confuses me - isn't ASUS firmware based on an open source project, and therefore requires ASUS to release a GPL that tracks with the actual firmware release (although potentially time shifted)?

One encouraging thing I see is that many of the more current routers are now on the same firmware release.

A comment I'll make is that I'm in favor of reducing the number of supported routers if that would make it possible to continue the project. I'm sure a lot of people wouldn't like this, but this is a freeware project, and RMerlin's time is limited. Could drop everything but AX routers.
 

dave14305

Part of the Furniture
A comment I'll make is that I'm in favor of reducing the number of supported routers if that would make it possible to continue the project. I'm sure a lot of people wouldn't like this, but this is a freeware project, and RMerlin's time is limited. Could drop everything but AX routers.
Even 2+ months after the last release, AC routers still top the downloads per week. So it would be a difficult decision to cut off the most popular models, unless Asus made it easier by not releasing code for them.

1634666011211.png
 

heysoundude

Part of the Furniture
I take it the "other party" is confidential. Is there a way of mobilizing your base to lean on them?

Or lean on Asus? They might find it helpful to have friendly pressure on them as a way to demonstrate to the other party the importance of what they are asking for.
I like the way you think about leaning on that other party, @elorimer

Broadcom? Is it a US/Taiwan/China cold war trade dance?
 

maxbraketorque

Very Senior Member
Even 2+ months after the last release, AC routers still top the downloads per week. So it would be a difficult decision to cut off the most popular models, unless Asus made it easier by not releasing code for them.

I don't think the decision is hard. I'm thinking about this in terms of: 1) how RMerlin could cut down on his time, and 2) what routers are most likely to be part of a GPL release. Assuming that ASUS begins to release GPLs again (I think they will), these are two key barriers to keeping the project alive. I get that the AC68U and AC86U are popular (these are what I have), but I think the reality is that if dropping AC-support ensured survival of the project, there would be a big increase in AX downloads.

Also, drawing the line at AX routers was just a starting point for discussion. Perhaps there is zero benefit to RMerlin by dropping any of the currently supported routers, although I think the AC88U/AC3100 and RT-AC5300 are effectively EOL devices. There are many better alternatives out there, and I would drop those if there was any hassle with keeping those supported.
 

heysoundude

Part of the Furniture
With all the complaints in this forum with regards to poor wifi signals from release to release, and they are substantial, I would say Broadcom has to clean their own house first.

If B's proprietary closed source drivers are broken then they should not be holding up the works for ASUS. Seems counter-intuitive.
well, it could be that "broken" is entirely the issue they would hope to avoid: the radios have to pass muster with various certification authorities globally, and only they can know where they're in jeopardy of losing those certifcations. It's probably bigger than "hey, make my wifi better", and I'd suppose Asus' work has to be submitted to them for sign-off before they both could be in regulatory dutch.

Or is it the TrendMicro stuff?
 
Last edited:

heysoundude

Part of the Furniture
I don't think the decision is hard. I'm thinking about this in terms of: 1) how RMerlin could cut down on his time, and 2) what routers are most likely to be part of a GPL release. Assuming that ASUS begins to release GPLs again (I think they will), these are two key barriers to keeping the project alive. I get that the AC68U and AC86U are popular (these are what I have), but I think the reality is that if dropping AC-support ensured survival of the project, there would be a big increase in AX downloads.

Also, drawing the line at AX routers was just a starting point for discussion. Perhaps there is zero benefit to RMerlin by dropping any of the currently supported routers, although I think the AC88U/AC3100 and RT-AC5300 are effectively EOL devices. There are many better alternatives out there, and I would drop those if there was any hassle with keeping those supported.
Pros and cons to dropping the AC in favour of AX - the AC stuff would be forced to become nodes in AiMesh configs as they'd be feature-frozen (until...), AX stuff could be focused on as you've said...hmmm.
with @L&LD 's glowing report and whole-hearted endorsement of the AX68, this could be the lateral move while we wait...
the AX86 is sold out at my local retailers, and the $300+ Canuckistan kopeks to obtain one is a bit dear for me at the moment IF one were available (what's the difference between the 86u and 86s?)...the ax68 is only 60-70 kopeks less, still a reach but stretchable...
I will wait. there are only 3 AX-enabled devices (2 iPhones and an asus laptop) on my network at this time
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Similar threads

Latest threads

Sign Up For SNBForums Daily Digest

Get an update of what's new every day delivered to your mailbox. Sign up here!
Top