don't forget to enable (well, at least seriously consider enabling) IPv6 functionality on your router if your ISP offers it, whichever firmware you ultimately choose to go with.Thanks SO much for the heads up. I'll trash the Merlin installer and stay with what works. I appreciate your details and advice.
The AC68 was and still is one of the most reliable routers sold by ASUS. I have been using one as an AP since 2013 and it still works fine. I have another AC68 on which I have installed the latest Merlin firmware and it works fine including many of the scripts that can be installed using ATM. I keep it on the shelf as a spare to quickly install if and when my AC86 fail. While over the course of using the router and the AC86, I did have one USB drive fail it did not effect to functioning of the router just the collection of data. Since upgrading to a better USB drive instead of using bargain basement specials the drives have continued to function.I was waiting to see your further questions. You definitely don't need Asuswrt-Merlin on your router. Read why below:
- your router is 2012 hardware and not all Asuswrt-Merlin features will be available to you, no Cake or Wireguard for example.
- your router's radios rely heavily on the main CPU and the more things you run on the router the more impact on overall performance.
- your router has 256MB RAM only and all of the above people who recommended Asuswrt-Merlin to you use routers with 1GB RAM
- uBlock origin is much more effective ad-blocker than Diversion, it doesn't destroy web pages and blocks YouTube ads.
- many custom scripts require USB stick, including Diversion. Your reliable router will become as reliable as your USB stick.
- if you want custom scripts, you have to learn how to troubleshoot your router yourself. You're far from it at this stage.
First to complain from your experiments are your family members. Make sure you are ready to handle the situation. Good luck.
Asuswrt-Merlin is excellent, but not for everyone. You can climb the mountain, but with no experience you may fall off the cliff.
It's the default for now, the time being, but if jontalk wants to start their journey into learning internetty things, I'm happy to point them in the direction of ipv6.he.net/certification
Interesting feedback from everyone. Regarding IPv6, I found this when attempting to see if Xfinity supports it: https://www.xfinity.com/support/articles/about-ipv6You don't learn to swim by looking at the water. Jump in. Experience the vast ocean called IPv6.
When you're ready to be in test mode, do the above. Be sure you have your handy notepad with you during your tests to write down/screen snip anything you may have a question about.
You may decide that IPv6 isn't for you. But it will be through experience and expanding your knowledge. Always a good thing.
Sure, search to see if you're not leaping blindly off a cliff. But IPv6 is the future, whether anyone wants it or not. Get comfortable with it sooner, rather than later (the 'hill' will just seem steeper then).
By not using Merlin's firmware you give up many useful features which for many people make the ASUS routers more useful and more reliable.
I'd wager if it's enabled on your gateway/"modem" device, your AC68 will probably see an IPv6 WAN address and you've been using it unknowingly for some time.
Sourceforge is just one of the download sites, so you are also missing stats from mirrors like Onedrive and Softpedia.I use numbers for assessment. On the next Asuswrt-Merlin release look at downloads per week for AC68U firmware. It is still one of the most popular models around. The firmware covers all Asus models from AC66U_B1 to AC1900P plus AC68U V4. Most Asuswrt-Merlin users upgrade shortly after release, so monitor for 2 weeks. You are going to get a number in some thousands. Do you know how many AC68U variants Asus have sold between 2013 and 2022? If you do, you will get an idea of "many people" in numbers. My realistic expectation is under 5% of Asus router users run Asuswrt-Merlin firmware.
@RMerlin You would think with all the growing consensus for security consciousnesses that the 120,000 number could have easily doubled by now.Sourceforge is just one of the download sites, so you are also missing stats from mirrors like Onedrive and Softpedia.
A few years ago I was able to get an estimate of the number of installed users based on the amount of DNS traffic hitting Cloudflare for the update server, and it was around 120,000 unique users hitting the update server within the 48 hours time period of the update check cycle.
I can no longer get that estimate however because I now have the main website sharing the same domain as the update server.
Maybe this estimate would have been true in the first couple of years of running asuswrt-merlin. I remember my first asuswrt router was the RT-AC68U and RT-AC56U. This was in the early days of these router models. I remember my internet connection was crap until I decided to research what the average users settings were for the time. Don't ask me where i got this information, but it was here in the SNBForums from a very very old post. This was before I was even an active participant of the threads though. My Internet connection was crap on these routers until I installed Asuswrt-Merlin on them. (using the same settings that I had previously selected from this forum for as a regular asuswrt user.) Hell, Even the default settings worked better on Asuswrt-Merlin version of firmware at the time, then it did with the stock firmware. I remember switching back to stock firmware constantly trying to replicate whatever it was that made RMerlins firmware better, but I simply couldn't; meaning, I was not able to replicate on stock firmware, whatever RMerlins version was doing to make my connection better. Now stockfirmware does not have nearly as many bugs as it did back then. I honestly believe alot of some of the strengths of Asuswrt firmware can be attributed to backports off of RMerlin. But, I am not expert in this regard, or any on that matter.My realistic expectation is under 5% of Asus router users run Asuswrt-Merlin firmware.
Now stockfirmware does not have nearly as many bugs as it did back then.
I honestly believe alot of some of the strengths of Asuswrt firmware can be attributed to backports off of RMerlin.
It probably did increase, but I have no easy way to get accurate numbers.