Did I brick my AC68U with the 386.7_2 merlin fw?

deadpanlearn

New Around Here
Hi,
I just updated my ac68u from 386.5 to 386.7, but the router is inaccessible for me after restarting the router physically when the firmware update was done. Wifi lights are off, I cannot see on my computer any wireless access points come to life when I turned it on. Plugging it in to ethernet port also does nothing (laptop does not recognize any connection, I cannot access the router from the browser). The internet led on the front of the router seem okay and when the laptop is plugged in to one of the ethernet ports, the correct port's led flashes as it should.
I tried the reset button on the back, tried to turn on the wifi with the button on the side, but nothing changed its behavior.
Am I missing anything?
Can someone please point me to threads with ideas I should try? I looked for a half hour, but probably I am not using the right keywords.
Thanks very much!
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Welcome to the forums @deadpanlearn. Welcome to you too @FlamingIce.

How long did you wait for the router before you 'physically' rebooted it? You need to ignore the message in the browser to reboot manually and be more patient next time.

Are you rebooting the device you're using to test the router with too?

Try using the appropriate method for your router in the link below.

[Wireless] ASUS router Hard Factory Reset | Official Support | ASUS Global


I would also flash 386.7_2 when you get this working.

And be sure you're flashing the correct firmware for your model too. Check, and double-check before using the method suggested above.
 

deadpanlearn

New Around Here
Thank you both for the help!

@FlamingIce this is what I was hoping to find, thanks very much for the link. Unfortunately I was unable to flash fw on it. The utility, the rescue mode worked fine, but during the upload, it restarts at 44-45% every time. I tried 3 different firmwares now (the most recent merlin, the merlin one I had before and the most recent asus). Every time it starts the upload, restarts it around 44%, stops there again and gives an error message that it failed to recover the system. Any further ideas?

@L&LD I am not sure how long it was, but at least a minute, probably more (had to get a chair to reach the router, at minimum a minute, but I am not sure I saw the message immediately, bc I was multitasking, so there is a high likelihood, that it was 3-5 minutes. I do not reboot the laptop each time I try something, but have rebooted twice since the firmware update failed. Thanks for the link, I do use the appropriate method for rebooting. I checked and rechecked, I am using using the correct model's firmware.

Any further ideas would be very welcome, or if you think this is a brick and I should just give up trying? Thanks very much!
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
Asus recently switched to a combined firmware image for the RT-AC68U, where it contains two firmwares for two different models. I suspect that Firmware Recovery does not work with these combined firmwares.

Try downloading version 386.4, which will have the smaller single model image and flashing that in recovery mode.
 

Portalnet

Regular Contributor
Asus recently switched to a combined firmware image for the RT-AC68U, where it contains two firmwares for two different models. I suspect that Firmware Recovery does not work with these combined firmwares.

Try downloading version 386.4, which will have the smaller single model image and flashing that in recovery mode.
Do you know if ASUS is going to release new Recovery software for these large files?
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
Do you know if ASUS is going to release new Recovery software for these large files?
I don't know. It would be tricky to implement, because all the tool does is transfer the file over TFTP, and then the bootloader on the router handles the actual writing. The recovery tool would need to somehow know which target device it's trying to recover, and split the file into two separate images before uploading the correct one. So, I suspect this isn't going to happen.

It would probably be easier for Asus to just release a separate "recovery" image destined to be used by the recovery tool to at least get a working firmware, after which the user could flash the latest regular firmware through normal methods.
 

Poul Bak

Occasional Visitor
@RMerlin THANK YOU! That worked! I really appreciate your help!

I think the problem is that you rebooted too soon after upgrade.
I also have my good old AC68U running 386.7_2 . When I have upgraded, I always go into the router webpage and check the CPU usage. Once (can't remember when) it stayed at about 80% for half an hour, then went down to normal (a few percents). ONLY THEN did I unplug it. Apparently it was doing some important stuff. By rebooting in the middle of that process, you might have 'bricked' it.
 

Portalnet

Regular Contributor
It would probably be easier for Asus to just release a separate "recovery" image destined to be used by the recovery tool to at least get a working firmware, after which the user could flash the latest regular firmware through normal methods.
That's right, there are no single files for ax86U (small - except Merlin), so based on the original ASUS can't be recovered
 

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