Issue with Merlin-WRT 386.4 firmware update on Asus RT-AC88U (Mesh)

antman

New Around Here
Hi,

First off, thank you for Merlin WRT - it's unbelievably awesome. I've been using Merlin for around 4 years now and it's a massive, massive improvement on the stock firmware in terms features and of range and speed of WiFi.

So onto why I'm here; I recently updated my Asus RT-AC88U's (three in mesh) to 386.4 and then around half an hour later all hell broke loose. All of the lights on all of IoT devices in the house went red and both android (wireless) and the windows PCs (wired) were showing either cannot connect or just "no internet".

I started out with easier fixes but in the end I had to downgrade and sanity was restored. Here's what I did:

1. Logged onto the master node, checked status, it showed a yellow warning triangle to indicate no internet
2. Restarted all three node's
3. Power cycled all three node's
4. Looked up guidance on the WAN settings (I have a Virgin Media router that is in modem aka bridge mode), altered DHCP Query frequency to Continuous Mode.
5. Restarted the Virgin Media modem
6. Factory reset the master node and loaded the update again (I also tried Factory resetting, loading the current stock firmware then flashed 386.4, I did this on the master node and the two other nodes)
7. Factory reset and did a manual config on the master node.
8. Factory reset and did a simple (ie no other changes I normally make other than the bare minimum needed to operate) manual config on the master node.

Nothing worked so as I mentioned above I went back to 386.3_2 and the moment I did everything started working perfectly.

Did I miss anything or do anything wrong? Has anyone else had problems with this particular firmware version on the RT-AC88U's? I'm staying on 386.3_2 for the time being but would like to update soon so any feedback would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance.
 

pinkgrae

Regular Contributor
I recently updated my Asus RT-AC88U's (three in mesh) to 386.4 and then around half an hour later all hell broke loose. All of the lights on all of IoT devices in the house went red and both android (wireless) and the windows PCs (wired) were showing either cannot connect or just "no internet".
Do your IoT devices connect to a guest network?
 
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pinkgrae

Regular Contributor
Most of them do (the Philips Hue do not for example as it's wired ethernet) but afaik they were all affected on both the core network and the guests.
There have been various issues with 386.4 around aimesh and guest networks (particularly guest 1) - not an asuswrt-merlin issue, but imported from Asus upstream. Asus has fixed a number of these issues in the latest gpl, which are making their way through to 386.5.

I suspect the symptoms you described may be associated with those issues, but hard to be sure without knowing exactly what goes wrong and where in your setup.

If you want to test this theory you could experiment with installing 386.5_alpha1 as a number of people have reported good experiences with that. Otherwise you have the option to stick with 386.3_2 until the 386.5 release appears.
 

antman

New Around Here
There have been various issues with 386.4 around aimesh and guest networks (particularly guest 1) - not an asuswrt-merlin issue, but imported from Asus upstream. Asus has fixed a number of these issues in the latest gpl, which are making their way through to 386.5.

I suspect the symptoms you described may be associated with those issues, but hard to be sure without knowing exactly what goes wrong and where in your setup.

If you want to test this theory you could experiment with installing 386.5_alpha1 as a number of people have reported good experiences with that. Otherwise you have the option to stick with 386.3_2 until the 386.5 release appears.
Thank you that's very useful, I will try the beta.

Your comments have triggered a few additional things id forgotten. I had also tried the 386.3 beta (386.3_3 iirc) but the problem remained.

Also I already had that asus guest wifi glitch before I started but just on the 2.4ghz guest wifi somehow it also spread to the 5ghz guest wifi, I tried switching slots but it just got worse.
 

pinkgrae

Regular Contributor
That all seems pretty consistent with some of the issues others have been reporting - eg see this thread. In my case, moving my node to stock firmware proved to be a reasonable temporary workaround, but hopefully 386.5 will fix most of the issues properly - I'd be interested to know if it works for you (can't test myself as no alpha yet for AC86U).
 
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winkingwolf

New Around Here
i too have had a problem with this fw 386.4, i lost lan ports 5-8, in the end to get them back
i flashed with asus fw, anybody else lost ports 5-8, router running a mesh with ac68

 
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antman

New Around Here
i tpp have had a problem with this fw 386.4, i lost lan ports 5-8, in the end to get them back
i flashed with asus fw, anybody else lost ports 5-8, router running a mesh with ac68

Don't think I had that (although due to my issues seemingly not kicking in straight away, I was too busy running around like a headless chicken trying to work out what had happened and get our cameras back on line very very late at night lol).

Out of curiosity how did you notice that the ports not working, we're you trying to use the devices on those particular ports or did your routers config page show it?
 

winkingwolf

New Around Here
i have a sat receiver that was on port 6, after a long time mucking about thinking it was sat receiver i began to suspect the ports, i disconnected the receiver and took it up stairs and hey presto it connected instantly with a powerline into the router, so to double make sure i have a remote desktop pc i know connected from port 3, so put that in port 6 and the sat receiver in port 3, the sat receiver connected, and the remote desktop wouldnt, so i reflashed with asus latest fw which i didnt want to do and everything is back to normal, the very last thing i thought it could ever be was the router, may reflash merlin back on and see if this sorted the problems out, how do merlin get to know of my issues, do they look on here or do you have to inform them?
 

winkingwolf

New Around Here
Out of curiosity how did you notice that the ports not working, we're you trying to use the devices on those particular ports or did your routers config page show it?

on the merlin fw there is a sub catogorie called tools, there it shows whats connected to each port, 1-4 was populated, 5-8 it says unknown, thats what started to arouse my suspicons, under the asus fw, this sub cat is not there.
 

antman

New Around Here
i have a sat receiver that was on port 6, after a long time mucking about thinking it was sat receiver i began to suspect the ports, i disconnected the receiver and took it up stairs and hey presto it connected instantly with a powerline into the router, so to double make sure i have a remote desktop pc i know connected from port 3, so put that in port 6 and the sat receiver in port 3, the sat receiver connected, and the remote desktop wouldnt, so i reflashed with asus latest fw which i didnt want to do and everything is back to normal, the very last thing i thought it could ever be was the router, may reflash merlin back on and see if this sorted the problems out, how do merlin get to know of my issues, do they look on here or do you have to inform them?
Ah gotcha. Good question, not sure myself I would imagine they get notified of new posts (Merlin himself seems quite active on these forums which is good). I'm sure someone will be along soon.
 

antman

New Around Here
Out of curiosity how did you notice that the ports not working, we're you trying to use the devices on those particular ports or did your routers config page show it?

on the merlin fw there is a sub catogorie called tools, there it shows whats connected to each port, 1-4 was populated, 5-8 it says unknown, thats what started to arouse my suspicons, under the asus fw, this sub cat is not there.

I think that particular tool is a bit of a red herring, those are the Realtek ports and on my router it says "note: not all information can be retrieved for Realtek ports" so when it shows unplugged I take it with a pinch of salt (especially when the device is working lol)

I only go to that part when I want to know what is plugged into where (if I'm looking to unplug a windows PC for example and assuming it's plugged into ports 1-4), I usually just look at the ethernet ports on the main page.

Hope it goes well on your other thread you posted, interesting/annoying to read how shoddy those realtek ports are, will check back from time to time. :)
 
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