RT-AC86U failed firmware update

  • ATTENTION! As of November 1, 2020, you are not able to reply to threads 6 months after the thread is opened if there are more than 500 posts in the thread.
    Threads will not be locked, so posts may still be edited by their authors.
    Just start a new thread on the topic to post if you get an error message when trying to reply to a thread.

Namrustler

Occasional Visitor
My attempt to upgrade the firmware on my RT-AC86U from 384.19 to 386.1 went badly.

The current state of it is:
  • I can access it's web server (finally).
  • LAN 4 LED is the only working light.
  • I can no longer enter rescue mode. I've tried the usual sequence to enter this mode, but the power LED never lights up and I've held the reset button for up to 60 seconds.
  • The LED switch has no effect
  • I cannot upgrade the firmware. I've tried 386.1, 384.19 and the last two official ASUS firmware and each fails with "Firmware upgrade unsuccessful. This may result from incorrect image or transmission".
  • The wireless is not working. The radios are enabled but the wireless icon on the main page is dimmed, and the wireless button on the side has no effect.
  • A factory reset from within the GUI works but it doesn't eliminate and of the problems I've noted above.
Other than that the router appears to be working. The WAN port gets an IP address, I can browse the Internet, and a speed test is fine.

Does anyone have some ideas for me to try?

Thanks.
 

Namrustler

Occasional Visitor
I cannot get the router into rescue mode. I had it in rescue mode last night, but it's like none of the buttons, other than the power switch, work. If I plug the power in while holding the reset button, the power LED never flashes like it did yesterday. LAN 4 LED is the only functioning light, but it's always on even if nothing is plugged into that port.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture

Namrustler

Occasional Visitor
With the state of your router as described, the following link may help.

Fully Reset Router and Network
Thanks.

I tried that today but it didn't help. When I try to upgrade the firmware it fails immediately.

To verify that the reset button works, I pressed and held it and after a few seconds the router rebooted. However, when applying power to the router while the reset button is pressed and held, the router never enters rescue mode. Since the power LED does not light, I've held the button for up to 60 seconds but the recovery program says the router is not in rescue mode.

This router is about 2-3 years old. I replaced it yesterday with the same model but it would have been nice to resurrect the old one.

If I could just get into rescue mode, I think it would be okay.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
If the LED for the Power Button is burned out (I'm not clear if it's lighting at all for you), then test various times of 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 seconds to get the router into recovery mode.

The time start counting is after you have plugged in the power plug to the router, with the power switch having been left 'On' and the router left unplugged for a minute or two (to fully drain any residual power) in addition to all Ethernet cables and USB devices unplugged from it too.

Test multiple times at each 'timed' level. Even a perfectly working unit doesn't make this an exact science.

Before doing the above, your laptop or desktop's Ethernet Port should be configured to 192.168.1.10, or 192.168.50.10 (depending on what its default was), manually (see the link provided in the previous post for further details).

The Firmware Restoration Utility should be running on the computer with the firmware you want to flash ready to go.

After attempting to put the router in recovery mode, wait a few seconds (10 to 15) before plugging in an Ethernet cable from the laptop/desktop to one of the router's LAN ports.

After beginning the flash, note that it may take an exceedingly long time for the router to be available (an hour or more). Be patient.

Be sure to also test different ports, to rule out every combination and permutation possible.
 
Last edited:

Namrustler

Occasional Visitor
If the LED for the Power Button is burned out (I'm not clear if its lighting at all for you), then test various times of 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 seconds to get the router into recovery mode.

The time start counting is after you have plugged in the power plug to the router, with the power switch having been left 'On' and the router left unplugged for a minute or two (to fully drain any residual power) in addition to all Ethernet cables and USB devices unplugged from it too.

Test multiple times at each 'timed' level. Even a perfectly working unit doesn't make this an exact science.

Before doing the above, your laptop or desktop's Ethernet Port should be configured to 192.168.1.10, or 192.168.50.10 (depending on what its default was), manually (see link provided in previous post for further details).

The Firmware Restoration Utility should be running on the router with the firmware you want to flash ready to go.

After attempting to put the router in recovery mode, wait a few seconds (10 to 15) before plugging in an Ethernet cable from the laptop/desktop to one of the routers LAN ports.

After beginning the flash, note that it may take an exceedingly long time for the router to be available (an hour or more). Be patient.

Be sure to also test different ports to, to rule out every possible combination and permutation possible.
The only LED that ever lights is LAN 4, and it is always on when the power switch is on, regardless of whether a cable is plugged in. Because the power LED never comes on, you can't tell if the router has entered recovery mode.

The LEDs worked prior to the firmware upgrade.

I'll try again with your instructions. I assume when you said "The Firmware Restoration Utility should be running on the router", you meant running on my dekstop/laptop.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
@Namrustler, correct I did mean desktop/laptop computer instead of the router. I've edited the post for clarity.
 

Similar threads

Sign Up For SNBForums Daily Digest

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