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RT-N66U entered recovery mode by itself - hardware failure?

Discussion in 'ASUS N Routers & Adapters' started by Ormu, Feb 2, 2019.

  1. Ormu

    Ormu Occasional Visitor

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2012
    Messages:
    39
    I was using RT-N66U yesterday (via Ethernet) and it was working fine. Today, 5GHz Wifi was unstable. After a few reconnections I logged into the router control panel and rebooted the router.

    After rebooting, network was not working and the Wifi lights were off. The power led was blinking slowly, about 3sec on and 3sec off. The WAN led and one ethernet led were working normally. I rebooted the router twice using the power button but it didn't help.

    I recalled that the power led may flash like that when the router is in the recovery mode. I connected my computer using ethernet and configured a manual IP address. Now the router responded to ping (with some packet loss) and I could indeed access the recovery panel.

    I clicked the NVRAM reset link in the recovery panel and it displayed a message "Command nvram erase completed". After that I rebooted the router again using the power button.

    After rebooting, the router was still in the recovery mode. I tried to reset it by using the reset button as well as using the WPS button while powering on the router but the router is still in the recovery mode.

    I also tried to hold the reset button while powering on the router - this would normally put it into the recovery mode. It did not cause it to exit the recovery mode.



    I'm going to upload the firmware using the recovery panel next. How long should it take? I've heard from various sources that it may take a minute, 10 to 15 minutes, up to an hour, 90 minutes or 4 hours. The current firmware is the latest official released by Asus.

    If it doesn't work, I'm going to test the power supply as soon as I have access to suitable equipment. But I guess that's where it ends. Are there any other tricks I should try, or is it time to buy a new router? This router is about 7 and a half years old and it has been in 24/7 use for at least 5 years.



    I also noticed that scanning port 80 when the router is in the recovery mode causes the recovery panel to stop responding, and the port also goes into stealth state. Is this intentional?
     
  2. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    7,017
    Seems like a lot of the RT-N66U's are having issues all of a sudden. See post#6 in the link below.

    https://www.snbforums.com/threads/rt-n66u-frozen-wont-reset.54817/#post-463367

    Even with a successful flash of any firmware I cared to try on that RT-N66U router, including latest official Asus' builds, RMerlin and john9527's fork, the router was not working as it should. The 'fix' was to install an RT-AC68U for my customer.

    I hope that you'll have better luck though.

    The N66U was still not stable even after performing a full reset to factory defaults after flashing the firmware I was testing was successfully installed.

    https://www.snbforums.com/threads/n...l-and-manual-configuration.27115/#post-205573

    The post above has the following links included that may prove helpful, but it also has an overview of how to be organized and consistent when testing new firmware out too.

    http://www.snbforums.com/threads/faq-nvram-and-factory-default-reset.22822/

    http://www.snbforums.com/threads/no...l-and-manual-configuration.27115/#post-205573

    http://www.snbforums.com/threads/rt-ac66u-slow-wan-to-lan.12973/page-3#post-269410

    http://www.snbforums.com/threads/user-nvram-save-restore-utility-r24.19521/
     
  3. Ormu

    Ormu Occasional Visitor

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2012
    Messages:
    39
    Thanks for the links.

    I managed to reinstall the firmware via the recovery panel. Uploading the file was very fast, it only took some seconds. After that, the power led turned off and the router apparently started flashing the firmware. I left it alone so I don't know how long it exactly took but it was less than an hour anyway.

    After flashing the firmware, I quickly did the initial setup, enabled telnet and erased NVRAM once more to be sure that it's clean.

    Now the router is working and I managed to download some GBs of files over Wifi. We'll see how long it stays stable.


    I found some other threads as well. Here's a very similar case with a broken router:
    https://www.snbforums.com/threads/help-plz-asus-rt-n66u-dark-night-stuck-in-rescue-mode.20868/page-2



    I noticed a minor security problem too. When the router is powered on for the first time after a reset, the Wifi radios are on and there are two open networks available which can be used to set up the router immediately. Of course it's unlikely that anyone would hijack the router at this point, but I think this is worth noting. Should this be reported to Asus?
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2019
    L&LD likes this.
  4. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    7,017
    You're welcome. :)

    Glad to see your router is more stable than my customers from a couple of days ago.

    The open networks are a feature. Some may not have a device with a GbE network connection available to them when they first buy and install the router.