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[RT-N66U] firmware upgrade from old merlin build

Discussion in 'ASUS N Routers & Adapters' started by amita, Jan 18, 2020.

  1. amita

    amita Occasional Visitor

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    Hello,
    I am using an old Merlin firmware on my RT-N66U Assus router: 3.0.0.4.374.34_2 (Merlin build).

    Since this is a very old version and updated firmware includes many security fixes, as I heard, and since I experience problems with a printer that is connected to my network that starts printing pages that were not sent from legitimate source, I would like to upgrade my router's firmware in order to reduce possibility of attacks over my connected devices.

    I understand that the firmware to this router is no longer supported, so I would like to get the latest version that is available to it.

    I have few questions:
    1. Any recommendation for use of Merlin Firmware vs. the Assus official version?
    2. Which version is the latest for this router by Merlin? Where can I download it from?
    3. How should the upgrade process be done? Should I only choose from the upgrade screen the new firmware and that's all? should I do anything else? (Note that the current firmware that I use is very old). A link to relevant guide, if available would be appreciated.
    Will this process be different in case I choose to install Assus firmware over the Merlin, or if I choose to install the Merlin firmware on top of the current one?

    Thanks,
    Amit.
     
  2. AndreiV

    AndreiV Very Senior Member

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    Відправився на риболовлю
  3. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    You have two realistic choices if you want to stay with an Asuswrt based firmware.

    1. John's fork of Merlin. It was last updated on 17-April-2019 and includes many fixes not present in the final Merlin release.

    2. Stock Asus firmware.

    I wouldn't consider the final Merlin release anymore as that hasn't been updated since April 2018.

    Installation for either firmware should be a matter of simply downloading and unzippping the file and applying it through the GUI. You should perform a factory reset afterwards followed by a manual configure.
     
  4. amita

    amita Occasional Visitor

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    Great, Thanks for the answers !
    Any recommendation about the better option - John's for vs the Stock Asus FW?
     
  5. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    The RT-N66U isn't capable of supporting some of the newer firmware features, like Adaptive QoS. So that's not a consideration.

    Personally I use John's fork. It's rock solid and has some added features that are not in the stock firmware.
     
  6. amita

    amita Occasional Visitor

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    So I went on with John's fork.
    The upgrade was performed using the GUI, even though I read in the @UpgradeMatrix.txt file (which is part of the installation package) that I should have upgrade the router using the Asus Firmware restoration tool.
    The upgrade seems to work well - the router works with the new firmware.
    Since it seems to work fine, I did not perform NVRAM reset (also supposed to do that according to @UpgradeMatrix.txt file)

    Do you know if I should perform the NVRAM reset, and then manually reconfigure the router? if so - how? Will the factory default button in the GUI do the job?

    with the new firmware I see one problem: some of the text in the GUI pages is printed over other text - for example the page titles, and explanation text that is printed over some tabs.
    See example in the attached screenshot.

    [​IMG]
    Who should I report issue this to?
    It is difficult to me to assume that I am the first one to see these issues - maybe these are related to the actions that I did not do?
     

    Attached Files:

  7. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    Yes you really should do a reset. You can either do it in the GUI, or you can just press and hold the physical reset button for 5 seconds.

    Yes this is a known issue with recent versions of Chrome. The fix is described here.
     
    amita likes this.
  8. amita

    amita Occasional Visitor

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    Thanks, Andrei.
    I saw that page prior to posting my questions. I did not know about the form made by John based on Merlin's code, and considered using the latest version by Merlin. John's fork is a better option, I understand.