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RTN-66U Upgrade question?

Discussion in 'ASUS N Routers & Adapters' started by wh7qq, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    After running TomatoUSB/Shibby on my trusty RT-N66U for years, upgrading often, it was getting behind the times as regards new threats and so on and I wanted to upgrade to fresher firmware so I thrashed around looking and finally settled on the latest (and stated to be the last for this model) upgrade to Merlin's firmware (380.70). I have found that lacking a bit...nice but not what I was used to...and tried to upgrade to John's latest but the ASUS based Merlin firmware would not accept the alternate firmware as it was "uncertified" or something of the sort. I do not have a copy of Windows...Linux only here...so running the Asus utility is not an option.

    Can anyone please remind me of how to get to the onboard rescue mode without the W$ utility?
     
    HowIFix likes this.
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  3. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    Turn the router off.
    Press and hold the Reset button.
    Turn the router on.
    Wait about 5 seconds until the power LED starts flashing slowly.
    Release the Reset button.

    You should now be in Rescue mode and the CFE MiniWeb server accessible at http://192.168.1.1

    Flashing the firmware from here can take up to 40 minutes for the RT-N66U so be patient.
     
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  4. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    Thanks @ColinTaylor. I will try that out this afternoon
     
  5. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    Sorry to report that this did not work. The computer ethernet connection drops and the router is inaccessible.
     
  6. john9527

    john9527 Part of the Furniture

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    You may need to assign a static address and netmask on your client.....something like
    192.168.1.2/255.255.255.0
     
  7. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    ^ What John said ;)

    Did the router have its power LED slowly blinking? If so it was in recovery mode.
     
  8. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    Yes, slowly blinking but no way to access (192.168.1.1) from this box...network off.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2018
  9. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    That would be.... unusual. Have you tried configuring your PC with the static IP address and netmask that John mentioned?

    https://www.asus.com/support/FAQ/1000814/
     
  10. dave14305

    dave14305 Occasional Visitor

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    Make sure you’re plugging into a LAN port and not the WAN port. Big difference.
     
  11. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    Sorry for the time lag...my ancient gray cells have taken some time to research through the difficulty created by Mint's change to systemd and its impact on naming (the silly new naming conventions for ethernet ports). (@dave14305, I am plugged into a LAN port so that is not the problem.)

    This is frustrating as I used to know how to get to the CFE...have done it in the past...but the damned OS doesn't work as it used to. Linux seems to be getting more Windowish in taking all the control away from the user or I am just getting older and more stupid. So I really appreciate all the interest and support this has generated. Thanks guys...trying some more. I will get back to you.
     
  12. dave14305

    dave14305 Occasional Visitor

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  13. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    @#!!%&@#!!!

    First off, @#!!%&@#!!! to the jerkheads that put the bad link to the idiotic "Captcha" trap on the new passwords and the worst kind of incurable pox on the concept of passwords and its creator(s)

    No joy on any of the preceding ideas. Thanks to the FCC and the ASUSwrt folks and everyone else connected with the "certified upgrade" nonsense, I am beginning to think I am totally at the mercy of an April upgrade and who knows when it will be upgraded further. The RT-N66U has been converted from a good versatile machine into a hunk of I don't know what.

    The version 19 of Linux Mint and I suppose any box that now implements the often cursed systemd has made making the IP static nearly impossible. Linux used to be under user control but the masters of the universe have screwed that up but good.

    Warning to any dummies like me: Do NOT upgrade to the newer copies of the factory firmware or even the last of the Merlin upgrades for this router. It will render the router unchangeable. Grrrr!
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2018
  14. dave14305

    dave14305 Occasional Visitor

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    Feeling your pain, but you’re not giving us any information to help you troubleshoot. Someone else might see something you’re missing if you post some error messages or configuration data.

    Help us help you. :)

    I’m also on the verge of replacing my N66U, so let us know if you decide to throw in the towel. We can do an autopsy.
     
  15. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    I appreciate your feeling and understanding. Basically, I have tried various approaches including the Chris Hardie post to no avail. Most are based other operating systems or on earlier versions of Mint and do not address the systemd mess. The roots are the last Merlin update for this router which I recall came in April...it refuses to accept "uncertified" .trx files.

    I can ping the router normally and it returns normally. My subnet and the router are the same 225.255.255.0. tftp comes back as "timed out" after a minute or so so no new firmware is transfered. I have not tried to lengthen the tftp timeout per one of the commenters. The computer was already getting a 192.168.1.30 IP so I stayed with that...I may try one more time with a longer timeout and use an IP between 2 and 10.

    My next move may be to install ipfire on an Intel D2500MUD board that I have replaced and use the 66U as a second firewall, port extender and wifi with some IoT stuff in the DMZ. I will not be dropping $$$ for a new router from Asus or any other. Other than that, I have no idea which way to turn, but in my free download time early tomorrow (I am ISP capped at 5G), I will download an image of MX linux that has not yet been transmogrified to systemd and burn it to a USB key so that I can set a static IP with the live disk running. I am guessing that DHCP is probably killing the connection when it fails.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2018
  16. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    It is not clear to me whether the router is in recovery mode when you are doing this (ping and tftp)? tftp won't work when the router is running normally, only when it's in recovery mode.
     
  17. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    Router power LED is slowly flashing so I suppose it is in recovery mode.

    On the Mint forum, several kind contributors helped me with a GUI method of setting a static IP...the cli approach is still beyond my reach...and this seems to be solved, maybe.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2018
  18. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    And yet you can ping it successfully but cannot access to the router's web interface or tftp to it? :confused: Strange.
     
  19. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    When you ping the router when it is operating normally the TTL response is 64. When it is recovery mode the TTL is 100. That is the telltale sign. What TTL do you get?
     
  20. wh7qq

    wh7qq Regular Contributor

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    My inability to get into a static IP mode and get a connection is the likely cause. I think I got that fixed but I will update on that when I get back to it later.
     
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