What can I do with old wireless routers

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droople

Occasional Visitor
Hi there,

I have found some old routers in my home, Asus RT-N16, RT-N18U, Netgear WNDR4300, R7000 and R7800.
I'm just wondering that what I can do with these routers.

ChipsetRAMFlashYear2.4 Ghz5 GHzAntennasStandards
RT-N16Broadcom BCM4718A1 @ 480 MHz128 MB32 MB2009YesNo3 x 2 dBi
RP-SMA
IEEE 802.11b/g/n
RT-N18UBroadcom BCM47081A0 @ 800 MHz256 MB128 MB2014YesNo3 x 5 dBi
RP-SMA
IEEE 802.11b/g/n
WNDR4300Qualcomm Atheros QCA9563 @ 750 MHz128 MB128 MB2014YesYes3 x 5 dBi
internal
IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
R7000Broadcom BCM4709A0 @ 1 GHz256 MB128 MB2013YesYes3 x 3.3 dBi
RP-SMA
IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac
R7800Qualcomm Atheros IPQ8065 @ 1.7 GHz512 MB128 MB2015YesYes4 x 2 dBi
RP-SMA
IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac



Any suggestions will be appreciated.

Cheers,
 
Last edited:

Adooni

Senior Member
for RT-N16, RT-N18U and R7000 you can go with FreshTomato and have very good routers for long time.
I have for example RT_N16 with fresh tomato and LTE modem E3372s-150 (non hi-link) and is working very good
RT-N18U and R7000 are very good routers and those would be enough for 90%+ users for next 10years.
you can use them as AP = there is a lot possibilities :)
 

droople

Occasional Visitor
for RT-N16, RT-N18U and R7000 you can go with FreshTomato and have very good routers for long time.
I have for example RT_N16 with fresh tomato and LTE modem E3372s-150 (non hi-link) and is working very good
RT-N18U and R7000 are very good routers and those would be enough for 90%+ users for next 10years.
you can use them as AP = there is a lot possibilities :)
Looks awesome. Just wondering that what's the best firmware for WNDR4300 and R7800?
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
Netgear R7000 is hardware equivalent to Asus RT-AC68U and Linksys EA6900. Netgear R7800 is one of the best AC routers in terms of Wi-Fi range. Both are still used by many folks today. If you have no use for them - sell them on eBay. 3rd party firmware compatibility makes them interesting for some people. No new HND platform Broadcom routers support OpenWRT or FreshTomato.
 

droople

Occasional Visitor
Netgear R7000 is hardware equivalent to Asus RT-AC68U and Linksys EA6900. Netgear R7800 is one of the best AC routers in terms of Wi-Fi range. Both are still used by many folks today. If you have no use for them - sell them on eBay. 3rd party firmware compatibility makes them interesting for some people. No new HND platform Broadcom routers support OpenWRT or FreshTomato.
Thank you I will flash the firmware.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
If you have no use for them, give them to a friend, recycle them responsibly or donate them. My local thrift shop has benefited from all the routers I've taken to them over the years

The R7800 in particular is still an very good and serviceable router. Probably one of the best AC routers made.
 

droople

Occasional Visitor
If you have no use for them, give them to a friend, recycle them responsibly or donate them. My local thrift shop has benefited from all the routers I've taken to them over the years

The R7800 in particular is still an very good and serviceable router. Probably one of the best AC routers made.
Yes you are right, I'll try to make it as an ad-blocker, which firmware do you recommend, VOXEL or Openwrt?
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
Yes you are right, I'll try to make it as an ad-blocker, which firmware do you recommend, VOXEL or Openwrt?
I have no experience with either. I always run factory firmware.
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
Yes you are right, I'll try to make it as an ad-blocker, which firmware do you recommend, VOXEL or Openwrt?
Voxel is a variant of the stock firmware, so it will be fairly similar in terms of features. It will also be reliant on Netgear's own support to continue receiving security updates to anything related to wifi or other proprietary components.

OpenWRT is a completely different firmware, so it will have a lot of extra features, however performance may not be as good (I don't know if OpenWRT supports hardware acceleration on the R7800, or the quality of the wireless driver it uses for that model). But it should get long-term support even beyond Netgear's own EOL date.

For ad blocking, consider going with Pi-hole for a more advanced ad blocking solution that won`t be reliant on the router`s own performance.
 

BreakingDad

Very Senior Member
Create a modern art piece with them. Entitle it "ever increasing ghz against the passing of time"
 
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dosborne

Very Senior Member
Personally, I just keep at least one or two generations of my old gear around in case something dies suddenly or I need another AP or a friend needs one etc. The rest goes to charity or recycle.
 

droople

Occasional Visitor
Voxel is a variant of the stock firmware, so it will be fairly similar in terms of features. It will also be reliant on Netgear's own support to continue receiving security updates to anything related to wifi or other proprietary components.

OpenWRT is a completely different firmware, so it will have a lot of extra features, however performance may not be as good (I don't know if OpenWRT supports hardware acceleration on the R7800, or the quality of the wireless driver it uses for that model). But it should get long-term support even beyond Netgear's own EOL date.

For ad blocking, consider going with Pi-hole for a more advanced ad blocking solution that won`t be reliant on the router`s own performance.
Thank you so much Merlin.
 

IK Gamex

New Around Here
If you are into gaming/LAN parties, it may be worthwhile to keep them and use them as a switch or dhcp server. It always helps to have a 'network guy' who can bring multiple switches to a LAN.

If you aren't looking to keep them, you could throw them on craigslist in the 'free' section. It provides an opportunity to meet someone in your area who is also interested in networking.
 

JonP

New Around Here
Voxel is a variant of the stock firmware, so it will be fairly similar in terms of features. It will also be reliant on Netgear's own support to continue receiving security updates to anything related to wifi or other proprietary components.

OpenWRT is a completely different firmware, so it will have a lot of extra features, however performance may not be as good (I don't know if OpenWRT supports hardware acceleration on the R7800, or the quality of the wireless driver it uses for that model). But it should get long-term support even beyond Netgear's own EOL date.
I believe it does support SW and HW accel. Depends on whether you want to use SQM, then the HW may not be supported. You may not need it that much, the R7800 was no slouch CPU wise. OpenWrt has been going thru RC's for the next major release, and just released a update to the current stable version. Many updates, including wifi drivers, have been coming thru.
For ad blocking, consider going with Pi-hole for a more advanced ad blocking solution that won`t be reliant on the router`s own performance.
Been a happy user of the Adblock package for some years now, even back when my TP-Link C7 was my main router. Don't know if Pi-hole is more advanced, and I don't run every possible list, (but probably could now that my routering is done on a tiny PC box w lots of memory) but have been happy with it. Check it out on the OpenWrt Fourms, for feature list and so forth.
 

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