Networking, Solution

How to turn a router to a repeater?

Hi All,

I have received a new challenge recently where I have an unused router and I were asked to make it act as a repeater. Some of the router has the repeater functionality but not this one that’s with me which is the Linksys WRT54G v5.0.

DD-WRT is a Linux based alternative OpenSource firmware suitable for a great variety of WLAN routers and embedded systems. The main emphasis lies on providing the easiest possible handling while at the same time supporting a great number of functionalities within the framework of the respective hardware platform used.

“Nothing is impossible” (Lucky me~), hereĀ  are the list of devices that support DD-WRT. Below are the steps for flashing the router to become a repeater.

Note: You’ll need the router to be connected to the computer using the Ethernet cable and also a timer/stopwatch.

  1. Download the zipped files in GV5Flash.zip
  2. Do a hard reset on the router, 30-30-30 reset:
    • Push the reset button with the router powered on.
    • Hold it for 30 seconds with the router powered on.
    • Still holding it, pull the power cord for 30 seconds.
    • Still holding it, plug the power back into the router
    • Continue to hold the reset button for 30 more seconds.
    • Full 90 seconds without releasing the reset button.
  3. Set a static IP on the computer to 192.168.1.7 and Subnet mask to 255.255.255.0.
  4. Turn off the wireless connection and firewall. Only connect the computer to the router using the Ethernet cable.
  5. Unzip the GV5Flash.zip
  6. Unzip the VXImgToolGui.zip and run VXImgToolGui.exe
  7. Select the WRT54G not WRT54GS
  8. Put the MAC address which can be seen at the bottom of the router
  9. For the output image, save it as My54gImage.bin in the same extracted folder
  10. Power cycle the router by unplug the power from the router for 30 seconds and then plug it back in.
  11. Go to the internet browser and type 192.168.1.1. Linksys page will be shown and not the Management Mode page. If it shows management mode then power cycle the router again.
  12. Enter “root” as the username and “admin” as the password.
  13. Go to Administration and Firmware Upgrade.
  14. Navigate to the extracted folder, and select vxworks_prep_03.bin.
  15. Hit upgrade.
  16. Wait for FIVE FULL MINUTES. DO NOT turn off or disconnect the router.
  17. Once it is passed, do a power cycle on the router.
  18. Browse again to 192.168.1.1. If it shows a blank window, clear the browser cache. and it should be showing the MANAGEMENT MODE window.
  19. Select the My54gImage.bin and hit Apply.
  20. Wait for the “Upgrade Success” message, and then WAIT FIVE FULL MINUTES again. DO NOT turn off or disconnect the router.
  21. Start tftp.exe.
    1. Enter 192.168.1.1 as the address in the top box of tftp.exe.
    2. Leave the password blank.
    3. Select the 12548 Newd_Micro.bin firmware.
    4. Set retries to 99.
    5. Power cycle the router.
    6. Count to 2.
    7. Hit upgrade.
  22. When it is success, wait FIVE FULL minutes.
  23. If it is not success, repeat from steps 21(4) up to this one. If it is still not success, clear your browser cache. Try using a different browser as well, to navigate to 192.168.1.1.
  24. When dd-wrt page can be accessed using a browser at 192.168.1.1, power cycle the router.
  25. When it can be accessed again the dd-wrt page using a browser at 192.168.1.1, do another HARD reset (refer to steps 2) on the router.
  26. Reset the computer Ethernet connection to auto IP and auto DNS.

So that’s how to flash the router. Once it is done, then you can set the wireless mode to the repeater.

That’s it!…


-Farrah K.