What to do when your router isn’t in the DD-WRT router database

If you have a router and want to run DD-WRT on it, but can’t find the router in the router database, you may have learned the hard way that the router database is a couple of years out of date.

But not all hope is lost. Here’s how to find a build, if one exists.

Visit ftp://ftp.dd-wrt.com/betas/

Navigate to the current year, then to the most recent date.

Routers are listed in alphabetical order. Look for your router and version. The version is listed on a sticker on the underside of the router. Download both webflash.bin and the second file in the directory, if one exists.

Once you have an appropriate build downloaded, installation doesn’t vary much, if any, from router to router. Here are my notes from upgrading a D-Link DIR-615E1 and TP-Link TL-WR841N. If you want to be really safe, do this before you upgrade the router: Find the factory default admin ID and IP address, reset the router to the factory defaults and wipe the internal memory by holding down the reset button for at least 15 seconds, then unplug the router while still holding the reset button for 30 seconds, then plug the router back in and continue to hold the reset button for another 15 seconds.

Then navigate to the router’s default IP address, which will usually be http://192.168.0.1 or http://192.168.1.1, log in with the default credentials, and then navigate to the router’s upgrade page and apply DD-WRT’s webflash.bin. This will apply a functional, if minimal, version of DD-WRT. After getting webflash.bin running on it, you can upgrade to the second file you downloaded, which may contain additional functionality, depending on how much RAM and flash memory your router has. Sometimes they have to cut functionality to fit within the router’s limits.

2 thoughts on “What to do when your router isn’t in the DD-WRT router database

  • July 18, 2015 at 9:53 am
    Permalink

    One thing I discovered while looking through the router database was that the firmware for my Cisco-Linksys router is actually kept under the Broadcom folder rather then being listed under a folder for the router model. So if you have a Broadcom chip based router and can’t find a folder matching your router model check to see if your router has available firmware in the Broadcom folder.

    • July 18, 2015 at 10:11 am
      Permalink

      Nice tip! Thanks for that.

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