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RiM3Y.net | BlogZero - Neither a nerd nor a geek. Just born techie.

UnBrick your Linksys router – WRT54GS v7

 

Why my router got brick?

Alot. Usually it because of power-surge that cause the chip to corrupt your router’s boot-loader. Some people make use of this method to Unbrick the router by shorten the 16 pin of the chip. I personally dont like the trouble of opening my router, so I dont recommend this method.

Some other reason that lead your router to BRICK is… of course firmware upgrade. I have re-written and merge Part 1 and Part 2 of my tutorial to this page. Anyway let get started.

image

Read what others are saying: useful info for troubleshot.

 

Notes:
Please bear in mind that this tutorial is specifically for Linksys WRT54GS version7. If you got question that is not for “how to unbrick your Linksys router – WRT54GS v7” then the chances are your question will never be answer, ever.

Let me emphasize:
For your router to get brick, the chances are you have an itchy hand to flash the firmware or at least you know how to play around with command prompt. If you don’t know anything about command prompt, the chances are you might not survive by the end of this tutorial and your question might not be answer. 😛

What to expect:
I’m going to show you guys how to UN-Brick brick router. For your info, the router is Linksys Wireless Router with SpeedBooster WRT54GS v7, running Broadcom chip. What inside this tutorial:
– Prerequisite
– Prepare your test computer
– Before Un-bricking begins
– Let the UN-Brick begins

Prerequisite

  • Make sure your router really is brick.
    • Un-connect any cable from your router.
    • Connect power plug to your router and turn it on. Let it on for 5 minutes.
    • Then plug ethernet cable to your router, and plug the other end to your computer.
    • Wait until it gives your computer an IP. If you have a “No connectivity or limited connectivity” message, then you might want to look at my other article here (http://blog.rim3y.net/zero/?p=720). If the same problem occur then follow next step.
    • Then ping 192.168.1.1 (assuming that is your router IP)
    • If you received no reply or error, then look at the LED lights.
    • Look at Power light, if the light is dimmer; and there is no LED light for your Wireless; then bad news: you router is Brick.
    • Sometimes the Power light is blinking continuously. This is the same symptom about brick router.
  • Get necessary firmware.
    • If you want to flash the original firmware then you can download it from Linksys. Update: Some people said that sometimes original firmware didn’t work.
      http://www.linksysbycisco.com/US/en/support
    • If you want, you can use DD-Wrt (http://www.dd-wrt.com/). For my case I use DD-WRT firmware which is specifically for my router. Yours may vary.
      http://www.dd-wrt.com/site/support/router-database
    • Please read whatever notes and warning on each site. For instance:
      • For WRT54GL – using DD-WRT:
        You need to flash using “mini generic” version first before you can apply “standard generic” version.

        WRT54GL v 1/1.1 can go up to “standard generic” version.

      • For WRT54GS v7 – using DD-WRT:
        You need to flash it using “VXWorks-killer” first before you can apply “micro generic” version.

        WRT54GS v7 can go up to “micro generic” only.

    • Once you go the any of the mention website, download any relevant firmware files (the one that ends with “.bin” extension) and put it to “c:\temp” folder. If “c:\temp” folder don’t exist, then create one.
    • Based on this tutorial which is for Linksys WRT54GS v7, we have two files in our “c:\temp”
      – vxworkskillerGSv7-v3.bin
      – dd-wrt.v24_micro_generic.bin
  • Get the tool:
    • Another tool that you may need is “tftp.exe”, which is TFTP-Client for Windows:
      http://www.tftp-server.com/tftp-client.html

      • If you download it, please put it to “c:\temp”
    • If you are using Vista or Windows 7, they have a built in TFTP which you need to enable:
      • Go to Start > Control Panel > Programs
      • Under Programs and Features, click “Turn Windows features on or off”
      • Check TFTP Client, and click OK.

        tftp

Now you are getting closer to start un-bricking your router.

Prepare your test computer
You need to make a simple communication between your computer and your router. This mean, using lowest speed possible and manually configuring the IP.

  • This is an assumption that your router IP is “192.168.1.1”
  • Open your Network Connections. Right-click your Local Area Connection then click Properties

    image1

  • Click TCP/IP, then click Properties

    image2

  • Click “Use the following IP address” then enter below IP:
    IP address: 192.168.1.2
    Subnet: 255.255.255.0
    Default gateway: 192.168.1.1

    This is assuming your router’s IP is “192.168.1.1”

    image3
    Click OK.

  • Again on Local Area Connection Properties;
    • choose Advance tab
    • Speed & Duplex
    • change value to 10mbps/half duplex

      image4

      Click OK.

Before Un-bricking begins
Let start already… I know, I know, but lets do another testing to make sure you cover everything up before you start the un-bricking of your router.

  • Have you done Hard Reset (aka 30/30/30 reset):?
    If you done that and yet your router still brick then follow next step.

    If you haven’t done this yet, then visit http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Hard_reset_or_30/30/30

  • Maintenance Mode Firmware Screen
    The nice thing about Linksys router is that they have Maintenance Mode Firmware Screen. This screen will over-write the router from booting up and instead allows you to upload any firmware to it. The problem is how to get to that page.
  • Its a good idea to turn off your router and make sure it is not connected to power adapter and network cable, at least for 15 minutes (I find this very important)
  • From your testing computer, click Start and on the search field type “cmd
    cmd
  • Command prompt show up
    cmd2
  • At the prompt type (without quote “”):
    ping 192.168.1.1 –t

    Again, this is assuming your router IP is 192.168.1.1

  • You should received an error message. This is OK.
    cmd3
  • Now take an ethernet cable and plug one end to your testing computer. DON’T connect the other end to your outer yet!
  • Turn on your router’s power adaptor and DON’T connect it to your router yet.
  • Now take your router. PRESS and HOLD the reset button for 10-15 seconds.
  • While still holding the reset button, plug the power to your router.
  • Now connect the other end of the ethernet cable to your router.
  • And… while still holding the reset button, continue holding it for 10-15 seconds.
  • By now you should notice that on the command prompt, there is a reply from your router.
  • Open up any web browser and type (without quote “”):
    http://192.168.1.1
  • You should get Maintenance Mode Firmware Screen.
  • Remember the download firmware just now? So, now browse to that file which should be located at: “c:\temp”
  • Then click APPLY.
  • You should received a message saying “Update Successful”
  • You command prompt also showing a success reply. Close the web browser. You’re done!

If Maintenance Mode Firmware Screen didn’t work. Then its time for the final show down.

 

Let the UN-Brick begins

Please bear in mind that before you start this step, make sure your router is not connected to power adapter and network cable, at least for 15 minutes (I find this very important) The objective of this step is to interrupt/attack the router before it able to boot to the current firmware. Your router BRICK because it try to boot up to the current firmware, if its not successful, then it crash, leaving your router useless, thus it BRICK.

  • From your testing computer, click Start and on the search field type “cmd
    cmd
  • Command prompt show up
    cmd2
  • At the prompt type (without quote “”):
    ping 192.168.1.1 –t

    Again, this is assuming your router IP is 192.168.1.1

  • You should received an error message, well just let it running.
    cmd3
  • Next, connect one end of the cable to your testing computer.
  • Press reset button on your router, and DONT let go.
  • At the same time connect the other end of the cable to any other port on your router.
  • Still holding the reset button, connect your router to the power cord.
  • …and STILL holding the reset button, keep pressing it more than 30seconds.
  • Then release the reset button.
  • By the time you doing so, you can see there is a reply from your router.
  • Next, open up another command prompt on your testing computer.
  • Through your command prompt, go to the location where you put your firmware. If you been following this tutorial it should be “c:\temp”

    cmd4

  • Then type tftp -i 192.168.1.1 put <firmware>
    For our case we have “dd-wrt.v24_micro_generic.bin”, so we type:

    tftp -i 192.168.1.1 put dd-wrt.v24_micro_generic.bin

  • You will see successful and your router will restart.

If everything goes well, you might see that your power LED light is brighter, wireless LED lights up, and your current port’s LED keep on blinking. CONGRATS! You just UNBRICK your router!

Tested on: WRT54GS V4, WRT54GS V7, and WRT54GL V1.1, if yours didn’t work; do and redo before asking questions. Thanks.

Read what others are saying: useful info for troubleshot.

  • John says:

    Had to go all the way to the last step, but then my lights all came on including power and the orange led behind the Cisco Systems logo on my WRT54GSv7. Thanks a lot; great information!

    27 February 2011 at 12:39 am
  • Mark says:

    Awesome, it worked! Many thanks!

    27 February 2011 at 10:12 pm
  • Eric says:

    Thanks so much for your comment. I had the same exact issue and it ended up being the firmware all along.

    3 March 2011 at 7:56 am
  • MJ says:

    I followed what drifta had to say. It worked out very well. This has been such a learning experience. I had gotten stuck when it came to input of the tfpf command. That draytek tool fixed it right up. thanks to the OG post, but especially to Drifta for sharing his experience. For the record when my wrt54gs v7.2 bricked i only had a dim power light.

    14 March 2011 at 9:29 am
  • Megagamerx1 says:

    Thanks Alex! I tried what you did, and POOF! My router worked again.

    For other people still having trouble:
    – If you router successfully pings
    – shows no light except for connect ethernet
    – and will not load web interface,
    then you should really try this!

    24 March 2011 at 11:42 pm
  • Cesar says:

    AMAZING!!!!! Works with a WRT54GS 7.2 and the “dd-“wrt.v24_micro_olsrd_generic.bin” firmware. Thanks!!!!!!!

    26 March 2011 at 1:59 am
  • Tim says:

    Alex, cheers for your post as you helped me recover my router as well!

    27 April 2011 at 2:26 pm
  • Jatin Talwar says:

    I have a Linksys WRT 54G2 v 1 which got bricked recently.
    Tried everything as mentioned above , Hard reset and everything .
    The ONLY message iam getting is ” Destination Host Unreacheable ” nothing else …not even a single successful ping from the router .
    Whats the matter ?
    Is it bricked forever ?
    Tftp cmd window gives error 106 i.e could not transfer/open local file . Its obvious as the router is NOT reachable ..
    Any ideas ? Suggestions ?
    Dr.Jatin Talwar

    27 April 2011 at 6:38 pm
  • Keith Weinberg says:

    Yes, my WRT-54GS really, really was bricked. Yes, it took four or five tries to get it to work, but it DID work. My router is back in the world with DD-WRT v24 micro. Thank you sooooooooooo much!!

    12 May 2011 at 10:33 pm
  • Laura says:

    IT WORKED ON MY WRT54G2 ROUTER! THANK YOU SO MUCH!

    17 June 2011 at 12:08 pm
  • Christophe Pasquier says:

    Thank you!
    My router is back to work!

    24 June 2011 at 8:08 pm
  • hotzenplotz says:

    Unbricking worked even with the original Firmware and is alive again.

    BUT was only working with the Internet Explorer.

    Thanks a lot

    27 June 2011 at 2:20 am
  • Dan V says:

    Dude, you saved my router! Worked like a charm on my WRT54GSv4. Don’t know how you figured that out, but THANKS VERY MUCH!

    12 July 2011 at 2:16 pm
  • chris says:

    Hi

    I bricked my WRT54G2, and with this post, i was able to make it OK again, and flash the firmware and finally be able to use it as a repeater
    thanx a lot dudes

    9 August 2011 at 9:18 pm
  • ales says:

    Hey,

    After a long day trying to do all that I can, I found your blog on the web. I saved my WRT54GL.

    With option “2”.

    Thank you,
    a

    10 August 2011 at 4:20 pm
  • RiM3Y says:

    A shout out to everyone! Congrats of unbricking your router! Peace! 🙂

    13 August 2011 at 7:15 am
  • Tdeo says:

    Hi , i’ve been traying everything explained in this tuto and nothing works for me, my problem is i upload Fairuza Firmware,it works for me, typing 192.168.1.1 and splash Fairuza welcome page, but now i want to reset my wrt54 ver 2.2 and upload again dd-wrt.bin, but when i type again 192.168.1.1 Fairuza page appears again, so my another problem is with the next command tftp -i 192.168.1.1 put dd-wrt.bin, appears the next error: time out, i’ve been traying too with Tftpd32_SE Admin but rise this error:tftpd32 error code 10054 , what is going on, some ideas? thanks.

    21 August 2011 at 4:13 pm
  • router says:

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    8 September 2011 at 7:45 am
  • Chander says:

    You are the Lifesave, You don’t have to be geek but as you said basic knowledge is required

    11 September 2011 at 7:02 pm
  • Culbert says:

    I sort of discovered your web site by mistake, but your blog site captured attention and that i thought that I might post to show you that I really like it.

    19 September 2011 at 11:34 am
  • sms message online says:

    Brilliant post; smart article; this content is highly informative; keep sharing the post and be informative as like; all the very best.

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    28 September 2011 at 11:51 am
  • carros says:

    Thanks did work for me. All the best

    4 October 2011 at 9:10 pm
  • al langley says:

    Thanks man! Great site! you done unbricked my router!

    17 November 2011 at 5:55 pm
  • Kurt says:

    I have bricked my linksys wrt g54s v.7 router have gone through entire tutorial and read all posts. I have gotten my router to ping but when I enter tftp -i 192.168.1.xxx put dd-wrt.v24_micro_generic.bin I get timed out. so no chance to continue. any thoughts or help would be greatly appreciated!

    6 January 2012 at 7:24 pm
  • Zack says:

    I love you, thanks so much. Totally worked 😀

    12 January 2012 at 1:45 am
  • Register website domain says:

    Very nice post shared by the author..

    6 February 2012 at 9:30 am
  • Raff says:

    Thank you so much for this! Saved my router. Everything else I found online was incomprehensible technical jargon.

    11 February 2012 at 11:43 pm
  • BrickbyBrick says:

    Hi,
    I had no lights at all for my linkys, only when i connect lan 1 blinking one.
    I did the hardreset 30/30/30 then started tftp2. Then flashed the vxworkskillerGSv7-v3, after that i couldnt flash the dd-wrt.v24_micro_generic. i did the hard reset again en then the flashing worked. i had to wait e few minutes before my router came alive again. was very happy to see 3 lights burning 🙂
    Maybe this will help someone

    24 February 2012 at 2:51 am
  • vikeee29 says:

    dude pls tell me which firmware you downloaded…awaiting your reply

    4 March 2012 at 10:01 am
  • vikeee29 says:

    @ roverius …i have wrt54g v7…which firmware u downloaded

    4 March 2012 at 10:31 am
  • April says:

    How about instructions for Mac users?

    7 March 2012 at 12:50 am
  • Zeffern says:

    OK I tried it all too and nothing seemed to work the link to the TFTP server sent me to a site that I got one at and it did not use the same syntax as the original instructions. I modified the instructions to the new version that did not work. Oh yes and actually I was trying to upload the original Linksys V7 firmware too. All this stuff did not work.
    My router had a very dim power LED lit when pluged in, the LAN port I was connected to lit up and I was getting that 100 code when I pinged it at 192.168.1.1

    Here is what did work:

    1)I followed the original instructions as per how to set up my network adaptor to the 10HD.

    2) Got the ping thing going in a command prompt window.

    3) Held down reset for 10 seconds,

    4) Pluged in LAN cable to computer then power and continued to hold down the reset for another 30 seconds.

    5)Tried my modified command line instructions in the secondairy DOS window and that failed

    6) Then went back to my desktop and ran the TFTP utility I downloaded 2 years ago from some site I was directed to by a WIKI or something on DD-WRT site. (Sorry I can not be more specific other then to say the file is called Tftp MFC Aplication, file version 1.0.0.1, and it is 36.0kb) If I was intersmarter I would upload it to a website somewhere but I’m not that intersmart on that kind of stuff.

    I re-directed it to the latested stable DD-WRT file that I had downloaded before starting all this stuff. Told it to upload and it said succesful! watched my ping window and saw it go from the TTL-100 to no responce then to TTL-64 then wiped the shit eating grin off my face as I loged into the former brick and configured my new router.

    Thanks to the original author of this page (Anyone ever tell you you look like MJ?) , all those that took the time to give some instruction and advice to others…

    Cheers

    Zeffern Cochrane (May the force be with you.)

    16 March 2012 at 9:02 pm
  • Zeffern says:

    P.S. April I have a mac I did it from my windows partition.

    16 March 2012 at 9:04 pm
  • Skubi says:

    Thanks a lot. It really works. My WRT54G v 7.0 works again with original linksys firmware. You’re genius 😀

    26 March 2012 at 11:09 pm
  • Teja says:

    i tried to reset WRT54G by 30/30/30 process and failed.so i done the process given by true rock (POSTs) and the firm ware updated successfully but the ping is again showing destination host unreachable and the router is not working…please tell me how to unbrick it

    4 April 2012 at 5:00 am
  • Psychotron says:

    Thanks so much for the guide! I used you guide to unbrick my wrt54gs V7.2 version and it worked like a champ with the direct tftp command 🙂 Saved me from throwing it away 🙂

    15 April 2012 at 1:14 pm
  • Ben says:

    My router was bricked from lighting hitting my house. Followed the TUT and it worked!!

    19 June 2012 at 7:55 pm
  • liam vangance says:

    Thanks for the tut worked great on a wrt54gs v7.2 was in the middle of vworkskiller install when the power went out,needless to say router was bricked(dim powerlight,no ping)followed the 2nd set of instructions except for cmd install wouldn’t take so I just upgraded through tftp and no more brick.
    (note) first try was from a laptop couldn’t get anything to work was all ready for the JTag approach but tried from my desktop and everything went smooth.
    Thanks again

    24 June 2012 at 3:28 am
  • RiM3Y says:

    Glad the tutorial help a lot of you guys!

    20 July 2012 at 11:00 am
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