What is a Router?
What is a Firmware?
It is a small program that is used to control a electronic device. some examples are mobiles, Routers etc..
Now a days these programs are loaded into a small EEPROM (Electronically Erasable Programmable Read Only Memory). It is done so because, most of the times, when a product is launched, the firmware it contain may contain bugs, or the company might look onto adding new features to the device later. Which eases the process.
What is Open Firmware?
There are two types of firmware. The ones which are released by your product company these are official firmware. And there are firmwares which are developed by open source developers (These are generally much more sophisticated) these are open source firmware.
Why should I flash my Router with open source Firmware?
Obviously it is not a necessity, if your router is working fine. But it is a necessity if you are a Hack freak and want to try out something that can be done. Of course there are more reasons than that. It will turn your $50 router to a $500 specification router. You will get options to configure you never expected to exist in your router.
Company of your router keeps your router downgraded most of the time and there are several reasons for that. One being the price, like if you buy a $50 router there is very much chance that it has the same hardware as of a $80 router. But then why don't you get the options similar to it? Because you bought the cheaper one. The advanced functions remains disabled in your router when the other guy enjoys it, both being the same from inside. Now this is done by loading different firmware in both the routers.
What feature upgrade can I expect ?
Yes, off course all the features that were available before upgrading. Some of the other features are:
- Extending the strength of the signal in case of wireless router.
- Speed up your internet speed in different ways.
- Port forwarding and UNPNP.
- Protection from Hackers(As bugs are removed)
And a lot more, which I can't explain all here.
How Do I Switch To Open Firmware?
First of all I would like to tell you that, you should know what you are doing. Now take a backup of your company provided firmware, in case you want to shift back to it. When you are done you need to check in the given below list, that whether your device is supported by open firmware for router community. if you find your device in the list you are good to go for an up grade. The further instructions from here on would be Model specific so it is not feasible to provide here. you will get all the detailed directions in the website provided. Follow the instructions slowly and carefully. For Firmware Listing Click Here.
You would also be interested in my previous post about how to shift to Open DNS easily to double your internet surfing speed. To read the post Click Here.
Don't forget to leave your comments. Enjoy the hack.