As usual, blog posts from me have been scarce, there have not been much time for keeping the blog up to date.
Anyways.. I got two Viasat branded Netgear WG602 V4 access points for free, and quickly found out they support my favourite custom firmware, [DD-WRT].
I thought it was going to be a straight forward TFTP firmware update, but this was not the case. The two accesspoints were configured to act only as a wireless ethernet bridge, but I needed two wireless AP's instead - with custom security settings and SSID's of course!
Connecting to the router through ethernet was a big problem though since I could not get access to the administration page, normally located at 192.168.0.227 for this kind of access point. The SSID was also hidden and WEP encrypted, so connecting this way would be time consuming.
I did however, find a good solution to access the router at 192.168.0.227 and finally upgrade the firmware using TFTP. Following downloads will be needed to upgrade the firmware:
- DD-WRT firmware. You can find the newest firmware at the DD-WRT site. Remember to check your WG602 version first!
- A TFTP utility. I used the windows TFTP2.exe utility from the [TFTP guide at DD-WRT]
This solution should not be different from non Viasat branded WG602's:
- You will need to power down the AP and disconnect it from ethernet.
- Then configure the TCP/IP settings for your ethernet card using IP 192.168.0.1, Subnet 255.255.255.0 and no gateway settings set. Make sure no firewall settings will block for connections used in this case. Remember to CLOSE the network card settings first. If you are already using this subnet for eg. your wireless network you will have to disconnect first from this network, so keep this page open, in case you loose internet access!
- Connect the WG602 directly to the ethernet card (i.e. no switch or hub and one cable) with the computer on and WG602 off.
- Turn on the WG602
- Make sure the AP starts up completely before attempting to log in or TFTP to 192.168.0.227.
- You should now get a login prompt. Use the default user and password ("admin"/"password") unless you have changed this.
- Change or observe settings if necessary.
Pictures of the original settings are shown below. Interestingly enough, the "hidden" SSID is, in my case, "Netgear_ViaSat" with WEP password "MH1234dfHR4321"
You should now be able to upgrade the firmware with the TFTP utility. You may want to check the [TFTP guide]. Keep in mind, I used windows 7 x64 bit without any trouble updating the router.
- Use the same TCP/IP configuration as shown above
- Shut off the router, but keep it plugged in the PC.
- Start TFTP program on IP 192.168.0.227, but use at least 20 retries.
- Turn on the router and QUICKLY start the upload process
- TFTP utility should attempt to "clear flash memory". Nothing should happen at this moment, and the utility should skip to attempt 2/20 retries. If it does NOT skip though and starts flashing the new firmware, do NOT disconnect power but continue to step 7. Otherwise, continue to step 6.
- Quickly disconnect and then reconnect power to the router while the utility is trying to clear flash memory. The TFTP utility should now upload the firmware.
- Once it flashes and you receive the Success message. Wait for a full 2 minutes while the new firmware flash configures itself.Do NOT disconnect power to the router. This is a very good time to grab a cup of coffee!
- After the 2 minutes do a [Hard reset or 30/30/30] on the router, then configure at 192.168.1.1 (DD-WRT's default IP address). Remember to change your IP to 192.168.1.X, or you wont be able to see the AP! The default DD-WRT username/password is root/admin.
You should now be a proud owner of a DD-WRT powered router
Notice: If you are going to use the WG602 as an wireless accesspoint connected directly to a different router, you will need to make a few changes to make it all work. These changes are all covered in this [DD-WRT guide].
If you want to use the AP as a wireless bridge instead while using WAN port as switch, this guide will be very helpful: [Client Bridged, DD-WRT guide]