Old routers

02 May, 2016

I'm pretty impressed by this thing:

Asus WL500gP

It's an Asus WL-500g Premium I bought new in 2008. This little machine have been through the router equivalent of a heart transplant and a couple of brain surgeries.

At first I used it with the stock Asus firmware at, and later flashed it to use the now defunct FreeWRT.

It worked very well for a long time, then developed peculiar problem: the wall warts kept breaking. At first I suspected a freak lightning strike for having overloaded it. But it kept breaking them. Over a couple of years think I replaced the power supply three or four times.

Then the router itself gave up the ghost and I replaced it with a TP-Link running OpenWRT.

Before recycling the Asus however, I decided to have a peek inside. I discovered that most of the capacitors had gone bad. I'm not sure if that was the cause of the failing PSU:s.

Anyway, I replaced the capacitors, and it fired up right away. OpenWRT still supports this model so if I just could reflash it I might get some use out of it. There was no upgrade path from FreeWRT to OpenWRT that I could find, so eventually I reflashed the old Asus firmware and then reflashed again to Chaos Calmer.

Not bad for cheap hardware that is eight years old.