WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

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instinctivedeep
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:34 am

WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by instinctivedeep »

I recently got a Linksys WRT54GL (version 1.1). I flashed 1.4.5-brcm47xx on the router. It worked fine except that after some time my Wi-Fi devices could not connect to the router's AP. I would need to login to the router and enter the command wifi to bring the Wi-Fi back up. I discovered that I can trigger the Wi-Fi failure if I heavily load the network (i.e. 15 Mbit/s sustained downstream), and the load does not necessarily need to be on the Wi-Fi network (e.g. wired Ethernet to the Internet). I tried subsequent versions 1.4.6 and 1.4.7, but they were no avail.

After reading through this forum and the OpenWrt forum, it seems that the brcm47xx firmware for the 2.6 Linux kernel has grief with the WRT54G(L), and that the previous firmware for the 2.4 Linux kernel (brcm-2.4) behaves nicely. I tried flashing 1.2.5-brcm-2.4, which succeeded but its configuration would not succeed (using Firefox 10). I then flashed 1.3.9-brcm-2.4, which worked and is what I am using now. I tried bringing the Wi-Fi down by heavily loading the network but the Wi-Fi stays up. I have not had to manually reset the Wi-Fi since I installed 1.3.9.

I would like to stay current with the latest [stable] Gargoyle. I looked through the git repository and the root Makefile. Is building a 1.4.7-brcm-2.4 version possible? Is it built by simply running make brcm-2.4?

pbix
Developer
Posts: 1371
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2009 5:09 pm

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by pbix »

I am glad to hear that you got v1.3.9 running reliably for you .

The prospected of ever sustaining 15Mbps with a GL seem dim to me. I would suggest that you enable QoS on your downlink and then limit the bandwidth to around 8Mbps. That would keep your CPU from saturing and it might be interesting to then see if your WiFi becomes reliable even with the modern builds.

Modern versions of Gargoyle no longer support Linux v2.4 which is required to use the drive you reference. If you are having issues with the modern brcm driver you are best to take them up over at openwrt.org IMHO.
Linksys WRT1900ACv2
Netgear WNDR3700v2
TP Link 1043ND v3
TP-Link TL-WDR3600 v1
Buffalo WZR-HP-G300NH2
WRT54G-TM

mix
Posts: 292
Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2011 11:18 am

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by mix »

I honestly think this is part of the reason I have had success with wifi while others haven't with this router. My internet connection is only 2 Mbps, so I never max out the router. I'd suspect the issue has something to do with the irq storm that gets generated when a significant amount of traffic is pushed across the device. This is easily apparent when you run top, and download a file. System irq spikes for b43. Copying a file between two computers both using wifi on your lan will max it out immediately; the max sustained throughput is pathetic. I am unsure if this applies to the non wireless part, I guess I will take the posters word for it.

To the poster, I believe you are on your own when it comes to getting the old 2.4 era driver to work, at least with gargoyle.
Last edited by mix on Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
WRT54GL v1.1
Gargoyle 1.4.7

Culex
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Dec 25, 2010 5:38 am

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by Culex »

pbix wrote:I am glad to hear that you got v1.3.9 running reliably for you .

The prospected of ever sustaining 15Mbps with a GL seem dim to me. I would suggest that you enable QoS on your downlink and then limit the bandwidth to around 8Mbps. That would keep your CPU from saturing and it might be interesting to then see if your WiFi becomes reliable even with the modern builds.


I never heard of that, it seems interesting. Does that mean limiting copying on the lan as well? When the WiFi dies the wired still functions normally. Can you limit the wifi portion only?

Also I've had the router freeze when ssh'ing in and running opkg on more than one occasion. Same results seen w/ OpenWRT.

Currently running 1.3.9 and its stable, except it would be nice if the bugs were to be fixed :(

pbix
Developer
Posts: 1371
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2009 5:09 pm

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by pbix »

Culex wrote:I never heard of that, it seems interesting. Does that mean limiting copying on the lan as well? When the WiFi dies the wired still functions normally. Can you limit the wifi portion only?

If you are copying between wired LAN computers this does not affect the CPU. If you are copying between wireless computers it does so the answer to your question is yes and no.

QoS applies only to the WAN connection. By managing how your IP addresses are allocated you could make different rules for wireless vs. wired clients but you will need to limit both to prevent your CPU from saturating. So to start with just limit everything to 8Mbps and see if you get stability.

Then you can optimize.
Linksys WRT1900ACv2
Netgear WNDR3700v2
TP Link 1043ND v3
TP-Link TL-WDR3600 v1
Buffalo WZR-HP-G300NH2
WRT54G-TM

Culex
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Dec 25, 2010 5:38 am

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by Culex »

I think the issue has to do with the Wifi driver. When the wifi drops I can ssh in and manually restart the wireless driver. Lan connections are unaffacted.

However it still intermittently locks up and require a power cycle when running commands ie. top or opkg. I think it has to do with the k26 kernel.

btw, in order to do k26 dd-wrt you have to modify your CFE.bin. Perhaps this solves the problem?

Culex
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Dec 25, 2010 5:38 am

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by Culex »

root@Gargoyle:/tmp/www# mtd unlock cfe
Could not open mtd device: cfe

argh.

Will have to flash dd-wrt, change the cfe and reflash gargoyle. btw it's an altered cfe from WRT54G-TM on the dd-wrt site.

mix
Posts: 292
Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2011 11:18 am

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by mix »

Culex, the dd-wrt versions of the broadcom K26 wireless driver and 2.6 kernel are not really comparable to b43, openwrt or gargoyle.
WRT54GL v1.1
Gargoyle 1.4.7

Culex
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Dec 25, 2010 5:38 am

Re: WRT54GL brcm47xx Wi-Fi failure

Post by Culex »

mix wrote:Culex, the dd-wrt versions of the broadcom K26 wireless driver and 2.6 kernel are not really comparable to b43, openwrt or gargoyle.


First off the Mac Addr in the CFE I extracted was not the Mac Addr on the Router Label. Brick.

Short pinning sort of worked, but with the wrong Mac Addr I couldn't ping let alone tftp a new firmware. Finally got a jtag cable from ebay and figured out how to get it to work, flashed with the correct mac addr, but no firmware will work with that modified cfe.

Possibly older versions of NEWD-2 as it states newer NEWD-2 no longer supports older hardware. But the linksys firmware and no openwrt firmware works which makes it pointless.

Now some people are claiming that they can load Tomato k26 on the wrt54gl and stable as long as it's the MIPSR1 version?

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