No Router Redux

One item left incomplete after manually restoring the router was configuring the OpenVPN server. These days I have no immediate or urgent need for such remote access. Yet after the debacle I thought restoring everything as much as possible sounded sane.

After seeing improved wireless speeds and fixing a DNS lookup anomaly, I thought I would remove that remaining item from the check list.

Restoring the OpenVPN server required only a few minutes because I already had copies of all certificates and a check list.

All seemed to go well. I saved the configuration backup.

I made two mistakes.

This is DD-WRT. I did not schedule an hour or two for obligatory troubleshooting and I did not immediately reboot the router.

The next morning the router failed to boot normally.

I repeated my common litany of steps. I restored to the last previous backup file rather than the latest with the VPN server changes. All went well.

Except once again the 5 GHz wireless was hosed.

Rather than rebuild from scratch, I installed the 26339 firmware and rebooted. The 5 GHz wireless configuration seemed fixed. I updated to the 30826 firmware and after the reboot all looked well. I restored the last previous backup file rather than the latest with the VPN server changes.

All looked good. The laptop again found and connected to the 5 GHz interface.

I powered down the router and office computer. After powering on the router, the device sent a wake-on-lan (WoL) magic packet to boot the office computer.

Good enough.

For now there is no OpenVPN server configured.

I accept the possibility the router has some failed or corrupted NVRAM or RAM. That does not matter much. The base problem is the DD-WRT software does not seem designed to validate data loaded from NVRAM. Instead DD-WRT pukes.

Possibly newer firmware releases are more robust. Possibly not. I remain cynical and skeptical. I am not much interested in testing and wasting hours of my time.

The lesson is let sleeping dogs lie. No more changes to the router. Find time to build a gateway/router based on a reliable operating system rather than hobby software.

Posted: Category: Usability Tagged: DD-WRT

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