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I am interested in utilizing the advertised feature set of the Asus RT-N16 (Print Server, File Server, WAP etc.), but I have heard negative things about the stock firmware. The word on the street seems to be, great hardware, bad firmware.

So my question is:

Is the stock firmware on the Asus RT-N16 going to be a liability for me as the IT administrator for a small office that despite my warnings, wants to do a fair chunk of their work on wi-fi?

I have already been preaching that critical operations don't belong on wi-fi, but that is another battle. For now I will try to appease and continue to preach. Any advice is much appreciated.

My suspicion is that I should not pass Go, just install DD-WRT, but I want to hear the voice of experience. Thanks in advance.

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4 Answers 4

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I have this router at home and love it. I had issues with the WiFi dropping connections regularly for no reason or the device would restart randomly.

I installed DD-WRT and have not looked back. The support for the device is vastly superior to the stock firmware.

The install was really simple as well. Just open the box, connect via cable, install new firmware right in the upgrade tab.

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I should also note, that I've been running DDWRT for the last several years with great results and superior performance over the stock firmwares that came with the routers (linksys mostly until the new asus). –  Mike Mar 9 '11 at 19:39

It is terrible, always crashes. I use DebWrt (full debian linux that runs on the rt-n16) check it out here: http://dev.debwrt.net/wiki/AsusRT-N16

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I used to have WL500gx and I promptly installed Oleg's firmware on it. The original was buggy and featureless. Now I own RT-N16, but I admit I still run original firmware (1.9.2.7-rtn-r1943). It's a big improvement over wl500gx's original firmware. Of course DD-WRT offers much more than original, but the original is not a total crap. I never really managed to get bandwidth management working, but I don't really need it. As for the other services go: FTP, Samba, firewall, port forwarding, etc. work just fine, no problems whatsoever. They are stable on 10Mbs WAN and 3 1Gbs LAN and WLAN (computer, phone), the router has never crashed (I have it about a year now).

However, you cannot go wrong with DD-WRT. When I need it, I will surely install it. until then, the original works just fine ;-)

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Have you not had issues with dropping WiFi connections? If not you're lucky. That was my big reason for switching - no WiFi stability. With DDWRT that went away. –  Mike Mar 9 '11 at 20:25
    
No, never in one year. But I never used wifi for huge downloads (with a lot of peers), just normal browsing & work on the laptop and phone. I'm glad to hear DDWRT works good on this router. –  Boocko Mar 9 '11 at 20:52
    
Exactly Mike. I think with 1-2 active users the stability may be OK, but I am guessing 2-8 active clients is another story. –  Somantra Mar 9 '11 at 21:35

I have never used this particular model but as per the review on CNET the stock firmware seems to be not up to the mark. But for me personally if I could install dd-wrt on it I would go ahead and do that because dd-wrt would definitely offer more features and flexibility than the stock firmware.

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