Currently, all Linksys/Cisco WRT routers ship with their basic firmware. Doing something else than AP mode isn’t possible by default. Also it’s rather limited on system information and extended setup. In this specific case, I wanted to create a client bridge (WRT320N) onto the primary router (WRT610N).
Both support dual band (2,4 and 5 GHz) and the main target was to use the 5 GHz band in order to allow others use 2,4Ghz for them alone (300MBit/s each on draft N). Currently, the WRT610N runs with basic firmware and handles main internet access. In order to create a client bridge with wrt320n, I needed to update the firmware.
From what I have read on the DD-WRT Wiki, the WRT320N series is a bit tricky to install. But on a fresh router it is not that difficult:
* forget the wiki instructions, follow those and lookup 320n in router’s database
* make sure you’ll get v24-k26 (not the presp2)
* download dd-wrt.v24-13493_NEWD-2_K2.6_mini_wrt320n.bin (with “_wrt320n” suffix) and dd-wrt.v24-13493_NEWD-2_K2.6_mini.bin
* take the router on a pc on a seperated subnet, login to 192.168.1.1 with defaults
* reset to factory defaults, reboot, login again and go to the firmware upgrade page (Administration – Firmware Upgrade)
* chose the file with the “_wrt320n” suffix (this has the headers for first time flashing of dd-wrt)
* wait several minutes until upgrade and reboot is complete. the new dd-wrt interface will demand setting new admin credentials.
* check the firmware build and go to the firmware upgrade section again, now chosing the firmware with the “_mini” suffix. Do the same stuff again and login then.
Now having the firmware flashed, the main task will be to change the router into a client bridged version of WRT320N. I am following these instructions, while adapting several of them.
* assign your pc a static ip like 192.168.1.9
* go to 192.168.1.1 and login
* go FIRST to “wireless” -> “wireless security” and enter the security type and key that matches your primary router (WPA2 Personal, TKIP+AES, passphrase)
* hit SAVE, APPLY
* go to “setup” and check that the DHCP-Server is enabled if you want that (changing settings for wireless mode might accidently disabled this!)
* go to “wireless” -> “basic settings” and change the wireless mode to “Client Bridge”
* “channel” should be kept to “auto”. “channel width” should match the primary router on the specified band (in this case 5GHz). All these settings will disappear if you save into client bridged mode!!!
* “wireless network mode” is the tricky part – if you want the router using the 5 GHz band and channels, set this to “NA-Only” – tip here
* set the “wireless network name” to exactly the same as your primary router, in this case the secondary band.
* set “ack timing” to 0 unless you have a long distance (>300 meter) link
* hit SAVE at the bottom. then hit APPLY and check that all settings have been applied properly
* go to “setup” -> “basic setup” and enter a router Local IP address of 192.168.1.2. leave subnet mask at 255.255.255.0
* add the gateway with the primary router ip address (of WRT610N).
* leave Local DNS blank
* change timezone and DST
* hit apply
* set your browser to 192.168.1.2 and login
* go to “security” -> “firewall”. Below “Block Wan Requests”, uncheck everything but “Filter Multicast” (Leave Filter multicast checked).
* hit SAVE
* disable SPI firewall
* hit APPLY
* go to “setup” -> “advanced routing” and change the operating mode from “gateway” to router. hit APPLY.
* change your pc IP address back to DHCP and ping an external Url.