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Peter Andersson

I've already got a female to worry about. Her name is the Enterprise.
-- Kirk, "The Corbomite Maneuver", stardate 1514.0



After getting fedup with the bad fon support I decided to give a new wireless router a try. After browsing internet and openwrt forums I thought that a Linksys WRT160NL would fulfill my requirements:

The requrements are:

  • N
  • 3G USB dongle
  • Cheap


Packing up

The installation from Linksys is crap, a CD comes with the product and if you want to configure it you need to install software from the CD. The only supported operating systems are windows or Mac, I run linux.

I skipped the CD and connected my Linux box with a ethernet cable to the router. I tried to connect to and got a login screen.

After some googling I found that the default login was blank and the password admin.

I managed to configure my new router after logging in. I do not now the purpose of the CD, real stupid.


Install OpenWRT

I read the instructions to get OpenWRT on my Linksys WRT160NL and tried the "OEM easy installation". According to the instruction openwrt-ar71xx-wrt160nl-squashfs.bin is the image to install. Unfortunatly I get an errormessage " Firmware Upgrade Failed!"

I upgraded the firmware to the latest Linksys firmware and after that tried the OpenWRT firmware with the same error message.

After some bad language and alot of googling I found a bug reported that the version I tried to install always gives that message when installed from the Linksys webgui.

So I tried the Beta version instead and finally I success message.

I telneted to and run passwd to change my password.

ssh to 192.168.1.


root@OpenWrt:~# opkg update

root@OpenWrt:~# opkg install kmod-ath9k

root@OpenWrt:~# opkg install  hostapd

And start configure.


Update BETA to stable version

It was a annoying feeling to run beta when a stable version existed.

I used the luci webgui to update the firmware to the stable version and it looked alright. I managed to log in both with ssh and webgui.

But when I tried to install a new package it gave me an error message that there was no free disk, sigh!

I installed the BETA version and it worked, tried RC3 and the same problem with no free disk.

After some bad language and a lot of fiddeling I updated to the stable with the checkbox "Keep configuration files" unchecked and this time it works flawless.

Follow the guidlines above to change root password, update the software package list, install wlansupport, WAP support  and start configure.


A succefull login below:

peter@peter-laptop:~$ ssh -l root
root@'s password:

BusyBox v1.15.3 (2010-04-06 03:14:11 CEST) built-in shell (ash)
Enter 'help' for a list of built-in commands.

  _______                     ________        __
 |       |.-----.-----.-----.|  |  |  |.----.|  |_
 |   -   ||  _  |  -__|     ||  |  |  ||   _||   _|
 |_______||   __|_____|__|__||________||__|  |____|
          |__| W I R E L E S S   F R E E D O M
 Backfire (10.03, r20728) --------------------------
  * 1/3 shot Kahlua    In a shot glass, layer Kahlua
  * 1/3 shot Bailey's  on the bottom, then Bailey's,
  * 1/3 shot Vodka     then Vodka.
root@WRT160NL:~# uname -a
Linux WRT160NL #20 Tue Apr 6 15:01:26 CEST 2010 mips GNU/Linux



12 Responses to “Install OpenWRT on Linksys WRT160NL”

  1. Louis Tim Larsen Says:

    Did you use a serial port?

  2. peter Says:

    No, have you read my text?

  3. Enrico Says:

    I am trying to make it work but i am a bin in trouble.

    I installed the beta version because the regular one as you said was not working.
    I can telnet, ssh and even access web interface.

    I changed ip address of router using web interface to because my modem has

    My problem is that the the machine (wrt160nl i mean) has no access to internet. When i run opkg update i get this:

    wget: cannot connect to remote host ( No route to host
    Collected errors:
    * opkg_download: Failed to download http://downloads.openwrt.org/backfire/10.03-beta/ar71xx/packages/Packages.gz, wget returned 1

    Any suggestion?

  4. peter Says:

    I think you have an ip-conflict in your network.

    I assume that you connect you modem to the WAN port on WRT160NL. Is that correct?
    If yes, then your internal and external network probably has the same same network adress and your WRT160NL get confused.

    Change you internal network to something else, e.g., and pick an ip-adress for your WRT160NL e.g.

  5. Enrico Says:

    That’s it. And it was even simple. (Stupid i would say)
    Thanks a lot

  6. peter Says:

    I’m glad that I could help

  7. OpenWRT en WRT160NL desde cero « Overside Says:

    […] claro que como muchas otras cosas que dice que hay que hacer no funcionó. Con un poco de ayuda usé la versión beta (openwrt-ar71xx-wrt160nl-squashfs.bin) y después actualicé a la versión […]

  8. Ou Says:

    Hi, I installed OpenWrt, but now my router Wrt160NL doesn’t have Wifi. I dont know what to do.

  9. peter Says:

    You must configure it.
    The steps are:
    1-Telnet to your router, user name root
    2-run passwd and set a password
    3-Use your favorite browser
    4-Login: root Password:
    If this does not work, read the openwrt documentation.

    However I have installed dd-wrt on my wrt160nl, because the openwrt wifi performance on wrt160nl is still real bad.

  10. Anders Says:


    After installation, you might need to install kmod-at9k and wdi-mini as written in the post to get WLAN to work.

    After that, WLAN should work. Configure with a modern web browser (Not MS Internet Explorer). Usually, but your network addresses could be change to something like 192.168.X.1, where X can be anyone in interwall 1-254. Default is 1.

    You should also set password on your WLAN. Always change to WPA-PKI or WPA2-PKI. Never without encryption or with WEP. It’s not safe.

    Restart, and it should work.

    Please read instuctions at http://openwrt.org/

  11. How to reflash the linksys WRT160NL with OpenWRT | Flesh and machines Says:

    […] it stucks at 40% and says the flashing wasnt succesful. So I asked my friend(google) what to do and here is the link to the solution. So you have to use a latest release of the ar71xx version. Ok […]

  12. Janis Says:

    Here is another description about OpenWRT on WRT160NL

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