It’s been a long time since I last checked the market for WLAN routers. Although I don’t intend buying one right now, I think staying up to date with the latest advancements in the technology used in these devices is a good idea, because I might need to buy one in the near future. And this time I want to make the right choice, which practically means I want to choose a wireless N router that is fully supported by the open source router firmware DD-WRT. For those not familiar with DD-WRT:
DD-WRT is a Linux based alternative Open Source firmware suitable for a great variety of WLAN routers and embedded systems. The main emphasis lies on providing the easiest possible handling while at the same time supporting a great number of functionalities within the framework of the respective hardware platform used.
You can check whether a device is supported by DD-WRT or not by checking the device’s model name in the database of supported routers. If you are like me and prefer to read an overview of the wireless N devices instead of querying a database, there is a page in the project’s wiki that lists all these devices.
After checking the technical specifications of several routers on their manufacturer web sites, it is quite clear that at this moment there are not many wireless N routers & ADSL2+ modem combos that are fully supported by DD-WRT. In my case that won’t be a big problem, but I’d really like the device to have a DSL port so as to keep the number of devices around the house at a minimum. But anyway, this is not a big deal.
Some other things I’d consider a plus for such a device are:
- Support for Wireless Client Mode by the manufacturer’s firmware
- Support for a VPN Server by the manufacturer’s firmware
I know that these functions are available anyway if the DD-WRT firmware is used, but, if the default firmware supported these functions, it would definitely make a difference for me. Another useful feature would be the existence of a USB port, but this would greatly limit the available supported devices, so this is not a mandatory feature.
So, if anyone has a suggestion for such a router or if you own one, please let me know about your experience with it. I am particularly interested for devices that are 100% supported by the DD-WRT open source firmware.
The DD-WRT support for Wireless N Routers by George Notaras, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.