[Cerowrt-devel] WNDR3700v4 is out...

David Lang david at lang.hm
Sun Dec 23 10:16:34 EST 2012

On Sun, 23 Dec 2012, Dave Taht wrote:

> On Sun, Dec 23, 2012 at 2:27 AM, David Lang <david at lang.hm> wrote:
>> On Thu, 20 Dec 2012, Richard Brown wrote:
>>> The wndr3700v4 is out, and appears to be a good hardware upgrade from
>>> the 3800 series, but it's not supported by openwrt yet.
>>> I took a look at their GPL source distribution. And yea! it's openwrt.
>>> And boo! it's ancient openwrt, for example dnsmasq is 2.39 (current is
>>> 2.64), and their kernel is 2.6.31.
>>> I think the cpu and ethernet chips tho look a lot better: Atheros
>>> AR9344+ AR9580(5GHz)+AR9344(2.4GHz). It's my hope these do ipv6
>>> better.
>>> I found a WNDR3700v4 at the local Staples for $99.99. I wasn't brave
>>> enough to buy it. Here's an image of the box so you can recognize it...
>> I've purchased one, but I don't have the openwrt experiance to bootstrap
>> this. I have built my own openwrt images for the 3700v2 and 3800 and have
>> been using Linux since the 0.99 kernel days, so I am very comfortable
>> mucking with kernel compile options.
>> If someone is willing to coach me through the process, I'd be happy to do
>> the experimentation.
> I've ordered one too, but I would argue that a concerted effort would
> need to be made on the part of some core #openwrt devs to get it
> anywhere. The cpu is a mips 74k. It's a dual issue core with a very,
> very long pipeline, so although it boasts twice the instructions per
> clock than the 24k, and in simple benchmarks like drystone, rocks,
> that deep pipeline isn't helpful for tons of code. (IMHO). It doesn't
> look like the cache architecture is improved much, either.
> It's not clear what the ethernet driver is, there appear to be legal
> issues on the equivalent broadcom ethernet device, and so on, and so
> forth.
> You will need, at least, a 3.3v serial port and adaptor, and jtag
> might be needed. If you want to learn about just how painful it is to
> bring up a new board, this is your chance!

I've got the serial adapter

> It makes sense to start a thread on openwrt-devel about doing the port.
> https://forum.openwrt.org/viewtopic.php?id=41092

There's already a thread (in english), I've added to it and sent a message to 
the -devel list


> And/or find some other still supported hardware still being shipped by
> some other manufacturer.

any suggestions?

> Frankly, if we truly have to jump platforms, I'd rather go arm.

part of me agrees with you, but then a nagging voice bugs me that if we are 
programming to the point that such things matter, we're working too low in the 
stack. It's not enough to de-bloat ARM based systems, we need to do all of them, 
includeing ones that are even worse than MIPS :-)

Also, I'm suspecting that the v4 hardware is pretty close to the v2 and 3800 
hardware from a OS point of view, close enough that it may just be a matter of 
firmware headers being changed to get the images loaded. If I'm right, then it 
may be that adding the 3700v4 to cerowrt isn't going to be much worse than 
adding the 3800 was (once openwrt gets support for the v4)

David Lang

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