109 of 114 people found the following review helpful
Inexpensive but Feature-rich High Performance Router,
I have been looking for a router with decent range, speed, support for USB based external NTFS drives and last but not the least, good QoS support for VoIP phones. Another important thing that perhaps everyone wants but forgets to mention is reliability. I expect it to keep on working once it has been setup.
I have had this router for just couple of days so far and cannot comment on reliability yet, but other requirements have been met quite well. The specs were something to die for - 480MHz (capable of 533MHz) processor, 128MB RAM, 32MB ROM and runs Linux with support for bittorrent and FTP right in the firmware. Even the firmware source code is GPLed and anyone with a bit of knowledge in this area can improve it. In fact, DD-WRT (an open source Linux based firmware) is already available and works quite well with this router.
With DD-WRT installed on this router, it becomes quite a powerful computer that can serve as a web server as well as a NAS once you connect an external hard drive to the USB port. QoS and Port Forwarding have been implemented quite well in DD-WRT and is the main reason why I had to install DD-WRT within few hours of receiving the router.
I would have given the router a 4.5 rating if I could as the firmware it came with had a few bugs. I could never get port forwarding to work and also QoS setup in the original firmware is limited.
Here are some pros -
1. Gigabit ethernet, excellent processor and so the performance. Asus claims 300,000 concurrent sessions, which should be enough to handle even commercial hotspots with hundred users.
2. It has 2 USB ports that support various devices. One could connect a USB printer and a cheap external hard drive at the same time. The printer would work as a network printer (available to all computers in the network) and the USB hard drive will be available as Network Attached Storage to everyone without paying hundreds for one such device.
3. DD-WRT availability. They are constantly improving and adding features. QoS (Quality of Service) is one such feature that is needed in any household that has a VoIP phone and lot of online activity in the background like uploading videos to youtube, p2p, online gaming etc. With proper QoS setup phone service or online gaming shouldn't be affected even with other large scale online activity.
4. The original firmware is image based and looks quite nice. I found it very intuitive.
1. Should have been dual band (separate bands for G and N traffic), the chipset supports it. I am running in mixed mode as several of my devices (iPhone, Fuze, Wii) support only G mode and in mixed G/N mode, N components operate predominantly at G speed.
2. The original firmware is buggy and I couldn't get port forwarding to work reliably after several tries. QoS, the main reason behind me upgrading from a D-Link, is not implemented as well as I expected. DD-WRT fixes both issues but first-time owners may not be savvy enough to reload a 3rd-party firmware on their brand new router.
All in all, it's an excellent purchase for the capability and price, especially when you consider Cisco charges more (sometimes twice) for routers with slower processors and much less RAM and flash memory.
Update: Updated the links since Amazon yanked them. Also would like to add that the reliability is quite good so far with DD-WRT. Has been running for 3 days straight and no issues/slowdown etc.
Tracked by 2 customers
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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 3, 2010 8:06:37 PM PST
Gary Dean Gray says:
Posted on Jan 19, 2010 9:48:01 AM PST
Now in a Tomato flavored version:
Posted on Apr 26, 2010 9:32:43 PM PDT
T. Shaffer says:
I tried Tomato and liked it; for me, this one is better: http://firmware.mooo.com/Toastman%20Build
Posted on Jun 3, 2011 11:22:05 PM PDT
Michael J. Ryan says:
I discovered Wireless N wasn't working with DD-WRT (latest as of post), snagged a Toasman build of Tomato and running much faster, with N...
In reply to an earlier post on Jul 14, 2011 3:08:18 PM PDT
Jeffrey Kamis says:
Tnis link doesn't work. Please update, thanks
Posted on Dec 6, 2011 6:31:53 AM PST
Question....I can't seem to find a network router with USB ports that doesn't you to install some software in order to access the attached storage device. I'm looking to use this to share a printer and hard drive with my laptop, android tablet, android smartphone, and other devices. But if i have to install software, obviously that won't work. Does this just broadcast the hard drive as an IP address or something (like a real NAS), instead of using the software?
Please respond. This looks like the best option for me, but I'm not going to buy another device and have to return it.
In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2012 9:30:23 AM PST
kernel sanders says:
if you use tomatousb firmware the printer will be the ip address of the router. the hard drive will be shared using the integrated samba server. So no, no software needed.
Posted on Jul 22, 2012 6:36:36 PM PDT
sven-ove westberg says:
I use this router with dd-wrt as an OPENVPN server. I am very satisfied with its VPN performance (12Mb) and is very stable.
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