DISCLAIMERThis is NOT a D-Link sanctioned guide. The information you will find in this post does not represent official D-Link recommendations (in fact, quite the contrary) and I am not employed by the company. Changing a device's firmware, although generally safe, is not without risk to the device, especially if not done properly. Therefore, read everything carefully first and then decide if you're up to the task. You have been warned.Intro
Reading this forum one can only reach one conclusion - that people are unhappy with the factory firmware supplied by D-Link for its DIR-615 routers. Which is sad, because in terms of hardware, DIR-615 is a solid product, capable of good performance.
It's true that some problems are solved with a firmware update, when one is available, but more often than not, users are stuck with issues that severely impact their Internet experience and no fix in sight. However, before starting throwing routers out and spending money on new ones (yes, I've read a lot of people saying that), users should be aware that there is another option at their disposal, in the form of a custom open source firmware called DD-WRT.What is DD-WRT and things to know before running with itDD-WRT
is a custom open source firmware for routers, based on the Linux kernel, which is developed and maintained by a community of programmers. Originally written for the extremely popular WRT54G Linksys router, the software has since evolved to support a wide array of devices from many manufacturers.
DD-WRT is very powerful and unlocks access to advanced networking features that factory firmwares don't provide. It is so popular that some home networking equipment manufacturers like the UK-based Buffalo Technology pre-install a custom version of it on their routers. All of this sounds appealing? Good, but first you should be aware of a few things.
For one, installing a custom firmware on a D-Link device theoretically voids the warranty. I say theoretically, because practically if the router is not completely fried, you should be able to flash the factory firmware back and chances are no-one will tell the difference. Even if it's completely dead I doubt anyone will attempt to repair it and see what you had on it. Chances are, your supplier will just replace it, but don't blame me if that doesn't happen.
Second thing you should know is DD-WRT exposes a lot of settings the average user has no idea about. My advice is not to mess around with anything you don't know and then complain that it doesn't work as expected anymore. Of course, set WAN, wireless security, port forwarding and the usual stuff, but for the rest I learned that default settings work best
.Where do I get DD-WRT from?
Well, it's not that straight-forward as you might think. The DD-WRT developers release individual builds for each router model and/or hardware revision (that's a lot I know). A particular router model/revision is not "officially" supported and added to the DD-WRT database until someone donates such a device to the DD-WRT dev team for development and testing purposes. However, there are unofficial builds for many models/revisions that are tagged as "work in progress" and much of the time they are stable enough to use without any concern of critical bugs.
So now, back to our model of interest - the mighty DIR-615, which D-Link should be congratulated for, because it's a very decent product (hardware-wise) for a very good price. The DIR-615 comes in many "flavors" (hardware revisions or versions). Amongst the ones that I know are: B1, B2, C1, C2, E1, E2, E3, E4, D1, D2, D3, D4, H1, H2, I1.
Here is where to get the DD-WRT build for your particular revision.B1, B2
: Sorry. No build for you guys. C1
/dlink-dir615c1/ DO NOT flash r16454! Read warning.C2
: Try the one for C1. It might work, but I don't have confirmation. If you test it and it works post on this topic so I can update this info. DO NOT flash r16454! Read warning.D1, D2, D3, D4
: Might work with the one for E1 (above) or the one for E3 (below). Please confirm on this topic if you get it working.E3
The [most_recent_date] is at this time 07-20-12-r19519, so the folder you should be looking in is ftp://ftp.dd-wrt.com/others/eko/BrainSlayer-V24-preSP2/2012/07-20-12-r19519/
. However, new builds are constantly released so check the most recent date folder in ftp://dd-wrt.com/others/eko/BrainSlayer-V24-preSP2/ regularly.WARNING: DO NOT flash r16454 from ftp://dd-wrt.com/others/eko/BrainSlayer-V24-preSP2/2011/03-17-11-r16454/ or your wireless controller will stop working.How do I install DD-WRT?
In each of the folders corresponding to your router's revision, you will find two or more files. The ones with "factory
" in their name, like dlink-dir615d-factory
-webflash.bin are for initial flashing from D-Link's factory firmware to DD-WRT. The flash should always be performed over a WIRED
and not wireless connection. You can do it in two ways:
1. From the D-Link firmware's Web interface. Go to Tools > Firmware and under "Firmware Upgrade" press Browse, select the DD-WRT file and hit Upload.
2. From the router's Emergency Room Web interface. To access the Emergency Room Web interface follow these steps:
- Unplug the router's power cord and wait 20 seconds.
- Get a pin, push the RESET button and KEEP IT PRESSED.
- Connect the power cord back (while still keeping the reset button pressed)
- Keep the reset button pressed for an additional 5 seconds after connecting power cord and then release. At this point you should see the power button blinking orange.
- Connect over a WIRED connection to the router and set your network adapter IP MANUALLY to 192.168.0.2
- Open http://192.168.0.1 in a browser. You should see a white page with a Browse and Upload button.
If the DD-WRT flash works, reboot your router and set your Ethernet adapter to obtain IP automatically then try to access http://192.168.1
.1 .How do I update to a new DD-WRT build?
In each of the folders corresponding to your router's revision, you will find a .BIN file that does NOT contain "factory" in its name
. This file is to be used for update if you already have an older DD-WRT build installed on your router.
From the DD-WRT interface go to Administration > Firmware Upgrade. Hit browse, point to the file, hit upgrade and wait. When it's finished check out the build date in the upper right corner to make sure it updated.Warning:
Leave "Don't Reset" option alone if you don't want all your settings to be reset to defaults.How do I restore the original D-Link factory firmware?
Obtain the latest firmware for your revision from D-Link's support site for your region. Go into the Emergency Room Web interface using the steps provided above in the installation section of this guide. Flash the firmware file from the Emergency Room Web interface.Frequently Asked Questions
This will be updated in time with answers to your most common questions.
PS: Excuse my spelling and/or grammar mistakes. English is not my native language. Suggestions and comments are appreciated.
Oct. 11 2012 - Updated the guide with links to the DD-WRT builds for H1, H2 and I1. Also updated the most recent date for DD-WRT releases and the link to the folder.