Last week I added a new device to the list of hacked devices in my house, next to my hacked Tivo and Xbox: the Buffalo WHR-G54S wireless router.
My D-Link DI-624 router had been giving me trouble for a while, and since I had heard a lot about the various open source firmware alternatives that are available for many routers, I decided to give this a try.
One of the most popular router firmwares is DD-WRT, which is based on the original Linksys firmware that Linksys had to release as open source in order to comply with the GPL.
The firmware was originally intended for Linksys routers, but there are many other compatible models, including the Buffalo WHR-G54S router I decided to go for because of its cheaper price, while being 100% compatible. The DD-WRT Wiki contains a full list of supported devices, along with customized installation instructions.
I initially had some trouble flashing the firmware from my Mac, but once I put the router behind a switch and performed the update from my Linux box, I was able to get it working. I have not had a chance to fully explore the new firmware, but so far the router has been working great. The speed is very nice.
One of the main things I intend to play with over the next few weeks is the QoS (Quality of Service) support that DD-WRT adds. It sounds very promising and should allow me to prioritize online gaming or HTTP traffic over P2P traffic, for example.
A full list of DD-WRT features can be found here.