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TP-LINK N600 Wireless N Dual Band Gigabit Router w/ 2x USB Ports (TL-WDR3600) EXPIRED

Discombobulated 14,264 96,049 February 19, 2013 at 12:00 AM in Mail In Rebate (8) More Newegg Deals
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Promoted 02-19-2013 by brisar at 07:17 AM View Original Post
Newegg.com has TP-LINK N600 Wireless N Dual Band Gigabit Router w/ 2x USB Ports (TL-WDR3600) for $68.99 - $15 w/ promo code EMCXVWL24 - $15 rebate = $38.99 with free shipping. Thanks Discombobulated

Price Research: Our research indicates that this TP-LINK TL-WDR3600 N600 Wireless Dual Band Gigabit Router w/ 2x USB Ports is $27 lower (41% savings) than the next best available price from a reputable merchant with prices starting from $66. - brisar
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Edited February 19, 2013 at 01:57 AM by Discombobulated
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Community Wiki

Last Edited by The Debater March 20, 2013 at 03:33 PM
Update to latest stock firmware if not planning to use a 3rd party firmware (OpenWrt, DD-WRT). The latest stock version includes several important stability fixes:
http://www.tp-link.us/support/dow...version=V1

Note: flashing to a 3rd party firmware will void your warranty. Proceed with caution. If you follow the directions carefully, you will be fine.


Note also (unsupported 3rd party feature): 3rd party firmware does not currently support the hardware NAT feature of this router and probably will not any time soon. Flashing back to stock will restore this functionality.



This router is the cheapest router to get OpenWRT's newest branch, Attitude adjustment which implements CoDEL a new parameterless bufferbloat solution.

Bufferbloat = latency lag when network approaches full usage.

Example: VoIP, VidChat, gaming, latency sensitive apps start stuttering once that other dude in your house starts his NetFlix streaming. You cry and stop doing what you were doing until he's done. OR you can buy this and setup codel and be happy. ^^

Installing OpenWRT isn't necessarily quite as easy but it's straightforward. If you've installed dd-wrt or Tomato, I have confidence in you that you can install OpenWRT Wink
If you know someone who would probably struggle putting dd-wrt/tomato on a router... don't have them install this. They might mess it up.

Got mine and got OpenWRT installed, so far so good....

Here's what I did (Disclaimer, if you are technically challenged I do not suggest doing this or find the beta builds of DDWRT or Gargoyle):

Original link stopped working here's a new link, if it no longer works see below.
http://downloads.openwrt.org/atti...actory.bin

If that still doesn't work here's the path from the openwrt downloads page.
Attitude adjustment...
12.09-rc1...
Ar71xx...
Generic...
Openwrt-ar71xx-generic-tl-wdr3600-v1-squashfs-factory.bin

1.) Connect an ethernet cable to the LAN side of the router, navigate to 192.168.1.1 (It may be 192.168.0.1). Username is "admin" password is "admin".
2.) Rename your OpenWRT image to "factory.bin". Navigate to the firmware upgrade page and update the firmware with your OpenWRT image.
3.) Once upgrade is done, manually set your computer's IP to 192.168.1.X (whatever you want on 1.X subnet). this step wasn't necessary for me, I got an IP via DHCP right after flashing just fine
4.) Use Putty or some other program to telnet into 192.168.1.1. Type "passwd" at command prompt and set a root password. Type "exit" and get out of the telnet session.
5.) Connect an ethernet cable from your modem to the WAN (Internet) side of the router. The blue port. The router needs internet access for the next step.
5.) Reopen Putty and do an SSH session to the same IP, login as root with your new password. Type "opkg update" and return. Type "opkg install luci" and return. To enable Luci to start on boot, type "/etc/init.d/uhttpd enable" and return and then type "/etc/init.d/uhttpd start" and return. I would also install the Luci qos module, type "opkg install luci-app-qos" and return.
6.) You can now login to Luci via an HTTP interface at 192.168.1.1. Good luck with the rest, just make sure you enable your wifi interfaces and configure them.

NOTE: It has been widely reported that LuCi is already installed and running after the install of OpenWRT. After you do the initial upgrade try navigating to 192.168.1.1 to see if the LuCI interface is up and running. If it is not then you should run through the steps listed above.

7.) Optionally, you may change to a more user friendly interface by installing the bootstrap theme (now available from the software installation function built into the web interface).
Info about bootstrap theme: http://nut-bolt.nl/2012/openwrt-b...-for-luci/
To install: System --> Software --> search for bootstrap in available package --> click install
To activate theme go to: System ---> Language and Style ---> Design ---> Bootstrap Smilie

More info, including instructions for setting up Codel on OpenWrt: https://gist.github.com/petedoyle/4129668. (he does it in a bit more complicated way than necessary, if anyone has easier instructions, please update).
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gargoyle install: (i.e. the easy way)
If you want the simple method and are ok with a simplified interface then download the gargoyle image here http://www.gargoyle-router.com/do...actory.bin and do the upgrade with that. It already has the GUI installed and running so you can go directly to 192.168.1.1.

Although very functional, Gargoyle is kind of ugly by default, so if you care about that sort of thing, install a theme Smilie

NOTE: Gargoyle does not have all the options that LuCi does, it was designed this way. It has QOS and Codel installed by default. If you don't know why you want all the options available in Luci, then you probably don't need them.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Here are some other helpful links that I used: bimologist
DDNS Client: http://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/howto...using.luci
OpenVPN Setup: http://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/howto/vpn.openvpn
Guest WLan: http://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/recipes/guest-wlan (non Luci) (I could not get the Luci directions to work)
Guest WLAN via Luci (does not work for some): https://forum.openwrt.org/viewtopic.php?id=34092

Instructions for setting up QoS and CoDel for OpenWRT peeps:

Pulled from OpenWRT forums:
Quote :
First of all, the values to enter in the qos configuration are your maximal net bandwidth minus some headroom that qos needs to be effective (I hink this is no longer true for the post-backfire codel-based qos). Especially the upload value needs to be lower than the maximum you observed empirically.
I have a "up to" 16Mbit / 1Mbit line. The observed actual net rates are for me about 12Mbit and 950 kbit respectively. I hence entered this in the qos config
option download 12000
option upload 800
Since you cannot control downstream in a meaningful manner I left it at 12000, but upstream needs the headroom and through testing with simultaneous saturating upload traffic and pings I settled on 800.

I also have this stanza
onfig classify
option target "Express"
option ports "22,5190,5060,5222,19295,19301-19310
where the 19xxx ports are for Google voice and video chats, 5060 is supposed to be VoIP, but I have a hunch that this is only the port for negotiation not payload data. 5222 is XMPP instant messaging.
I’m not sure you can successfully prioritize Skype because Skype hides on port 80 and port 433, which are the usual HTTP(S) ports.
Also see, https://gist.github.com/petedoyle/4129668

To add a USB flash-drive to expand the capacity of your router, follow: http://klseet.com/index.php/tl-mr...ap-extroot

428 Comments

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#271
Quote from Tnyc View Post :
Could you confirm if the router came with the latest stock firmware?




Umm might be a couple of months before they are back on sale again. The last deal was around BF?
Quote from boltman2007 View Post :
QoS on SOHO routers is simply unnecessary and likely to degrade performance overall.

It is effectively taking away rather than adding and oinly used when network is saturated. Something has to give its not magic.

I'm amazed how much people buy into it as a must have feature for home networks.
Like another poster said just becuse you can does not mean you should...especially if you have no real idea if you need it.

Just install this router and be happy... change the usernme/password turn off WPS...done
I would like to give some of my devices (certain IP addresses) the ability to use more bandwidth when than other devices. Say I am watching a movie on my WDTV and also surfing the net on my laptop. I would rather the WDTV get most of the bandwidth so no interruptions in streaming HD video. Is this possible?
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#272
Quote from dealmonkey View Post :
I would like to give some of my devices (certain IP addresses) the ability to use more bandwidth when than other devices. Say I am watching a movie on my WDTV and also surfing the net on my laptop. I would rather the WDTV get most of the bandwidth so no interruptions in streaming HD video. Is this possible?
Short answer no..not with this router or any firmware.... again the bandwidth itself is the main culprit not the mixed traffic.

Try finding a clear 5Ghz n channel to use.
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Last edited by boltman2007 February 21, 2013 at 11:16 AM
#273
Quote from dealmonkey View Post :
is this a common thing for router firmware upgrades?
If it doesn't, you should. I'd recommend a factory reset after a firmware upgrade and then restoring your settings backup or doing the initial setup AFTER doing the firmware upgrade. You can end up with little goodies left lying around in the cmos if you don't. I think a large percentage of wacky router issues are from configuring a unit, doing a flash, seeing that at least most of your settings are intact and just running with that. I have the same recommendations when doing a regular PC bios update.
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#274
Quote from dealmonkey View Post :
I would like to give some of my devices (certain IP addresses) the ability to use more bandwidth when than other devices. Say I am watching a movie on my WDTV and also surfing the net on my laptop. I would rather the WDTV get most of the bandwidth so no interruptions in streaming HD video. Is this possible?
Internet or wireless bandwidth?

I'm not familiar with this specific router, but most modern ones (particularly with openwrt or ddwrt or ???) have automatic QOS to give video streams first priority, or they at least allow you to specify QOS priority by application or mac address. Plug in the mac address of the WDTV, set its priority to #1 or 'high', voila...shouldn't have any problems with priority internet bandwidth.

If you're talking wireless bandwidth, then you'd want to set it up so your laptop used one radio (2.4 or 5) and the wdtv using the other...or use a second router in the house, one for your video box and one for everything else.

You might also look into a cheap pair of powerline 500 units like the rosewill ones that were on FP yesterday for $49. MUCH better quality of service than most wireless connections, and with a small switch you could join anything else around your tv to a wired powerline network.
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#275
Quote from boltman2007 View Post :
QoS on SOHO routers is simply unnecessary and likely to degrade performance overall.

It is effectively taking away rather than adding and oinly used when network is saturated. Something has to give its not magic.

I'm amazed how much people buy into it (blindly) as a must have feature for home networks.
Like another poster said just becuse you can does not mean you should...especially if you have no real idea if you need it.

Just install this router and be happy... change the username/password turn off WPS...done
I'd have to disagree. SOME routers experience a drop in throughput when employing QOS, because the router has to inspect every packet. In most high end routers in a home environment, unless you're doing live backups from many machines and a ton of multiple HD video streaming, that little performance cut off the top doesn't matter.

Some routers have no drop in throughput when using QOS. But most of those don't cost $40.

In my household, without QOS if someone is doing a VOIP or skype session, all sorts of stuff stops working. If my son is skyping in HD, the ooma voip phone quality sucks and sometimes it wont even ring. If we're doing multiple hd video streams, the phone call quality stinks. But with a set of QOS rules that put the voip box #1, skype #2, and other video streaming #3 and everything else after that...it all works beautifully no matter whats going on.
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#276
brbubba,

Do you have a guide how to setup CoDel correctly? I just noticed my OOMA sounded like crap when using Netflix at the same time.
Thanks.
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#277
Quote from moonlightinred View Post :
Has anyone been able to install luci-app-qos? Because this is why I get when going through putty:

opkg install luci-app-qos
Unknown package 'luci-app-qos'.
Collected errors:
* opkg_install_cmd: Cannot install package luci-app-qos.

Can't find it through the web interface, either. I suppose I should move this to the OpenWRT forum, but I thought I'd give it a quick shot here, first.
Try "opkg update" first.

EDIT: This can be done from LuCi too.
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#278
Quote from yazyazoo View Post :
brbubba,

Do you have a guide how to setup CoDel correctly? I just noticed my OOMA sounded like crap when using Netflix at the same time.
Thanks.
Posted what I found in the last WDR3600 thread in the Wiki for this thread. Big Grin

CoDel should be enabled when you enable and configure QoS. The links in the wiki show you how to test it.
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#279
Quote from brbubba View Post :
Try "opkg update" first.

EDIT: This can be done from LuCi too.
Well, update at least allowed it to find luci-app-qos...but when trying to install, I got this:

Installing luci-app-qos (0.11+svn9425-1) to root...
Downloading http://downloads.openwrt.org/atti...ar71xx.ipk.
Collected errors:
* satisfy_dependencies_for: Cannot satisfy the following dependencies for luci-app-qos:
* kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) *
* opkg_install_cmd: Cannot install package luci-app-qos.

Thoughts?
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#280
Quote from sklar View Post :
I'd have to disagree. SOME routers experience a drop in throughput when employing QOS, because the router has to inspect every packet. In most high end routers in a home environment, unless you're doing live backups from many machines and a ton of multiple HD video streaming, that little performance cut off the top doesn't matter.

Some routers have no drop in throughput when using QOS. But most of those don't cost $40.

In my household, without QOS if someone is doing a VOIP or skype session, all sorts of stuff stops working. If my son is skyping in HD, the ooma voip phone quality sucks and sometimes it wont even ring. If we're doing multiple hd video streams, the phone call quality stinks. But with a set of QOS rules that put the voip box #1, skype #2, and other video streaming #3 and everything else after that...it all works beautifully no matter whats going on.

With THIS router QoS is not going to help and may hurt overall performance.

QoS is used in Enterprise environments successfully for VOIP but again those are Enterprise class routers. NOT SOHO

I think people are misled about what some of these third party firmware features actually do in real life.
At the very least we already see from various posters the "headaches" 3rd party firmware can cause.
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Last edited by boltman2007 February 21, 2013 at 12:16 PM
#281
Quote from boltman2007 View Post :
With THIS router QoS is not going to help and may hurt overall performance.

QoS is used in Enterprise environments successfully for VOIP but again those are Enterprise class routers. NOT SOHO
Hmm, well I don't own one and don't know about the stock firmware, but if it runs dd-wrt or openwrt, then the QOS will most certainly help in mixed voice/video/data environments. Its not like the software decides to not do its job because its running on this particular platform. laugh out loud

So apparently either your thesis is incorrect, or my long standing personal experience with requiring decent QOS in any application using voip or video is incorrect.

I just spent most of this week farting around with the QOS settings on my router, which runs openwrt. Without it, my voip doesn't work right and video conferencing doesn't work right. With it, they work. I'm unable to detect any difference in top end routing performance without running ixchariot, since not a lot of home users can saturate gigabit ethernet for very long.

I might have agreed with you ~5 years ago when not as many people were doing voip or video conferencing/facetime/video streaming, and router performance was so low that cutting into it to do QOS was a big decision. I'm afraid I don't agree at this time given many users current requirements and the power of most modern routers, even cheap ones.
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#282
Quote from sklar View Post :
Hmm, well I don't own one and don't know about the stock firmware, but if it runs dd-wrt or openwrt, then the QOS will most certainly help in mixed voice/video/data environments. Its not like the software decides to not do its job because its running on this particular platform. laugh out loud

So apparently either your thesis is incorrect, or my long standing personal experience with requiring decent QOS in any application using voip or video is incorrect.

I just spent most of this week farting around with the QOS settings on my router, which runs openwrt. Without it, my voip doesn't work right and video conferencing doesn't work right. With it, they work. I'm unable to detect any difference in top end routing performance without running ixchariot, since not a lot of home users can saturate gigabit ethernet for very long.

I might have agreed with you ~5 years ago when not as many people were doing voip or video conferencing/facetime/video streaming, and router performance was so low that cutting into it to do QOS was a big decision. I'm afraid I don't agree at this time given many users current requirements and the power of most modern routers, even cheap ones.
sklar is correct.
One of the big reasons why open source firmwares like Openwrt are so popular is because they give a SOHO (normal cheap) router capabilities of an enterprise class router.
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#283
Quote from dealgeek007 View Post :
sklar is correct.
One of the big reasons why open source firmwares like Openwrt are so popular is because they give a SOHO (normal cheap) router capabilities of an enterprise class router.
So you are saying managing outbound packets makes a huge difference... I'm skeptical. Its bandwidth you need not "tricks" we all no nothing actually happens to inbound packets unless you have a better router. Its again a placebo effect. The router is not the choke point your ISP is.
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Last edited by boltman2007 February 21, 2013 at 01:04 PM
#284
Quote from boltman2007 View Post :
So you are saying managing outbound packets makes a huge difference... I'm skeptical. Its bandwidth you need not "tricks" we all no nothing actually happens to inbound packets unless you have a better router. Its again a placebo effect. The router is not the choke point your ISP is.
Depends on how you have built the network.
In my case, I have a 40mbps down signal and 4 mbps up.
My router is in the basement.

I have other routers that I use as clients and wire every device to those clients.

In short all my stuff is wireless.

Currently my wireless starts to stutter a little if I use too much HD streaming and OOMA phone at the same time.

This router I am sure will help in my particular situation.

I also have a ps3, Wii a media server, apple Tv, etc which all also operate on the wifi via the client routers.... that are spread across my home.
I also have a server hardwired to the router in the basement running Hyper-V with 3 Windows server instances on it. One of them is used to back up all my other computers in the house (over wireless)

In short in my case the ISP is not the bottleneck, the main central router in my basement is.

By splitting some of my traffic to the 5GHz also, I'll help ease the congestion.

Peace!!
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Last edited by dealgeek007 February 21, 2013 at 01:23 PM
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#285
Quote from moonlightinred View Post :
Well, update at least allowed it to find luci-app-qos...but when trying to install, I got this:

Installing luci-app-qos (0.11+svn9425-1) to root...
Downloading http://downloads.openwrt.org/atti...ar71xx.ipk.
Collected errors:
* satisfy_dependencies_for: Cannot satisfy the following dependencies for luci-app-qos:
* kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) * kernel (= 3.3.8-1-be18a8a01d768ba03d7c87a93a45a9e5) *
* opkg_install_cmd: Cannot install package luci-app-qos.

Thoughts?
What version of OpenWRT did you install???
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