Getting Started with the NETGEAR WGR614L Wireless Router

Whether you're an aspiring networking expert or a seasoned open source vet, it's always a good thing to know where to start with any new piece of equipment - and the NETGEAR WGR614L Open Source Router is no exception.

What Exactly Is the WGR614L?

At first glance, this router looks like an ordinary wireless router, which at its core, will take your wired Internet connection and broadcast it wirelessly, so your mobile devices such as phones and laptops can access said connection.  The WGR614L is a Wireless-G router, giving you boosted speed and range over 802.11b.  Click below to see the specifications of the WGR614L.

[WGR614L Hardware Specifications]  |  [WGR614L Software Specifications]

However, what makes the WGR614L special is that it is based on open source framework, and can be reflashed with third party firmware to enhance the functionality and flexibility of the router.

Learn why the WGR614L is a great choice compared to the Linksys WRT54GL, including boosted power.

Standard Use (For Beginners)

For those of you who are looking to run the WGR614L as a standard wireless router and have no need to hack the hardware or upgrade the firmware, we have many resources to get you started.

Advanced Use (For Hackers, Geeks, or Aspiring Open Source Gurus)

Even though the WGR614L makes an excellent router for daily use, the true beauty of the router is that it can be upgraded, tinkered, hacked, and enhanced with third party firmware.

  • The very first thing you should do is look at the latest firmware downloads available on the community.  Currently, there are three types of firmware available - DD-WRT, Tomato, and OpenWRT.
  • Each firmware will come with different instructions on how to install the firmware to the router.  Some include pre-written scripts that will download and compile the firmware, and others include pre-compiled firmware.  You will need to read the detailed README file or instructions included with each firmware to properly install them.
  • You can switch between different firmwares without a serial cable using this utility.  This is a handy article to read when testing out various fimware versions.
  • Most of the instructions included with the firmwares posted here are for Linux systems, but you can also upload firmware to the WGR614L using Windows.  You can read this article on how to use TFTP to transfer a firmware image to the router using Windows.
  • If you need to recover your WGR614L due to a bad firmware upload or other mishap, you can recover your router using Windows and a serial cable (not included with the device.)

Expert Hacks, Tricks, & Hardware Modification (For Experts Only)

Once you've become familiar with the WGR614L, you just might be ready to take up the soldering iron and really get your hands dirty.  We've got some dedicated community members here who have done just that.

Other Resources