How to Set Up a Serial Console for NETGEAR R7000 "Nighthawk" Wi-Fi Router


Using serial console setup users can get access to the serial console of their router. Serial console setup finds its most important use in debricking a router. Moreover, developers may use it to extract useful debug information from their routers.

This short tutorial explains how to setup serial console for Netgear R7000.


Identify location of Serial pins on your router:

First open the case of your router. You should be able to find pins for serial communications at the location indicated in Figure1(a).



Figure 1(a)

Figure1(a): Serial pin location on your router

Some R7000 may not come with pins for serial communications
. In such cases, you will have to attach the pins on your own. Go to the location as indicated in Figure1(a), where you will find a connection with the name J252 as shown in Figure 1(b). Solder the pins here carefully.

Figure 1(b)

Figure 1(b): Serial pin location on your router

Identify important pins on router for serial communication:

Important pins on the router for serial communication are identified in Figure 2.

Figure 2

Figure 2: Important pins on the router for serial communication


Identify important pins in USB-TTL cable:

Important pins in the USB-TTL cable are indicated in Figure 3.

Figure 3

Figure 3: Important pins in USB-TTL cable

How to connect USB-TTL cable to the pins on the router for serial communication:

The connection between USB-TTL cable and pins on the router for serial communication is explained in Figure 4.

Figure 4

Figure 4: Connection between USB-TTL cable and pins for serial communication

Physical setup of your serial console ends here.

Verification of the setup:

To verify your setup, start serial client on your PC with proper parameters and then power on your router. As soon as you do this, you will be able to see debug information from the router on your screen. If you do not see anything, check that all the connections have been made properly and if in doubt, reattach the cables. Verify that the Serial Client has the proper parameters for the connection.

intrepix's picture
I followed the instructions

I followed the instructions but it all came to an end when a password was requested and it stated "TomatoUSB requests a password".   None of the admin, root or password combinations work with or without blank usernames or passwords.   The router works fine, it responds to with a pop up username and password but nothing works even when using Telnet to get the username and password as the username came back as the mac address of the router but there is no password that will work to get past that point.   Anyone have any thoughts on how to debrick this R7000 ?