Transform the NETGEAR EX6200 into a Wi-Fi Router with DD-WRT

Introducing: DD-WRT for the NETGEAR EX6200.

[Download DD-WRT for NETGEAR EX6200 at MyOpenRouter]

The EX6200 is naturally a Wifi Range Extender -- now, it gets a special upgrade using DD-WRT open source firmware. DD-WRT will transform this Range Extender into a full featured Wifi Router.

By default, the EX6200 has 5 LAN ports and no WAN port. DD-WRT allows you to use one of the LAN ports as a WAN port + 4 LAN ports. Since there are differences in features, I'm going to explain a few of the changes when using it with DD-WRT.

In the picture below you can see that once you have flashed DD-WRT, you will have one WAN port, which is port 5 on the router.

The LED with label "Connected" will show WAN status, once it lights up you are connected to WAN either through a cable connection or wifi connection, e.g. Client Bridge. The wifi lights will only display if the radio is online or offline.

 

 

NETGEAR logo is used as diag light indicating DD-WRT diag events, e.g. if you press Save or Apply in the web, this light will confirm this action. The WPS button on the back is being used as radio on off switch. This is useful if you want to quickly turn on/off the radios, e.g. you have defined a schedule to turn off the radio at certain times and it is currently turned off you can quickly turn the radios on in order to have wireless access.

The reason why I think this hardware is interesting to use as a wireless router with DD-WRT are the following:

  • For the price, you will get a router with very good range, most wireless routers in this class only come with internal antennae
  • Good usb storage performance as it features a arm dual core cpu (2x800Mhz)
  • The unit is smaller than other routers in this class
  • It looks damn good :-)

What is not so good about this unit:

  • It has limited flash size and therefore we cannot add all features

Features:

  • WAN Support Static/DHCP/PPPOE/PPPOE Dual/PPTP/L2TP/Mobile Broadband 3G/4G
  • Dynamic DNS-VLAN Support
  • Wireless AP/Repeater/Repeater Bridge/Client/Client Bridge/Guest Wireless
  • DHCP Server
  • SSH Server
  • FTP Server
  • Network Filesharing Samba
  • WAN Traffic Counter
  • OpenVPN
  • PPTP Client/Server
  • Advanced USB Mounting by Labels UUIDs
  • CRON Jobs
  • Firewall with Logging to integrated syslog or remote logging server
  • Access Restrictions URL/Keyword/Protocol Based
  • Port Forwarding
  • Advanced QOS-DMZ
  • Connection Watchdog
  • Wireless Connection Watchdog
  • Schedule Reboot
  • WOL
  • Custom Script Tasks on Boot/Shutdown

The firmware file can be downloaded via this link.

 

 

    Tags: 

    Venturis
    Venturis's picture
    Hi Kong,

    Hi Kong,

    Great work on the firmware.

    I have both an EX6200 and an R7000.

    I started off with the R7000 Netgear firmware and found that it was dropping connection to my Netgear WN3000RP extender every 24 hours.

    I installed your 24200 OLDD Firmware and was liking it a lot but found that the transfer rates over wireless had dropped by 30% - 40% on AC 5GHZ band over the Netgear firmware. Other than that it was rock solid and the ability to adjust radio power was fantastic.

    Since I couldn't live with the knowledge my shiny new AC router was not performing to full potential I went back to the Netgear firmware but it has its own issues.

    I turned now to the EX6200 which I purchased as a potential replacement for the WN3000RP extender but it is overkill for my needs and I was contemplating putting DD-WRT on the EX6200 as a replacement for the R7000.

    Its crazy I know to replace the R7000 with the EX6200 but I can still return the R7000 to the store and keep the EX6200 and convert it to a router using your firmware.

    My question is can I expect the same performance drop on the EX6200 as I had with the R7000 on DD-WRT.

    Also, if I used the EX6200 "Initial" firmware to update the extender, do I then use the regular K3-AC-Arm builds after that to update?

    The initial build is only 7MB whilst the subsequent builds are 20MB.

    Thanks and keep up the great work.

    BaskeeDK
    BaskeeDK's picture
    Hi Venturius,

    Hi Venturius,

    You need to stick to the builds less than 8mb, since that is the flash size of the chip!
    Read: http://www.dd-wrt.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=262988&highlight=ex6200

    Seb

    Kong
    Kong's picture
    Venturis said: Hi Kong,

    Venturis said: Hi Kong, Great work on the firmware. I have both an EX6200 and an R7000. I started off with the R7000 Netgear firmware and found that it was dropping connection to my Netgear WN3000RP extender every 24 hours. I installed your 24200 OLDD Firmware and was liking it a lot but found that the transfer rates over wireless had dropped by 30% - 40% on AC 5GHZ band over the Netgear firmware. Other than that it was rock solid and the ability to adjust radio power was fantastic. Since I couldn't live with the knowledge my shiny new AC router was not performing to full potential I went back to the Netgear firmware but it has its own issues. I turned now to the EX6200 which I purchased as a potential replacement for the WN3000RP extender but it is overkill for my needs and I was contemplating putting DD-WRT on the EX6200 as a replacement for the R7000. Its crazy I know to replace the R7000 with the EX6200 but I can still return the R7000 to the store and keep the EX6200 and convert it to a router using your firmware. My question is can I expect the same performance drop on the EX6200 as I had with the R7000 on DD-WRT. Also, if I used the EX6200 "Initial" firmware to update the extender, do I then use the regular K3-AC-Arm builds after that to update? The initial build is only 7MB whilst the subsequent builds are 20MB. Thanks and keep up the great work.

    There is no performance drop on the R7000 with dd-wrt. You just need to set it up correctly:

     

    http://tips.desipro.de/2014/02/12/wireless-starters-guide-for-first-time...

    Venturis
    Venturis's picture
    Hi Kong,

    Hi Kong,

    Ive been using DD-WRT on a few different routers over the years and I'd like to think that by now I've learnt to set up a Wifi network properly but in case I missed something I went back to basics and loaded your 24345 build on my R7000 once again.

    I made sure i did a 30/30/30 reset and double checked all the wifi settings were optimum.  I also increase the 5GHZ power output up progressively from 500mW to 999mW without substantial gains.

    I spent several hours trying every combination of channel/sideband available with mixed results but all in all, the Kong DD-WRT build had a significantly slower Wifi transfer rate than the Netgear firmware.  Wifi security was WPA2/AES.

    Testing with a USB A6200 AC Wifi Adaptor

    Netgear Genie:  24-26MB/s

    Kong DDWRT 24345: 15-16MB/s

    Testing with an EX6200 set up with a decicated 5GHz link to the R7000 with local PC connected through EX6200 network ports.

    Netgear Genie: 32-35MB/s

    Kong DDWRT 24345: 24-25MB/s

    The previous firmware 24200 gave very similar results.  Although reported connection rates appear the same between the Kong and Netgear Genie firmware was about the same, the actual transfer rates were quite different.

    I also did the same Wifi bandwidth tests after updating my EX6200 to DD-WRT but the results were very dissappointing in general after using the R7000 so I reverted back the the Netgear firmware.

    I might move this to the forums and see what feedback I get there.

    I'm still open to the fact that I've set up something wrong in the firmware that is not Wifi related that could be limiting the transfer rates but I've not found it.

    shpapy
    shpapy's picture
    Is it just me or the speed

    Is it just me or the speed should be around 70-80MB?

    26MB seems super low 

    Kong
    Kong's picture
    Venturis said: Hi Kong, Ive

    Venturis said: Hi Kong, Ive been using DD-WRT on a few different routers over the years and I'd like to think that by now I've learnt to set up a Wifi network properly but in case I missed something I went back to basics and loaded your 24345 build on my R7000 once again. I made sure i did a 30/30/30 reset and double checked all the wifi settings were optimum.  I also increase the 5GHZ power output up progressively from 500mW to 999mW without substantial gains. I spent several hours trying every combination of channel/sideband available with mixed results but all in all, the Kong DD-WRT build had a significantly slower Wifi transfer rate than the Netgear firmware.  Wifi security was WPA2/AES. Testing with a USB A6200 AC Wifi Adaptor Netgear Genie:  24-26MB/s Kong DDWRT 24345: 15-16MB/s Testing with an EX6200 set up with a decicated 5GHz link to the R7000 with local PC connected through EX6200 network ports. Netgear Genie: 32-35MB/s Kong DDWRT 24345: 24-25MB/s The previous firmware 24200 gave very similar results.  Although reported connection rates appear the same between the Kong and Netgear Genie firmware was about the same, the actual transfer rates were quite different. I also did the same Wifi bandwidth tests after updating my EX6200 to DD-WRT but the results were very dissappointing in general after using the R7000 so I reverted back the the Netgear firmware. I might move this to the forums and see what feedback I get there. I'm still open to the fact that I've set up something wrong in the firmware that is not Wifi related that could be limiting the transfer rates but I've not found it.

    Since I have the A6200 and done tests with it, there is definitely something wrong with your setting. The A6200 gives me 28MB/s. Show me a screenshot of your wireless status page and I'll tell you what is wrong.

    As I noted in my guide most users don't need to increase output power the default power is the same as in netgear.

    Alien
    Alien's picture
    Hello,

    Hello,

    I have installed this on the EX6200 and it works GREAT.

    I have enabled Samba and USB support. I put in a Fat32 usb 3.0 device into the port and began a 5Gb (multiple files) transfer. Everytime it hangs at 2%, and the web gui becomes unresponsive.

    Even after I pull out the USB flash drive I cannot access the GUI. I must do a reset.

    Also is ~89C an acceptable temp?

    Thank you for developing this firmware!

    Kong
    Kong's picture
    Alien said: Hello, I have

    Alien said: Hello, I have installed this on the EX6200 and it works GREAT. I have enabled Samba and USB support. I put in a Fat32 usb 3.0 device into the port and began a 5Gb (multiple files) transfer. Everytime it hangs at 2%, and the web gui becomes unresponsive. Even after I pull out the USB flash drive I cannot access the GUI. I must do a reset. Also is ~89C an acceptable temp? Thank you for developing this firmware!

    The 90° are ok, I guess your environmental temperature is above 30°C.

    I haven't done any tests with FAT32, but it sounds like you didn't specify the correct mount path in samba setup and instead of copying the file to usb it goes to routers ram which will fill up and hang the router. Check the mount point in samba setup and in disk info. To verify it has been mounted correctly login via ssh/telnet and run command:

     

    mount

     

    it should list the drive and mount point.

    cysaty
    cysaty's picture
     

     

    Hello Kong! Can according 2014-6-18 of ex6200 firmware, write fully functional firmware of a 16m? I discovered later versions, support for usb bad. I've upgraded flash to 16m.

    123456

    Alien
    Alien's picture
    Using SSH I verified that it

    Using SSH I verified that it is mounted correctly in Samba. Here is the behavior http://i.imgur.com/tj1niSU.png It will hang and require a reboot.

     

    I will use an external hdd and format it to EXT3 and post back.

    Orange
    Orange's picture
    Thank you for your work OP. I

    Thank you for your work OP. I bought this EX6200 thinking I can use it like an AP to extend my wired Ethernet to wireless. I then found that it's impossible under official firmware. After flashing your firmware everything works like a charm and I will be much more frustrated if this firmware doesn't exist :)

     

    Alien
    Alien's picture
    Alien said: Using SSH I

    Alien said: Using SSH I verified that it is mounted correctly in Samba. Here is the behavior http://i.imgur.com/tj1niSU.png It will hang and require a reboot. I will use an external hdd and format it to EXT3 and post back.

    EXT3 works perfectly. Uptime is 3 days now. Is it possible to add DLNA functionality to this device?

    Kong
    Kong's picture
    Alien said:

    Alien said:

    Alien said: Using SSH I verified that it is mounted correctly in Samba. Here is the behavior http://i.imgur.com/tj1niSU.png It will hang and require a reboot. I will use an external hdd and format it to EXT3 and post back.

    EXT3 works perfectly. Uptime is 3 days now. Is it possible to add DLNA functionality to this device?

    Not enough space on the flash to include it, unless I leave out other things.

    Orange
    Orange's picture
    Is it possible to release an

    Is it possible to release an optional full function version that can be installed and booted from a flash drive? So the firmware won't need to fit 8mb limit

     

    Alien
    Alien's picture
    Sorry to keep bothering you.

    Sorry to keep bothering you. But in regards to the ProFTPD server, and in the authentication section there a "User Password List."

    How can I specify the password?

    Going to ftp://10.0.0.11 displays a login screen. I have tried user: root, admin and nothing works.

    Please help and thank you.

    Venturis
    Venturis's picture
    Kong said:

    Kong said:

    Since I have the A6200 and done tests with it, there is definitely something wrong with your setting. The A6200 gives me 28MB/s. Show me a screenshot of your wireless status page and I'll tell you what is wrong. As I noted in my guide most users don't need to increase output power the default power is the same as in netgear.

    Hi Kong,

    Just wanted to close out the item I raised about Wifi performance.

    I once again installed DD-WRT (v24345 OLDD) on my R7000 doing all the necessary resets to default the settings between flashs.

    This time I was able to achieve Wifi performance near or equal to the OEM Netgear firmware.  All my settings were the same as previous attempts and nothing changed on my Wifi adaptor but for whatever reason performance improved dramatically over my previous efforts.

    I am getting 20-24MB/s with my A6200 USB Wifi adapator about 10 metres away from the router through several double brick walls.

    Thanks.  Appreciate your input.  I have been running for several days now with no problems to report.

    Kong
    Kong's picture
    Alien said: Sorry to keep

    Alien said: Sorry to keep bothering you. But in regards to the ProFTPD server, and in the authentication section there a "User Password List." How can I specify the password? Going to ftp://10.0.0.11 displays a login screen. I have tried user: root, admin and nothing works. Please help and thank you.

    ON the same page where you enable proftpd you can setup users and shares for proftpd.

    Dieseldes
    Dieseldes's picture
    Hi guys. Can anyone confirm

    Hi guys. Can anyone confirm if the 6200 can be used to connect to a lan on one of its ethernet ports and become a access point? Eg with no other wifi devices, and this to become the wifi access point? I have a draytek that I use for vpn etc, so I just need a good wifi access point that will connect to the draytek. The draytek has no wifi. Do I need to install DD-WRT to do this. Cheers des

    Arthur Borsboom
    Arthur Borsboom's picture
    Hi Kong,

    Hi Kong,

    Thank you very much for creating and sharing this firmware. It improved my EX6200 a lot, since I was looking for routing functionality.

    For the future, if there are firmware updates by you or anybody else, where can I most likely find them?

    I am currently using: DD-WRT v24-sp2 (06/10/14) minikongac - build 24200M

    Thanks again for your efforts!

    Regards,
    Arthur.

     

    Gerald Paul
    Gerald Paul's picture
    hi,

    hi,

    i am looking for a range extender to stream full hd video 1080 p from the entrance floor to a floor above through massive walls (Beton). But the ex6200 with stock firmware has no access to high channels like 104 in the 5 ghz ac band.
    What channels can reach in the modded kong dd-wrt firmware?
    I need the high channels because all our neighbours have wlan routers or access points.

    Regards

    Gerald

    Kong
    Kong's picture
    All channels are available in

    All channels are available in dd-wrt on the EX6200.

    But you should probably wait until I release a new build for the EX6200. Netgear added a firmware size limitation in latest EX6200 models. Current dd-wrt build can't be flashed to EX6200 models with CFE revision v2.0.8.

    I'm going to prepare a new build soon, that is within this limitation.

    If you flash current builds it will be unsuccessful and stop at the cfe prompt waiting for you to upload a working build through tftp. This is indicated through the green "arrow leds" on the router.

    Arthur Borsboom
    Arthur Borsboom's picture
    Hi Kong,

    Hi Kong,

    I am looking forward for a new version!
    Thanks again for your efforts.

    Regards,
    Arthur.

     

    MarcusP
    MarcusP's picture
    Hello Kong.

    Hello Kong.
    Is there any way I can identify the CFE version my EX6200 is running?
    My bad, I thought this device would act as a wired access point out of the box.

    Kong
    Kong's picture
    Latest build 25015 now

    Latest build 25015 now supports both revisions:

    http://www.desipro.de/ddwrt/K3-AC-Arm/25015M/dd-wrt.K3_EX6200.chk

    Arthur Borsboom
    Arthur Borsboom's picture
    Hi Kong,

    Hi Kong,

    Just to confirm, the new build runs fine on my EX6200.
    I don't see any noticeable differences yet.

    Nevertheless, thanks again.

     

    Stephane
    Stephane's picture
    can't download that build

    can't download that build
    Latest build 25015 now supports both revisions:

    http://www.desipro.de/ddwrt/K3-AC-Arm/25015M/dd-wrt.K3_EX6200.chk
    grrrr :(

    cippolaus
    cippolaus's picture
    error404 file not found

    error404 file not found

    quakel
    quakel's picture
    Hello Kong,

    Hello Kong,

    i'm new with dd-wrt. Can i update the firmware from my ex6200 with the dd-wrt.k3_ex6200.chk? (from the default firmware option in the webgui?)

    and can i also restore the original firmware over the curstom firmware?
    I'm very happy that you create a firmware for the ex6200.

    ROKIMOTO
    ROKIMOTO's picture
    Hi, I installed the firmware

    Hi, I installed the firmware and is working ok as a router but I can not enter to configure the extender using the link http://www.mywifiext.net/. How Can I enter to extender configuration again?

    GeertJ
    GeertJ's picture
    Hi All,

    Hi All,

    Being a newby i am interested as to how to convey this firmware into the EX6200's flash. Should i use a USB-TTL cable, an ethernet cable or can it be done via WiFi?

    I followed the links but none of the subsequent pages provided more info on that.
    BTW Kong, your latest build has moved to a different location on the desipro site, i was unable to dig it up ;-).

    Thanks for doing this great work!

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