Debricking a Linksys WRT54GS v5.0 Router

I’ve been looking at the logs for this site and have noticed that many people come here looking for the article on debricking a Linksys WRT54GS router (March 31st, 2007), an article on my old blog.  Well, I had lost the article when I switched web content solutions but just found it in the Internet Archive Wayback Machine.  I have reposted the article below.

I have a Linksys WRT54GS v5.0 router that I purchased from ebay. I bought it because I had heard that installing DD-WRT firmware on these router versions was difficult and many people manage to brick them. I wanted to see for myself.

I began to install the 3 firmwares required to get DD-WRT working (pre, vxWorks killer, and finally DD-WRT mini). I managed to brick the router after trying to install the 3rd and final firmware. The router would not respond to anything: ping, Linksys TFTP, and manual network configuring. I looked all over the internet to find way to debrick this router and find two method:

  1. JTAG cable
  2. Pin shorting

I didnt have a JTAG cable nor wanted to buy one. So, I tried the pin shorting as a last resort. So I used the tutorial I found and shorted pin 4 and 5 with a jewelry screwdriver and viola, the router started to respond. I then tried to install the firmware again but ended up bricking the router several more times. So, I switched to another firmware installation HOWTO. It seemed to let me install the firmware via TFTP but not the web interface because it would not come up. So, I just followed all the usual instructions but instead installed the firmwares using TFTP. Everything worked fine up until the final firmware. The router didnt brick this time, but the webpage would not come up. I then read in a forum somewhere that you have to wait up to 10 minutes after installing the last firmware before the webpages will come up. I waited and it worked.

I am now using my bricked WRT54GS router with DD-WRT micro on it!

The link to the tutorial to upgrade to DD-WRT that worked:

The link to the tutorial to short pins 4 and 5. It says its for the G but I got it work with the GS; just be sure to short pins 4 and 5 (USE AT YOUR OWN RISK!):