Netgear's USB-Equipped WNR3500L 802.11n Router Goes Linux

Netgear's USB-Equipped WNR3500L 802.11n Router Goes Linux

Caught yourself looking for a new Wi-Fi router here lately? Netgear's new RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router with USB (WNR3500L) is certainly worth a look, particularly if you value flexibility and have an inkling to make on your favorite USB peripherals go wireless. The router is built around a powerful open source Linux platform, giving developers and coding gurus the ability to make tweaks that would generally be disallowed.

Outside of that and the USB port, the guts here are similar to what you've come to expect from Netgear. It's an 802.11n supporting router that can also support a wide variety of applications created by multiple development partner sand the dedicated open source community. If you've ever heard of terms like DD-WRT, OpenWRT and Tomato, you'll be in love here. All of those applications (and more) can be downloaded and freely ran on this here device. Within, you'll find a 480MHz CPU, 64MB of RAM, five Gigabit Ethernet ports, and a USB 2.0 host port for adding an external hard drive (and accessing it over the Web) or developing other custom uses.

Netgear claims this one will be available later this fall for $139.99, and for those who can't stand a router that doesn't get tinkered with, we suspect they'll be lined up for this one.


Gigabit Switching with Wireless-N for Faster Network Performance

  • Wireless-N technology for faster wireless speeds and range
  • Four Gigabit Ethernet ports deliver ultra-fast wired connections
  • ReadyShare™ provides fast and easy shared access to an external USB storage device
  • Push 'N' Connect securely connects devices at the touch of a button
  • Smart Wizard® installation CD and multi-language support make setup easy
  • Automatic Quality of Service (QoS) for reliable Internet, voice and gaming applications
  • Configurable as a wireless repeater for extending range
  • Push 'N' Connect and Wi-Fi Protected Setup™ (WPS) ensure a quick and secure network connection

Open-Source Router, Community and Development Partner program

  • Open-source Wireless-N router with Gigabit wired ports for Linux developers and open-source enthusiasts.
  • Open-source community website and development Partner program with downloadable applications, user guide, forums, blogs and downloads at www.myopenrouter.com
  • High Performance Broadcom 480 MHz MIPS® 74K CPU, 8 MB Flash and 64 MB RAM to even run business-class applications
  • Popular Linux Firmware-DD-WRT, Open-WRT and Tomato available on Open-source community website
  • NEW Development Partner Program-development partnership with several 3rd party software vendors to develop custom applications on WNR3500L. Please visit www.myopenrouter.com to join the partner program and see the custom applications that are released or under development.

Features

  • High-performance BCM 4718 system-on-a-chip
  • Gigabit Ethernet and USB port
  • Double firewall protection
  • Denial-of-service (DoS) attack prevention
  • Wi-Fi Protected Access™ (WPA2-PSK, WPA-PSK) and WEP
  • Wi-Fi Protected Setup™ (WPS) - push-button and PIN
  • Push 'N' Connect using Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) and Smart Wizard® Standards
  • IEEE 802.11n
  • Five 10/100/1000 (1 WAN and 4 LAN) Ethernet ports with auto-sensing technology



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Why go linux?

It gives you a lot more control over the settings in the router vs. the linksys firmware, and of course, more control over functions such as lan and better port forwarding options.

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I use DD-WRT on my Linksys WRT54GL router, and it ROCKS. I will never buy another home router that doesn't support it.

DD-WRT has many many many more configuration options that the default Linksys firmware, better QoS, configurable VLANs, SNMP support (I have a CACTI poller pulling the data), VPNs, Hotspots, MUCH better WAN access restrictions (great for blocking just your kids PCs from accidentally hitting objectionable sites), WOL support, and about a million other things.

Tomato's okay. It has nice reports, but not as many features as the latest DD-WRT. I tried it just to see what it was like, but went right back to DD-WRT after a few days.

The USB port on the router in the article gives you a lot of sweet possibilities! And, the processor/RAM stats are great. My router is only running at 216Mhz (overclocked) at the moment.

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Yeah, what he said. :)

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