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Firmware

There is no final version of the 802.11n standard yet, so the firmware of the WRT300N router is going to be updated. Right now the Linksys website offers only one official version of firmware (2.00.17). We don’t know anything about alternative firmware for this router. The official firmware is rich in options (we’ll discuss them shortly), but we were mostly interested in checking out the router’s support of the Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol. Many modern routers have poor implementation of PPTP, so what about this one? It turned out that the WRT300N provided limited options for setting up a VPN tunnel by means of PPTP. The router cannot establish connection if the VPN server is on another subnet. Moreover, it doesn’t support an alternative address for the PPTP server. In fact, the router only allows to set up a PPTP tunnel if the server has the same address as the main network gateway. Alas, this is not a common thing for many providers that work via VPN (PPTP).

To learn what else the firmware can do, we should check out the options provided through the router’s Web-interface. To enter it, type 192.168.1.1 into your Web-browser’s address line. You’ll be asked to enter a login and password then. The login field should be left empty while the password is admin by default. The router’s GUI doesn’t look like an interface of a common SOHO-class router and may be somewhat unusual to deal with for a user who has never worked with Linksys products before. The interface seems to be overcrowded at first and it’s hard to make out anything among the options. But after you get used to the austere design without rounded-off corners, pretty buttons, etc, the interface turns to be quite comfortable, in our opinion. The menu is organized as a horizontal row of tabs each of which contains its own submenus which are listed horizontally below the main list. Each page contains options divided into groups whose names are located on the left of the list and opposite the corresponding group. A short description of the current page is given on the right. To get detailed help on the necessary page, you should click the appropriate button below the brief description. The Save Settings button in the bottom right corner of each page does what its name suggests. An Abort button is placed next to it.

You don’t have to open up a special page to learn the firmware version of the router. It can be seen in the top right corner of each page.

We’ll now describe briefly the options offered by the WRT300N’s web-interface.

Setup Section

The Setup tab goes first. On this tab you can change basic parameters of wired networking and routing. The first page is called Basic Setup.

Here you can configure the WAN port, particularly the way it is connected to the Internet. The next group of settings belongs to the router’s DHCP server, including the router’s address on the local network. At the end of the page you can set up the router’s internal time.

On the DDNS page you can choose a service the user host will be registered with if you have enabled the dynamic DNS feature.

This is the MAC Address Clone page. You can specify a MAC address the router will be identified on the external network by.

The Advanced Routing page is the last one on the Setup tab. Easy to guess, it contains settings of routing parameters.

You can enable/disable NAT, specify the type of routing (static or dynamic), and manage entries in the routing table.

 
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