Yesterday my wife and I mourned the passing of Bobby, or as he was better known to the world, Linksys WRT54G. He has been my faithful router and friend for nearly 5 years now, and for the entire time that I’ve known him, his only thoughts were to serve…packets. Indeed, he will be missed.
On an unrelated note, I bought a new router yesterday. Rodney (I enjoy using router names that are easy to yell at), is a Linksys WRT160n, and has bravely stepped up to take Bobby’s place. I had planned to make my next router wireless N with 1Gb wired transfer, but decided to hold off on that, seeing as routers which actually implement the recently finalized, full wireless N specs aren’t on the market yet, and I really have no need for 1Gb connections. Maybe after Rodney bites the dust, or I build a media center PC I’ll get one.
One important selection criteria for routers, at least for me, is the ability to flash dd-wrt, an alternative, Linux based, open-source firmware. It turns out that many cheap-ish routers can support many more features than the built in firmware allows, so for me, this is a cheaper way to get a fully featured device. They have a nice list of supported devices, and well written instructions on how to upgrade and configure afterwards.
I strongly recommend doing some searching and reading around their wiki before starting: I nearly bricked poor Rodney yesterday because I was following some generic instructions rather than the hardware specific ones.