Copyright © 2012 by "GBARC" All Rights reserved
The Georgian Bay Amateur Radio Club
Est. October 18th, 1973
P.O. Box 113, Owen Sound, Ontario Canada N4K5P1
APRS I-Gate from a Linksys WRT54g V2 Wireless Router
Bin Files: The next step is to find the files we just created and get them to a place where w can
upload them to the router. The ubuntu screens below are a file manager, go the ubuntu app, at the top
of the screen you will see Applications Places and System. In the Places menu select "Computer"
and you will see a screen similar to the one shown. You probobly created a directory called backfire,
so look for a directory called brcm 2.4 somewhere below that. That directory is shown below, notice
that there are files for more than one router, matter of fact a bunch are compiled at the same time.
So the one I was interested in was the
Now in my case I used a second
computer which is running Xp as the
platform for working with the routers.
This way I could play as much as I
liked and I was also able to access
the web at any time with the Vista
computer. But I also had to get the bin
file to the other computer somehow,
first time I did it with ubuntu email
which worked fine and then I used the
usb stick which worked better. At the
top of the linux screen you will see a
menu called devices, pick usb
devices and go from there.
Firware Upgrade: So now we have a bin file on
our usb stck or on the computer where we are
going to to do the upgrade. Most of the upgrade
instructions are on the openwrt website at this and
other url's. I ran an cable from the computer to the
router lam port 1, performed a reset of the router
and confirmed I could use internet explorer to
access the router via 192.168.1.1. This ip address
may not be the same for your router, search for it
on the web and you will also find the default
username and password. You will need all this
info to proceed.
You will need to assign a static ip at the start to
initially access the router. Go to control panel,
network connections, click on local area
connection, click on properties, select internet
protocol tcp/ip and select use the following ip
address. If your routers ip is 192.168.0.1 then put
something like 192.168.0.5 in the ip address field,
then put 255.255.255.0 in the subnet mask field.
Click OK and exit out. You may have to unplug the
lan cable on the router to force windows to use the
So after the reset, log into the router with the info
you now have, you will see a linksys (or your
brand of router) screen, go to the Administration
tab and with any kind of luck you will see this
screen. I sinply clicked browse, found the .bin file
and clicked upgrade. It was as easy as that. A few
minutes later I had a new firmware. I logged in
again and was presented with the x-wrt admin
screen. (Don't forget to look this up yourself. This
is what I did, it may not work for you.)
Well it wasn't exactly like this at the beginning.
The device immediately asks for a password.
Before a password is entered, the device can be
accessed with telnet and afterwards, telenet is
disabled and the device is now accessed with
SSH or a web browser. To have a backup plan
incase you do something and can't get back into
the router with SSH, then you can do a couple of
is explained in the openwrt documentation so I
won't go over it again here. Secondly download
Putty which allows access to the router over the
lan cable in telnet or ssh plus some others.
Either way It's good insurance as I had to get
This allows you to put the router back into the same state as a fresh firmware upgrade. For a dumb terminal program I've been
using hyperterminal and when you access the router with a ttl converter you may have to experiment a bit to get the right
baudrate although 115200 worked for me. You will likely need the converter to hook this up to a Byonics Tiny Tracker, others
have used a usb to serial converter. So lets assume the converter is installed, the tracker is also installed and in kiss mode and
the tracker baudrate is set to whatever you want yours set to. I have mine at 115200 baud. Here are my config files, anything I
don't want the world to see I will comment out with xxxxxx's. Refer to the aprx documentation for further details.
server noam.aprs2.net 14580
serial-device /dev/tts/1 115200 8n1 KISS
beacon via TRACE1-1 \
symbol "I&" lat "4437.03N" lon "08103.33W" \
comment "Aprx v2.00 - Tx-iGate -
So about the best thing you can do with x-wrt is to surf
around and get familiar with it. Getting it connected to the
web is a high priority also as the aprx part won't work
without it, package updates or additions are not possible
either. In a nutshell I shut off DHCP, created a vlan to
connect ports 0,1,2 and 3 so the internet is connected to
port 1 and the computer goes on any other port except the
Don't forget to check out google groups for APRX. The
people there were helpful and sometime one can answer
their own questions there by reading.
Well they say the proof is in the puddin, click here to see the VE3TSA I-Gate in service.
This is the .bin file I used for my wrt54g V2 which includes the aprx 2 package. If you have the same router you can use this. openwrt-wrt54g-squashfs
This is the .trx file