Netgear WGR614 v8.0 & WGR614L
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WARNING : This page is OUTDATED. Use the following link : Netgear_WGR614v8/L/WW.
 WGR614 V8 / WGR614L
Firmware Notes The basic hardware for the WGR614 V8 and WGR614L is identical and for the scope of this article the two device names can be used interchangeably. Please note that to load firmware on this device it must be first recompiled in Linux! If you do not do this you will brick your router with the DD-WRT firmware as it needs to be recompiled into the format necessary for the Netgear WGR614 V8. Hence the funky extension (.CHK).
Quick start To install DD-WRT on a WGR614 v8 / WGR614L with the original firmware installed, first download the 'Special WGR614 v8/L image for initial flashing' from the dd-wrt database - It is a .chk file.
Flash the 'dd-wrt.v24_mini-wgr614v8-L.chk' file, making sure to follow these instructions carefully.
You now have a fully functioning router, running a 'mini build' of DD-WRT and can install one of the 'Generic' builds if you like. The 'NoKaid' build is recommended.
Conspiritech says: Use eko firmware. I used 11100 [go to www.dd-wrt.com, click downloads, follow others/eko/V24_TNG_OBSOLETE/svn11100 and get dd-wrt.v24-11100_WGR614v8-L_mini.chk] with .chk extension of course. For more info on this and other releases find eko in forums here or on myopenrouter.com. Flash from web interface. Reset to factory defaults after flashing and then reboot it again just to be sure, before attempting settings. I am not even going to attempt to get a .bin or a standard on there given all the remaining funkiness in the reports about this router.
Procedure 1 on this page Recover from a Bad Flash also works for wgr614l v8. I only killed this one once, by not defaulting after flashing, the interface slows to a crawl and it crashes after a few reboots. This process defaults the machine and you are back to your current firmware. Still pings in this condition.
Basic Guide to Flashing (Must Use .CHK Version of The Firmware) First off if you have the WGR614L you can download this mini firmware and flash it as its already to go. Modded Mini Firmware Ready For Installation If you do not want to use that firmware you will need to download the Netgear toolchain and source for your router and rebuild the latest DD-WRT source code (available below at svn) into a working firmware. To download svn links in Windows you have to install TortoiseSVN or an equivalent.
svn co svn://svn.dd-wrt.com/DD-WRT
To install the Standard version of DD-WRT you will need to recompile it using these instructions (NOTE: Linux is required for this procedure!)
WGR614L Firmware Image Creation
Text below taken from WGR614L Firmware Image Creation @ myopenrouter.com
Some of you have already noticed that WGR614L firmware uses a .chk extension. Let us go through the steps that is needed to create a firmware image in .chk format.
Most of the Broadcom hardware uses a TRX style firmware. Netgear's WGR614L Linux based open source router's .chk is also based on the same TRX format - but does add the following interesting improvements
First, the kernel is compressed using LZMA which achieves a better compression than the usual gzip or bzip2 compression. This improvement does need an addition to the CFE bootloader to support decompression of LZMA encoded kernel
Second, this formats adds a header to trx format, that has the checksum, length, and a compatible board identifier. These checksum and length information makes the job ensuring image integrity much easier and since these checksums are stored in the flash and also checked at each system boot, boot-loader can also identify if the flashed image gets corrupted.
So to pack a image in the .chk format you will need the following files at hand Thee files are generated when you compile the downloaded Linux opensource codes for WGR614L
1. Download the source code the Netgear WGR614L 2. Linux Kernel - vmlunx -usually compiled at the top directory of the Linux kernel source. 3. compatible.txt containing the boardid of the netgear boards this fimeware is targeted for. 4. Root File System image - target.squashfs - usually a LZMA Squashfs file system. 5. Make sure you have added the bcm5354/tools directory into the PATH
$ export PATH=$PATH:$(SRCDIR)/bcm5354/tools
And you will need to follow these steps
1. Trim vmlinux by removing unneccessary sections in the object code
$ mipsel-linux-strip vmlinux
2. Convert to Binary format from the ELF format
$ mipsel-linux-objcopy -O binary -g vmlinux vmlinux.bin
3. Compress using lzma
$ ../../tools/lzma e vmlinux.bin vmlinux.lzma
4. Create the trx image
$ trx -o linux.trx vmlinux.lzma target.squashfs
5. Append the ".chk" header.
$ touch emptyfile; packet -k linux.trx -f emptyfile -b compatible.txt -ok kernel_image \
-oall kernel_rootfs_image -or rootfs_image -i emptyfile; rm -f emtyfile
And this will generate a new file "kernel_rootfs_image.chk" which can be uploaded to WGR614L using its Web UI or if you got the serial console you can also use the tftpd upgrade from the CFE firmware.
The format of a chk header is given below.
Type/Variable Size (bytes)
Unsigned long magic
unsigned char reserved;
unsigned long kernel_chksum;
unsigned long rootfs_chksum;
unsigned long kernel_len;
unsigned long rootfs_len;
unsigned long image_chksum;
unsigned long header_chksum;
BOARD ID < 64 digits
variable length (max 64 bytes)
Solution for TRX errors Solution for TRX Errors on NETGEAR Builds
Modded Firmware Installation Guide DD-WRT Firmware Installation Guide
If You Brick It! Tftp back into it. Once you get in, flash the original OEM for the device you have firmware as this is for recovery only! Do not flash any other firmware! After you bring it back from the dead you can start playing with firmware again but not now!
So, You Killed It Twice! Now is the time for JTAG It is highly recommended that with this particular router that you do not attempt to solder in a pin header for the JTAG. The heat from the iron will destroy the surrounding traces. Best bet is to solder the JTAG from the underside of the circuit board where the least damage can occur and to put the leads directly in the board itself after tining the wires and applying flux.