4 Easy Steps To Upgrade Linksys Wireless Router Firmware

by Ramesh Natarajan on June 8, 2009

Wireless RouterIf you own a Linksys Wireless router, it is strongly recommended that you upgrade the firmware to a latest version, which may resolve lot of bugs including random dropping of wireless connections. This article explains how to upgrade to the latest firmware on your Linksys wireless router.
 
Also, make sure you’ve secured your wireless as mentioned in 6 Steps to Secure Your Home Wireless Network

1. Get your Wireless Router Model Number and Version Number

On the back of your wireless router, you’ll see both model number and version number for your specific linksys wireless router. The example below shows the model and version of a WRT54G wireless router.

Identify Model Number For WRT54G2
Fig: Version Number of Linksys-Cisco WRT54GL Wireless-G Broadband Router (Compatible with Linux)

2. Download Latest Linksys Wireless Router Firmware

Go to linksys.com -> Support -> Enter your wireless router model number (for example, WRT54GS)  -> Click on ‘Get Downloads’ -> Select Version number for your wireless router -> Click on the download link under firmware section, which typically shows the following information.
 

  • Release Date: For example, 07/01/2008
  • Firmware Version Number: For example, Ver.1.52.6
  • Download Size and Link. for example,  1.66 MB
  • Release Notes for the new firmware

 
Direct Download link for :

3. Take a Backup of Linksys Wireless Configuration

Before the upgrade, take a backup of the current Linksys Wireless Configuration. From the web interface, go to Administration -> Config Management -> Backup -> Config.bin, Save this file to some location on your local machine.

4. Upgrade the Linksys Wireless Firmware

From the web interface, go to Administration -> Firmware Upgrade -> Choose the latest file that you downloaded above -> Click on Upgrade.
 
Once the upgrade started, do not click on any other link on the web interface. Just wait until the upgrade is completed.
 
Once you’ve completed the upgrade, verify your new firmware version to make sure the upgrade was successfully completed. In my case, following is the firmware version.

  • Before the upgrade old Firmware Version: v1.50.5
  • AFter upgrade Firmware Version: v1.52.5

WRT160N Linksys Firmware Upgrade
Fig: Firmware Upgrade for Linksys WRT54G Wireless-G Router


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{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

1 ku June 8, 2009 at 10:50 am

actually, i would rather give an advice to “upgrade” to dd-wrt ;) all my problems were solved after i did so over a year ago. and i also got new awesome features, one of which makes me able to have internet right now – the wireless bridge ;) and this works waay faster and more stable than a normal wifi adapter (900-1000kbps direct wifi connection on my laptop vs. 4+mbps on my pc over the wireless bridge).

2 d June 11, 2009 at 8:20 am

I’d agree with Ku here. I brought both of our routers up to dd-wrt and never looked back.

3 Ramesh Natarajan June 11, 2009 at 9:54 am

@Ku, @d,

Yes. I agree with you. Thanks for your feedback. I’ll probably write another article later about DD-WRT.
 
For those who don’t know about DD-WRT, it is a open source linux based firmware for the wireless router.

4 uBigDummy June 11, 2009 at 10:24 am

i bricked a 300n…can u help or know of any software that can be used for de-bricking…had power failure at the last moment.

5 MOhit June 15, 2009 at 12:42 am

Hi Ramesh, I am amzaed you are not using TOMATO firmware :)
or may DDWRT or OpenWRT, Why so ?

6 Ramesh Natarajan June 21, 2009 at 12:48 am

@uBigDummy,

I believe you are talking about Linksys WRT300N Router. You have to call Linksys customer support for that. If you find an answer, share it with me.
 
@Mohit,

I’m running DDWRT on one of my router. I’ve never used TOMATO firmware. Just for it’s name, I should play around with it. :)

 
For those, who are not aware of it, Tomato firmware is a small, lean and simple replacement firmware for Linksys’ WRT54G/GL/GS, Buffalo WHR-G54S/WHR-HP-G54 and other Broadcom-based routers .

7 Pushpraj June 22, 2009 at 12:48 am

Thanks for article,
DD-WRT with linksys working best for me. and i m waiting for your article on DD-WRT.

8 Ashish September 17, 2009 at 4:10 pm

I have a WAP54G V2 Access point. I have downloaded the latest firmware from the linksys site. i type in the router’s IP address in the address bar ( computer is connect to the router with the ethernet wire), but then explorer starts to searching the net and does not open the web based utility. Am i missing something very basic ?

9 Lisa May 8, 2010 at 12:37 pm

I attempted to upgrade the firmware for my WRT54GP2 by following the instructions. However, browsed to the download location of the bin file, then began the upgrade, the router username/password verification box kept continually popping up. The upgrade progress bar continued to move and got to a point where it says to please wait for upgrade (or something to that effect), then a big red 404 unauthorized user page pops up, which says I have entered the wrong username/password or IE does not know how to obtain information from this request.

I tried this two different times and was never able to update my firmware. Could I perhaps try this using another browser?

Thanks

10 William F Hickey January 27, 2011 at 11:31 pm

Purchased Cisco E-3000 Dual-Band, Wireless Router…$200.00! Purchased because I have several Wireless Devices & wished to avoid Frequency Issues, Interferences.

Set-up was a breeze… ran super-fast!!! Then, about a half-hour later…Big Trouble!!!
The unit began to smell, a burnt smell! Why, Ive no idea. Power is 110v…No power problems &, I’m protected with a APC unit! Have several adaptors plugged-in to the unit without any problems.

Returned the E-3000 to Cisco…received a replacement…Wham! Same thing happened again???

Returned the 2nd unit…requested a Different Router…one that has been in the field & well tested! Cisco said…Sorry! So, awaiting another E-3000!!!

I’ll not install the New E-3000 untill I am confident that it won’t burn-up once again!

Please advise if anyone out there has had similar issues with the E-3000!

Thanks,
William

11 T Banner February 12, 2011 at 12:37 pm

Really helpful site! It was easy to follow and helped me upgrade my Linksys so it would be compatible with my new Tivo. Thank you so much for creating this article.

12 Jacky February 15, 2011 at 6:04 am

Thanks! I did not upgrade my firmware for nearly 3 years and you helped changed that!

13 Max Riposati February 15, 2011 at 11:43 pm

I have a WRT54G V8. I have downloaded the latest firmware from the linksys site ver 8.2.08. i type in the router’s IP address in the address bar ( computer is connect to the router with the ethernet wire), but then explorer starts to searching the net and does not open the web based utility. What can I do to restore my Router to a previous state using linux OS or Windows.

14 joe zink April 11, 2011 at 12:05 am

Very good instructions. This is another reason why the Internet help SO much!!
Joe

15 Suzy Sunshine April 14, 2011 at 1:01 pm

I clicked on the link for my router and it took me to the general website. I did a search for my router downloads & a link came up. I clicked it and it wanted me to browse MY computer. That didn’t make any sense to me whatsoever. Most times when I go to download an upgrade it comes from the WEBSITE and NOT my computer.

Anyone have a direct link where I can download the firmware upgrade from the website?

16 Clarke August 12, 2011 at 5:04 pm

I just upgraded the firmware for my linksys wrt54g. I went to the linksys website and all necessary information and the download file are provided. A detailed set of instructions are available, and I advise that they be followed carefully. I printed out a copy to make the process easier.

I created a folder in “My Documents” and named it Linksys. I saved the downloads in the folder to simplify upgrade process. The process worked without difficulty. Linksys has provided a very user friendly and detailed set of instructions.

17 Howard August 16, 2011 at 9:40 am

Linksys recommends resetting the router and then restoring the config from the backup but I did not and I wonder if that step is truly necessary, as everything seems to be working fine after the firmware upgrade and the latest version of the firmware is displayed.

I have a Linksys Model WRT54GS V5
and upgraded firmware from 1.20.5 to 1.52.8

Is my router out of date?
Are the newer ones much better or faster?

Thanks for a great set of instructions!

18 Adonis March 19, 2012 at 8:41 am

Guys, i have WRT54G v 5. The linksys firmware sucks. As far I know, Tomato doesnt support beyond v4. Can u suggest some way out??

19 Claudio March 25, 2012 at 12:30 pm

I have a CISCP linksys, WRT54G2v 1.5. When I access web admin, it only throws garbage (html corrupted) to screen. How can y upgrade firmware if I cannot access the web admin?

Claudio

20 Ricardo July 23, 2012 at 11:32 pm

People are talking about upgrading to DD-WRT as if it was so easy. There’s totally nothing easy about it! And people don’t even mention that you can risk bricking your router while doing it. Unless you’re having major problems with Linksys firmware, just stick to it. DD-WRT is an advanced upgrade option.

21 amy September 21, 2012 at 7:51 am

Great article! I let my firmware upgrades go by the wayside but finally made the updates today. I can already see a difference in my internet. Your steps made it super easy to take care of. Thanks!

22 kenwoodquality March 3, 2013 at 11:13 pm

I tryed to instal tomato and got impatient and screwed it up. Is there a way to recover my router? Please say yes!

23 Chris Bartholomew April 8, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Just did the upgrade for my WRT54G v8 router. I thought it all went well, but…
After the install I reset the router (which is what the linksys instructions told me to do). Now I believe the name of my network has changed to “Linksys”. I say “believe” because I can’t find my old wireless network name any more and I’ve never had access to a “Linksys” network. Also when I try to log into to the Linksys website it doesn’t recognize my wireless name and password anymore!!! Does this mean I have to call Linksys to get a log in password again?

24 Travis April 20, 2013 at 1:13 pm

The default username password is admin/admin.

Use that after a reset.

25 Gaurav April 25, 2013 at 5:56 am

Hi, I am using the Linksys-Cisco WRT54GL wifi router. the router was initialy configured by tadaa wireless and the router ip is 10.10.10.1 and connection name is tadaa.lan.
The user id and password for the admin page is lost. To recover the password I tried reset. tried all options still the router ip is 10.10.10.1 and connection name is tadaa.lan.
I tried the default password “admin”. Can you please help me in recovering the password or resetting the router?

26 Charles December 20, 2013 at 12:55 pm

Hello,

I have a wrt54g v5. I never updated the firmware, but I did download and store the firmware upgrade from 2007 onto my computer. I finally wanted to upgrade the firmware with the latest version, however linksys no longer provides it on their website for version 5′s and higher. Does anyone know of a copy of this saved at another site that I can download?
Thanks.

27 Ami Sapphire December 26, 2013 at 10:35 am

@Charles
WRT54G v5 (known latest) firmware: here

There are other locations. I even saved a copy just in case.

Yep, the ones at Linksys have started purging the firmware for older routers from their site in 2011. They continue to do this for more recent routers that go EOL. Basically, (about) anything that is before the E series for routers (as of this posting). Some of the following routers:

BEFSR11, BEFSR41, BEFSRU311, other BEF series (all versions) [no surprise; very old and vulnerable router anyway. I own v1 and v2 hardware versions of this router and have found almost all firmware for it...] (2012)
WRT54G (v5 – v8.2) (2012) Yes, there’s an exception! v1 to v4 are still on their site! [I own a v8 hardware version of this router and managed to obtain all the firmware for v8 before the purge]
WRT54G2 (all versions) (2012)
WRT54GX, WRT54GX2, WRT54GX4 (all versions) (2012)
WRT100N (2011)
WRT120N (all versions) (2011?)
WRT150N (all versions) (2011) [I have all the firmware for that router except 1.00.5 of course, and GPL code for 1.00.5]
WRT160N (all versions) (2012) [I have the released and beta firmware for v1 of that router; works with WRT150N as well]
WRT300N (all versions) (2012)
WRT320N (all versions) (2012)
WRT350N (all versions) (2012)
WRT400N (all versions) (2012)
WRT600N (all versions) (2012)
WRT610N (all versions) (2012)
…some more older obscure routers as well…

Interesting thing is they’re still making firmware for WRT54GL. o.O You’re technically meant to install third-party firmware on that router. That, and it’s pretty old, anyway, from the WRT54G v5 era.

28 jaggyRobles March 12, 2014 at 12:46 am

guys,i need help.i have a problem with my wrt54g, if i go to router settings the i cannot load everything.is it firmware problem?tnx

29 Saintbane April 8, 2014 at 11:35 am

I’m using a WRT54G V.6 Router and I cannot find out where to get the most recent firmware for it. I’ve also been experiencing a problem over the last year or so. Sometimes, the internet completely drops at certain times in the day..well last year..around 3-6am..afterwards, it wouldn’t disconnect during the day. Then, recently, the last week or so, it just keeps disconnecting 5-10 times a day or so..usually every hour or two..the only way to restore internet connectivity is to unplug/replug in the router wire. Is the router going bad, or does it just need new firmware? I am using the net without the router for the last hour to test it..obviously it hasn’t been long enough to tell anything yet..but assuming I don’t lose connectivity, should I bother updating the firmware, or should I just replace the router with a new one? It’s getting extremely irritating.

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