Hello. I have been hearing about OpenWRT for a long time and always wanted to try it, but I didn't have a single device that supported it. In this week I was improving my internet connection (mainly removing the download limit size that I had previously) and my old router may be not sufficient anymore (or just be an annoyance to deal with).
So right now I have these devices:
- Mi-Fi Router TP-Link M7350 (EU v5) - Yeah, I know it isn't top shelf, but it was actually and improvement from my old huawei Mi-Fi and it was actually on good price so I just rolled with it. The biggest problem I have with it right now is that it doesn't have any internet blocking tool - there is a "deny" list, but I want only to block the internet connection not the whole device. There was also issue with WPA2 password. It's just Wi-Fi 4 and it would be good to have better statistics because I will soon have 2 LTE sim cards with different internet plans and it would be good to distinct them in statistics automatically. I know it's not supported by OpenWRT, but maybe it can just act as a modem for another router.
- Plain smartphone with Wi-Fi 4 - not anything special so whatever goes. I use it exclusively to watch youtube and maybe I'll start using it to watch netflix when my 2nd card arrives.
- Main PC - it doesn't have any Wi-Fi card and I connect to internet by connecting my M7350 by USB. It used to work decently I mean, I didn't download anything heavy because of my limit, but recently it started to not charge my battery and it just died so I started looking into wi-fi cards for that so I can just keep my Mi-Fi router on the wall charger all the time. I learned about Intel AX200 Wi-Fi 6 and it seems perfect, but my PC doesn't have any M2 slots so I would need to buy some PCI-e card (maybe TP-Link Archer TX3000E or some cheaper card like fenvi FV102). I plan to upgrade my PC in next year so maybe it will have already m2 slot, but having a PCI-e card won't hurt anyway right?
And that's all devices that connect to internet here, occasionally I have some guests so it would be good to have a decent Wi-Fi. And before you ask "Why not use cable internet" - It's just not possible for the moment where I live. So here are my questions.
- What device to buy to install OpenWRT. I'd like to finally test it after hearing so many good things about it. It needs to have 4G/LTE connectivity or if it's possible USB modem passthrough (I've seen some ASUS routers that had USB port that you could connect your modem into, IDK what's that called). Otherwise I have no requirements other than maybe being at least Wi-Fi 4 and having 1 LAN port so I can connect my PC to the internet before I get PCI-e card or upgrade my PC.
- I also want to have PiHole installed so I can have a good adblocker on every device. Is it even possible on 4G/LTE connectivity to add it to network? And is it better to use Raspberry Pi Zero or Raspberry Pi 4B?
- Is it extremely hard to flash your own device? My Mi-Fi router isn't supported by OpenWRT, but last I checked it has a sufficient hardware and you can flash updates yourself by downloading zip update so maybe you can replace the files.
- Does OpenWRT have good statistics page? My 1st card would have still a limit, and other would have no limits but only on certain hours. Would I need to manually keep track of that or can it detect which card is plugged in?
That's all. Hopefully my questions are not too stupid and we can find a way to improve my weird network setup.