Asus RT-AC87U fully supported?

#1

Hi there,
in toh for the asus rt-ac87u nothing is noted as unsupported, i expected cause of the broadcom chipset wifi will not work but it isnt listed as unsupported? Is this due to the other build in chipsets for wifi or just missing info?

i search currently for a wifi router with good nas performance and good wifi range (for 2,4 + 5 Ghz) and thought this might be the one i search but i am unsure if the toh is rly correct. Can someon confirm wifi works with this router?
If it is not supported, does anyone has another recommendation of a router with good wifi range (Performance isnt that important, range is...currently running asus rt-n18, had the linksys ea8500 and was very disappointed by the range, maybe wrt1900acs is a better one?)

Kind regards

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#2

The broadcom chipset requires proprietary drivers for wifi, so there is no opensource version available. That means it isn't supported in the LEDE project. What is your budget for your new router?

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#3

Thanks for the reply so RT-AC87U wifi is unsupported as i expected

Budget is up to 200€ (Germany)
Currently running the RT-N18u, wifi range is ok, nas perfomance lacks a bit my needs and no 5ghz/ac
Had already the linksys ea8500 but was very disappointed by the range so i sended it back, may the wrt1900acs any better?

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#4

That device suffered from poor wifi performance as far as I could understand. Not sure if that has been ironed out yet, you could check the topics about that device in these forums. I think the Netgear R7800 fits your needs perfectly. Alternatively, the Dir-860l b1 might be a nice budget alternative.

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#5

@tmomas might be a good idea to add "wifi" to the "unsupported" column of most broadcom-based devices, as the open drivers suck (for some n devices) or don't even exist (n and ac).
The Owrt Wiki is pretty blunt about this, for example https://wiki.openwrt.org/toh/asus/rt-ac87u

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#6

https://lede-project.org/toh/views/toh_available_864 already mentions limited supportability of Broadcom wireless, but separate mentioning in the "unsupported" field is certainly a good idea.

Which would that be? Or which ones do not fit the rule "Broadcom wifi = unsupported"?

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#7

Declaring all Broadcom wireless as unsupported would probably the easiest way, but it's not quite correct. the b43/ b43legacy modules cover most old 802.11b/g chipsets (e.g. Linksys WRT-54GL/ Asus WL-500gP era) quite well, but even among those there were newer core revisions and newer chipsets like LPPHY which are, while still functional, much less mature than the G_PHY and prior. Once you go to 802.11n chipsets, the situation gets much worse, b43 is still able to run on those, but without HT (so degrading them to 54 MBit/s operations), the proprietary drivers can still cover those (e.g. Linksys WRT610N era, but those drivers haven't been updated in a long time, so newer softmac devices aren't covered by them). 5 GHz operations aren't supported by b43/ b43legacy at all.

Then there is also the current crop of Broadcom fullmac devices (e.g. Netgear R8000), which neither need b43/ b43legacy, nor the proprietary broadcom drivers, but are covered by brcmfmac instead, which is supposed to work quite well.

While I haven't checked the raw data for the device support pages, but I doubt it has the necessary data to distinguish between these individual chipsets and their problems.

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#8

imho it's safe enough to say that "broadcom wifi ac = unsupported" and "wifi n = wifi g at most", and then if there are complaints for some specific device we fix it. It's much better than the reverse (what we have now).
Only ones working decently should be the ones with wifi ac and BCM43602 wifi chipsets, (as netgear R8000) but I have no experience with that.

The Owrt wiki states these wifi chipets as unsupported https://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/hardware/soc/soc.broadcom.bcm53xx
--802.11ac wireless devices (BCM4352/BCM4360 not usable at all), except for FullMAC BCM43602 (supported by brcmfmac)
--802.11n features on older wireless devices (BCM4331, BCM43217, BCM43227, etc.)

and afaik this hasn't changed significantly.

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#9

@slh @bobafetthotmail I opened a new topic: Table of Hardware: "Unsupported" column

Comments are welcome!

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#10

Any change in status? Has 2.4 GHz support been improved on this router?

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#11

Not at all.

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