Finding my way around

I'm used to having certain programs around on Unix-like systems, but it seems that OpenWrt is a bare bones system so I can't run things like lsblk or cfdisk and don't know where to find them. Can anyone point me at a list of essential pkgs for OpenWrt?

I have already installed MC as I'm lost without it, but what else should I install?

Really depends on what you want to do.

Personally, from a utilities perspective the three I "can't do without" are

  • tcpdump-mini (installed on an as-needed basis)
  • diffutils
  • less

add rsync if you've got the space, and/or scp and sftp

Some others for actual functionality are due to some of my networking needs, such as ip-full, wpad-mesh, gre, and the like.

1 Like


I don't know you exact Router but e.g. for my router I have the packages: cfdisk & lslbk
allready handy to install via opkg.

Here the "Walkthrough"

  1. make sure your openWRT Router can access the Internet

  2. ssh into your OpenWRT Router.

  3. type:

to update the package-list

opkg update

to view what you can install

opkg list

to search for a specific package

opkg list | grep cfdisk

if you want to install a package:

opkg install cfdisk

for more infos about opkg

opkg --help

  1. But beware. not every OpenWRT supported device has a lot of flash memory. Unless you want to go for an extroot solution have a look a the flash usage of your device. Just type

df -h

to view something like this:

Filesystem                Size      Used **Available** Use% Mounted on
/dev/root                 8.0M      8.0M         0 100% /rom
/dev/root                 8.0M      8.0M         0 100% /rom
tmpfs                   124.3M    572.0K    123.7M   0% /tmp
/dev/ubi0_1               8.6M      4.3M      3.8M  53% /overlay
overlayfs:/overlay        8.6M      4.3M      **3.8M**  53% /
tmpfs                   512.0K         0    512.0K   0% /dev

As long as your overlayfs has enough free space you are done.