Flash chip patch for Archer C7 v2 in LEDE 17.01


#1

Hi all

I hope this is not an annoying question, but I want to be absolutely certain to have it answered before I flash LEDE.

Is the patch that supports the newer flash chips in the Archer C7 v2 included in the release? Background: I had to compile my own OpenWRT image, because it was not included in the 15.05.1 release. And I want to avoid the issues I had when flashing a version without the patch. :wink:

Kind regards
Kacha


[Solved] Archer C7 v2 - firmware version 3.15.1 - cannot install! - Help
[Solved] Archer c7 V2 NEW FLASH CHIP support
#2

V2 should be supported:

http://downloads.lede-project.org/releases/17.01.0/targets/ar71xx/generic/

Binaries are there.


#3

Sorry, maybe I wasn't clear. I meant a specific patch for V2. I know that the binary is there. But it is important that that patch is included, otherwise you can not flash it on the newer devices. TP-Link changed the flash chip around December 2015 and the patch was not included in OpenWRT 15.05.1. It was added after that release. I would assume that it is included in the LEDE 17.01 release, but I want to be sure.


#4

I know what you mean - and I'm pretty sure it is :slight_smile:

The v2 is a popular choice with LEDE/OpenWrt users. There would have been lots of complaints of the newer revisions would've been unsupported.


#5

Likely, yes. But I would like to have something more then assuming. Nothing against you. The last time was... annoying enough. But I guess I will try it then. Worst case, I have to open it and use a serial cable, TFTP didn't work.


#6

If you had to patch previous OpenWrt versions, you should still have said patch, which means you should be able to confirm that it is indeed present in LEDE's 17.01 branch.


#7

@Kacha I believe this is the patch you are wondering about. You could have researched that yourself if you are really anxious about bricking your device ;).

As you can see from that patch, it was a backport from 3.19, and the 17.01 kernel is 4.4.


#8

Honestly, I have no idea anymore which patch it was. I know it was a commit for the 15.05.1 trunk after the 15.05.1 stable release. But it looks like it it s what Borromini mentioned. That's good to know.

I hoped somebody knows it and could just say yes, because I didn't know which patch it was anymore. But thanks for the effort!


#9

I'm an owner of an Archer C7 v2 with serial number starts with 2169 and it works perfectly fine on LEDE-17.01-rc2.

As for TFTP, maybe you need to flash an up-to-date stock firmware to update U-Boot, which contains the TFTP recovery procedure. LEDE doesn't include the U-Boot partition. Beware that newer stock firmwares might me region locked; you would then have to use the LEDE image that contains the appropriate region.


#10

Mine starts with 215B. I'm not sure if there is a specific number for the different flash chip.

Hm, that might be the case. I immediately flashed OpenWRT and kind of bricked it. I didn't use up-to-date firmware because of the region lock and at that moment there was not really a way around it or only a risky one.

Would you recommend flashing the stock firmware and then re-flashing LEDE? Can I flash the stock version from LEDE? I never did go back to stock on any device after I flashed OpenWRT.


#11

You should be able to flash LEDE from OpenWrt just fine. Just do not keep your settings (back them up first and use them as a reference to reconfigure after upgrading).


#12

The wiki talks about flash chip change from serial number 215C, in the orange caution panel at the right.

Going back to stock firmware from an open source one for Archer C7 v2 is a little bit tricky; you need a stripped firmware, then if region locked afterwards you need to use a specific lede firmware. It's worth the try but you should be comfortable with those steps, including the possibility to brick it. To be honest I didn't do it myself yet.

Following @Borromini 's suggestion is the easiest path.


#13

It does sound like it's not worth it to go back to stock. Maybe I will do that at a later point in time when I have a serial cable from work. I don't have one myself.

But now I'm curious because my serial number indicates that I have an older version. Could be that I send the first one back, because I didn't want to open it and still had warranty. Playing the dumb customer can pay off. :wink: Maybe I go an old one then.

Does it make a difference if I flash a region version or non-region version if there is no region lock? I'm not sure anymore, but I think there was no lock, because I don't remember including anything like that in the image.

@Borromini Thanks for reminding me for the procedure with the settings, I might have forgotten that!

Edit: I found that site: http://www.friedzombie.com/tplink-stripped-firmware/ for stripped firmware. Seems like I can just flash that from OpenWRT and I should be on the stock firmware and on the newest version. And from there I should be able to go to LEDE. The only question is if that means the bootloader was updated...


#14

For sure the uboot section will not be updated because it has been stripped, so you're right! After going back to stock you will need to flash again with a full stock image this time, if flashing from/to the same version is permitted.

If you are going to flash LEDE from OpenWrt then you can use the generic image, no need to use a region specific image. Lock-check is performed from within the TP-Link's GUI, not from OpenWrt.


#15

I'm not sure if I can flash from/to the same version. I was also wondering if those images are US or EU locked.... Do you know if I can flash from a US locked to a EU locked?

It all sounds like I should first get a serial cable ready and then do the whole flashing.

Or I will just skip the stock part...: https://forum.openwrt.org/viewtopic.php?id=62821


#16

No you can't (not from stock firmware to another stock firmware). The lock is a software lock implemented into the stock firmware which forbid flashing to a firmware with different or no region. Once on LEDE (flashed with the firmware with the same specified region), you can do whatever you want.


#17

According to the readme of the stripped firmware it is a European version. The US version has a different number. OK, I will try it as soon as I have serial cable at hand.


#18

This post is just if someone stumbles upon this thread.

If someone has the problem that he can not upgrade his firmware on the TP-Link Archer C7 v2 from the stock firmware version 160616 with bootloader 3.15.1 and has the error that the needs to chose a file, then renaming the LEDE file to ArcherC7v2_en_eu_3_15_1_up_boot(160616).bin works perfectly fine.


#19

And

@Kacha I assume you flashed your router to stock firmware. Is TFTP working now? U-Boot partition got upgraded?


#20

@DjiPi As far as I can see, yes. As it certainly checked for the name and version. And yes, I did flash the stock firmware. First a stripped one from http://www.friedzombie.com/tplink-stripped-firmware/ and then the latest one from the TP-Link website.