Installing OpenWRT on RT-AX53U (Complete Beginner)

Hello, I'm super new to this stuff. To the point where every term seems super confusing. I'm looking at the guide and have no idea what any of this stuff means but I'd really like to flash my router with OpenWRT. I'd like to follow the MTD-Write method. If there's a possible way I could get into call with somebody and have someone guide me through this, that would be really helpful. I'm sorry if this isn't how this forum should be used, I did look at the community guidelines. Again, I'm sorry if this inconveniences anyone that comes across this post.

Welcome to the community!

  • What issues are you having following this method?
  • What step are you stuck on - or having an issue with?
  • What term or terms are super confusing?

You haven't mentioned any issues about the installation yet.

Are you asking for a telephone/telepresence call?

If so, it's not usually how the forum is normally used. Maybe someone would be willing to do so.

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I'm able to get as far as enabling SSH in the administration page. But connecting to SSH? I have no idea where to begin with that. Do I need to download something specific to have access to that? Flashing the Kernel partition seems straight forward as it seems like you're just inputting a command, but getting there seems very confusing to me.

What OS is your computer running?

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Windows 10

Windows comes with a SSH Client:

Alternatively, you can run/install a program like PuTTY:

After successfully connecting (i.e. Step 2), you would then proceed to Step 3.

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Okay, I'm in the Root using PuTTY. I've downloaded the factory image from step 3. Do I just input the command from Step 4 into the Root on PuTTY?

  1. Flash the image to Kernel partition.

mtd-write -i openwrt-22.03.3-ramips-mt7621-asus_rt-ax53u-squashfs-factory.bin -d Kernel

Yes (:spiral_notepad: this is usually the Step where you understand the implication and make the decision yourself).

Also FYI, the current stable version (as of this post) is 22.03.5 - you can use the sysupgrade file after you're done:

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Okay, it finished but after rebooting. It will not output internet at all, no signal whatsoever. So now I just plugged in my old router for the time being to have internet and reply

The router does having flickering lights though when turned on. But after a few minutes of it being on, it does not output any network to connect to

I have seen messages, it was bricked during OpenWRT installation process. Please, make search by its model here.


Hello, currently restoring the firmware and unbricking it. But as I’m restoring it, it’s becoming day time and I don’t want to disrupt the internet connection for my family while installing OpenWRT for the second time. Is there a way I can keep the old router that I’ve set up for the time being up and running while I work on the new one? Because I do need to access the firmware online on the new router to install OpenWRT which requires the WAN cable being plugged in right?

Yes you can cascade a new router off of your old one to set it up. Plug the WAN port of the new router into one of the LAN ports of the old one which is connected to the Internet, and leave your PC connected to a LAN port of the new router. This creates a separate network which is double-NAT, but it can reach the Internet to try out the new router.

Okay, I'm back at

mtd-write -i openwrt-22.03.3-ramips-mt7621-asus_rt-ax53u-squashfs-factory.bin -d Kernel

How do I know that this command is finished and completed?

Thank you, I'll do this now so when family wakes up and I'm still doing this, they have connection

mtd-write is an Asus specific command so I'm not sure what it should do when completed. It should come back to a command prompt or reboot. If it doesn't seem to do anything, wait at least 10 minutes then cut the power and reboot.


Okay, thank you so much!

Also if your old router uses 192.168.1.X for the LAN you'll need to change the LAN IP on OpenWrt to something outside that range (e.g. for the double routing to work properly.

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Okay, something weird is happening. I've rebooted the router and the internet seems to be working on my PC but there's no actual network to connect to any longer.

Oh wait, wireless is disabled

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