I had a couple of hours with some iffy stuffs. First of all I am not sure soft factory reset works properly.
I apply 'firstboot && reboot now' and it got into a semi bricked state. After some tries to get the serial console up and running I managed to reflash it and all up again.
As for the serial console and my USB to PL-2303 adapter (10 years old) it seems the router is hanging due to some creep over grounds between the router and PL-2303 chip. Router simply refuses to boot for like 8 out of 10 times if the ground is connected. Once I pulled the ground router boots but obviously I get garble in terminal becuase signal gets messed up without ground for the serial connection. I solved it by take another spare USB cable and skin it and connect the ground from another USB port to ground on serial on router. That bypassed whatever the PL-2303 chip ground creep messed up.
..maybe its my old USB adapter that is funky but I thought I throw it out there if someone has the same kind of issues with router refuses to boot while serial (ground) is connected.
First of all, many thanks to @ccchen and @chunkeey for bringing OpenWRT to this router. It worked very well for me. Could you update the TOH page with the description of the preparation (soldering 4 pins to the board) and the commands given? This would simplify the process a bit for new users and help them choose a suitable router, e.g. if soldering is out of the question for someone.
Sorry for my first-timer question:
In order to flash this Asus router I have to open it (voiding warranty), solder a serial cable 'somewhere' and then follow the instructions as provided in pimpeks message?
Will the exact serial connections be documented at some point? Ideally with pictures.
(wow, now I really feel like a newbie )
Quite interesting GPL, it looks like Asus is working on devices based on chips:
MT7986A, MT7986B, MT7981 - all ARM64
We would also see some devices in near future to work DBDC with each band 4x4:4, 802.11be, 1024QAM, 160MHz channels: MT7902 and MT7990, called Besra.
There are many patches for mt76, mac80211 and hostapd to support them - I hope - officially by mac80211 subsystem.
Also.. For the time being I will stick to STOCK FW, is there any reason to NOT update it to the newest version?
Is it possible that in the future some exploit will be available for older FW that would not need opening the case and soldering the serial header?
I'm currently at 126.96.36.199.382_44917