Problems with TP-Link TL-WR841N v13 NOT recommended to install

Greetings, everyone! :wave:

I want to share my experience of using this firmware (openwrt-22.03.5-ramips-mt76x8-tplink_tl-wr841n-v13-squashfs-tftp-recovery.bin) on TL-WR841Nv13 router. CPU MediaTek MT7628N (it might be important).

All I touched after installation was only wifi settings (through the luci). And everything seemed to be fine... But about 2-4 hours passed and the first disconnect happened, after which the wifi was not available for about 4 hours(!). It is important to note that there was no automatic re-connect.

Then it happened that I lost wifi on my laptop. Also there was no automatic re-connection of the wifi connection. The network wasn't even in the list of available networks. I went to the desktop which was connected by cable and there was no connection there either(!). I went to reboot the router physically. Only the power light was on. After manual reboot everything was restored and there was internet connection. I looked in the logs, but either there was nothing suspicious or the logs disappeared after the reboot. I don't know.

Then I decided to intentionally cause this problem. I started to heavily load the network with numerous downloads. And after about 10-15 minutes wifi network disappeared and either did not reconnect for a long time (more than 30 seconds) or never reconnected until I rebooted wifi device manually through GUI luci.

With the stock firmware wifi was not lost (at least as often as with this firmware). Even if it was lost once, the connection was quickly restored (without manual reboot).

So there were three different scenarios of firmware failures:

  • when during normal use wifi disappears after a random time and does not restore connection automatic.
  • when not only wifi but also lan disappears and as a consequence it is impossible to enter GUI luci. You have to physically manually reboot the router.
  • with intentionally high network load after some time (10-15 minutes) there is a disconnect of all wifi devices. The wifi network is unavailable. But the wired connection remains and only after manual reboot of the wifi device in luci the connection is restored.

A search for a similar problem led me to numerous resources. They mention very similar symptoms. The wifi is not stable. Or even crashes.

I have a suspicion that it is related to the CPU MediaTek MT7628N driver. Here's a couple of issues on GitHub:

Here's a whole issue that combines similar problems:

This problem seems to be years old. There are some links on the official page in the device table.

I think we should collect such information about problems in one place, for example on the device page. Add an item called "possible problems" to the data section. This would firstly warn people who just want to have a fairly stable firmware without contributing to its improvement. And secondly it would help those who want to try the firmware and are ready to improve its negative aspects.

P.S. Unfortunately I had to remove some links in the post because new users are only allowed to use up to 8.

If I understand you correctly, your device hasn't been bricked by 23.05.0-rc2, its wireless 'just' doesn't work as reliably as you'd (understandably) like it to be. In that case -imho- your warning is a bit alarmist with all the icons/ emojis and the way the subject is phrased, as you can still -easily- revert to an older version or the OEM firmware. Don't get me wrong, the warning as such is certainly valuable (and might also have a place on the device page in the wiki, if it can be corroborated (so please, do try to debug it further) - it's just not a case of 'omg, it killed the device'-

apples and bananas, completely different, well, everything

1 Like

My device is not broken. The installation instructions are quite simple. The only thing is that there is an inaccuracy in the instructions to return the stock firmware. In the following command:

sysupgrade /tmp/tplink.bin

the -f flag is missing. Without it the process will not start. The correct command is:

sysupgrade -f /tmp/tplink.bin

About the emoji. It's just an emoji. I didn't mean it like my device is dead. I like emoji. I use them. :woman_shrugging:

Also please note that I am not judging this project or all maintainers. This is just my experience and a compilation of many comments about this problem. The purpose of this post is to say that there is such a problem with this particular device. I truly believe that I was just unlucky with a particular device.

Unfortunately I didn't look for possible problems right away. Such information in the dataentry section of this device could have helped me.

Version 11 is not the same as 13. According to this table, they have different CPU. QCA9533-AL3A vs MT7628NN for 11 and 13 respectively.