Question on Cisco Aironet 1042/1142 APs

Hi there,

recently started using OpenWRT on several devices to provide wireless coverage for my home. Very impressed and satisfied so far. Always was worried about my wireless security and up-to-date device firmware in the past. :grinning:

Did some searches in the mailing-list archives and on the forums. Wondering if someone tried or thought about porting OpenWRT to the 1040/1140 series of Cisco Aironet access points.

They are pretty cheap to obtain since they are end of support, are pretty sturdy, have fairly good hardware specs (considering AP-only use) and a dedicated console port.
I saw that earlier OpenWRT versions had support for some powerpc processors, maybe this is an option to work on?

I have a few of those devices and would donate an AIR-LAP1042N-E-K9 and AIR-LAP1142N-E-K9 each to interested developers.

AFAIK both devices have the same memory (64MB) and flash (32MB), but differ on the CPU (3xx and 5xx mhz)

Here is some output generated from the cli:

# show version

cisco AIR-AP1042N-E-K9 (PowerPC405ex) processor (revision A0) with 98294K/32768K bytes of memory.
Processor board ID **************
PowerPC405ex CPU at 333Mhz, revision number 0x147E
Last reset from reload
1 Gigabit Ethernet interface
2 802.11 Radios

32K bytes of flash-simulated non-volatile configuration memory.
Base ethernet MAC Address: D8:67:D9:12:34:56
Part Number                          : 73-14034-05
PCB Serial Number                    : ***************
Top Assembly Part Number             : 800-34285-04
Top Assembly Serial Number           : **************
Top Revision Number                  : A0
Product/Model Number                 : AIR-LAP1042N-E-K9
#show memory
                Head    Total(b)     Used(b)     Free(b)   Lowest(b)  Largest(b)
Processor    2297004    64382972    48381244    16001728    15483276    15434940
      I/O    6000000    32505856    28031892     4473964     2949556     2949552
      I/O    7F00000     1048576       23040     1025536     1000556     1000488

#show flash:

Directory of flash:/

    2  -rwx         318   Nov 1 2018 19:17:04 +02:00  test.txt
    3  -rwx        2072   Nov 4 2019 19:32:23 +01:00  private-multiple-fs
    4  drwx           0   Mar 1 2002 01:12:53 +01:00  configs

32126976 bytes total (12992000 bytes free)

Let me know if there is interest in the hardware donations.

Best Regards

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I know this topic is old but I am just not seeing this.

I have 5 or 6 of these I'd love to experiment with.

How would I go about flashing OpenWRT to one or two of these?

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Adding more info here:

  • someone related the (PowerPC405ex) processor (revision A0) to magicbox which relates to ppc40x which was removed because was unmantained (commit)
  • in a conversation in IRC we found:
    • it's difficult to see the SoC, can we have a better image of it or the text content of it? (pink square) [0]
    • that wifi chipset is Marvell 88w8363c [1] as shown in internal photos more info from FCC
      • "So it has some chance of working if it's not too hard to make Linux run on the SoC. Which probably is if similar SoCs are not supported."
      • "that connector looks like minipcie (but ppc 405 appeared before PCIe … so hrm?), you can try running it in a suitable laptop (after building an extender probably) to see if it's useful at all."
        • In this case certainly the first step would be to see if those cards are usable with current Linux. And if yes, probably they can be repurposed for custom projects or with cheap SBCs.
    • "ppc40x is the CPU core. But you'd need IRQs, DMA, Timers, UARTs, PCIe etc. I have no idea if it's common for PPC ecosystem for those peripherals to differ."
    • "If upstream Linux+musl can run on something, then the corresponding target can be added to OpenWrt without much difficulty."
    • "PPC had a lot of standards for the platform, alas 4xx are embedded so I don't know if they followed the PReP"
    • "the chip with the FE32 sticker looks like parallel flash to me"
    • "the 18 pin header might be jtag although they are more typically 14 or 20 pins"
    • "since it's cisco, one of those rj45's is probably the serial console. according to the manual, the one closer to the power connector is the console"
    • "it has 32 MB of flash and 128 MB of DRAM" source
    • "if it's running linux, you can request their GPL sdk"



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Hate to necro a thread (does anyone say necro anymore?) but is there any new info available/anyone around that feels like assisting me in the process of generating a bootable openwrt image for the 2500 series aironets? I'll update this with pics or post a new topic. I'm not asking for someone to do the work for me, just don't want to re-invent the wheel if there is already a starting point I can use.