Thinking of switching from DD-WRT to Openwrt


I currently have a Net gear R7800 router running DD-WRT Kong build. I was, however, thinking of switching over to OpenWRT as it sounds like this may be a bit more stable than DD-WRT and the fact that my R7800 is officially supported. I have 2 questions tho.....1) What are some of the benefits of OpenWRT over DD-WRT, 2) Can I flash to OpenWRT directly from DD-WRT, provided I do a reset before and after the flash, and 3) Does OpenWRT have an OpenVPN server feature built-in or do I have to install it as a separate package?

Thanks for any feedback you can provide.

OpenWrt factory images expect the stock OEM firmware as a starting point, dd-wrt has been known to do incompatible changes (different bootloader, partitioning, etc.) for some devices (no idea if yours is among those) which would make a direct cross-flash somewhere between risky and doomed to brick your device for good. The recommended action would be to revert to the stock Netgear firmware first - and to install OpenWrt from there.

Keep in mind that you can't install OpenWrt from the OEM webinterface, but must use tftp.

I could understand if flashing from dd-wrt web gui caused problems but would flashing from bootloader tftp ?? It seems ddwrt wouldn't be involved and the bootloader would write the openwrt flash image the same way as if ddwrt weren't involved, but please enlighten me if I'm wrong.

The problem here is that the situation of the bootloader is unknown, dd-wrt has replaced them for some routers (probably for size reasons and for hooking up nvram), if it's left untouched, directly flashing from the bootloader's tftp recovery would be fine - but that is a big "if". This could only be answered by someone familiar with dd-wrt, while reverting to the OEM firmware first (hopefully) restores the known vanilla state.


OpenWrt has a lot more packages. There is Adblock, banIP, SQM, Bcp38, VPN, DNS-over-https and mutch more. The people on the forums are more polite and the fermwair is better to build if you ever want to go down that root.

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  1. It's more "open source"/mainline (as in Linux stock Linux kernel) friendly (like) and follows other Linux distributions more closely when it comes to software. Drawback is that DD-WRT might work better on some devices as they allow OEM binary blobs which may work better than the open source counterparts.

  2. You should probably go back to vendor firmware before flashing to OpenWRT

  3. No, it's a separate package and if you care about security and performance I would highly recommend you to compile your own firmware and include OpenSSL 1.1 (pending PR on Github) with OpenVPN. OpenVPN still slow due to userland implenmentation and being single threaded but still. You can also using some simple tricks also squeeze out a bit more performance rather than using snapshots/stock firmware. In general using HEAD/trunk ("bleeding edge") is recommended for this device.

The R7800 does suffer from ethernet performance issues and recently switched to a "3rd party" fork of the ath10k driver which seems to cause instability/performance issues on WIFI. The latter can be mitigated by switching back to the upstream ath10k version.

I don't have the device myself most information is gathered via this forum.

So long and thanks for all the fish, @simon_lefisch

Well, i made the switch over a year ago.

Very happy.....

I think the main thing to note is configuration is harder ( generalising..... most basic features are not that bad ). And one would be wise to limit oneself when it comes to your production devices. If I did not require low level / extensible configuration...... I may have gone back...... But that is the only quarm ( EDIT: Qualm thanks! d ) I have.....

I'd also recommend sticking with stable / previous releases..... barring a necessity from a bleeding edge device compatibility requirement.

I suppose I should add that the above comments need to be taken in context with the main points made by the other members.

-Extensible like lego in a child psychologist waiting room
-Maintains traditional architecture

What do you express with "quarm"? Can't translate.

I would never switch back. Alone thinking at the development process and release policy at dd-wrt let my hairs stand up ;- )

Basic features not that bad, you are joking right? I find them really splendid :- ) not mentioning the extended possibilities

Also documentation, forum software with members and least but not last all the developers which doing the work, thank you very much, really appreciated. I wish you all a happy new year, live long and prosper!

Still want to donate to support the project....

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pretty sure it's a typo for "qualm": an uneasy feeling of doubt, worry, or fear, especially about one's own conduct; a misgiving (google define)

Thanks! go here: donate via paypal


I forced flash a buffalo router with DD-WRT going into the command tab

and ran the wget command to get the firmware and ran an MTD command to flash it with -f flag

Daniel, do you know why the link for donations isn't placed on the web site although SPI is mentioned there?

Nope, I just volunteer here :wink:

Thanks, the moment I wanted to add "know by chance" ;- )

You have done a good job digging this information :- )