Very slow USB Tethering / WIFI repeating

Since I canceled my ISPs contract a month ago (to avoid having another 12 month contract) I will have to return my ISPs router by the end of august. As an in-between solution until the house is finally done I was thinking of sharing my phones 5g connection via USB Tethering on an old DIR-645 router I still had laying around.

So I flashed it with the latest OpenWRT Firmware and followed the Wiki guide to enable USB Tethering. It worked so far but is only returning around 30 mbit up and down on the desired spot. If I do USB Tethering directly to my Macbook on the same spot it returns about 300-400 mbit down and 30 mbit up. I also tried Wifi repeating via the hotspot, but these returned even worse results. I tried increasing the range between my phone and the router to avoid signal interference with a longer USB cable but had no luck either.

Is the 10+ year old single core SOC on the DIR-645 the limiting factor? I always thought USB Tethering requires next to no resources? USB 2.0 transfer rates should allow for 300mbit transfers .. or at least half of that if you consider bidirectional data transfer. I don't mind wireless speeds from the router as all important devices are connected via ethernet anyways.

Possible solutions would be

  • buying a more modern router with USB 3.0 and more cores
  • or buying a USB-C Hub with and RJ45 port for my pixel 7a to do ethernet tethering

Do you have any suggestions for me?

Thanks in advance :slight_smile:

Is tethering allowed by your carrier?

I mean if I connect my phone directly to a Computer it does well beyond 300 mbit. So I guess yes?

I'm talking about permitted use. Ask your carrier and/or check your plan.

There are no such limitations in the data plan description, terms or in the contract.

Then this is probably the result of the poor performance of the router.

RT3662F is a particular old and rather slow SOC, especially its USB capabilities aren't going to be fast, so yes, I'd blame the router for this performance first.

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Yeah, this is a weak SoC for sure, 30Mbps seems consistent with other reports on this hardware. I'm using an old RPi2 as a router and it works really well. Great routers can also be had cheap now like the Netgear r7500v2, goes for ~$40 on eBay and even has two USB3 gen1 ports.