VxKiller and OpenWrt for TP-Link WR542g v4

Can anybody help me find or build a VxKiller image for this router? Trying the firmware file from this page didn't work: https://wiki.openwrt.org/toh/tp-link/tl-wr542g

It's a 2 MB flash device. It's obsolete and likely not supportable with any current firmware from OpenWRT or any other vendor (including TP-Link).


“VxKiller” is a heavily stripped OpenWrt Backfire 10.03 with MicroRedboot bootloader adapted for 2MiB flash and 16MiB RAM. There is

  • no working DHCP server
  • no wireless driver
  • no WebUI
  • no SSH daemon
  • no writable RootFS

on this image. Its only purpose is to fit into the specs that the TP-Link's web interfaces accepts.

Even the "VxKiller" firmware, now nearly a decade old, didn't appear to provide much functionality. Installing "Backfire", or any version of OpenWRT that is not currently patched against vulnerabilities in the kernel, application firmware, wireless protocols,... and actively maintained is highly discouraged for any device, especially those that are exposed to the Internet in any way. (versions 17 and 18 are "current" in August, 2018)

Affordable, current "replacements" can be had for on the order of US$20. See, for example, the long thread of options and opinions:

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I need to clean a dust on my archives ) @Hacker1245, if you really interested in this files and want to reflash 542 to openwrt - drop a message and i will try to find it.

I would be happy if you found the files.

@xssa Any updates?

I am interesting in those files too.
It would be great if you could find and up them again.

Sorry for my bad english.
I flashed a router tl-wr542g v4 with the vxkiller named wr54xv4_linux, but the RedBoot does not recognized my hardware. Reading the old topic of the forum i discovered that i should flashed the image named 'wr543_linux16RAM'. It seems that some people have made that mistake too, but there are some pages of the discussing missing. So i want to know if it is possible to flash the correct image from the RedBoot. It seems that you gave a suggestion in the old topic, but as i said the pages are missing.

What is wrong? You updated your router with wr54xv4_linux and it does not start? Can you be more specific?
Can you look for the 8pin flash chip inside the router and find it's brand?

Sorry for my bad english.
It brand is hynix.
The router starts, but when i type fis init the router crashs. See the image: screen .

Is there a way to fix this?
Thanks for your help.

Your flash chip is not detected by RedBoot so not supported. Moreover there is no hynix flash chips, it is probably SST. It is small 8 pin one. And there is nearly no chances that somebody will add support for it into ancient RedBoot sources. Try to find hardware with winbond branded flash and it will work.

Where did you find the images? Can you post links?

The WRT54g, in any flavor, is dead and gone. Even if you could get something running, it's going to be a severe security threat to you, anyone on your network, and everyone else on the Internet as hackers love anonymous boxes out there that are trivial take over to hide their tracks. They are not supportable nor securable. Use of such an ancient 802.11 device will slow down your entire wireless, and perhaps those around you as well.

Do yourself a favor and buy a cheap router, or a good one for that matter. There are plenty of recommendations and opinions on the thread already linked above.

I bought a US$17 GL.iNet AR-300M-Lite, basically just to confirm that there are quality routers out there at very reasonable prices. Yes, there are.

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Could you send me those files? The links from the OpenWRT page don't work unfortunately.

Since not everybody seems to be aware:

TL-WR542g has
only 2MB Flash -> insufficient for current OpenWrt
only 16MB RAM -> insufficient for current OpenWrt

OpenWrt Backfire 10.03 is insecure and should not be used any more, under no circumstances.

Details see above.

I aware of security, I just have this router, and I don't want to throw it to the trash, and I need a solution for an old, LAN only printer, to use it wirelessly. Even older version of OpenWRT could create a secure, WPA2 access point, I need it for just that reason. I don't put it on the internet, to the outside world, so I don't see the point, why is this more vulnerable, than the 2008's latest factory image?

That is incorrect due to well-known, severe, actively exploited, security flaws in the 802.11 protocols of that era. Further, a “g-only” AP will likely impair all operation on the channel, both yours and your neighbors’.

Time to recycle it.

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Yes, it wasn't correct at all, but for me, those exploits don't play, because I live in a small village, and due to that, I should not care about local hacking possibilites, at least not the router's ones.

Anyway, I asked for help about the files, because they aren't avaliable anymore. I'd like to give it a try, even if I throw it into the trash after that.

Could somebody help me about that?

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