ZTE MF296R support? (= MF286R ?)

Has anybody tried the ZTE MF286R image on ZTE model MF296R?
Will it work? Is the hardware sufficiently similar?
Model MF296R is sold by an Austrian provider (spusu) for € 90 (https://www.spusu.at/ztemf296r#ratepay), has LTE-A with ext. antenna capability, 2.4/5G Wifi, & GB LAN, therefor fulfills my hardware needs well.
Any feedback appreciated.

Never flash OpenWrt images from one device to another - this could brick your router. -initramfs builds booted via TFTP are usually safe to try.

NB: You will need to disassemble your device to attach serial console. This could void your warranty.

If you want something really cheap, get a used 3HuiTube aka ZTE MF282 and try my PR - it's only Cat.4 though: https://github.com/openwrt/openwrt/pull/12405

Get an used 286D instead, should be way cheaper than 90€.

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You may check its regulatory labels and there could be some more information for the chipset/hardware into the documents attached, without tearing-down the device. For example the FCC ID on https://fccid.io.

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Another cheaper alternative (used) is the TP-Link Archer MR600v2, readily available in Austria.

Only if sold in US though....

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This is the easiest way to obtain the images, since already public.

There is an MF296C which is likely to be similar (or the same), but with different 4G card. All the RF components are being covered with screens, likely soldered, so the tear-down is not an easy option. It may worth finding the serial interface.

Sometimes, the providers may force you with a CPE included in the contract, otherwise you cannot order a specific service. If you order a fixed service, you may end up with something similar. The service could be even locked to the IMEI of the specific device, and you will have no option to move it without paying for an address change. So possibly the device must be present into provider's webpage.

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Assuming the device you're interested in, is (also) sold in US.

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Thank all of you for the tips!


  • never did soldering
  • MF282 doesn't show up on the openWRT ToH (table of hardware), and
  • is missing some features I require.
    Thanks for the safety tips!
    ... the TP-Link Archer MR600v2 I didn't find at all, neither on sale (Austria & Germany), nor on the ToH.

I ordered a used 286D right now from the UK on eBay (approx. € 46 + € 10 shipping), because it's supported by OpenWRT (on the ToH).
I'm to lazy to lookup each component. :slight_smile: ... but might be helpful in the future.
MF296C is not on the ToH.
Thank you!

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