I made a really stupid mistake last night, and accidentally ended up bricking my new Linksys router that I just bought only a month ago. OpenWRT is nice and all, but I wanted to do a bit more with my router, and I wasn’t up to hacking on it over SSH again. So, I figured I would restore the original Linksys firmware, so I could get a nice web interface, an then things would just work pretty easily for a while until I had more time to poke around.
Well, just as I was uploading the firmware binary, I thought to myself, “Hmm, I should probably have closed out my programs that are accessing the Internet.” So I closed my Gaim session, and then without thinking, closed all my Mozilla windows too (File >> Quit) including the one actually uploading the firmware. Man, I’ve never seen LED lights go so crazy before.
I tried re-flashing the firmware by uploading OpenWRT over TFTP, and at first it looked like it was going to work since it actually accepted the transfer. It still just sat there after that though, and nothing was working (DHCP, web interface, and nmap gave no love). I’ve tried re-flashing it again, but I can’t get TFTP to upload anything now, so who knows what’s up with the thing.
I’m sure there’s a lesson to be learned from all of this, though I can’t imagine what it is right now, other than never change your firmware 5 minutes before going to bed. Well, that and never void your warranty on something unless you really know what you’re doing.
So, if anyone wants to play with this thing, drop me a line. The next step is probably to get a serial port on there to reflash it, but that’s way out of my scope of expertise. My networking skills top off at plugging in cables. And bricking boxes. :)