I have a rather weird network setup at home. Partly due to having both a sensible ADSL connection from Black Cat and an NTL cable modem as backup, partly because I have native IPv6 (over the ADSL). I used to just use a normal PC with a USB Speedtouch plugged into it, but a while back I managed to get an ASUS WL-500g setup to do the job (it has USB for a flash drive / webcam, but this got the Speedtouch plugged into it). It does the job, but is somewhat hacked up. Plus I think the USB ADSL modem adds extra latency and can sometimes be dodgy.

So, when I discovered that the Netgear DG834G had source available for all the important bits (wireless, ADSL, ethernet) I was intrigued. I already know a bunch of people who have this router and are happy with it, so the knowledge that it was more hackable than the average ADSL router made it very appealing. As it happened quinophex (who seems to becoming my hardware pimp) had a spare one, so we did a deal and he brought it round today.

After checking it actually worked and could connect to my ADSL line it was time to open it. The screws are hidden underneath the little white feet and appear to be torx style, but I had a normal flathead that did the job (I should really get myself a larger set of screwdrivers). At first I couldn't spot any headers, but then I saw JP603 half hidden under a sticker with the MAC address on it. Ta da. 4 holes, one obviously ground, one looked non connected, 2 had tracks leading away from them.

I found a piece of veroboard in my toolbox and realised I'd put off building my MAX232 level shifter for too long. After much too long (but no burnt hair) I'd soldered up the simple circuit and was ready to try it out with my Linksys WMA11B. Using Andrew Wild's excellent serial port instructions I had an adapted device to test with. Hooked it all up and it didn't work. Bah, think I. My soldering sucks. No, serial ports suck. ttyS0 has decided not to play nice on my desktop machine. One USB serial port adaptor later and I can see the Linksys boot. Yay!

So, onto the Netgear. A bit of prodding (and dodgy soldering) later and I have a console. Yay! I can see ADAM2 and I can see the kernel boot and get a busybox login. Rock. Now I just need to work on getting a better firmware installed that can handle what my Asus is doing at present.