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What is DD-WRT?

What is DD-WRT?

DD-WRT is a Linux-based firmware project developed to enhance the performance and features of wireless Internet routers. Launched in 2005, DD-WRT is one of the most popular alternative router firmwares due to its longevity of existence and support for a large array of devices. As of now, DD-WRT has builds for leading routers from top manufacturers that consumers can peruse on DD-WRT's website.

Before we proceed, we should cover a fundamental point regarding the function of firmware. At its core, firmware is the brain that powers many electric devices like your router. Firmware is a specific type of software installed on a hard drive and kept on a device's Read-only-Memory (ROM). A device's firmware operates all of the actions it takes.

For example, if you're reading this article on a computer or mobile device, your device's firmware is what instructs the components of your device (RAM, CPU, etc.) how to interact with each other so you can see the article. If you consider carefully, a router is simply just a specialized computer that processes information. Except rather than taking inputs and outputting them to a user, a router takes a user's online traffic and routes it to and from sites.

Standard WiFi routers from the computer store or website ship with basic and often outdated router firmware. While easy to use, this firmware is often very insecure and full of holes that make your network simpler to penetrate. With DD-WRT firmware, many of these holes and vulnerabilities are eliminated, meaning hackers, miscreants, and potential bad actors will be prevented access to your network and your personal data.

DD-WRT's popularity is in large part due to how active its development community is. The DD-WRT community regularly releases new builds for routers, to ensure that they stay safe and secure. Standard router firmware, on the other hand, is very rarely updated, leaving users exposed.

When router manufacturers develop routers, they do so for non-technical users in mind, making them simple and easy to use while limiting their effectiveness. With DD-WRT a personal-class router with limited functionality transforms into a powerful, multi-use, business-class router. For a fraction of the price, users can unlock the benefits of an enterprise-level router using DD-WRT.

Flashing a router with DD-WRT unlock many benefits, ranging from superior network stability and performance to the ability to encrypt your entire network by tunneling all traffic through a VPN connection. DD-WRT's community-vetted-and-tested firmware is consistently updated and upgraded, to avoid frustrating bugs and potential backdoors. In fact, under certain configurations, you may see better network performance when using DD-WRT, as opposed to with regular router firmware.

Upgrading your router to DD-WRT requires several steps. First off, you'll need to visit the DD-WRT website. Once there, you can find your router model, and follow the steps listed online to upgrade or "Flash" your router to DD-WRT. However, flashing is not without its own risks. Flashing a router incorrectly can cause irreparable damage to your router, also known as 'bricking'. Bricking will leave your router unusable as a networking device. Furthermore, flashing a router voids the manufacturer warranty, meaning users are left with no workable router until they shell out more money for a new router.

To avoid dealing with this situation, users can opt for the best of both worlds, features and security, by employing a pre-configured solution with tech support from a third-party vendor like FlashRouters. FlashRouters are the leading experts in flashing DD-WRT routers. Around since 2011, they've got the expertise to ensure that your router works upon arrival. By going through FlashRouters you don't have to worry about receiving a bricked router, as all their devices are triple-tested, to ensure optimal quality.

In addition to flashing, FlashRouters also provides VPN configuration services included and a warranty and support plan. Meaning, users can opt for a pre-configured VPN router and not have to worry about bricking. Plus, users with already existing DD-WRT compatible routers can simply have their routers flashed remotely, saving users some money.

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