TP-Link TL-WR703N Cheap hackable router!

New project page added for the TP-Link TL-WR703N router here :-

All the installation instructions are inside that page, here are a few draft quick starts :-

Setting up extroot

  1. Partition/format your USB drive to ext4 using a PC/Mac (I didn’t include any fdisk/formatting utils on the image)
  2. In Luci Top Tabs -> System -> Mount Points
  3. Under Mount Points, you should have a disabled mount point /dev/sda1. Click “Edit”
  4. Check “Enable this mount”
  5. Under Filesystem, select “ext4” (Or whichever you’ve chosen)
  6. Check “Use as root filesystem”
  7. Press “Save & Apply”
  8. Reboot for the changes to take effect

Note, you should do this prior to any other step.  The USB will replace the standard overlay for storing your settings, so doing it later will be messy.

Connecting to the Internet (via your home WiFi)

  1. In Luci Top Tabs -> Network -> Wifi
  2. Click “Enable” on the radio
  3. Once the radio is enabled, click “Scan”
  4. If you see your home network, click “Join Network”
  5. Enter your WPA passphrase
  6. Leave other settings the same and click “Submit”
  7. Now press “Save & Apply”
  8. You should now be connected

Tricks with the LED

Turn blue led on :

echo "1" > /sys/devices/platform/leds-gpio/leds/tp-link:blue:system/brightness

Turn blue led off :

echo "0" > /sys/devices/platform/leds-gpio/leds/tp-link:blue:system/brightness

Blink blue led on/off :

cd /sys/devices/platform/leds-gpio/leds/tp-link:blue:system/
echo timer > trigger
echo 100 > delay_on
echo 100 > delay_off

Note : The delay_on value must be less than 255


More tricks and quick how-to guides coming up including installing additional software and setting up a webcam streaming.  For those who know how or can figure out how, the images point to a software repository where you can install more software once you have internet access!

6 thoughts on “TP-Link TL-WR703N Cheap hackable router!”

  1. Hey,
    thanks very much for posting all your information on the wr703n.
    It’s a great project box for the price.
    I’m just wondering how to try and fit samba onto this thing.
    overlay is telling me that there’s only 88kb and needs 886.

    any pointers would be awesome.

    1. You could always use an external USB storage and extroot for more additional storage space for large applications.

      Why use samba? :/

    1. Hello,

      I am actually controlling an FTDI FT2232 directly using libusb-1.0 which is included in my images. I’ve also compiled in the bindings for lua and python and they are available as packages.

      I do not recommend using libftdi. What is it that you’re trying to do?

  2. Nice packaging, missing usb mode switch though for my huawei modem. I’m working on a small solution for telemetry via 3G.

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