Using an Linksys E3000 AP as a general linux server

Recently I said farwell and thanks for all the fish to my old Linksys WRT54G router(s). They served me well for many years, but end the end they lacked IEEE 802.11n and 1000BASE-T. After looking around I decided to buy the Linksys E3000 AP. It stayed within my budget, had almost all features I desired and could also run community based firmware.

I tried to run with the built in firmware. And I did. For a month or so. And then I gave in and installed dd-wrt on the thing. The built-in firmware works and is stable. But boy it lacks features!

Getting dd-wrt onto my AP was easy due to this tutorial. After I got dd-wrt onto the AP I had myself a full blown linux distribution. Comparing the E3000 with its 240MHz MIPS cpu and 64MB memory to my first PC with its 66MHz intel 80486 with 4MB memory made me smile ;-)

root@dd-wrt:~# cat /proc/cpuinfo
system type             : Broadcom BCM4716 chip rev 1
processor               : 0
cpu model               : MIPS 74K V4.0
BogoMIPS                : 239.20
wait instruction        : no
microsecond timers      : yes
tlb_entries             : 64
extra interrupt vector  : no
hardware watchpoint     : yes
ASEs implemented        : mips16 dsp
shadow register sets    : 1
VCED exceptions         : not available
VCEI exceptions         : not available

Having such a small nifty general purpose platform at my disposal ofcourse made me think what I should use it for (besides moving bytes around in my house). I found these things I want to and/or have implemented on it:

  • Local DNS server. I have many many projects brewing all the time and have vast amount of hardware. I utilize a DNS server to keep track of my ip assignments, either static or through DHCP. Running a DNS server on the router is a must.
  • PXEBOOT server.
  • TFTP server.
  • NFS server
  • DansGuardian filter

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