Saturday, 10 December 2011

How to upgrade Huawei WA1003A to a Feature Rich Firmware


I am one of those guys who still have the Huaweii WA1003a Router provided by BSNL and its still working perfectly (guess a solid build) , but its nearly 7 years passed and  no new firmware update was provided , on asking for newer version of firmware in huawei forums... the reply was shocking as one of Huawei staff replied "Sorry , Quidway 1003A is a terminal product not a DATACOM router."(Source: http://forum.huawei.com/jive4/thread.jspa?threadID=319714&tstart=1&orderStr=9).

Ok, Finally i decided to put Third party Feature Rich firmware called  RouterTech Firmware

The upgrade process is a little difficult , but people who have knowledge of linux commands should handle this fairly easily. THIS UPGRADE PROCESS IS NOT FOR NOVICES AND ANY MISTAKES MAY BRICK THE ROUTER AND MAKE IT USELESS.

ALSO , MAKE SURE YOU HAVE ACCESS TO OTHER  MEANS OF INTERNET CONNECTION LIKE MOBILE GPRS / 3G AVAILABLE  IN THE EVENT OF YOU BRICKING THE ROUTER... YOU CAN USE  READ THE UNBRICKING PROCEDURE IN INTERNET AGAIN.




AN SMALL INTROduction TO BEGIN:
Most of the routers today have  hardware like RAM , ROM , Processor and a Boot loader, and so can run OS like Linux on it. This applies to my old Router Huawei WA1003a which on Inspection has the following configuration.

My inspection of Huawei WA1003a reveals the following:

Cpu model               : MIPS 4KEc V4.8 / 149.91 MHZ
OS : Linux version 2.4.17_mvl21-malta-mips_fp_le / MontaVista Linux
RAM : 16 MB ( please verify anyone)
Boot Loader : Adam 2


UPGRADATION PROCESS:
I Have divided the process into 4 phases and explanations are also  provided in each phase :
Phase1: Install necessary softwares
Phase2:Pre-Update configuration
Phase3: Upgrade
Phase4:Post-Update configuration


CAUTION:
·         I have done this step-by-step many times and worked fine for me,
·         However , it is your risk to proceed or not as it may sometimes brick the router.
·         Initially I too bricked my router many times but  finally I determined a way to restore it.
·         You can also restore the old Huawei firmware if you don’t like this firmware.
·         And finally , If you are novice and new  to Linux , then please don’t use this as any wrong  step may brick your router.


NOTE :

TRY THIS PROCEDURE IN A WINDOWS XP 32 BIT OS
WITH NO ANTI VIRUS SOFTWARE OR FIREWALL INSTALLED
ALSO DISABLE WINDOWS FIREWALL



Phase1: Install necessary softwares
·         I tried this in Windows XP Professional 32 Bit edition and it works fine
·         THIS PROCEDURE WONT WORK  in Win7 or Ubuntu

·         ALSO MAKE A NOTE OF BSNL (ISP) PROVIDED USER NAME AND PASSWORD FOR YOUR ROUTER SEPERATELY.
You need following software installed
·         Dot net framework (version 2 or greater) è required by  SolarWinds TFTP Server
·         SolarWinds TFTP Server 8.2  è required for backup of data from router to pc
·         Download http://www.neolics.com/getfile.php?id=196

·         After installing SolarWinds TFTP Server , create a folder in C drive called as router (C:\Router).

·         Start SolarWinds TFTP Server,  goto file-> configure  and select  Tftp root directory as c:\router and select transmit and receive in secutrity tab.

·          Now close the SolarWinds TFTP Server.

·         Download Router Repair Tool v1.0.8 from  http://www.neolics.com/getfile.php?id=196  and extract to C:\router\rrt directory

·         Download  Download PCTool  v2.1  from http://www.routertech.org/downloads/firmwares/class2/ar7_upg_tools.zip

And extract to C:\router\pctool

·         Keep pctool 2.1 folder and delete other folders…
·         Download  firmware  file routertech-ar7wrd-adam2-firmware-1port-20110502.zip  from http://www.routertech.org/download/file.php?id=2003 and extract it to c:\router\fw folder
·          

Phase2: Pre-Update configuration:
·         Configure the system to have static ip address and have following setting:
·         Static ip as 192.168.1.10
·         Subnet mask 255.255.255.0
·         Default gateway as 192.168.1.1
·         Dns as 208.67.220.220 and 208.67.222.222
You can see this tutorial on how to do this : http://portforward.com/networking/static-xp.htm

Now to back up router environment…
·         Now open Router Repair Tool v1.0.8 to back up environment
·         Set router ip as 192.168.1.1 and user name=root and password=admin
·         Rom size=4 
·         Boot loader =adam2
·         And then select environment->backup (env)


Phase3: Upgrade
·         Start SolarWinds TFTP Server,

·         Open a telnet session to your router ip 192.168.1.1 as follows:

goto Start -> Run -> and type Telnet
you will find a Telnet Window as shown
type “o 192.168.1.1 ” , of course without Quotes
Note: The Default Router IP Address is 192.168.1.1 , if you have changed the default router IP address , then you have to enter that value
Now if you are successful , your telnet window will prompt for User name and password
The Default user name is “root”  (FOR HUAWEI WA1003A)
The Default password is “admin”  (FOR HUAWEI WA1003A)

Once , you login successfully, you can enter commands to the router.

·         enter the following commands
1.cd /var/tmp/
2.cat /dev/mtdblock/0 > mtd0
3. ifconfig  br0 mtu 500
      4. tftp -p -l /var/tmp/mtd0 192.168.1.10 -r mtd0
 
And then delete mtd0 to make some free space…
 
5. rm mtd0
6. cat /dev/mtdblock/1 > mtd1
 
Actually you will get an read i/o error here.. but continue
 
      7. tftp -p -l /var/tmp/mtd1 192.168.1.10 -r mtd1
8. rm mtd1
9. cat /dev/mtdblock/2 > mtd2
      10. tftp -p -l /var/tmp/mtd2 192.168.1.10 -r mtd2
11. rm mtd2
12. cat /dev/mtdblock/3 > mtd3
       13. tftp -p -l /var/tmp/mtd3 192.168.1.10 -r mtd3
14. rm mtd3
15. cat /dev/mtdblock/4 > mtd4
      16. tftp -p -l /var/tmp/mtd4 192.168.1.10 -r mtd4
 
And finally delete mtd4 from temp
 
17. rm mtd4
 
 
 
To check the process is correct , you will have the following as output 
In explorer
 

 
 
 
 
Setting environment values manually
·          Switch off the router
Open command prompt and type ftp 192.168.1.199 and keep it ready (don’t press enter yet)
 
·          Switch on  the router and exactly after 6 to 12 seconds , press enter
 
Note :  once you see network icon as connected ... then immediately press enter

You will get output like this:
 
·         Now type the following commans sequentially,
 
quote SETENV mtd0,0x9008f000,0x903f0000
quote SETENV mtd1,0x90010090,0x9008f000
quote SETENV mtd2,0x90000000,0x90010000
quote SETENV mtd3,0x903f0000,0x90400000
quote SETENV mtd4,0x90010000,0x903f0000
 
 
after wards check whether values are passed ok by running following commands
 
quote GETENV mtd0
quote GETENV mtd1
quote GETENV mtd2
quote GETENV mtd3
quote GETENV mtd4
type ‘quit; and exit ftp
 
 
 
Now run pctool 2.1
·          
·         Now run pctool 2.1
·         press retrieve IP address
·         Select file type as binary
·         Select media type as flash
·         Select  "Firmware - Kernel/FS" in download to T1 bootloader and click download
·         Now select C:\router\fw\RouterTech_3.6.0D_20110502_2.96_AR7WRD_Adam2_1-Port_firmware.upgrade.img file.
·         You will get a message that says something like “ successfully loaded to the flash”
·         After you get this message, switch off the router immediately
·         Switch on after  some seconds and wait for 1 minute 
·         You will see ADSL led trying to blink ,
·          Open your browser and type 192.168.1.1
·         Now enter user name as “Admin” [ note the Initial capital letter ]
·         Password as “Admin”  
·         First , thing to do is to reset router to default config
Goto system->restore defaults (router will get rebooted)
 
Now you have installed firmware , congrats! But wait its not over yet…
 
 
The Post-Update configuration step is very important


Phase4:Post-Update configuration:

·         Open your browser and type 192.168.1.1
·         Now enter user name as “Admin” [ note the Initial capital letter ]
·         Password as “Admin”  
·         Goto system->tools->update gateway -> choose file and select the C:\router\fw\RTech_AR7WRD_config.img file
·         And click update gateway 
·         When you get status as “Upgrade Successful” 
·         Click on restart gateway…
 
·         Now , to configure the LEDS to work properly , do the

Following steps:
1)Log into the router again, 
2)Goto System->RT Configurations
3) Add a check to "Choose LED file" 
4)type “wa1003a” in  text box
5)Click "Save changes" button 
6)Finally, click restart router
 
 
 
And now finally , you need to configure your BSNL user name and pass word as follows:
 
1.goto setup->WAN setup->new connection
2.enter connection name like bsnl or whatever you like
3.choose connection type as PPPOE
4.BSNL (isp) provided user name and password
5.GOTO TOOLS->SYSTEM COMMANDS -> SAVE ALL
6.AND FINALLY , .GOTO TOOLS->SYSTEM COMMANDS -> REBOOT ROUTER
CLICK YES AND REBOOT….
 
Hurray,! you should now be connected , enjoy your new Router…
 



Issues :


* only Status LED will not blink.. i will give try to figure out the configuration later..
* note Telnet user name="root" and password="Admin" for router tech firmware


Restore process to get by original Huawei firmware:

* If your router does not respond.. dont worry... you could unbrick your router if you have backed up earlier..

To restore the original firmware , you need the back up files mtd3 and  mtd4 , you would have backed up earlie...


Restoration Process:

1.goto command mode,

2. change directory to the folder that has mtd3 and mtd4 , in my case i have those files in C:\router....


cd C:\router

3.Now , Switch off the router
 
In  command prompt and type ftp 192.168.1.199 and keep it ready (don’t press enter yet)
 
·          Switch on  the router and exactly after 2 to 3 seconds , press enter


once loggged in to ftp service ...
NOTE : USER NAME AND PASSWORD ARE BOTH "adam2"

enter following commands sequentially.

quote SETENV mtd0,0x90091000,0x903f0000
quote SETENV mtd1,0x90010090,0x90091000
quote SETENV mtd2,0x90000000,0x90010000
quote SETENV mtd3,0x903f0000,0x90400000
quote SETENV mtd4,0x90010000,0x903f0000

quote GETENV mtd0
quote GETENV mtd1
quote GETENV mtd2
quote GETENV mtd3
quote GETENV mtd4

quote "MEDIA FLSH"
bin
 
put mtd4 "fs mtd4"
put mtd3 "fs mtd3"

quote REBOOT

* now your router should be restored to old firmware....


* first thing you have to do is to reset your Router to defaults and enter a fresh configuration of user name and password ... and Enjoy!


Do post your queries here itself and dont PM me... Thanks

References:
I found very helpful resources from these sites...
1.http://www.linuxsmiths.com/blog/?p=427
2.http://www.routertech.org/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=4512



Update : guys i restored back to original huawei firmware as i found / random delays in getting internet connection..... currently i am in huawei orgiginal firmware only... will try rr firmware after a new version comes..

6 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  4. Hello , can u please post link for orgianl WA1003a backup u took please


    Guide is nice, i am able to install without issue , but like to goback to orginal Firmware but my backup was not correct , so can u pls provide me with ur orginal firmware backup

    ReplyDelete
  5. One issue i am facing while following the above mentioned steps:

    In the following section....

    -----------------
    Setting environment values manually·

    Switch off the routerOpen command prompt and type ftp 192.168.1.199 and keep it ready (don’t press enter yet)

    Switch on the router and exactly after 6 to 12 seconds , press enter
    -------------------------
    ftp 192.168.1.199 ==> this ip belongs to what router/gateway or user machine?
    ==> Is it a type???

    Even I tried 192.168.1.1 which is my gateway ip, i could login but the above mentioned commands like the below are not understood by ftp connection...

    quote SETENV mtd0,0x90091000,0x903f0000
    quote SETENV mtd1,0x90010090,0x90091000
    quote SETENV mtd2,0x90000000,0x90010000
    quote SETENV mtd3,0x903f0000,0x90400000
    quote SETENV mtd4,0x90010000,0x903f0000

    quote GETENV mtd0
    quote GETENV mtd1
    quote GETENV mtd2
    quote GETENV mtd3
    quote GETENV mtd4

    Am I missing something here or the above steps need some more fine tuning ???

    Secondly....

    PCTool only retrieving my pc ip and not able to select flash, binary, load new firmware image files etc,. not sure what was wrong in that.

    Only difference is i am tryingout in Windows 7, i read that warning it wont work n Wndows 7, dont see any reason why cant t work n wndows 7, unfortunately do not have ay windows xp machnes, can someone help here...

    Otherwse i love this solution... exited to make t happen to see the results...

    ReplyDelete
  6. hi
    while backing-up the original files,

    # tftp -p -l /var/tmp/mtd0 192.168.1.10 -r mtd0

    i am getting "tftp: timeout" error

    OS type : windows xp
    Solarwinds ver : 8.2
    antivirus : none
    windows firewall :disabled

    thanks in advance.
    waiting for your reply to proceed

    ReplyDelete