Nerd Alert
June 2, 2010 10:36 AM   Subscribe

I've got a WRT54GL router running the Tomato firmware. Now what extremely awesome/nerdy things can I do with it?

This question was spurred on by a Lifehacker article that mentioned ad-blocking via Tomato. What other nerdy/techy/cool things can I do with the firmware? Any forums out there that have cool addons for Tomato? Etc, etc.
posted by nokry56 to Computers & Internet (14 answers total) 29 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Tomato makes it very easy to use OpenDNS, which in turn lets you have localized DNS shortcuts (typing "cal" takes you to Google Calendar, for example). It also has a ton of awesome Quality of Service stuff that I use to control VOIP on our lan...when a call comes in, everything else accessing the 'net defers speed to the phone until the call hangs up, then everything else ramps back up to speed.
posted by griffey at 11:04 AM on June 2, 2010 [3 favorites]

The 54GL has GPIO pins. Example:
posted by Leon at 11:12 AM on June 2, 2010

SSH tunnel proxy? Should work. I use my WRT54G to tunnel remote desktop sessions so I can access my home computer on the road.
posted by caution live frogs at 11:28 AM on June 2, 2010

Oh, Confess, Fletch...I must confess that I am going to cop some of your brilliance to deal with Wi-Fi poachers here abouts. Get ready, Kitten War, your hits should go up soon!
posted by beelzbubba at 12:03 PM on June 2, 2010

I always thought the Power-Over-Ethernet hacks were pretty cool, but have never been tempted to try them.

I also use the built-in PPTP server to occasionally access the home network.

Lastly, I signed up for a account so that I've got a consistent hostname I can use for reaching the at-home ssh box (which is nat'ed through the buffalo). I started off with the free dyndns account, but finally got tired of the regular 'renew' messages.
posted by jquinby at 1:35 PM on June 2, 2010

Best answer: Dynamic DNS (I used too) makes any sort of remote access infinitely easier. If your IP address changes often enough, I don't think you'll get asked to renew your account, but I could be wrong.

The two things I love about my setup are:

* SSH tunneling through the built in server (so my computer doesn't have to stay on)
* Wake on LAN (so I can turn my computer on if I need too). Tomato has it built into its interface. I've got remote HTTP access turned on, so I can turn my computer on from any web browser, including the one on my phone.
posted by natabat at 2:06 PM on June 2, 2010

I came here to say what natabat already posted. I use Wake on LAN so if I need, I can remotely turn on my PC. Then I can remotely ssh in to my PC and retrieve files/info I need, and then tell the computer to turn itself off again.

I'm using for my Dynamic DNS needs.
posted by fings at 2:47 PM on June 2, 2010

Best answer: My experience with Tomato has been nothing but wonderful, as you're soon discovering. Besides SSH-tunneling, I use the built-in routing to handle redirects to my own web server (as a Java coder, I must eat my own dog food) as well as the internal support for DynDNS to handle automatically re-establishing my domain's IP should my cable go out for some indeterminate amount of time. I'm also using the built-in CIFS client to map a local share to the router so I can remotely store backups of logs. All the systems on my network are mapped using MAC address, so I can walk around the house with a laptop and then plug-in if I want faster access and keep the same IP & host name--no mucking about with Dnsmasq necessary (though entirely possible, if you so desire). It's fucking awesome.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:25 PM on June 2, 2010

Plus the interface and dynamic graphs are kick-ass.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:26 PM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]

If you have multiple public static IPs from your ISP you can configure each one to point to a different machine on your network making it easy to remote in to various machines or run servers.

I just wrote up the details on how to do it where you can read on my blog.
posted by iamgoat at 6:52 PM on June 2, 2010

Civil_D - you kill me. :)

blah yada blah technical excellence yada blah wizardry blah abilty blah techno god stuff blah

...followed by....

' and it has realllllly coool graphs, man!'

Too funny :)

Sorry. Carry on.
posted by DrtyBlvd at 7:32 AM on June 3, 2010

Response by poster: You guys rock, keep it coming! So far I'm going to set up SSH & OpenVPN, along with mapping via MAC Address. I set up OpenDNS & dyDNS last night -- pretty sweet. In addition, I turned on TCP Vegas (more info here) -- its actually included in the stock build now -- and I'm seeing really great results without bothering with QoS.
posted by nokry56 at 10:38 AM on June 3, 2010

Oooh, I got one. I used mine as a wireless bridge to hook up the Xbox 360 in my room to the internet.

Can I qualify that as a geeky task given the required firware flashing and setting up IP configurations in both routers and the Xbox 360?

It saved me $80 because I didn't have to buy the proprietary wireless thingamagig (or $10 for a long ethernet cable).
posted by onich at 8:13 PM on June 3, 2010

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