Tomato router software, works very nicely

September 13, 2009

Friday morning I installed Tomato 1.25 on a Linksys WRT54G 2.2 router, and it went swimmingly.
Except for changes to the admin/root account info and dynamics DNS, it picked up all the settings from the previous (Linksys) firmware.

Other than tweaking the power slightly upwards, I have not looked into the bells and whistles much, except to study our bandwidth use. If it turns out that we’re not using, or not getting, the peak bandwidth promised by our cable company, I’ll have a look at DSL. I’ve checked performance at DSLreports and it looks good there, but I would be completely unsurprised if they noticed test connections to that site, and gave them priority (I have, in fact, worked on benchmarking in the past, and know that cheating is industry-standing behavior).

Well, gosh darn, I think I have to take back some of the bad things I’ve said about Comcast. To test bandwidth, I fired up Vuze (= Azureus = BitTorrent) and pointed it at the South-by-SouthWest 2009 showcasing artists, gigabyte 1 and gigabyte 2. Uploads were running at about 2Mbit/s, which I think is a lot more than is advertised. Downloads were something like 3 times that. The timing for the bandwidth was a little wonky; it went like gangbusters for a while, then it backed off (why?) but when I tried it experimentally just now, vroom, 2Mb/s, no problem.

And the mighty-fine tomato router software lets me look at this. And it also makes it pretty obvious why ISPs might be a little grumpy about P2P; the P2P parts of the graph just dwarf all the rest.

Further update: hard to tell, after two weeks, we had a spell of really wonky behavior. Despite my best attempts to debug it, cannot tell if it was the router or the ISP. Similar problems (and my reply) reported here.

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