Building Non-WiFiX WE826-T2

How To Tutorials related to Routers and Firmware
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JimHelms
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Building Non-WiFiX WE826-T2

Post by JimHelms » Wed Jan 09, 2019 9:10 am

A very limited number of the WiFiX branded WE826-T2 (purchased between Dec 2018 and Jan 9, 2019) was shipped with a different OEM firmware than what is generally loaded onto the WiFiX routers. The OEM firmware is also used on most of the WE826-T2's that are purchased though other vendors.

The vast majority of WiFiX branded WE826-T2 router will use THIS tutorial for updating the firmware.

The OEM firmware installed on the router as mentioned above requires a slightly different approach to build and configure.

The OEM firmware does not allow flashing the new firmware (i.e., WiFIX, ROOTER, GoldenOrb) from within LuCI (the web user interface). To upgrade the firmware on these initial units, the Bootloader Menu method (aka, Firmware Recovery Mode) must be used.

We have also noticed that the latest OEM firmware tries to reconfigure the modem to an undesired composition. Thereafter, there are issues trying to connect to the network.

If you are just beginning your build process on a non-WiFiX branded router, I recommend installing your Sierra Wireless Modem last -- AFTER you upgrade the router's firmware.

If you have already installed the modem and upgraded the router firmware, you will need to perform the following steps.

1. With the router powered off, remove your SIM Card, then power on the router, and login.

2. Go to: SYSTEM BACKUP / FLASH FIRMWARE > RESTORE > PERFORM RESET and restore the WiFiX/ROOTER/GoldenOrb/OpenWRT Firmware to its Default settings:

Restore to Defaults.png
Restore to Defaults.png (66.84 KiB) Viewed 9461 times

2. When the router finishes and comes back online, go to MODEM > CONNECTION PROFILE > GENERAL > APN and:
  • Enter/type in the "correct" APN for the carrier you are using (see below for common list)
  • Select None for the Authentication Protocol
  • SAVE & APPLY
3. Go to SYSTEM > SYSTEM > GENERAL SETTINGS > and:
  • Click on SYNC WITH BROWSER
  • Set the Timezone
  • SAVE & APPLY
4. Go to SYSTEM > ADMINISTRATION > ROUTER PASSWORD and setup your new password, SAVE & APPLY.

5. We will next restore the modem to its OEM status (removing any configuration that may have been changed by the new OEM router firmware). Note that these commands will work on the EM74XX, MC74XX and the EM75XX series of Sierra Wireless modems. The EM7565 may require the latest Sierra modem firmware to accept the restore command.

5. Go to MODEM > MISCELLANEOUS > AT-COMMAND TERMINAL > AT-COMMAND and send each of these commands one at a time, and waiting for a response before sending the next. Best to copy and paste each of the following commands (but use at your own risk):

Code: Select all

AT!ENTERCND="A710"
AT!RMARESET=1
AT!RESET
6. Go to MODEM > DEBUG INFORMATION and once you start seeing activity with different commands being sent:
  • Unplug the power to the router
  • Insert your activated SIM Card
  • Power up the router
When the router comes back online, and given a minute of two to configure the modem, the router should be connected and have internet service.

NOTE: After the modem is restored to its default setting, the modem will return to a QMI composition. The newer kernel OpenWRT firmware builds allow modems to run in QMI so no further programming is required--although some users prefer placing the modem in MBIM composition for its IPV6 incompatibilities.

I recommend you first establish internet connection prior to placing the modem in MBIM.

For the EM/MC74XX modems:

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AT!ENTERCND="A710"
AT!USBCOMP=1,1,1009
AT!RESET
For the EM75XX modems:

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AT!ENTERCND="A710"
AT!USBCOMP=1,3,1009
AT!RESET
Always be certain the APN you have entered is the correct one used by your carrier. Some of the more common APN's are:

AT&T

Code: Select all

broadband
Verizon

Code: Select all

vzwinternet
T-Mobile

Code: Select all

fast.t-mobile.com
Sprint (depending on device and plan, one of the following)

Code: Select all

r.ispsn
n.ispsn
x.ispsn

madgc8
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Re: Building the NEW WE826-T2

Post by madgc8 » Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:07 pm

Hi Jim,

Thanks for this writeup. It's very detailed and extremely helpful.

I purchased a WE826-T2 on January 8th, so I just made the cutoff. I'd like to confirm a couple things.

1. I will use the Bootloader Menu method to flash the new firmware.
2. After first installing firmware, then installing the modem, without any additional configuration, the internet should be active.

Thanks

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JimHelms
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Re: Building the NEW WE826-T2

Post by JimHelms » Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:58 pm

madgc8 wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:07 pm
1. I will use the Bootloader Menu method to flash the new firmware.
Yes, you will use the Bootloader Menu.

2. After first installing firmware, then installing the modem, without any additional configuration, the internet should be active.
After you update the firmware, you should only need to do steps 2 though 4 -- assuming you did not install the modem before upgrading the firmware.

Unplug power from router, insert SIM and power back up. Should connect pretty easy.

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