TP-Link TL-WR1043ND

Поддерживаемые версии

Версия/Модель H/W Ревизия Дата запуска S/N Поддержка версии OpenWrt Спецификация модели
v1.1 - - Backfire 10.03 Как в WR941ND.
v1.4 - - Backfire 10.03 Same v1 board as v1.1
v1.5 - - Backfire 10.03 Same v1 board as v1.1
v1.6 - - Backfire 10.03 Аналогично
v1.7 - - Backfire 10.03.1-rc4 Аналогично
v1.8 - - Backfire 10.03.1-rc6 or trunk Аналогично
(DE)v1.0 - - Backfire 10.03.1-rc4 Аналогично, Немецкий WebUI

Основные технические характеристики

Процессор Память Флеш Network Gigabit USB Serial JTag
Atheros AR9132@400MHz 32MB 8MB 4x1 Да Да Да Да

See paragraphs Hardware or Tags for more details.


  1. obtain.firmware You should download a stable image with factory and SquashFS in the Name.
  2. generic.flashing Now write this firmware-file onto the flash-chip of your device
  • Quickest way is to download a precompiled latest trunk image, look for openwrt-ar71xx-tl-wr1043nd-v1-squashfs-factory.bin.
    • Has fully working wireless
  • Safest way is to download a precompiled stable image, look for openwrt-ar71xx-tl-wr1043nd-v1-squashfs-factory.bin.
    • That image does not have modules for wifi. There is room to easily install missing packages on the jffs2 partition later per opkg update then opkg install kmod-ath9k wpad-mini. UPDATE: Backfire (10.03.1, r29592) has all this already built-in.
  • You can allways build your own image based on Kamikaze or on Backfire. Choose Atheros AR71xx/AT7240/AR913x platform and use TP-Link WR1043ND v1 Profile.

It appears that in order to use the "Firmware upgrade" option in the original firmware for installing OpenWRT, the WR1043ND must be connected to internet, or at least to a dhcp server on its WAN port - otherwise it won't flash the OpenWRT image, but come up with original firmware again after reboot. UPDATE: not a problem with hardware v1.8 running stock firmware 20110429: leaving connected back to back the Windows client PC performing the upgrade was good enough.

Flash Layout

Please read the article Flash Layout for a better understanding. It contains a couple of explanations. Then let's have a quick view at flash layout of this particular device:

TP-Link WR1043ND Flash Layout stock firmware
Layer0 m25p80 spi0.0: m25p64 8192KiB
Layer1 mtd0 mtd1 mtd3
Size in KiB 128KiB 8000KiB 64KiB
Name u-boot firmware art
mountpoint none / none
filesystem none SquashFS? none
TP-Link WR1043ND Visual Flash Layout OpenWrt
Offset 0 128 1408 2944 8128
x64KiB Blocks oo oooooooooooooooooooo oooooooooooooooooooooooo ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo o
TP-Link WR1043ND Flash Layout
Layer0 m25p80 spi0.0: m25p64 8192KiB
Layer1 mtd0 u-boot 128KiB mtd5 firmware 8000KiB mtd4 art 64KiB
Layer2 mtd1 kernel 1280KiB mtd2 rootfs 6720KiB
mountpoint /
filesystem mini_fo
Layer3 mtd3 rootfs_data 5184KiB
Size in KiB 128KiB 1280KiB 1536KiB 5184KiB 64KiB
Name u-boot kernel rootfs_data art
mountpoint none none /rom /overlay none
filesystem none none SquashFS JFFS2 none

ART = Atheros Radio Test - it contains mac addresses and calibration data for the wifi (EEPROM). If it is missing or corrupt, ath9k won't come up anymore.

Простая установка OEM-способом

Установите openwrt-ar71xx-tl-wr1043ndv1-squashfs-factory.bin используя "Firmware Upgrade" веб-интерфейса оригинальной прошивки.

Массовая перепрошивка OEM-способом

Перепрошивать десятки или сотни устройств вручную через веб-интерфейс непрактично. В этом случае можно использовать следующий скрипт:


# Файл с имиджем прошивки -- первый и единственный аргумент командной строки.
# Второй вызов curl возвращается с ошибкой таймаут, но это нормально.
# После завершения работы скрипта можно отключить Ethernet-кабель
# и начать перепрошивку следующего устройства, но обязательно ОСТАВЬТЕ
# включенным ПИТАНИЕ, пока процесс перепрошивки не завершится! После
# успешной перепрошивки раутер сбрасывается автоматически (все светодиоды
# одновременно высвечиваются один раз примерно на полсекунды).

curl \
  --user admin:admin \
  --user-agent 'Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Ubuntu; Linux i686; rv:12.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/12.0' \
  --referer '' \
  --form "Filename=@$1" -F 'Upgrade=Upgrade' \ > /dev/null

sleep 1

curl \
  --max-time 2 \
  --user admin:admin \
  --user-agent 'Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Ubuntu; Linux i686; rv:12.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/12.0' \
  --referer '' \ >  /dev/null

OEM installation using the TFTP and RS232 method

If you want to upgrade using TFTP you follow these steps (as an alternative to the above install process).

Quick howto recover from bad flash. (full log)


  • terminal program (e.g. minicom) set to 115200 8N1, no flow control
  • file named code.bin containing openwrt firmware.
  • tftpd server with an address (configurable with setenv command, printenv first if unsure)

The simplest tftpd server to use is dnsmasq. Install and run with dnsmasq –enable-tftp –tftp-root=/code.bindirectory


After you see Autobooting in 1 seconds type tpl and hit enter to get into command promt.

erase 0xbf020000 +7c0000 # 7c0000: size of the firmware (be aware that you may have a different size thus bricking your router)
tftpboot 0x81000000 code.bin
cp.b 0x81000000 0xbf020000 0x7c0000
bootm 0xbf020000

OEM installation using the Kermit and RS232 method

If you do not want to bother with running a tftpd server on your computer, especially considering the security concerns, you can also use a Kermit client to transfer the new image. It may take forever and a half (15-20min) to copy, but it's easier and more secure than running a tftpd server. These instructions assume you're using a Linux system, but they will give you all you need to do the same on a Windows box.


  • terminal program (e.g. minicom) set to 115200 8N1, no flow control
  • file named code.bin containing openwrt firmware.
  • Kermit client (these instructions will involve using C-Kermit under Linux)

In your terminal program you type:

erase 0xbf020000 +7c0000 # 7c0000: size of the firmware (be aware that you may have a different size thus bricking your router)
loadb 0x81000000

Hint: After you see Autobooting in 1 seconds type tpl and hit enter to get into command promt.

Fire up C-Kermit and run the following commands (or configure your Kermit client to these parameters):

set line /dev/ttyUSB0 # Just make sure you got the right USB interface
set speed 115200
set carrier-watch off
set handshake none
set flow-control none
set file type bin
set file name lit
set rec pack 1000
set send pack 1000
set window 5
send code.bin # Make sure you include a proper path to the file. That's why I just kept it in /home/$user

After the 15-20min file transfer, the new firmware should be on your router and you can continue in terminal:

cp.b 0x81000000 0xbf020000 0x7c0000
bootm 0xbf020000

Upgrading OpenWrt

Back to original firmware


This section describes actions that might damage your device or firmware. Proceed with care!

In case of the WR1043ND there is a catch: You download the stock firmware from the OEM:

  • in case the file name of this firmware file does not contain the word "boot" in it, you can simply revert back to original firmware
  • in case the file name of this firmware file does contain the word "boot" in it, you need to cut off parts of the image file before flashing it:

An example of an image file with the word "boot" in it is wr1043nv1_en_3_9_17_up_boot(091118).bin.

Cut the first 0x20200 (that is 131,584 = 257*512) Bytes from original firmware:

dd if=orig.bin of=tplink.bin skip=257 bs=512

This has been confirmed by supertom64

Основные настройки

After flashing, proceed with Basic configuration.
Set up your Internet connection, configure wireless, configure USB port, etc.

Специальные настройки


The default network configuration is:

Interface Name Description Default configuration
br-lan LAN & WiFi
eth0 LAN ports (1 to 4) + WAN None
wlan0 WiFi Disabled

Порты свитча (для VLAN)

Numbers 1-4 are Ports 1-4 as labeled on the unit, number 0 is the Internet (WAN) on the unit, 5 is the internal connection to the router itself.

Port Switch port
Internet (WAN) 0
LAN 1 1
LAN 2 2
LAN 3 3
LAN 4 4
Gigabit Media Independent Interface 5

Some issues with 10.03.1-rc4 on Hardware Ver.1.8 see this post for workaround.

Failsafe mode

OpenWrt Failsafe Mode

Power up your router. When the 'SYS' light starts to blink, press and hold the QSS button in the front-right until the blinking gets faster.

Восстановление через последовательную консоль

You will see something like this:

No valid address in Flash. Using fixed address
: cfg1 0xf cfg2 0x7114
eth0 up
Autobooting in 1 seconds


during this 1 second period. Then continue with OEM installation using the TFTP and RS232 method

Аппаратная часть

Общая информация

Architecture: MIPS
Vendor: Qualcomm Atheros
Bootloader: U-Boot
System-On-Chip: AR9132 rev 2 (MIPS 24Kc V7.4)
CPU/Speed 24Kc V7.4 400 Mhz
Flash-Chip: ST 25P64V6P
Flash size: 8192 KiB
RAM: 32 MiB
Wireless: Atheros AR9103 2.4ghz 802.11bgn
Ethernet: RealTek RTL8366RB 5-port Gigabit switch w/ vlan support, swconfig
Internet: n/a
USB: Yes 1 x 2.0
Serial: Yes

The Realtek 8366RB supports: VLAN, Jumbo Frames (not supported by the SoC), bandwidth control, port priority, storm filtering, QoS, ACL. Not all of these features are actually supported by OpenWrt. Supported VLAN IDs are 1-15 (VLAN Configuration Mode 2 ?). See: Ticket #7977


See → performance for results and performance for help for measuring

Потребляемая мощность

Измерения дешевым ваттметром показали, что в режиме простоя устройство потребляет 6,9 Вт, а при нагрузке - 9 Вт.


Opening/closing the case

Note: This will void your warranty! The case of the WR1043N is composed of 4 pieces:

  • Top cover (white, with logo)
  • Bottom cover (white, with sticker)
  • Front (transparent, black)
  • Outer frame (black, vents on the sides)

There are only two screws at the back of the device, under the rubber feet. The rest of the case is kept together by two latches at the front of the device, and a system of guides and hooks in the front.

  1. Remove the antennas.
  2. Remove the rubber feet in the back and undo the screws.
  3. Unscrew all three retaining nuts on the antenna connectors and carefully push them into the housing. If you find this hard to do, leave them in place: you'll have to pay attention and avoid pulling the outer frame, as there are wires running from the back of the device all the way to the front of the board.
  4. Push one of the bottom screws back into place to lift the top cover, and keep it that way using a finger.
  5. With the top slightly open, push the bottom cover away. Use a screwdriver if you can't reach it with your fingers.
  6. If you have unscrewed the antenna connectors, now you can remove outer frame. Otherwise just carefully slide it out of the way: this will expose the clips that keep the top and bottom covers together.
  7. With a flathead screwdriver or similar tool, gently pry the two front clips apart. Each clip has two latches and is located near the corners, next to the black front. Put your screwdriver behind the latches and push it towards the ethernet ports.
  8. Now the top cover can slide out the vertical guides on the black front.
  9. The black front also has three plastic hooks that go into matching holes in the bottom cover. To remove it, pull the front away and then push it down.

Pictures can be found here

Putting it back together

  1. Place the board on the bottom cover, so that the two plastic pins at the front keep it in place.
  2. If you undid the antenna connectors, put them back in and tighten the nuts.
  3. Place the outer frame behind the board and make sure it sits flush to the connectors.
  4. Insert the hooks of the front into the holes in the bottom cover, don't push it in yet.
  5. Make the top cover slide into the vertical guides on the front. Don't push it down yet.
  6. Push the front towards the back so the hooks are engaged, then push down the top cover.
  7. Fasten the screws and re-apply the rubber feet.


port.serial general information about the serial port, serial port cable, etc. How to connect to Serial Port:

Solder a header as shown in the picture or wires with a connector directly. The device uses TTL @ 3.3V and not a standard RS-232 Serial that operates between 3 and 15V, so do not try to connect it to a common serial adapter: you will certainly fry the serial circuit or even the whole board. There are plenty of USB to TTL and RS-232 to TTL available on the market, just be careful with the voltage: the standard is 5V and it may also damage your board. Look for the ones with 3.3V or with both voltages and a way to switch between them.

Don’t forget that the TX pin of the serial port must linked to the RX pin of the router and the RX to TX!


port.JTAG general information about the JTAG port, JTAG cable, etc.

JTAG Line:


Download EJTAG Debrick Utility 3.0.1


Backup wholeflash:

tjtag3.exe -backup:custom /fc:25 /window:bf000000 /start:bf000000 /length:00800000

Backup UBoot:

tjtag3.exe -backup:custom /fc:25 /window:bf000000 /start:bf000000 /length:00020000

Backup Firmware:

tjtag3.exe -backup:custom /fc:25 /window:bf000000 /start:bf020000 /length:00800000


At the moment it is NOT possible to UNBRICK the router by JTAG (no write access to flashrom).

so be very carefull not to overwrite the bootloader.


port.GPIO The AR913x platform provides 22 GPIOs. Some of them are used by the router for status LEDs, buttons and to communicate with the RTL8366RB. The table below shows the results of some investigation:

Voltage level at GPIO in output-mode gpioX/value in input-mode when GPIO is:
GPIO Common Name PCB Name gpioX/value=1 gpioX/value=0 Floating Pulled to GND Pulled to Vcc
1 USB D18=D9 0V 3.3V 1 1 1
2 SYS D19=D8 0V 3.3V 1 1 1
3 RESET SW6 3.3V 0V 1 0 1
5 QSS D31=D10 3.3V 0V 0 0 1
7 QSS-Button SW8=SW9 3.3V 0V 1 0 1
8 Setting data direction to output and value to 0 causes hard reset of the SoC
9 WLAN D11=D7 0V 3.3V 1 1 1
10 P1-Tx overriden by tty-kernel module 1 0 1
13 P1-Rx 3.3V 0V 0 0 1
18 Data line of the RTL8366RB
19 Clock line of the RTL8366RB
20 GPIO20 3.3V 0V 1 0 1

To make the GPIOs available via sysfs, the required ones have to be exported to userspace, as it is explained on a page of the Squidge-Project. Kernel modules occupying that resource need to be removed before (e.g. "leds-gpio" and "gpio-buttons"). In output-mode, voltage levels of the GPIOs were measured against GND, after the value 1 or 0 had been written to /sys/class/gpio/gpioX/value. In input-mode, the value of the file /sys/class/gpio/gpioX/value was read when the GPIO was floating (initial state), pulled to GND or pulled to Vcc.


How to configure LEDs in general, see the LED section in the system.

The WR1043ND has 10 LEDs:

LED name LED print Internal name Trigger
Power PWR tl-wr1043nd:green:power N/A
System SYS tl-wr1043nd:green:system heartbeat
Wireless LAN WLAN tl-wr1043nd:green:wlan netdev:wlan0
LAN Port 4 4 unknown N/A
LAN Port 3 3 unknown N/A
LAN Port 2 2 unknown N/A
LAN Port 1 1 unknown N/A
Wide Area Network WAN tl-wr1043nd:green:wan N/A
Universal Serial Bus USB tl-wr1043nd:green:usb ledtrig-usbdev
Quick Security Setup QSS tl-wr1043nd:green:qss User preference

ledtrig-usbdev is only available in attitude adjustment (Trunk) and in self-built Backfire images using this set of patches.


hardware.buttons The TP-Link TL-WR1043ND has two buttons:

Reset reset
Quick Security Setup QSS

The QSS button is located at the front and can be easily pressed with a finger. The Reset button is located at the back and cannot be pressed with a finger, you need a small item to push it in.



NOTE: If you accidentally bricked your router by overwriting the bootloader, try the following:

  1. Desolder the Spansion SPI-Flash (here is the datasheet) from the board. I used tin foil to "mask" out everything else which I did not want to desolder and used a heat gun. It worked quite nice.
  2. Find a way to connect the SPI flash to something with SPI interface…. I used a AVR microcontroller. Here you can download a pdf containing the layout for the adapter board I made to solder the Spansion SPI flash chip on, in order to connect it to the AVR. Attention, the PDF is mirrored and it is intended to manufacuring boards with the direct toner method.
  3. Write the bootloader into the flash. I got my bootloader out of another wr1043nd.
  4. Solder the chip back into the router.
  5. The router shall now be unbricked.

Bootloader Mods

  1. you could read about bootloader in general and about Das U-Boot/Configuration of U-Boot in particular.
  2. the uboot version you find on the 1043 is a fork of mainline U-Boot version 1.1.4 from 2005-12-17 see here. You can / you cannot FIXME take a current mainline version of uboot and simply cross-compile it for WR1043ND! TP-Link-Version: It contains the file u-boot-ap83.tar.bz2 which is about 6,06 MiB in size, deflate this as well. The deflated source code will occupy about 37MiB of space, start with reading the README.
  3. also see and compare the versions.
  4. you may be able to cross compile the code with the OpenWrt toolchain Buildroot. See build for guidance. But you may need to use other toolchain to crosscompile, like the ELDK (Embedded Linux Development Kit).
  5. :!: Problem: you cannot test your bootloader, because for some obscure reason, you don't have write access to the flash via JTAG.

Making bootloader partition writable

Look at target/linux/ar71xx/files/arch/mips/ar71xx/mach-tl-wr1043nd.c

static struct mtd_partition tl_wr1043nd_partitions[] = {
    .name   = "u-boot",
    .offset   = 0,
    .size   = 0x020000,
    .mask_flags = MTD_WRITEABLE,
  } , {
    .name   = "kernel",
    .offset   = 0x020000,
    .size   = 0x140000,
  } , {
    .name   = "rootfs",
    .offset   = 0x160000,
    .size   = 0x690000,
  } , {
    .name   = "art",
    .offset   = 0x7f0000,
    .size   = 0x010000,
    .mask_flags = MTD_WRITEABLE,
  } , {
    .name   = "firmware",
    .offset   = 0x020000,
    .size   = 0x7d0000,
Remove the line
.mask_flags = MTD_WRITEABLE,
for the partition named "u-boot" to make it writeable.

Смена MAC адреса

  • Get the uboot image via the following command
    cat /dev/mtd0 > /tmp/
  • At the offset 0x1FC00 you will usually find your mac address. You can change it with an hex editor. I use dhex.
  • After changing the MAC and making the u-boot mtd flash portion writeable, you can write the modified uboot image back to flash:
    mtd write /tmp/uboot.mod u-boot
    where "uboot.mod" is the filename of your modified uboot image.

Аппаратные моды

  1. as a beginner, you really should inform yourself about soldering in general and then even obtain some experience!

Мод 64MB памяти

The Device uses a DDR1 16Mbit x 16bit (16Mibit*16=256 mebibit. 256 mebibit/8=32MiByte) 400MHz chip. Replace it with any 32Mbit x 16bit chip. 333MHz instead of 400MHz also works fine. It's quite hard to find these chips. The best chance is to have a look at DDR-SODIMM. Since there are no 64Mbit x 16Bit DDR1 Chips available → no 128 MB mod!

Working chips:

  • Hynix HY5DU121622DTP-D43 (From Mustang DDR-SODIMM 512 MB)
  • Infineon HYB25D512160BE (From Infineon DDR-SODIMM 512 MB)

Additional list that may work:

Type | ID Code | Vendor | DDR |32Mx16 |PC400 TSOP Pb Free |HY5DU121622DTP-D43-C |Hynix | DDR |32Mx16 |PC400 TSOP Pb Free |H5DU5162ETR-E3C |Hynix | DDR |32Mx16 |PC400 Pb Free |K4H511638G-LCCC |Samsung | DDR |32Mx16 |PC400 Pb Free |K4H511638J-LCCC |Samsung | DDR |32Mx16 |PC400 |A3S12D40ETP-G5 |Zentel | DDR |32Mx16 |PC400 |NT5DS32M16BS-5T |Nanya | DDR |32Mx16 |PC400 PB Free |P3S12D40ETP-GUTT |Mira | DDR |32Mx16 |PC333 CL2.5 TSOP |MT46V32M16TG-6T:F |Micron | DDR |32Mx16 |PC333 CL2.5 TSOP |MT46V32M16P-6T:F |Micron | DDR |32Mx16 |PC333 PB Free TSOP |EDD5116ADTA-6B-E |Elpida | DDR |32Mx16 |PC333 PB Free TSOP |HYB25D512160CE-6 |Qimonda | DDR |32Mx16 |PC333 PB Free TSOP |HYB25D512160CEL-6 |Qimonda | DDR |32Mx16 |PC333 PB Free TSOP |HYB25D512160DE-6 |Qimonda |

To make router see all new 64 mb of RAM do via putty SSH client

1.nvram set sdram_init=0x0013
2.nvram commit

root@OpenWrt:~# free
total used free shared buffers
Mem: 62104 17472 44632 0 1392
Total: 62104 17472 44632


An I²C-bus can easily be added using the GPIO-lines of the AR913x-SoC. So far, the only usable ones which have been confirmed to work are GPIO 5 (the QSS-LED, easily solderable at D10,left pin with '+') as SDA and GPIO 20 (labeled on the pcb, next to the RAM chip) as SCL. There are only two pull-up resistors of 4,7k-10k needed, which have to be soldered between the apropriate GPIO line and Vcc (found at the spot labeled TP3V3, about 2 cm above the WiFi-shielding). The common ground can be obtained from the TP_GND spot (between P1 and the flash chip). Remember this bus runs at 3.3V level, when connecting I²C-devices. Unfortunately the precompiled packages don't seem to work properly, so building from sources is most likely necessary. Therefore, make sure the apropriate part of your OpenWRT-config file looks like that:

# I2C support
# CONFIG_PACKAGE_kmod-i2c-algo-pca is not set
# CONFIG_PACKAGE_kmod-i2c-algo-pcf is not set

Besides that, check in the kernel-config, that the support for I²C character device is selected. In the kernel config file the appropriate line should look like that:

To load the kernel module, do a:
insmod i2c-gpio-custom bus0=0,5,20
In many cases, GPIO 5 will already be occupied by the leds-gpio kernel module - causing the above command to fail. In case you don't need the leds at all, you can just unload the leds-gpio kernel module, remove the package or disable it in the OpenWRT-configuration. As an alternative, you can just release the binding of the QSS-LED in sysfs - thus keeping the function of the other LEDs.

Мод I²C Tiny-USB

Though not really a modification of the internal hardware, the I²C Tiny-USB adapter allows you to extend your router with an I²C bus over USB. It is not as cheap as the I²C-GPIO mod, but will not risk your warranty. Remember this bus runs at 5V level, when connecting I²C-devices.


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ru/toh/tp-link/tl-wr1043nd.txt · Last modified: 2013/06/15 19:59 by lorema