Site Tools


Frequently Asked Questions

Day 0

Q: I'm new to FreshTomato where should I get started?

  • You are on the right site.
  • Verify if your device is supported by your router via the hardware compatibility page. Pay attention to the HW revision column and the notes.
  • Overall the installation is relatively safe and, based on the HW model, there are few recovery procedures you can follow in the unlikely event something doesn't go to plan. That said you are fully responsible for your device and the decision to upgrade to FreshTomato.
  • You need to have an ethernet connection between your end device (laptop?) and a LAN port of the router.
  • You must read and follow the Installing FreshTomato this will guide you through all the steps needed.

Device Support

Q: Does FreshTomato support only old devices or newer ones too?

A: FreshTomato supports a variety of devices. See the Hardware compatibility page for more details. Keep a close eye on CPU speed, Ethernet port speed and WiFi speed (with 802.11ac currently supporting the fastest WiFi speed).

Note that unless Broadcom releases the source code to their wireless drivers, it will not likely be possible to create new releases for 802.11ax or newer WiFi standards. Broadcom's wireless driver source code is an industry secret.

Default Login Credentials / IP Address

Q: What is FreshTomato's default IP(v4) address?

  • Default IPv4 address:
  • Netmask:

Q: What are FreshTomato's default login credentials?

  • Username: root
  • Password: admin

How Do I Choose a Build? (build naming scheme)

Q: What do those cryptic filenames mean? How do I choose the right build for my router?

A: The naming scheme for ARM-based models (with some exceptions) is roughly as follows:

Build Name Term Description
FreshTomato The Tomato mod name. This is always FreshTomato, as currently it's the only fork in development.
Hardware model Specifies the router or access point model number.
ARM Specifies the build is intended for devices with ARM CPU architecture.
Wireless Driver (optional) NG - Indicates whether the New Generation Broadcom binary wireless driver is in the build.
Broadcom never released the driver source code, so developers rely on binary drivers.
Builds for newer hardware required the newer wireless driver and a newer software development
kit (SDK). These builds were called “NG” (“New Generation”) driver builds.
RT-N - indicates the build's driver supports 802.11n.
RT-AC - indicates the build's driver supports 802.11ac.
Release name e.g. 2021.3 Note: this does NOT indicate the 3rd month of 2021!
Build Type e.g. (Mini / AIO / VPN) - indicates the features included in the build. See Feature matrix to learn more.
NVRAM size (32K / 64K / 128K) - Optional. For models with multiple hardware revisions
where each revision may include more or less NVRAM.
NOSMP (Optional) - This is a build for SMP-capable hardware, but for which SMP is disabled.
Custom (Optional) - identifies a build which includes or excludes a certain feature (set).
Reserved for future use
Reserved for future use

For example, we can know the following features from the ARM build with filename:


  • Fork name: FreshTomato.
  • Hardware Model: For the Asus RT-AC3200 router.
  • ARM: (for models with an ARM architecture).
  • Release name: 2021.3 (The third release of 2021. NOT the third month).
  • Build features: AIO (All-in-one). The build includes all features.
  • NVRAM size: 128K (this is optional but indicates the NVRAM size of the routers, 128K in this case).
  • no_media_server: The build doesn't include the Media Server.

Which Build Folders should I Look In for the Right Builds?

For more help choosing a build, see the Installing Firmware-Basic Concepts and Procedures page in the HOWTOs section.

When browsing through firmware folders on the website, a subfolder named “K26” indicates that the build includes Linux kernel 2.6.x . These folders generally contain generic builds for MIPSR1 and MIPSR2 routers. Generally, only very old models (before 2010) use the MIPSR1 architecture. Most routers made after 2010 use MIPSR2 or ARM architectures.

The other subfolders such as K26RT-AC and K26RT-N contain dedicated builds, meant for specific router models. Unless you're experienced, It's recommended you install specific hardware builds. If no specific builds exist for your model, select a generic build in the K26 folder. Think carefully before deciding if it should be a MIPSR1 or MIPSR2 build.

How Can I Check the Integrity of my Downloaded Build File?

MD5SUM files are available in each website folder containing firmware. It's strongly recommended that you run a hash program against the .zip file of the build you downloaded. Then, compare the value in that program with the hash value listed for that build in the MD5SUM file. If the two don't match, your download may be corrupt, and you shouldn't flash with that file, or you could damage your router. Try downloading it and performing the hash check again.

How Can I Experiment with Temporary Settings?

Q: How can I make temporary changes to FreshTomato's settings that aren't saved unless I want them to be?

A: In the Administration/Debugging menu, enable the “Avoid commiting to NVRAM” setting. If you don't want to keep the settings changes, just reboot FreshTomato and settings will return to what they were before you made them. If you later decide you want to save the changes, uncheck the Avoid performing an NVRAM commit button. This make experimentation fun and safe.

Another option while debugging is to make a backup configuration and then make your changes, if you decide you messed things up, just restore the backed-up configuration. NOTE that configuration backup files do not work across different releases of FreshTomato.

Device Name Defaults

Q: What are the common device names used to represent router interfaces/components?

  • vlan0: Wired (Ethernet) LAN ports
  • eth1: Wireless LAN
  • br0: Internal LAN bridge (configurable) for wired LAN and Wireless LAN
  • eth0: internal interface between CPU and the 6-port switch

Log Location Default

Q: Where is FreshTomato System log file located? How are logs stored?

A: * The logfile is located in /var/log/messages.

If you happen to have specified a different path/filname under Custom Log File Path /var/log/message is still relevant but will be available in a form os symlink. The only exception occurs if you configure remote storage e.g. external syslog.
Unless a sort of permanent storage is configured /var/log/messages is stored in RAM hence unable to survive a device reboot.1)


Q: What is BusyBox?

A: BusyBox provides the Linux commands used in FreshTomato.


BusyBox combines tiny versions of many common UNIX/Linux utilities into a single small executable. It provides minimalist replacements for most of the utilities you usually find in GNU coreutils, util-linux, etc. BusyBox utilities generally have fewer options than their full GNU equivalents. However, the options included provide the expected functionality and behave much like their GNU equivalents.

Read more at:


Q: The GUI is slow, is this normal?

No. FreshTomato was specifically built for speed and simplicity. There are some very rare cases where the GUI might become slow/unresponsive. This is almost always related to browser issues.

  1. First, try to clear the browser cache either manuallyvia the browser setting or reloading the page via keyboard's combination: CTRL+F5.
  2. Try a different browser.
  3. Rarely, you might have multiple copies of FreshTomato's administration interface certificate stored in the browser. If this happens, simply remove any unwanted FreshTomato certificates stored in your browser (or even all of them) before reconnecting to the web interface.

If the GUI is completely unresponsive, log in via SSH (preferred) or telnet and verify, in order:

  1. CPU utilization ( e.g. by running top )
  2. Presence of content in the /www folder (e.g. ls -l /www )
  3. The httpd deamon is running ( e.g. ps | grep [h]ttpd )

Netgear R-series

Q: What are the “Netgear R-series initial files”?

If you have the Original Netgear firmware installed, use these files to install FreshTomato for the first time. You cannot use these files to upgrade FreshTomato to a new version. The initial zip files contain firmware with a crt extension that the original Netgear can use to install FreshTomato. If you already have FreshTomato installed use regular build zip files which will have firmware with a trx extension.

If you enabled Log To Remote System your logs are obviously retained on the remote server as well.
faq.txt · Last modified: 2022/08/07 08:47 by rs232