The Topfield TF5800 and the Asus WL-500g

The Topfield TF5800 and the Asus WL-500g
By Penthes, ChunkyWizard and Jackofall
Version: 1.4, 15 January 2006
Asus WL-500g Premium
These instructions involve updating the firmware on your Asus WL-500g with a version not supplied
by Asus, probably invalidating your warranty. By doing this you are risking irreparably damaging
your Asus, and for this no responsibility can be taken. Take particular care over the instructions for
flashing the firmware, and in particular the version of the firmware used.
These instructions are provided as-is in the hope that they will be useful to you. There is no
guarantee of correctness or completeness.
Comments, corrections, errors and omissions
We would be glad get feedback on this guide, to hear of any problems you have or errors you find,
and will do my best to keep the guide up-to-date.
Please post your comments to the forums, under the "Computer connections" section.
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Guide History
7 January 2006
Initial version
8 January 2006
Integrated ChunkyWizard's guide. Incorporated comments and
corrected errors based on feedback from forums
9 January 2006
Incorporated Jackofall's guide. Added esmtp for sending emails.
Incorporated further feedback.
12 January 2006
Updated ssh section, included PuTTY example.
Added section on how to set up startup script for built-in cron.
Amended rt2mei – cron does not need installing, just configuring
Changed the rt2mei crontab log to /tmp/var/log/rt2mei to make
consistent with other logs
Changed email section, there needs to be a blank line before the
email body, or the email headers get messed up.
Modification to post-boot so that information and error messages
from init.d scripts are captured in the post-boot log.
12 January 2006
Minor typos corrected
15 January 2006
Automatic BST/GMT changeover (important for cron)
Corrected the "- pastes as ." problem when pasting text from the
Instructions for how to use crontab with nano
Added information on vi and nano text editors, and links to
Setting the default crontab editor to be nano
Other corrections and clarifications
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Document conventions
Entering commands
You will be typing commands for the Asus in a telnet session, using MS Windows telnet, PuTTY or
the telnet client of your choice (see Accessing your Asus using Telnet on p7 for more on this).
Commands that you type are shown as follows:
mkdir /opt/etc/samba
ls '/a path to a long directory name to show the format of text wrapping in
this document/*'
touch /opt/etc/samba/smb.conf
In your telnet session, you will see a prompt something like [admin@WL500gP root]$ -- type the
commands at this prompt, terminating each command with the <enter> key.
If a new line of text has been started because of the formatting of this document, the new line will
be shown indented. This does not mean that you press <enter> at this point, nor should you be
doing any indenting when you type the command in.
Editing files
You will also be creating and editing files on the Asus. To do this you need to use an editor (such as
vi or nano, see Text editors: vi and nano on p8), again through a telnet session.
Files that you are editing are shown in this document as follows, with the heading showing the full
path and name of the file.
# add the dns server to resolv.conf
echo '# resolv.conf' > /etc/resolv.conf
echo '# just a long comment to show how long lines of text wrap in this
document' >> resolve.conf
echo "# generated by $0" >> /etc/resolv.conf
echo 'nameserver' >> /etc/resolv.conf
Where lines of text have been wrapped due to the formatting of this document, they are shown
indented (so in the example above, the line starting echo '# just a long comment, and the
following indented line, are in fact all part of the same line). Do not start a new line in your editor at
this point, and don't add any indenting of your own.
Files used in this document
All of the files that you will be creating in this document are available in a zip file from
The folder structure in the zip file matches the directory structure used on the Asus.
Take care if you use these files as a starting point, make sure you follow the guide carefully, as
some of these files will need editing to suit your own configuration, and therefore won't work if you
use them just as they are.
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Why get an Asus WL-500g? .................................................................. 5
What is involved? ................................................................................. 5
The PC, Windows and your home network ........................................... 5
The Hardware....................................................................................... 5
Asus firmware version.......................................................................... 6
Accessing your Asus ............................................................................. 7
Upgrading the firmware ....................................................................... 8
Basic configuration using the web interface ....................................... 10
Adding a USB key: partition, format, mount on boot .......................... 14
DNS setup .......................................................................................... 19
Using the built-in FTP server and Samba server ................................. 20
FTP access to files on the Toppy using ftpd-topfield........................... 21
Windows file sharing access to the Asus using Samba ....................... 24
Command-line access to the Toppy using Puppy ................................ 25
Set up cron for scheduling tasks ........................................................ 25
Automated download of Radio Times EPG using rt2mei ..................... 27
Secure access using ssh: external access to your Asus ...................... 29
Sending emails from your Asus .......................................................... 31
Other hints and tips............................................................................ 33
FAQ .................................................................................................... 34
Thanks ............................................................................................... 35
References ......................................................................................... 35
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Why get an Asus WL-500g?
The Toppy doesn't have an Ethernet port or any wireless capability, out-of-the-box the only way to
connect it to a PC is through its USB port.
If you wish to add your Toppy to your wireless network, you will need a wireless device that
supports attached USB storage, such as the Asus WL500. There are various flavours of these but the
most currently available is the WL-500g Premium, or WL500gP for short, and that is the model that
is used in this guide, though most of the instructions also apply to the WL-500g Deluxe. It can
currently be ordered from Komplett for £69.99+postage.
The Asus comes with two external USB ports, one of which you can use for connecting to your
Toppy. So rather than having to connect a USB lead from your Toppy to your PC, with the Asus it's
possible to connect wirelessly to the Toppy, avoiding trailing cables all around the house.
The Asus is a small Linux-based (BusyBox) device, and with the addition of Oleg's firmware you can
install additional software on it.
You will also need a USB key, which plugs into the second USB port. This provides the extra storage
necessary for installing the various software packages; we would recommend at least 128MB.
By following the instructions in this guide, it will be possible for you to transfer recordings from the
Toppy to your PC for archiving and burning to DVD, to access files on the Asus itself using Windows
File and Printer Sharing (SMB), and to have a daily automated download of the Radio Times EPG to
the Toppy for use with the MyStuff TAP.
What is involved?
To get the Asus to perform these functions you need to add functionality to it. This involves
upgrading the firmware and loading other packages on. This is technical, but there should be
enough information out there (and in this guide) so you are following line-by-line instructions to
complete this task. The tricky bit is when it does not work, and then you may need to ask on forums for help.
How long does it take?
It took the authors of this guide about 3 days on and off (mostly on) to get it working. Should
everything run smoothly it should take a lot less, as we didn't have this guide to work from!
The PC, Windows and your home network
This guide was written for a PC running Windows 2000 or Windows XP. It is assumed you are on an
ADSL broadband connection with a wireless ADSL modem/router, though it is also possible to use
the Asus with a wired Ethernet connection. And if your ADSL modem/router is not wireless, it's also
possible to add a second wireless router to provide the link to the Asus, though you will have to do
some messing around with routing tables.
It's based on a home network with a network address of and a subnet mask of ( The Asus has a default IP address of If your
network uses different network addresses you will need to modify the appropriate values in this
The Hardware
The hardware you will need is
a) An Asus WL-500g (the Premium was used for this guide, most of the instructions are also
applicable to the Deluxe)
b) A USB key, minimum size 128MB. A 1GB key was used for this guide, but all of the software
installed in the making of this guide will fit into 64MB of storage.
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So what do you get for your money? See below.
As you can see, the Asus is about A5 size. It comes with a Quick Start guide (which you will not
need), a CD (containing a manual and some tools which hopefully you will not need), and an
Ethernet cable and power supply which you will need. If you got your router from Komplett then
they ship US versions and a plug adapter. This works fine but might mean you have to rearrange
your plugs for it to fit, see below.
Asus firmware version
The instructions in this guide have been tested with the Topfield TF5800, the Asus WL-500gP and
Oleg's firmware version They should also be applicable to the Asus WL-500g Deluxe.
The Firmware upgrade, basic configuration, USB key and ftpd-topfield sections were all taken from
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Jackofall's original "Connecting an Asus WL500g deluxe to your network" guide. Great care must be
taken in selecting the correct firmware version for your model.
Accessing your Asus
Your initial access to the Asus will be through a wired Ethernet connection, until you have the
wireless connection set up.
You will need to make sure that your PC and the Asus are on the same IP address range (subnet),
by default this is the address range from to The Asus itself has a
default IP address of, and this is the one that is used in this guide. Make sure your
existing ADSL modem/router's IP address, and any other PCs on your network, don't conflict with
the address you use for the Asus.
If you are connecting your PC straight to the Asus with an Ethernet cable to do the initial
configuration, you will need to assign a static IP address to your PC, eg
If you need help in setting up a static IP on your PC visit
Accessing your Asus through a web browser
The normal way of accessing your Asus is through a web browser, with the IP address of your Asus
as the address (the default is
This gives you the web configuration interface of the Asus, and you'll be using that to set up the
basic configuration.
Accessing your Asus using Telnet
In most of the procedures in this guide you will need to enter Linux commands and edit files.
This is done by using telnet – this gives you command-line access to the router. There are a number
of telnet clients you can run on your PC to do this, and Windows comes with a command-prompt
version of Telnet built in. PuTTY comes highly-recommended as a telnet client.
Please note that if you want to access your Asus using telnet before you have installed Oleg's
firmware, you will need to turn it on in the web interface. Enable it under System Setup ->
If you get as far as installing the dropbear sshd server, you can also access the router using an ssh
client (PuTTY is an ssh client as well as a telnet client).
MS Windows Telnet
To start Telnet, open a command prompt window (you can do this by clicking on Run from the Start
button, and entering cmd, or you can find it elsewhere in the start menu).
Then type
and enter your user id and password (the defaults are admin and admin).
Hints and tips:
a) You can paste stuff into the telnet window by positioning the mouse pointer over it and rightclicking. Note that if you are using the vi editor you will need to press i to get into insert mode
first. If you paste multiple lines of text that contain indentations into vi, vi does some strange
things with the indentations, so you are probably better off pasting line-by-line.
b) You can copy text from the telnet window by selecting it by clicking and dragging with the
mouse, and then pressing the Enter key. The selected text will be highlighted in white (unless
you have changed the default command prompt colours).
c) If you get into a mess, and nothing seems to be responding, type ctrl-] and type quit at the
Microsoft Telnet> prompt. This will close the telnet session and return you to the Windows
command prompt
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PuTTY is an excellent Windows telnet client. You can get it from
Hints and tips:
a) Connect by entering the Asus IP address (default in the Host Name box. Select
the telnet protocol. Enter your user name and password (default admin and admin) when
b) You can paste into the PuTTY window using right-click.
c) You can copy text from the PuTTY window simply by selecting it (mouse click-and-drag). The
text is automatically copied to the clipboard.
Text editors: vi and nano
Whether you choose to use MS Windows Telnet, PuTTY or some other Telnet or SSH client, a lot of
the instructions in this guide ask you to edit files.
This involves using a text editor once you are in a telnet session.
Oleg's firmware comes with a built-in text editor, called vi. It's pretty basic in terms of user
interface, but it does work. Alternatively you can install nano, which is a bit more user-friendly.
You'll need to have got past the section Macsat: Installing basic software (p17) before you can do
To install nano, in a telnet window type
ipkg install nano
For information on editing files using vi and nano, try
vi: and
Upgrading the firmware
Upgrading the firmware consists of replacing the Asus-provided firmware with Oleg's firmware. This
allows you to plug a USB key into the machine, mount it and install additional software on it.
It is recommended that you avoid making any configuration changes (eg user name, password,
network configuration) until you have installed Oleg's firmware.
You are also recommended to make sure you have a copy of the official Asus firmware, and the
firmware restoration tool. Both of these can be obtained from, and can
hopefully be used to restore the Asus to its original state, either using the web interface or by using
Recovery Mode.
Downloading the firmware
The latest version of Oleg's firmware is available from The version
used in this guide is and we recommend you use this version. People have ended up
destroying their Asus using some of the earlier versions, so if you plan to use a version other than
this, do your own research to make sure it will work with your model of the Asus WL-500g first. And
make sure you download the correct version for your model – as there are different versions for
different models.
The firmware is in a zip file, you'll need to unzip it and extract the .trx file.
Installing the firmware using the web interface
You can use the web interface of the Asus to upload the firmware.
If you have any problems with this, there is an alternative method that involves putting the Asus
into Recovery Mode, which is covered in the next section.
It is recommended that you do this with a wired Ethernet connection.
Browse to (or your chosen Asus IP), enter your login details and navigate to
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System Setup -> Firmware Upgrade
Click on browse and find the previously downloaded .trx file, click open then upload. The Asus will
then show a progress bar and reboot when upgrade is complete.
Installing the firmware using Recovery Mode
It is recommended that you do this with a wired Ethernet connection.
To install the firmware:
a) Unplug the power cable from the Asus, and leave it for at least 20 seconds
b) Press and hold the "Restore" button on the router
c) Plug the power cable back into the Asus.
d) Continue to hold the button in until the power light starts blinking
e) In a command prompt window on your PC navigate to the directory containing your firmware
and type
tftp -i put WL500gp-
Note that if you have changed the IP address of your Asus, you should replace
with the new IP address. You should replace WL500gp- with the filename of
the firmware you downloaded, if it is different.
The Asus should respond with a message something like:
Transfer successful: 7938048 bytes in 28 seconds, 283501 bytes/s
The router will then reboot, this can take a few minutes, wait until the power light is steady.
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Basic configuration using the web interface
The web interface is used to perform the basic LAN and wireless setup
This covers configuring the Asus in Hybrid mode, so it should be able to connect to your main
wireless router using WDS, and also allow wireless connections to itself. We also cover using the
Asus in Station mode, which means it connects to your main ADSL modem/router in the same way
your PC does, in case your main ADSL modem/router does not support WDS, or you have problems
connecting through that route.
Using your browser navigate to the Asus current IP of You will need to enter
the default username and password of admin and admin (you can change these once you have
completed setting up the Asus)
Operation mode
First we are going to change the operation mode of the Asus, changing it to an access point so using
the menu on the left of the screen navigate to System Setup -> Operation Mode
Click on Access Point and click on apply.
Check the ASUS is set to the correct time zone in
IP Config -> Miscellaneous
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IP Config - LAN
We are now going to change the IP address of the Asus, so navigate to
IP Config -> LAN
Here we need to make the following changes
Change Get IP Automatically?
Enter the IP
see note 1
The Subnet mask is
The Default Gateway
see note 2
1) The IP address you choose for the Asus will depend on what IP addresses you are using for
other devices on your network, particularly your main ADSL modem/router. If your main
ADSL modem/router is on a different IP address from, you can leave the Asus on
the default IP address. Otherwise you need to choose a different one, eg – if
you change the IP address here, make sure that this is the IP address you use for the rest of
this guide.
2) This should be the IP address of your main ADSL modem/router.
Next click Apply and then Finish you will then be taken to the following screen.
Click Save&Restart and then the ASUS will then reboot.
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Wireless setup
If you changed the IP address in the previous section, you now need to point your browser to the
new IP address.
Enter your login details as before, and navigate to
Wireless -> Interface
Here you will need to enter the following information
The same as your existing AP
The same as your existing AP
Authentication Method:
Open System or Shared Key
WEP Encryption:
The same as your existing AP
Passphrase or WEP keys:
The same as your existing AP
This guide only covers setting up the Asus as part of a WEP encrypted network
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Click Apply and then navigate to
Wireless -> Bridge
Here you will need to enter the following information
AP Mode:
Hybrid (1)
As Before
Connect to AP’s in remote bridge list?
Allow anonymous?
1) If you are going to use Station mode, instead of WDS, then choose WDS Only here
You will need to add the MAC Address of the AP you wish the Asus to become a client of enter it in
the format 000F66251CAE omitting any : and click Add.
Click Apply
If you are going to use Station mode, instead of WDS, you will also need to navigate to
Wireless -> Advanced, and set the Extended Mode to station, and again click Apply.
Click Finish as before you will be taken to the Save&Restart page.
Click Save&Restart and then the ASUS will then reboot
(Optionally you can apply any MAC address filtering on the Wireless -> Access Control page)
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You will now need to go to the web interface of your Access Point. in this case we are using a
Linksys WRT54G running the DD-WRT firmware. Please refer to the documentation relating to your
individual Access point regarding WDS.
Here you will need to enter the MAC address of the Asus (you can find this on the white sticker on
the side of the product), change the setting to LAN and in this case we also enabled Lazy WDS and
clicked Save Settings. The Asus should now show as a WDS Node in your other AP’s status page.
Now disconnect your CAT5 cable, and if you previously assigned a static IP to your PC change the
connection settings to their previous value.
Using a wireless client go to the IP Address of the Asus and ensure that you can connect.
You can now change the username and password settings in the System Setup and associated sub
Once you are happy that all is working as it should be Navigate to
System Setup -> Settings Management
And follow the instructions for saving a config file that you can use at a later date if needed.
Adding a USB key: partition, format, mount on boot
This is covered by the macsat guide at
For the most part we will be following the macsat guide, but there are some minor differences, and
some additional information to help you through.
Here we are into the techy stuff. You might want to refer back to Accessing your Asus using Telnet
(p7) and Text editors: vi and nano (p8) for information on how to connect and issue the commands
in this and subsequent sections, and how to edit files on your Asus.
Macsat steps 1, 2, 3 and 4: Adding the key and preparing for partitioning
You need to follow these instructions carefully. To ensure everything goes smoothly, it's best to turn
the router on without the USB key inserted, then plug it in once the Asus has booted up. Then follow
the macsat instructions.
Macsat step 1 to 4: Logging in to the router and unmounting the USB key
Follow these instructions as per the macsat guide.
If you have problems at step 4 – ie the umount command gives an error message, then as well as
killall stupid-ftpd
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killall smbd
killall nmbd
in case the built-in samba server is also started. Then try and umount again with
umount /tmp/harddisk/
If you still get an error message, then try the following:
d) Reboot your router leaving the USB key plugged in
b) See if the USB key is visible by typing
ls /dev/discs
If this shows disc0
then skip step c and proceed with the next section. You do not need to umount the USB key.
However, if you get an error message
ls: /dev/discs: No such file or directory
then carry out step c
(If FTP or Samba are enabled in the web interface, the modules inserted in c) below are
loaded automatically and you won't get an error.)
c) Insert the modules necessary to access the USB key, and check it is now visible by typing:
insmod scsi_mod && insmod sd_mod && insmod usb-storage
ls /dev/discs
You should now see /dev/discs/disc0 listed
As the normal Asus automount has not happened, there is no need to unmount the key.
Macsat step 5 to 8: partitioning, formatting, rebooting and mounting
You can now proceed with partitioning and formatting, steps 5 and 6 in the macsat guide.
The partitions you set up will depend on the size of your USB key. These instructions are for a 1GB
USB key, the macsat guide is for a 256MB key.
You can determine what partition sizes to use by typing
fdisk /dev/discs/disc0/disc -l
The first three lines will show the geometry and size, mine shows
Disk /dev/discs/disc0/disc: 1009 MB, 1009254400 bytes
64 heads, 32 sectors/track, 962 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 2048 * 512 = 1048576 bytes
So the total size is shown as 1009MB, deducting 69MB for the swap partition leaves 940MB for the
remainder. These calculations are not 100% accurate. In fact these figures result in a swap partition
size of 65MB, so when you are doing your own calculations you might want to add on 5-10MB to the
swap partition size you want just to make sure it ends up big enough.
This results in a partition setup of:
part1: 940MB e2fs partition (the main Asus partition)
part2: remainder swap partition, currently not used, I might remove this at some point
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The fdisk commands for creating these partitions are much the same as the macsat guide, but with
a different size for the first partition (don't type the comments in brackets!).
d (delete existing partition, if using a key that has been used before,
enter each partition number in turn, p to check t)
n (new partition)
p (primary partition)
1 (partition number)
<enter> (first cylinder, 1 is default)
+940M (size)
n (new partition)
p (primary)
2 (number)
<enter> (accept default start cylinder)
<enter> (accept default end cylinder)
( check with p here to display what you have set up)
t (partition type)
2 (partition 2)
82 (linux swap)
w (write changes)
Now format the partitions as per macsat step 6 and reboot the router as per 7.
When you get to step 8, first check that the USB key is visible, and if not insert the necessary
a) See if the USB key is visible by typing
ls /dev/discs
If this shows
then skip step c
However, if you get an error message
ls: /dev/discs: No such file or directory
then carry out step c
c) Insert the modules necessary to access the USB key, and check it is now visible by typing:
insmod scsi_mod && insmod sd_mod && insmod usb-storage
ls /dev/discs
You should now see /dev/discs/disc0 listed
Now proceed to mount the disk as per step 8, in my case as I am not (yet) using the swap partition,
the command
swapon /dev/discs/disc0/part2
was omitted.
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Macsat: Installing basic software
Install ipkg as per macsat's "Installing Basic Software". However at this point the Asus won't have
the IP address of a DNS server, so won't be able to resolve the URL for the ipkg software.
To resolve this
echo nameserver > /etc/resolv.conf
replacing with the IP address of your DNS server. This might be the IP address of your
main ADSL modem/router if this performs DNS forwarding (usually the case), or might be the IP
address of your ISP's DNS server. If you are not sure what to use, on your PC use ipconfig /all in
a command prompt window to see what DNS server address your PC is using, and use that.
You can confirm this has worked with
Type Ctrl-C to stop pinging.
This change is not permanent, the next section covers making it permanent.
Then proceed with the rest of this section in the macsat guide.
Macsat: Configuring the router to mount on boot
You can now set up the post-boot script as per macsat's "Configuring the router to mount on boot",
but use the post-boot script in this guide, which differs in the following respects:
1) As the modules scsi_mod, sd_mod and usb-storage (necessary for accessing the USB key) are
not inserted by default if FTP and Samba are disabled, there is a section at the beginning to
check and load them if necessary.
2) The command to mount the swap partition, this line was commented out (currently not felt to
be necessary, but as the partition is there it can be included later if it turns out to be needed).
3) Logging has been added, to /tmp/var/log/post-boot, so if there are problems with the boot
process you can check this file. This will also capture any error messages generated by the
/opt/etc/init.d scripts.
The post-boot script follows.
Make sure that you
flashfs save
flashfs commit
flashfs enable
after creating this file, or you will loose your changes when you reboot!
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# post-boot
# 1. insert modules for USB storage, if needed
# 2. mount part1 of usb drive as /opt
echo `date '+%F %T'` $0 started >>$log
# test if USB disc has been attached
# if not then insert needed modules
if [ ! -d /dev/discs ]
echo `date '+%F %T'` /dev/discs not found, inserting usb modules >>$log
insmod scsi_mod 2>>$log
insmod sd_mod 2>>$log
insmod usb-storage 2>>$log
sleep 5s
# check /dev/discs now visible
if [ ! -d /dev/discs ]
echo `date '+%F %T'` error: /dev/discs not found, check USB key inserted
echo `date '+%F %T'` /dev/discs found, USB key present >>$log
# Wait for /opt to mount
mount /dev/discs/disc0/part1 /opt 2>>$log
while [ $i -le 30 ]
if [ -d /opt/etc ]
echo `date '+%F %T'` USB key partition mounted as /opt >>$log
sleep 1
i=`expr $i + 1`
# check it worked
if [ ! -d /opt/etc ]
echo `date '+%F %T'` error: could not mount USB key partition >>$log
# Activate swap
# removed, not currently using swap partition
# swapon /dev/discs/disc0/part2
# Run all active services (all in /opt/etc/init.d starting with S)
echo `date '+%F %T'` starting rc.unslung >>$log
/opt/etc/init.d/rc.unslung >>$log 2>&1
echo `date '+%F %T'` $0 finished >>$log
Take care with lines that have split onto two because of the formatting in this document –
these should be fairly obvious as the second half of the line is indented significantly. You can
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copy/paste straight from this guide. Also note the backwards-apostrophe character used in
some of the "echo" statements. This is probably on the top left key on your keyboard.
After you have rebooted as per the macsat guide, you can check for any problems with
cat /tmp/var/log/post-boot
DNS setup
Oleg's firmware does not allow you to enter DNS servers in the web interface. (If you are obtaining
the Asus' IP address automatically, this section might not apply).
Therefore it is necessary to set the IP address(s) of DNS servers when the Asus boots up.
Depending on the model of your Asus, you may or may not need to do this.
To check, use Telnet and type
If you get the message
ping: Unknown host
then you do need to proceed with these instructions.
If you get a response something like
PING ( 56 data bytes
64 bytes from icmp_seq=0 ttl=238 time=24.3
64 bytes from icmp_seq=1 ttl=238 time=23.1
64 bytes from icmp_seq=2 ttl=238 time=24.9
64 bytes from icmp_seq=3 ttl=238 time=24.4
Then press Ctrl-C to stop ping running. This means you do not need to follow the rest of these DNS
setup instructions.
Setting the DNS server IP address on boot-up
To do this, set up a script in /opt/etc/init.d as follows:
# add the dns server to resolv.conf
echo '# resolv.conf' > /etc/resolv.conf
echo "# generated by $0" >> /etc/resolv.conf
echo 'nameserver' >> /etc/resolv.conf
You should replace with the IP address of your DNS server. If you have more than one, you
can duplicate the last line as many times as you need.
Then make this script executable with
chmod +x /opt/etc/init.d/
You can check that this is worked by typing
Use Ctrl-C to stop the pinging.
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Using the built-in FTP server and Samba server
Oleg's firmware contains both an FTP server (stupid-ftpd) and Samba, which can be used to access
files on the USB key only (they can't be used to access the Toppy, nor can they be used to access
files on the Asus itself – for this you should refer to the instructions for installing ftpd-topfield and
These are configured from the web interface.
Once you have set up a post-boot script these services only start if the USB key is plugged in after
the Asus has booted up, which means any additional software on the USB key won't run.
And if you then reboot the Asus with the key left in, the built-in FTP and Samba services will not
start this time around.
(If you haven't set up the post-boot script, or haven't made it executable, then the built-in services
will start.)
This means you can leave both the built-in FTP server and Samba server enabled, as there should
be no conflict with ftpd-topfield and the custom Samba configuration.
Warning: some people have had problems transferring large files with ftpd-topfield when the builtin FTP server is turned on.
In normal operation (booting up with the USB key present) the built-in services won't start, and you
can instead use ftpd-topfield to browse the Toppy's files, and a custom Samba configuration to
browse the Asus filing system, if you have set one up.
It is also safe for both ftpd-topfield and the built-in ftp server to use the same port (21) as they will
never be running at the same time.
Using the built-in FTP server
To enable the FTP server in the web interface:
1) Open a browser and put in your Asus IP address, and enter your user name and password
when prompted.
2) Click on USB Application on the left hand side
3) Click on FTP Server on the left hand side
4) Set the Enable FTP Server option to Yes
5) You also have options to allow anonymous users, and to allow the Super User (ie the admin
user), and the ability to add other user accounts. I just allow anonymous access.
6) Use the Apply button to apply your changes, then click on the Finish button, and when the
next page appears click on the button to restart the Asus
You can now use your favourite FTP client to browse the directories and files on the USB
Remember: the FTP server will only start if you boot up the Asus without the USB key present, and
then insert it.
The FTP root directory corresponds to the root of the USB key. Therefore the folder you normally see
as /opt/etc if you boot with the USB key present will now be visible as /etc.
Using the built-in Samba server
To enable the Samba server in the web interface:
1) Open a browser and put in your Asus IP address, and enter your user name and password
when prompted.
2) Click on USB Application on the left hand side
3) Click on Samba on the left hand side
4) Set the option Enable Samba Demo Mode to Yes
5) Set the Enable hidden read-write share to Yes
6) Change the Workgroup name to the workgroup you use on your Windows PC
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7) Use the Apply button to apply your changes, then click on the Finish button, and when the
next page appears click on the button to restart the Asus.
Remember: the Samba server will only start if you boot up the Asus without the USB key present,
and then insert it.
The shared folder on the Asus is called "share", and this corresponds to the root of the USB key.
Therefore the folder you normally see as /opt/etc if you boot with the USB key present will now be
visible as /etc.
FTP access to files on the Toppy using ftpd-topfield
ftp-topfield allows you to see the files on your Toppy through an ftp client on your PC.
ftpd-topfield is less well known than the puppy application. However, although it is slightly slower
than puppy it does allow a GUI interface on the Windows PC by using any suitable ftp program. In
comparison the puppy is only command line, and only gives you access from the Asus itself.
ftpd-topfield supports only a single active connection at a time, so if your ftp client supports multiple
connections make sure you disable this.
Telnet into the ASUS as before and log in with your username and password.
Install the ftpd-topfield application by typing:
ipkg update
ipkg install ftpd-topfield
The first command gets the latest list of packages available and the second installs the latest version
of ftpd-topfield. Note the same pair of command will also update any previous installed version too.
When a new version of ftpd-topfield is available you can upgrade with the ipkg command the same
as for a fresh install. Note this will stop the current ftpd-topfield, install the new one, and restart
ftpd-topfield so there is nothing else you need to do. If the install objects then you can also remove
ftpd-topfield by typing
ipkg remove ftpd-topfield
This will start you with a clean slate for the install
The command
ipkg files ftpd-topfield
Will return two pieces of information, the program location and the startup script. The results will be
something like this:
Package ftpd-topfield (0.6.4-3) is installed on root and has the following
To find out the program options enter the command:
/opt/sbin/ftpd-topfield --help
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This will return something like this:
Usage: /opt/sbin/ftpd-topfield [OPTION] ...
Internet File Transfer Protocol server.
-V, --version
-a, --auth=[AUTH]
Server configure for anonymous service only
Default to turbo mode on for transfers
Start the ftpd standalone
Debug mode
Send listing in EPLF mode
Increase verbosity of syslog messages
Change default location of pidfile
Change the port to listen on in server mode
Do not display version in banner
Set default idle timeout
Reset maximum value of timeout allowed
Set default umask(base 8)
Print this message
Print version
Use AUTH for authentication, it can be:
passwd authentication.
To change the behaviour of ftpd-topfield you need to edit the startup script.
To restart ftpd-topfield with your new options just run the start up script, which with the details as
above, would be the command:
Turbo Mode
The USB link to the topfield can be operated in turbo mode. This gives the fastest file transfer
however playback is interrupted and the remote control does not function. The default turbo state is
controlled by the the –b (or alternatively –turbo) option in the startup script /opt/etc/init.d/S67ftpdtopfield. If this is included on the command in the start up script then turbo is on by default,
otherwise it is off. The default start up script setting is turbo off.
If you change this option, restart ftpd-topfield:
If your ftp client allows raw ftp commands like filezilla then you can change the turbo setting on the
fly. The ftp command is one of:
site turbo
site turbo 1
site turbo 0
The first toggles the turbo state so if it was off it becomes on and vice versa. The second turns turbo
on in all cases and the last turbo off in all cases. For all 3 the ftp response window reports the new
state of turbo.
Note that when you connect to the Asus a new version of ftpd-topfield is started so each time the
starting state of turbo is as set in the start up script, not how you last left it when you logged off the
ftp session.
FTP clients
Windows has a built-in command-prompt ftp client. Just type
(use the IP address of your Asus if you have changed it from the default).
You will be prompted for a user name and password, use anonymous, and blank for the password.
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Filezilla ( is an open-source ftp client that is easy to use with the
You just need to put the IP address for the ASUS in (ie, leave the port as the default
and logontype as Anonymous. If you click connect you should get the directory structure of the
Toppy in the right hand plane.
Novell NetDrive
Novell NetDrive is an FTP client that allows you to map FTP sites to a Windows drive letter, so you
can browse your Toppy's files using Windows Explorer (it also supports the WebDAV protocol).
It is very easy to set up, just install, fill in one page of options and it just works. The URL is your
Asus IP address, server type is FTP and it is an anonymous login.
It's available from a variety of sources, just search for ‘Novell Netdrive’.
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Windows file sharing access to the Asus using Samba
With ftpd-topfield installed, you now have ftp access to files on the Toppy, but no mechanism for
transferring files to and from the Asus – this is necessary if you want to install rt2mei.
Samba can be used for this – it basically shares directories using the same protocol as Windows File
and Printer Sharing (the SMB protocol, using NetBIOS over TCP/IP, also known as NBT).
This allows you to browse your Network Places in Windows Explorer to navigate through the Asus
filing system, and you can map the Asus shared drives as Windows drives.
Samba comes preinstalled as part of Oleg's firmware, but the web interface is not comprehensive
enough to configure it properly.
There is a macsat guide at covering Samba
configuration, which formed the basis of my configuration. However the configuration in this guide is
a little different. The log files are stored in the /tmp directory structure (which is based in RAM) and
the startup script contains additional lines to stop any previously-running instances (which means
the script can be repeatedly called to restart Samba, for instance if you change the configuration
One important point here is that you must set a Host Name in the web configuration interface – go
to the LAN section under IP Config if you haven't done this already, enter a Host Name, and don't
forget to Apply, Finish and Save & Restart.
Set up the Samba configuration file
Create a directory for the Samba configuration file, and create the file
mkdir /opt/etc/samba
touch /opt/etc/samba/smb.conf
Edit the configuration file to be as follows:
workgroup = WORKGROUP
guest account = nobody
security = share
browseable = yes
guest ok = yes
log level = 1
max log size = 100
encrypt passwords = yes
dns proxy = no
path = /opt
writeable = yes
browseable = yes
force user = admin
Replace WORKGROUP with the name of the workgroup you are using on the windows network.
You can add as many additional shares as you like, following the structure of the [opt] section.
Note that the section name (opt) is the folder name as it will be seen by your Windows PC,
and this is mapped to the Asus folder defined by the path variable.
For instance, if you wanted to share the Asus /tmp folder, which is where logs are stored, and
where the rt2mei output is stored (see later) you would add to the bottom of smb.conf:
path = /tmp
writeable = yes
browseable = yes
force user = admin
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Set up the Samba start-on-boot script
Create a Samba startup script in /opt/etc/init.d, so that Samba will be started automatically when
you reboot the Asus:
# get rid of any already-running instances
killall smbd
killall nmbd
# start samba
/usr/sbin/smbd -D -l /tmp/var/log/smb -s /opt/etc/samba/smb.conf
/usr/sbin/nmbd -D -n WL500gP -o -l /tmp/var/log/nmb -s
Replace WL500gp in the /usr/sbin/nmbd line with the name of your Asus. This is the Windows filesharing name of your Asus, we suggest for consistency you use the same name as the host name of
your Asus (though they don't have to be the same).
Now make this script executable:
chmod +x /opt/etc/init.d/S97Samba
You can now reboot the Asus. When it has restarted, check that Samba is running using
ps | grep mbd
If Samba is running, then you should see three lines of output, two of which identify smbd and
Command-line access to the Toppy using Puppy
Puppy provides command-line access to the Toppy from the Asus itself (but not from your PC). It is
needed by the automated rt2mei EPG download process so that the EPG can be copied to the Toppy.
Install it using ipkg:
ipkg install puppy
Refer to the puppy documentation for more information.
Set up cron for scheduling tasks
cron allows scripts to be scheduled and run at regular intervals. Oleg's firmware includes cron.
It is also possible to install cron using ipkg. If you do this, the instructions below won't work (and
nor will the rt2mei automation instructions). If you want to check if you have the ipkg version of
cron installed, type
ipkg list_installed | grep cron
If you see the cron package listed, you can remove it using the following command but please note
that any existing cron jobs you have set up will be lost, so you will have to add them again.
ipkg remove cron
To start cron, and configure it to run from files on the USB key1 it's necessary to create a startup
script in /opt/etc/init.d, and to create a directory on the USB key to store the files.
By default, crond and crontab expect to use /var/spool/cron/crontabs for the crontab location. As this is a filing system in
RAM, rebooting would loose changes, or would involve flashfs save && flashfs commit every time a change is involved.
Therefore the configuration in this guide is to create a symbolic link from /var/spool/cron to /opt/var/cron on the USB key.
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So, create the directory with
mkdir -p /opt/var/cron/crontabs
And then create the startup script as:
# Startup script for cron
use built-in cron, which expects
to use /var/spool/cron/crontabs for
crontabs, but symlink /var/spool/cron
to /opt/var/cron, so changes stored on
USB storage
# first check /var/spool is present, if not, create
if [ ! -d /var/spool ]
mkdir /var/spool
# check if /var/spool/cron present, if not,
# symlink to /opt/var/cron
if [ ! -d /var/spool/cron ]
ln -s /opt/var/cron /var/spool/cron
# Stop myself if running
killall crond
# start (built-in) cron
Now make the script executable:
chmod +x /opt/etc/init.d/S10cron
You can either reboot to start cron, or execute this script manually with
Set up automatic switching between GMT and BST
This describes how to set up the timezone on the Asus so that it correctly compensates for changes
between summer and winter time.
Without this, you will find your cron jobs jump ahead (or back) an hour when the changeover
To do this, in a telnet session type:
nvram set time_zone=GMT+0BST-1,M3.5.0/01:00:00,M10.5.0/02:00:00
nvram commit
Note the nvram commit to save this – this information is not saved on the USB key, which is why
you need to issue this command.
Adding cron jobs
To add and edit scheduled jobs, type
crontab -e
This launches the vi editor to edit your existing crontabs.
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If you would prefer to use nano, type
export VISUAL=nano
crontab -e
You need to type the export command every time – if you want to make nano default editor (so you
don't have to type the export command) then see Setting up a .profile file to store the default
crontab editor on page 33.
Add your new job at the end. Refer to documentation on cron and crontab for the syntax for these
lines, for example
Automated download of Radio Times EPG using rt2mei
This section covers the installation of wooder's rt2mei, which is a php program to download the
Radio Times EPG and transform it into a suitable format for the MyStuff TAP, and also includes how
to automate this so it runs once a day.
The NSLU2 package is used, as it contains the automation script, from, follow the download link to download the latest
version of the package.
Install prerequisites and configure
Make sure you have installed puppy and have set up cron according to the previous sections.
Install php and libuclibc++ (required by php).
ipkg install php
ipkg install libuclibc++
Php requires some initial configuration to set the timezone. Edit the php.ini file so that the top two
lines match this (insert the date.timezone line beneath the [PHP] line – in fact the date.timezone
line can go anywhere in the [PHP section)
date.timezone = "Europe/London"
Install, configure and test rt2mei
Rt2mei will be installed at /opt/usr/local/rt2mei, with output files and logs stored at
Create the directory for rt2mei:
mkdir -p /opt/usr/local/rt2mei
You now need to transfer files from the rt2mei package you downloaded to the Asus. The easiest
way to do this is if you have installed Samba, you can then use Windows Explorer to map a drive to
the Asus opt share.
From the rt2mei package you downloaded, locate the files rt2mei.cfg and rt2mei.php, and copy
them to /opt/usr/local/rt2mei
Configure rt2mei by editing /opt/usr/local/rt2mei.cfg, refer to for more details on this.
Test that it works:
cd /opt/usr/local/rt2mei
php rt2mei.php
This will take a few minutes to execute, you'll be able to see the progress in your telnet window.
Once it has finished you should see output files in this directory (with ls). Once you are happy with
your configuration and that all is working, remove these output files (using rm 'filename'). When
you've set up the automated version /tmp will be used for these files.
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Install and test the automation
Copy the automation shell script to /opt/usr/local/rt2mei/ -- this is in the package you
downloaded, and is named rt2mei.
Make the script executable
chmod +x /opt/usr/local/rt2mei/rt2mei
Test the script, first creating the /tmp directory for the output:
mkdir /tmp/var/rt2mei
/opt/usr/local/rt2mei/rt2mei -new -tmp /tmp/var/rt2mei -ramdisk
Again this will take several minutes to complete.
Check the files under /tmp/var for correct output (you might like to add a Samba share for /tmp,
see the Samba section for more details).
Now we need to set up a calling script for this, that will also create the /tmp directory automatically:
# rt2mei calling script
# make sure /tmp directory exists
# then call the rt2mei script
if [ ! -d /tmp/var/rt2mei ]
mkdir -p /tmp/var/rt2mei
/opt/usr/local/rt2mei/rt2mei -new -tmp /tmp/var/rt2mei -ramdisk
Make this script executable with
chmod +x /opt/usr/local/rt2mei/
Now you need to set up the scheduled cron job to run the rt2mei process daily.
We do this using crontab (note, this assumes you don't have any other cron jobs set up, if you do
they will be deleted).
To do this, type
echo "5 7 * * * /opt/usr/local/rt2mei/ >>/tmp/var/log/rt2mei
2>&1" | crontab If you have other crontab entries already set up (you can list them with crontab -l) then you can use
crontab -e
to launch the vi editor (or see Adding cron jobs on page 26 for how to do this with nano), and add
the entry
5 7 * * * /opt/usr/local/rt2mei/ >>/tmp/var/log/rt2mei 2>&1
If you want to test this first, you can use different time entries.
a) the "5" corresponds to minutes-past-the-hour
b) the "7" corresponds to the hour (using 24hour time)
If you do this, choose a time at least 5 minutes ahead of the current time. You can find the current
time (and date) on the Asus by typing
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Remember to reissue the echo command above with the correct time in it once you've finished
You might also want to add a Toppy wake-up timer, set for 10 minutes or so prior to the crontab
time of 7:05am, with a duration of an hour or so, to ensure the Toppy is on when the rt2mei update
Secure access using ssh: external access to your Asus
Oleg's firmware includes the dropbear sshd daemon.
This allows you to start a terminal session with the Asus using ssh instead of telnet for commandline access.
ssh also allows "tunnelling".
Tunnelling means that network traffic of a particular protocol (eg http, port 80), is "tunnelled" by the
ssh client on the PC, and is actually sent over port 22 using the secure ssh protocol to the Asus.
dropbear on the Asus then un-tunnels the traffic (ie converting it back to http, port 80 traffic) and
sends it on to the recipient application (ie the web server). The same process occurs when the
recipient application (in this case a web server) responds – the response is also tunnelled through
port 22. As all traffic is sent via ssh, this means it is securely encrypted.
There are many different configuration options for ssh tunnelling, and you are recommended to read
a guide such as for
more information.
The particular configuration we will use here is:
a) An http server is running on the Asus on the standard http port 80 (this is the normal web
administration interface of your Asus)
b) We wish to connect from a PC (possibly any PC connected to the internet)
c) The PC will be configured so the ssh client forwards localhost (ie traffic addressed to the PC)
on port 1234 (we use 1234 just in case you are also running a web server on the PC) through
So when you type the address localhost:1234 in your browser, the traffic is forwarded to http port
80 on the Asus, but it is tunnelled through ssh, forming a secure connection. The same principle
can be used for other protocols.
As ssh is highly secure, you can then set up port/address mappings in your main ADSL
modem/router to allow access from the outside world.
You would configure your ADSL modem/router to forward all traffic on port 22 to the IP address of
your Asus. And if you were trying to access your Asus from an internet-connected PC, you would
use the public IP address of your main ADSL modem/router.
If you set up a port mapping in your ADSL modem/router to give external access, make sure you
change your password to a strong one. Otherwise it won't be long before someone has hacked into
your Asus. And remember if someone does manage to hack in with ssh, they effectively could gain
access to your whole network.
dropbear configuration
The dropbear configuration in this guide has the key files stored in /opt/etc/dropbear, and there is
an init.d script to start it automatically.
Note that for ssh tunnelling, the configuration is all done by the client, you do not need to set up
anything on the Asus for tunnelling to happen.
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Create dropbear security keys
To set up dropbear, you first need to create a directory for the key files, and then need to create
these keys:
mkdir /opt/etc/dropbear
dropbearkey -t dss -f /opt/etc/dropbear/dropbear_dss_host_key
dropbearkey -t rsa -f /opt/etc/dropbear/dropbear_rsa_host_key
Create dropbear start-on-boot script
Then create the script to start dropbear on boot:
# S51dropbear
# start dropbear
# kill already running instances
killall dropbear
# start, using config from /opt/etc/dropbear
dropbear -d /opt/etc/dropbear/dropbear_dss_host_key -r
Then make this script executable with
chmod +x /opt/etc/init.d/S51dropbear
You'll need to reboot the Asus, or run this script manually, to start dropbear.
Starting a terminal session using ssh: PuTTY
This allows you to do the same as you would normally do in a telnet session, but through ssh, for
added security.
If you are using PuTTY, then
a) For Host Name, enter the IP address of the Asus
b) For Protocol, select SSH
c) Click Open to connect
You will be prompted to save the server's key fingerprint in the registry. Select "Yes" here, and you
won't get this prompt the next time you connect. Or select "No" and you'll get the prompt every
As with a Telnet session, you'll be prompted for your user ID and password.
Starting a terminal session using ssh: Cygwin/OpenSSH
If you are using command-line ssh (eg you have Cygwin and OpenSSH installed), then simply type.
ssh admin@
Change the IP address to match that of your Asus, and if you’re not using the default admin
user ID change that as well. If you are trying to connect through a remote internet-connected
PC, replace the IP address with the public IP address of your ADSL modem/router.
You'll be prompted to log in in the normal way. You also may be asked whether you trust the
server, answer yes to this.
Using ssh tunnelling to connect to your Asus: PuTTY
The following configuration will map the localhost:1234 address to port 80 on your Asus, ie http,
through a secure ssh tunnel.
a) For Host Name, put the IP address of your Asus. If you are connecting through a remote,
internet-connected PC, put the IP address of your ADSL modem/router
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b) Select SSH for the protocol
c) Click on "Tunnels" under Connection -> SSH
d) Under Source Port, put 1234
e) Under Destination, put the IP address of your Asus, and the port to forward, eg (use the IP address of the Asus on your local network for
f) Click on Add
g) Click on Open to connect
Log on in the normal way in the terminal window.
You can now point your browser at localhost:1234 to access the web administration interface of your
You can use the PuTTY window as a normal terminal session in the mean time.
Once you have finished, type exit to close the session.
Using ssh tunnelling to connect to your Asus: Cygwin/OpenSSH
The following command on your client PC will cause traffic addressed to localhost:1234 to be
forwarded through ssh to your Asus on port 80 (ie http).
ssh admin@ -L 1234:
Note that if you are connecting from a remote PC over the internet:
a) The first IP address (part of admin@ should be replaced by the public IP address
of your main ADSL modem/router
b) The second IP address (part of 1234: should be the IP address of your Asus
on your home network.
If you now type localhost:1234 in your browser, you will see the web configuration interface of your
You can also use the ssh command prompt window as a normal ssh terminal session.
Once you've finished, type exit in the ssh command prompt window to shut down the session and
Sending emails from your Asus
Macsat has a guide for installing esmtp, which is an email client, at
The installation is very straightforward.
Instead of using the macsat instructions for creating a config file, you can instead use a text editor
(nano or vi for example) to create one, an example one is:
hostname =
username = "yourname"
password = "yourpassword"
Replace the values with the ones appropriate to your ISP's mailserver. If your ISP doesn't
require a username and password (many don't) then just omit these lines.
Note that the macsat instructions quote the value of the hostname – this is not necessary.
Also note the :25 at the end of the mail server address. Again the macsat instructions don't
mention this. You do need to include this value. 25 is normal value for smtp, check your ISP
mail server information if you are not sure.
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You can test this with
echo -e "\nTest Message" | sendmail -f
Replace with the email address where you want to send the message
to, and replace with the address the email is being sent from (the reply
address). Note the –e and the \n in the text, this makes sure there is a blank line before the
body of the message, which is necessary so the email headers are picked up correctly.
You can then use this in shell scripts to automatically notify you of things happening on your Asus.
For example, here is an init.d script to email the post-boot log file whenever the Asus boots up. The
filename starts with S99 so that it is the last init.d script to run. Note that we also set one of the
email header fields – the subject – at the start, and also that this includes line breaks to indicate
where the body of the message starts (\n).
# Email myself the post-boot log file
# create a file for the email message
echo -e "Subject: Asus has rebooted\n" > $message
echo "/tmp/var/log/post-boot contents follows" >> $message
echo "===START===" >> $message
cat /tmp/var/log/post-boot >> $message
echo "====END====" >> $message
# send it
cat $message | /opt/sbin/sendmail -f
Replace with where you want the email sent to, and change to a suitable reply address (probably both will be your own email
Don't forget to make the script executable, or it won't run:
chmod +x /opt/etc/init.d/
If you're using rt2mei, you could amend the /opt/usr/local/rt2mei/ script to email
yourself the rt2mei logs every time an update is done.
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Other hints and tips
Shutting down and rebooting your Asus
You can shut down your Asus using telnet interface by typing
You can also shut it down from the box itself by pressing and holding in the Restore button until the
power light goes off.
In both cases it should only take a few seconds to shut down – this is indicated by all the lights
going off.
You can reboot your Asus using telnet by typing
Disabling services from starting on boot
The directory /opt/etc/init.d contains all the scripts to run services such as ftpd-topfield and
samba when the Asus boots up.
Only scripts starting with a capital letter S are run, and these are run in order of the two digits
following the S in the filename.
To disable a service, eg ftpd-topfield, rename the script:
mv /opt/etc/init.d/S67ftpd-topfield /opt/etc/init.d/T67ftpd-topfield
The ftpd-topfield service will no longer start up the next time the Asus is booted.
To enable it again, rename the file back:
mv /opt/etc/init.d/T67ftpd-topfield /opt/etc/init.d/S67ftpd-topfield
Upgrading the Toppy's firmware
You can upgrade your Toppy's firmware using an ftp client and ftpd-topfield running on the Asus.
Simply drop the .tfd firmware file into the Toppy's firmware directory.
The Toppy automatically recognises the new firmware file, reboots and loads it.
Setting up a .profile file to store the default crontab editor
Setting up a /tmp/local/root/.profile file means you can store common settings that will get
recreated when you reboot.
The example here is to store the default editor for crontab, saved in the environment variable
Create the .profile file as (note the filename starts with a dot):
export VISUAL=nano
As this is part of the flashfs filing system, we need to add it to the list of files to be saved, so type
echo /tmp/local/root/.profile >> /usr/local/.files
And save to make the change permanent with
flashfs save
flashfs commit
flashfs enable
You can test this by rebooting, then using crontab -e to see if nano is started by default.
If you want to change your .profile file, you can do that whenever you want, but remember that you
will need to save it with flashfs to make the changes permanent.
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Here we hope to include answers to the most commonly asked questions on the forums.
The rt2mei scheduled download doesn't seem to be working
First of all, check the log file that the scheduled cron job produces. This is /tmp/var/log/rt2mei.
Make sure you haven't rebooted your Asus in the meantime, otherwise these files will not be
If this contains any errors they might point to the source of the problem. If it is not present, it
suggests a problem either with your cron installation, or with your crontab. Double-check against
the instructions in the guide.
You can step through the rt2mei process manually to see if that gives any clues:
1) Try running the rt2mei download process manually from telnet (this process does not transfer
files to the Toppy, it just downloads them to the Asus).
cd /opt/usr/local/rt2mei
php rt2mei.php
If there are any errors, it may be a problem with your rt2mei.cfg file
2) Try running the full download and transfer to Toppy process with
mkdir /tmp/var/rt2mei
/opt/usr/local/rt2mei/rt2mei -new -tmp /tmp/var/rt2mei -ramdisk
The mkdir command will give you an error if the /tmp directory already exists – you can safely
ignore that.
Watch for any other error messages.
Once it is complete, check the output files /tmp/var/rt2mei/My Stuff.mei and
/tmp/var/rt2mei/My Favourites.mcl – if you set up the custom Samba configuration and
created a share for /tmp you can examine these files on your PC.
Now check the files on the Toppy, using ftp (assuming you have ftpd-topfield running on the
Asus). Look in the ProgramFiles directory for My Stuff.mei and My Favourites.mcl.
3) If all of that looks fine, check the EPG on the Toppy. If that doesn't reflect the downloaded
EPG files, it suggests a problem with your EPG (eg MyStuff) configuration, so check that.
What is stored on the USB key, and what is stored on the Asus?
The majority of the instructions in this guide make changes to files stored on the USB key.
The exceptions are
a) any configuration changes you make in the web interface
b) the changes made under cron setup to set up the Asus for daylight saving
c) the /usr/local/sbin/post-boot file
d) a /tmp/local/root/.profile file (if you have created one)
You can make a backup of all configuration changes you make in the web interface, and the daylight
saving changes, from the web interface. Go to System Setup -> Settings Management, and follow
the instructions there (this page also tells you to how to restore a saved configuration file)
You can make a backup of the flashfs file system on the Asus itself, which contains the post-boot file
and the .profile file by going to System Setup -> Flashfs Management and following the instructions
there (this page also tells you how to restore a saved flashfs file).
So to back up everything, you need to make a copy of
a) The configuration file saved from the web interface
b) The flashfs file saved from the web interface
c) Everything on the USB key
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We would never have got our Asus WL-500gP's working with the Toppy without much help from
The forums proved an invaluable source of information, together with Jackofall's guide
for the Asus WL-500G Deluxe, the macsat guides, wooders' rt2mei package and web pages and the
Oleg firmware forums.
Particular thanks go to mdryden, vroomfondle, downswalker, paragon and ubuntu for providing help
and information, and for road-testing and providing feedback on some of the forum posts which
were a precursor of this guide.
And of course thanks to Nigel Whitfield for setting up, hosting and administering
References and forums
Jackofall's guide
macsat guides
Oleg firmware and forums
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