Author Topic: $1199 cripple locked down router demanding app & Linksys CLOUD account to use it  (Read 2156 times)

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Offline MrMobodies

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I was just looking at FTTP providers and came across one called Gigaclear which are providing these fancy looking routers.
Edit: My mistake $1999 is for a pack of three as pointed out by Ranayna and as in the URL below "3-pack" that I missed but I still think that is a lot of money for a locked down pile of p*ss.
https://www.linksys.com/us/whole-home-mesh-wifi/linksys-atlas-max-6e-tri-band-mesh-wifi-6e-system-3-pack/p/p-mx8503/

Quote
Linksys Atlas Max 6E: Tri-Band Mesh WiFi 6E System, 3-Pack
SKU MX8503

2.7 out of 5 stars. Read reviews for average rating value is 2.7 of 5. Read 29 Reviews Same page link.
IN STOCK: $1,199.99
Free Shipping on all orders.
Linksys Atlas Max 6E (AXE8400) unleashes the biggest upgrade to WiFi in a decade, bringing the ultra-fast, low-latency 6GHz band to every corner of your home. Use as a backhaul between nodes or connect directly for seamless video conferencing, working from home, remote learning, and even the latest AR and VR. Learn More
The first WiFi 6E system with mesh built-in*
The new 6 GHz band offers interference-free signal and ultra-fast speeds
Extreme speeds and limitless connectivity throughout your home
Coverage up to 9000 sq. ft., 195+ devices, and speed up to 8.4 Gbps**
Enough bandwidth to run video conferencing, working and learning from home, and AR/VR devices simultaneously

Apparently what I was reading that the Linksys MX8500 router they provide requires an "account" before you can start using it.
https://www.gigaclear.com/installation/setup-your-gigaclear-powered-by-linksys-router
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1. Search for and download the ‘Linksys App’ to your mobile device. Open the Linksys App and create an account using your email address.

According to the manual attached and url:
https://downloads.linksys.com/support/assets/userguide/MX8500_USERGUIDE_EN.pdf
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*You will create a Linksys account :bullshit: so you can use the app to view or change your system settings from anywhere you have an internet connection.
Among the many things you can do with your Linksys account:
• Change your Wi-Fi name and password
• Set up guest access
• Connect devices to Wi-Fi with WPS
• Block internet with parental controls
• Test your internet connection speed
*Sounds DEMANDING to me.
No I will not purchase a phone, create accounts and sign in just to set it up. I'd send it straight back and complain if one was given to me as part of the contract.

I question, does it have a basic built in webserver to be able to configure it without any need for mobile phone, a stupid "app", an account and dependency on Linksys hosting and registration/activation servers? I posted a couple of questions on their webpage and got some replies one of them that seems to miss the point.
Quote
MrMobodies · 8 hours ago 
Does the Android/IOS "app" require me to create an account in order to configure the router?
answer:
Linksys · 7 hours ago 
Yes, MrMobodies. A Linksys cloud account is a requirement to complete the set up process. To learn more, please click here: https://www.linksys.com/us/support-article?articleNum=317898
Quote
MrMobodies · 8 hours ago 
Say I don't have a mobile phone. Does this have a basic built in webserver so I can configure it without the need of anything else such as a mobile phone/software and connectivity to Linksys? So it will function regardless of what happens out there.
answer:
Linksys · 7 hours ago
Hi, MrMobodies,

The Linksys Atlas (MX8503) can only be configured using the Linksys App. No worries, you can still setup the Atlas with the use of any handheld devices such as iPad, iPod, and Tablet.
No worries? What if I don't have a phone or tablet (ipad, ipod) which I don't have and no intentions of buying them.
Completely ignore if I don't have any of these things.

According to this comment it doesn't seem to support VLAN and nothing mentioned in the manual about it see attached.
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Ryan B · a year ago 
Great product....if you don't need PPPOE and VLAN
I bought this to replace my CenturyLink Fiber modem...which required PPPOE and VLAN tagging to interface with the fiber ONT correctly.

Even with the PPPOE password and correct VLAN/MTU settings, performance was abysmal (850mbps down, 40 Mbps up). I put my old CenturyLink modem in passthrough mode and reset the Linksys router....then added it after the CenturyLink modem....850mbps down/950mbps up.

Why is performance using PPPOE and VLAN tagging so hard manufacturers to get right?
Quite disappointing for a router that costs $1,199.99
With no built in webserver, restricted and locked down that you need an account with them to use it and the only means of configuration appears to be with a stupid  "app". Hardware looks great to me  but obviously I think they are treating customers like they are somewhat stupid and confused.

As an "easy" setup I should NOT require a working broadband connection (initially), a mobile phone, a Google or Apple account in order to install their stupid "app" and then have create another account on the Linksys servers just to use open the "app" and then have to sign in to that just to be able to setup it up or configure the router... UTTER BULLSHIT.

I don't trust any router that requires me to set up accounts where remote access is involved that is out of my control. It is a big nono and completely unacceptable if I can't switch the remote access off and I'd feel it doesn't belong to me.

What I expect:
Connect a laptop/pc to the router where it obtains an IP address, open a browser, type in default IP address of router in the address bar, type in default username and password, and there I am in to configure it.

Not so hard is it as opposed to purchasing phones, requiring a working broadband connection (for the sign up process) and setting up accounts, signing into those and depending Linksys website and services to work and if one day they stop supporting it. Ridiculous.
I wonder how this will go with product obsolescence?

Take a look at this part of the login:

Isn't that bad, they want to know your phone number and there's marketing.
Shame about the hardware but I consider it a pile of piss and an insult to the customer.

This the first time I ever heard of a router requiring a "cloud" account in order to use it.

I just found this on reddit:
https://old.reddit.com/r/HomeNetworking/comments/a6k9ey/why_is_linksys_routers_so_unpopular/
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[–]schoolpaddled 1 point 3 years ago
In 2012, Linksys changed their firmware such that you needed to log in to a web portal to access your router:

https://tech.slashdot.org/story/12/06/29/1425210/cisco-pushing-cloud-connect-router-firmware-allows-web-history-tracking

Reports have started popping up that Cisco is pushing out and automatically (without permission) installing their new Cloud Connect firmware on consumer routers. The new firmware removes the user's ability to login and administer the router locally. You now must configure the router using Cisco's Cloud connect service. If that wasn't bad enough, *the fine print for this new service allows Cisco to track your complete internet history. Currently, it appears the only way to disable the Cloud Connect service is to unplug your router from the internet."
That was it for me: done. Seeya.
I am not sure what the status of that is now that belkin owns them, but nope, out.
So it is nothing new. If that happened to me unknowingly at first I'd go berzerk and "demand" a firmware revert to the one I brought it with.

*Disgusting so they not only do they change and cripple the firmware/restrict the user when they feel like it they also *own* the router you paid for and use it to spy on them as well.

What to do you think?
« Last Edit: June 30, 2022, 12:39:53 am by MrMobodies »
 
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Online Ranayna

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Just a side note: That thing does *not* cost $1,199.

It's just a bargain of $399 each  >:D

The blurb you quoted is for a pack of three. That puts it into the typical pricerange of similar WiFi 6E routers.

But yes: Keep clear of managed stuff like this. The same is also true for several Netgear Routers and Switches.
And let's not forget the HP printers that need accounts now.
 
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Offline Haenk

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Honestly, I don't think using a smartphone is too troublesome (maybe because I have grown up with configuring stuff via serial console, which really sucks).
There are plenty of services that require a 2FA nowadays, including banking, ebay, PayPal and so on. So a smartphone is an essential item, not optional.

However I find it annoying to require an online account, when it is absolutely not necessary at all. That really should be forbidden.
 

Online Ranayna

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Using a smartphone is fine. Requiring a smartphone is not, in my opinion.
Any device with a webserver can be managed with a smartphone. If the developers gave that a little bit of thought, they may even have build the admin pages with responsive design. AVM does that decently well, you can fully manage a Fritz!Box with a smartphone, if you want to.
Without any shitty apps, or any online accounts.
 
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Offline AndyC_772

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A while ago I sent back a Netgear WAC124 (wi-fi access point) for exactly this reason. Although it had the capability to be managed locally in the usual way, it would refuse access to the local admin interface if it had an internet connection, and insist on using an account via a Netgear server instead.

I replaced it with a WAC104 instead, which has no such limitation.
 
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Offline magic

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You will create your account and you will be happy. BTW, you don't need to buy a phone, you can rent one :D

Too bad no one came up with a smartphone in the cloud yet, seems like an obvious business opportunity is here...
 

Online JohanH

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Please don't call wireless access points "routers", unless they have built in routing capabilities.

 
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Online Ranayna

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@JohanH: That thing does have a WAN port and claims compatibility with ISPs, so i would categorize it as a router. It may not have the capabilities of a "real" router, but it is still a router.
 

Offline janoc

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Please don't call wireless access points "routers", unless they have built in routing capabilities.

There are very few "dumb" wireless access points that only bridge the wifi to the local network on the market today.

Most will actually create a separate network for wifi and route/NAT to the ethernet port (if it has only one) or between the WAN port and the ethernet/wifi (if it has separate WAN port like this device) unless configured otherwise. So "router" is a completely correct name for this gadget.
 

Online JohanH

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Define "few". All APs I have in my house don't have any routing capability. A separate router provides that functionality.

Many cheap "wifi routers" do contain wireless functionality, a router, NAT, DHCP server, an ethernet switch and even a firewall, so yes in that case you may call it a "router" even if the name describes only one part of the functionality.

 

Offline madires

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This the first time I ever heard of a router requiring a "cloud" account in order to use it.

You'll own nothing and you'll be happy. >:D BTW, Linksys is owned by Foxconn sine 2018.

Please don't call wireless access points "routers", unless they have built in routing capabilities.

This is a tricky one since the OS is usually linux. It can route IP but it might be not configurable via the web UI. Also, many WLAN routers can be set up as AP. Maybe we could say that a device is meant to be an AP or router based on the hardware configuation or intended design. I know about VoIP ATAs which support PPPoE (DSL). ;D

AVM does that decently well, you can fully manage a Fritz!Box with a smartphone, if you want to.
Without any shitty apps, or any online accounts.

AVM offers FTTH routers with an SPF port.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2022, 02:33:57 pm by madires »
 
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Offline MrMobodies

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Please don't call wireless access points "routers", unless they have built in routing capabilities.

Interesting you say that and to me it looks ambiguous of them if they don't have routing capabilities or lack them.
Gigiclear refers to it as a router.
https://www.gigaclear.com/installation/setup-your-gigaclear-powered-by-linksys-router



Ah Gigiclear appears to refer to them as a routers

Maybe I should give them a call and find out if they are using CGNAT.
https://www.gigaclear.com/installation/setup-your-gigaclear-powered-by-linksys-router

And so does the manual:


Whether it is a router or not with WIFI I see no reason why Linksys should "demand" an online account with your telephone number in the creditations and depend on Linksys to setup or configure in order function. That to me is just stupid especially when they stop supporting it.

I see "Cloud router" in the manual.
Another stupid term, I think mean "remotely manufacturer managed" routers.

Next time someone talks to me about these wonderful amazing "new technology" things called "Cloud routers" over the phone they in for a challenge on what they mean and and what it actually does.

I just spoke to Gigaclear and that is NOT the main router. They provide a modem or termination device and I can connect whatever I want to it but they give out Linksys MX8500 as part of the package to use as an access point around the house and if I don't want it they won't send it out. Which is very nice.

Also they only offer 1 fixed IP address which is nice for a home.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2022, 08:00:00 pm by MrMobodies »
 

Online JohanH

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It's the overuse of the word "router" that I can't stand. I guess they use it as a marketing term and people associate it with wireless access points.

Of course if a device is running linux, it can do routing in software. But that might not be it's main purpose, especially if it's a wireless access point. Routing packets takes some serious hardware. Not a problem for a PC, but a small ARM device or whatever can't do it at network speed. The router I have, a Ubiquiti Erlite-3 has a dedicated ASIC that does the routing in hardware and is capable of routing real 1 Gbit/s between its network ports (WAN to LAN or 1st LAN to 2nd LAN).
 
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Offline janoc

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but a small ARM device or whatever can't do it at network speed.

Sorry but that is a complete nonsense. Unless you are running gigabit and faster networks, then a small ARM devices are completely capable of routing packets completely in software and have been able to do it for many years. Even gigabit network is possible with some hardware support and sufficient memory.

What do you think is in all DSL modems, cable modems and low end networking hw from companies like Cisco? Custom ASICs? Dream on! A small ARM SoC running Linux - and barely anything else. E.g. my cable modem is running 1Gbps right now - and has a bog standard ARM chipset running Linux as router inside, with no special ASICs for handling the routing.

A typical consumer router isn't going to be routing between more networks than two and won't have any complex routing tables or rules. That CPU that often runs at hundreds of MHz or even GHz or two these days is literally doing nothing else but shuffling packets between NIC buffers and dealing with an occasional configuration change when the user opens the web interface. All perfectly in line of what a small ARM or MIPS SoC have been capable for years.

This is a pretty typical example of such (now 4+ years old) consumer router:
 
https://www.microcontrollertips.com/teardown-inside-tp-link-archer-c7-wireless-router/

Just a wireless SoC from Qualcomm (likely ARM or MIPS core) that handles both the 2.4GHz wireless and the main CPU functions and then a separate board for 5GHz radio and ethernet interfaces. And this has 1Gbps ethernet already.

Or the ASUS RT-N16 described here (article from 2012 - i.e. 10 years old!):

https://www.anandtech.com/show/6180/open-source-router-platforms

Runs on an old Broadcom all-in-one SoC with a small MIPS core:
https://www.witimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/4716_4717_4718-PB03-R.pdf  that does everything, including wifi.

You are likely confusing packet routing (which typically happens at the higher layers of the networking stack, such as dealing with IP packets) with packet switching e.g. handling ethernet frames - and that's running at network speeds and typically using dedicated chips.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2022, 04:58:25 pm by janoc »
 
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Offline coppice

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It's the overuse of the word "router" that I can't stand. I guess they use it as a marketing term and people associate it with wireless access points.

Of course if a device is running linux, it can do routing in software. But that might not be it's main purpose, especially if it's a wireless access point. Routing packets takes some serious hardware. Not a problem for a PC, but a small ARM device or whatever can't do it at network speed. The router I have, a Ubiquiti Erlite-3 has a dedicated ASIC that does the routing in hardware and is capable of routing real 1 Gbit/s between its network ports (WAN to LAN or 1st LAN to 2nd LAN).
Routing 1Gbps is easy when you are routing big packets. When you want to route a lot of small packets, like VoIP, you need a lot more horsepower. Most consumer routers are built around custom chips, with an ARM core and peripherals crafted to shunt packets around with little CPU involvement. This works well when the CPU only needs to inspect the headers of large packets, and the router can saturate a 1Gbps internet connection. If they need to inspect the headers of many more smaller packets, most consumer routers struggle to route more the 10's of megabits of data.
 
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Offline BrokenYugo

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I already run a openwrt router for other reasons (mostly SQM), but I'll add this to the list, bullshit indeed.
 
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Offline madires

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Just a wireless SoC from Qualcomm (likely ARM or MIPS core) that handles both the 2.4GHz wireless and the main CPU functions and then a separate board for 5GHz radio and ethernet interfaces. And this has 1Gbps ethernet already.

Some numbers for a 720 MHz SoC: https://openwrt.org/toh/tp-link/archer-c5-c7-wdr7500#nat_performance
 
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Online SiliconWizard

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Generally speaking, keep clear of ANY router that has cloud-based management. It's just a pile of garbage.
That will narrow down your options severely though.

If in doubt, check whether the one you're buying is supported by OpenWRT or not. I bought a simple "router" just to make an additonal WiFi access point, and the bugger had cloud-based management crap. Even if you did not create an online account, it would still "phone home" on a regular basis. :-DD Fortunately, it was supported by OpenWRT, I installed it and have not regretted doing so. I suppose that would break the warranty though. Which I don't care since it was not an expensive device.
 
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Offline iJoseph2

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I tried to use a Cisco 1921 (and a 1941 and a 867) as a router a couple years ago with a VDSL connection (35mbps I think).
It struggled horribly... it was the setting up and tearing down of connections that bogged down the cpu. Good luck trying to play an online game on an xbox through it.

The replacement model(s) ISR1000/ISR4000 were expensive and I think the ISR4000 suffers from the c2000 bug.

So, I started using OPNsense on a second hand HP Elitedesk 800 G2 SFF and it's never struggled. I believe you can put a wireless card inside and it can act as a wireless point as well.

I've never measured the power consumption though  :o
 
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Offline madires

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The Cisco 1941 is good for up to 15 Mbit/s WAN traffic. ;D
 

Offline MrMobodies

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Just found that they allow the user to downgrade on certain routers.

https://www.linksys.com/us/support-article?articleNum=138220
Quote
Rolling back the Linksys Smart :bullshit: Wi-Fi Router Firmware to the Classic web interface

We are sorry to see you downgrading to our Classic software :-+ (non- Linksys Smart Wi-Fi) on your Linksys Smart :bullshit: Wi-Fi Router.  Your Linksys Smart :bullshit: Wi-Fi Router with Linksys cloud :bullshit: account software provides you a new way to experience :bullshit: your connected home and a growing ecosystem of apps. :bullshit: By downgrading your firmware, *you are not able to take full advantage of your new Linksys Smart :bullshit: Wi-Fi Router.  For more information about Linksys Smart Wi-Fi please see our FAQs by clicking here.

Buzzword Bullshit: Ecosystem, apps, smart, smart wifi, cloud, new, "cloud account", experience, "connected home", "growing ecosystem"

*At least they get their local built in web server back and are "able" to login and and configure it offline like it was when they brought the router.

I am a home user and reading that made me angry with all those trendy, pretty, ambiguous sounding buzzwords "smart", "cloud" and a new one,"app ecosystem".  They think the "home user" is going to care about "apps installed in their router" than anything else and also spying on the user with this "cloud" firmware now isn't that taking advantage out of the user? They seem to care more about these "ecosystem of apps" than the ability to configure the router offline. I question if there is no internet how are they suppose to configure the router. I assume maybe if this "app" was install on their phone it might something locally but if there was no phone.

I wonder why are they sorry? That they can't collect statistics about the user with the classic firmware.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2022, 05:05:31 am by MrMobodies »
 

Online Ranayna

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Great... Downgrading the Firmware of your internet router...
The one device that will always be susceptible to outside attack, that is the first, and in most SOHO settings your only, defense... Welcome to the next botnet :D

Just do not buy that crap.
 
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Offline madires

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It's hard for a consumer to find a good router. The marketing departments sell you a cheap, crappy, insecure and home phoning plastic box as professional, high performance, super secure and cloud-whatever SOHO router. If you aren't a network pundit you're lost between piles of junk.
 

Offline nfmax

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It's hard for a consumer to find a good router. The marketing departments sell you a cheap, crappy, insecure and home phoning plastic box as professional, high performance, super secure and cloud-whatever SOHO router. If you aren't a network pundit you're lost between piles of junk.

This is not a pile of junk:

https://www.firebrick.co.uk/fb2900/

It's built in a metal box. Five years guarantee. Free software updates for the life of the product - automatically if you so choose. OTOH it's a router and firewall appliance, not a wireless access point. And it costs more than people are usually willing to pay, though less than the thread topic product.
 

Offline madires

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Lancom is in the same league and they also have models with WiFi.
 


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