[WRT54G/S firmwares] Talisman vs Alchemy ?

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Hi everybody,

Thanks to the help I got from this forum, I solved all my problems
after installing the public Sveasoft Alchemy firmware.
I am quite happy with Alchemy (which I think is much better than the
Linksys standard firmware) except for one thing : the log files are
very poor in details and short in time.

I heard of the Talisman firmware : everyone tell it is better than the
Alchemy one.
Moreover, it seems that Talisman uses the Flash memory included into
the WRT54G/S routers for storing the logs : that is exactly what I want
!
To get the firmware, I have to subscribe to Sveasoft for 20$/year.

Before subscribing, I would like to get more information about Talisman
: what I read on the Sveasoft web site seems interesting but I did not
find any versioning information.
It seems that Talisman is still under developpement and that subscribed
user work like beta-testers for Sveasoft.

So my questions are :

1/ Do you know some links giving more information about the Talisman
firmware than Sveasoft does ?
2/ Do you think it worth subscribing for Talisman ?
3/ What is your opinion about Talisman (compared to Alchemy)
4/ Have you heard of a stable version of Talisman ?
5/ Is 1.0.5 the last release of Talisman ?


Thanks in advance.


Re: [WRT54G/S firmwares] Talisman vs Alchemy ?


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I'm not sure you're going to get *more* information than the author?  
Have you read the forums on the site?

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Yes if you want the features and support.

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I don't really have an opinion, I have used both, both worked fine for
me.  I upgraded to Talisman to attempt to fix an issue with WPA although
I can't remember whether the issue went away with Talisman in the end.
:)

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Mine works fine, don't ask which version it is, different people have
different perceptions of what stable means.  One bug to someone means
it's unstable, to others, they couldn't tell whether it was stable
anyway.  If the wireless signal drops out, would you blame that on the
firmware or RF conditions?  It's a very subjective question.

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Yes

David.

Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


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Yes, I did. I created a forum account and when I went on the
Talisman/Basic forum, I got the following message :

"Sorry, but only subscribed users can read topics in this forum."

So I had a very few info about it. Moreover, Google did not help me a
lot.
That is why I wanted a user's opinion. Moreover, users opinions are
always more objectives than author's ones.


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Actually, I have the public Alchemy (I do not remember the version) and
my router is very stable (by stable, I mean that I can let it run at
least one week without having to reboot it and I use my computer daily
to work remotely)
If I use Talisman, I will be able to compare if it is as stable as
Alchemy.


Thanks for your advices.


Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


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Yes but the bulk of the opinions are in the users forums ;)

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I haven't had to reboot mine and it has run for weeks and weeks.  I
can't remember when I upgraded it from Alchemy now.

The reason why I was a little evasive is that you might want to use a
feature that I don't, hence my experience may vary wildly from yours but
as far as I can tell, the general consensus is that it works just fine
for the majority.

David.

Re: [WRT54G/S firmwares] Talisman vs Alchemy ?


On 1 Sep 2005 00:46:54 -0700, for.fun@laposte.net wrote:

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Now, if I could only remember what the problem was that you solved...

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Which log files are you using?  The SNMP generated traps or the
syslogd?  The level of logging generated by syslogd is configureable.
Enable it at on the Administration page and point it to a machine
running a syslog server program.  I'm having a bit of trouble finding
the configuratio file.  It's usually:
  /tmp/var/etc/syslogd.conf
but I can't find it in the Alchemy distribution.  Leave it at default
for now.  What you'll see is roughly the same stuff as in:
  /tmp/var/log/messages
Use a syslog reporting tool to make the messages readable.

I don't use syslog for anything more than post mortem failure
analysis.  For monitoring, I use SNMP with MRTG and RRDTool for
graphing.

So, what detail are you missing?

Let me guess... traffic analyis.  Use SNMP and MRTG.  See:
  http://www.LearnByDestroying.com/mrtg/docs/w95mrtg.htm
for Windoze 95 98 ME instructions and:
  http://www.mrtg.org
for W2K XP Linux instructions.

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I haven't tried Talisman.  No time.  Sorry.

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I guess you mean syslog, not SNMP.  Well, I don't think it's such a
great idea, but it might work for you.  NAND flash ram will last about
5 to 10 million write cycles before the cell dies.  I don't want to
try and estimate how many write cycles per cell your syslog generates
but my guess is that you have several years of lifetime before the
flash ram dies.
  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flash_memory


--
Jeff Liebermann     jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann     AE6KS    831-336-2558

Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


Jeff Liebermann a =E9crit :

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Sorry. This is the problem I asked help for in my last thread called
"My Linksys WRT54GS router is losing its DNS configuration ..." in this
forum.
The problem was due to the fact that my ISP was doing what you called
"DNS juggling".
Alchemy can refresh the DNS addresses more frequently so my problem did
not happen anymore.


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I am not familiar with Linux so I did not know this way of reading the
logs.
I was only reading the logs from the Alchemy Web interface.
Thanks for the tricks.


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In facts, I want to switch off my computer firewall (which eat my CPU)
and let the router firewall work instead.
When something goes wrong (like someone doing a port scan or other bad
thing on my computer), ZoneAlarm (my firewall) gave me a lot of
information (like event time, DNS name, used port, number of tentatives
.=2E.)
I wanted to do the same with my router and the Web admin interface does
not give so much details.

I did not think of traffic analysis and did not know it was possible to
get information about it with this router/firmware.
That seems very interesting so I am going to have a look at your links.


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You are perfectly right.


Thanks Jeff.


Re: [WRT54G/S firmwares] Talisman vs Alchemy ?


Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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/tmp/etc/syslogd.conf seems logical
--
derek

Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


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I downloaded the Wallwatcher which does everything I want (log server &
bandwidth display). In facts, the router logs are more detailed thant
the ZA logs.
I switched off ZA and decided to use the router firewall instead.

Moreover, Wallwatcher get the bandwidth information from the SNMP agent
packaged ib the router. I suppose this method is more efficient than
polling the router for some data.

As far as I am concerned, Alchemy firmware is enough for what I need to
do.
I forget the idea of paying 20$ to get Talisman !


Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


Where can I download Alchemy? Because www.wrt54g.com is down! Please
tell me where to get it.


Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


heldmar@gmail.com says...
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Google "alchemy firmware" ;)


Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


Yeap, I did it already, thanks anyway, by the way....what a great story
has created the people from SveaSoft, do these dudes now what GPL
mean???


Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


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The source code is available for download to keep the GPL folks happy.

David.

Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


David Taylor wrote:

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Not _easily_ available - I haven't managed to find anything at their site,
yet (_and_ I'm a paid subscriber). Directing people to a site outside their
control (and no longer available) for Alchemy is pretty week, too.  And
they manage to keep Talisman _unavailable_ by claiming it is pre-release
software.
--
derek

Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


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The source code is on the downloads page right along with the firmware.

It seems that plenty of people put it out on the P2P networks though in
protest hence it's not difficult to find.

David.

Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


David Taylor wrote:

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But the downloads page is not available unless you're registered (since I
subscribed before I figured that out, I can't tell if you can see it if
you're not a subscriber).  It might fit the letter of the GPL, but hardly
the spirit.
 
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Sure, that's where I found it first.
--
derek

Re: Talisman vs Alchemy ?


heldmar wrote:

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For now, wrt54g.net

Looks like the registered owner of wrt54g.com was holding the site for
ransom...
--
derek

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