Linksys WRT54G Setup want a password

I bought myself a WRT54G Linksys router to set up on my Windows XP box at home. I’ve set it up correctly and gone through the cd, but after I’ve plugged all the hardware together (the lights go on on the router correctly) the set-up program asks me for a password. The problem is that I have no idea what this password is: it doesn’t appear to be my regular password or my DSL password. The instructions are extremely vague in this regard. I can enter any password, but the installer then says “Checking network settings” and makes me enter my password again.

Anyone have any idea? I’d love to get this up and running.

no username
password is admin

What Xpav said. Also, remember to hit Save on EVERY SINGLE INDIVIDUAL PAGE, or it won’t save.

If those don’t work, do a hard reset as described in the manual.

I’ll try the hard reset, but the default password didn’t work, and Linksys tech support essentially told me I’m hosed, claiming that the ethernet ports on the router are broken. I’m a tad skeptical of that, frankly: the lights clearly go on when they are plugged in to the appropriate places. I suspect the difficulty somewhere is that my modem connects to my PC through USB (it can also do Ethernet, but I set it up with USB).

Err, yeah. Use ethernet. How would you use the router with USB anyway?


  1. Your physical network connections seem dodgy.
    You should plug the computer into the router with an ethernet cable. Plug your computer into any of the numbered ports on the back.

You should plug the modem into the router with another ethernet cable. Plug the modem into the router port named “Internet”.

You should not attach the modem directly to the computer in any way or fashion. The router must be connected between the computer and the modem. That’s the only way that it can act as a gatekeeper. Otherwise, you’re just bypassing the router.

  1. The installer seems to be caught in a loop, and keep prompting for the password because your network topology (the physical connections) is wrong.

To modify your router configuration, use your web browser. There’s actually a tiny web server living in your router, and it answers at

You guys are misunderstanding me, or I misspoke. Sorry. My MODEM is connected to the computer by USB. For the purposes of setting it up, I also plugged in an ethernet cable from the modem to the router. But it’s not flying.

Is there a guy at a pub somewhere who can rewire your network for a tenner? From what you are describing, you’re connecting cables at random hoping that it’s all going to work. But that’s not going to get you anywhere.

If you want to use a router, you cannot use a USB connection. It MUST be connected thusly:


What you’re describing is either this…

    |              |

…in which case your network traffic is bypassing the router entirely.

Or you are describing this…


… in which case, your computer cannot talk to the router because a modem cannot route network traffic between devices. Only a router can do that, and you’ve got the router off to the side like an appendix.

Neither configuration will do anything useful, and both are wrong. You must disconnect the modem from the computer, and reconfigure your Internet connection so that it uses ethernet.


Um, yes, I understand that. My router is configured (and has been, from the first post) exactly the way the instructions in the Linksys manual describe. I appreciate you trying to help, but I’m not a total computer imbecile here. All I’m saying is that the modem has a USB cable, that before I bought the router the modem always ran off USB, and that I suspect the way that XP was set up with the USB cable in mind might be playing havok with the way it is interacting with the router.

  1. Go into your Control Panel.
  2. Open Network Connections
  3. List for me the Name, Type, Status, and Device Name of each entry there.

How about you turn everything off, ditch the USB cable entirely, and set it up as Roger described, using only ethernet cables? Do you know how to determine if your computer’s ethernet port is enabled? If so, make sure it is.

Crypt may have some network card configuration issues because of the USB network adapter that he is currently using to connect to the Internet.

If he can give me a listing of his currently configured network devices, I can have a stab at giving him some correct instructions.

The danger here is that his only connection to the outside world right now is that damned USB connection, and if he disconnects that, he can’t talk to us.

The danger here is that his only connection to the outside world right now is that damned USB connection, and if he disconnects that, he can’t talk to us.

Good point. Keep in mind, he’s on a Macbook Pro, so unless he’s running boot camp, the Control Panel and Network Connections nomenclature may need tweaking. I’d have to look at my wife’s iBook at home to remember the proper route to the OS X prefs panel and network settings.


Under LAN or High-Speed

Local Area Connection 3, Lan or High-Speed Internet, Connected, Firewalled, Cayman 3000 Series USB Network Adapter #2
Local Area Connection, Lan or High-Speed Internet, Disabled, Firewalled, 3Com 3C920 Intergated Fast Ethernet Controller (3C905C-TX Compatible)

Your ethernet connection is “disabled”. So you have no way to talk to the router at all. Enable it, and try again. There is no need to use a CD to install a router.

  1. set your ethernet IP address to, gateway, subnet mask, DNS servers same as on the USB one

  2. enable the ethernet connection, unplug the USB cable, make sure that the ethernet cable goes from your computer to one of the four alike plugs on the wrt54g (not the upside down one). Make sure the router is plugged in and has power.

  3. startup your browser, go to http://null:[email protected] and follow the instructions

  4. there is no 4

You may have to do a clean install with the CD and do not choose the USB driver install option when you do. I had the same problem.

And Linksys tech support is motherfucking imbecilic. Their website is of more use and there is an option on the site to diagnose your setup. I’d also D/L the newest firmware version because the router settings have a tendency to go wonky (like, your wireless settings will default for no apparent reason and you’ll suddenly go from a secured setup to loser neighbors getting to hitch on to your bandwidth).

Hmm. Bill, I’ll give that a shot, since stusser’s suggestion doesn’t appear to be working. I’ll let you guys know what, if anything, that sorts out.

This is the USB network adapter. It’s active (connected).

This is your ethernet network. As you predicted, it’s been disabled. Probably disabled by the installer that configured your USB cable modem to work with your computer.

The plan of attack is.

  1. re-enable the ethernet network
  2. configure the ethernet network for Internet operations
  3. switch your cable modem over from USB to ethernet
  4. after successfully establishing an Internet connection over ethernet, place the router in between the cable modem and computer.

So, Step one, re-enabling your ethernet network:

The kicker is that you can’t enable it from the Network Connections window.
You have to go into the !@#$ing Device Manager to turn it back on.

  1. Launch the System configuration from the Control Panel.
  2. Choose the Hardware tab
  3. Click Device Manager.
    You should see a red X over the little network card symbol to the left of the entry for your 3Com 3C920 Integrated network adapter. This is your disabled network card.
  4. Right click 3Com 3C920 Integrated… and select Enable from the shortcut menu.

If your Internet conks out at this point, don’t worry.

Note: if you do need to restore your Internet connection, follow the same procedure as above except select Disable from the shortcut menu. This should make your USB Internet work again.
You then need nto set its properties with the Internet configuration details We need