RouterOS gets an update

Did some more testing of the RouterBoard 750GL last night and was pleasantly surprise to see an update to RouterOS 6.29.1 (I had upgraded to 6.28 shortly after buying the unit). Not bad for a mostly closed source product.

It turns out that Mikrotik is actually quite good about updating RouterOS. A quick perusal of the Changelog for the MIPS version my device uses revealed that there were 20 updates in 2014, and so far there have been 5 in 2015. That’s impressive when compared to the update history of other SOHO equipment vendors.

RouterOS is based on version 3.3.5 of the Linux kernel, but its complete source is closed and not available for public inspection. They do offer to provide the source of those components, like the kernel, that are under the GPL. While that’s damned inconvenient, it is still a far cry from the blatant violations of the GPL we’ve seen in the past (e.g. Linksys back before it was bought by Cisco). As I’ve previously written, I think this is unfortunate because it means the code can’t be audited by third parties who could verify its integrity — and could not be forked in the event Mikrotik were ever drop support for it or go out of business.

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About phil

My name is Phil Lembo. In my day job I’m an enterprise IT architect for a leading distribution and services company. The rest of my time I try to maintain a semi-normal family life in the suburbs of Raleigh, NC. E-mail me at philipATlembobrothersDOTcom. The opinions expressed here are entirely my own and not those of my employers, past, present or future (except where I quote others, who will need to accept responsibility for their own rants).