Ok I admit it, I have been lazy recently.
Not much had happened in the WRT scene in a while.
OpenWRT now has a great Web-Interface, DD-WRT got better on a daily basis while Sveasofts lost all its developers except James and the quality of their firmware releases declined even more.
However there finally was a somewhat working "dev build" recently that I and others took a look at. It became obvious that Sveasoft had switched to a new kernel and it turns out that kernel is a direct copy from OpenWRT.
Sveasoft had been using OpenWRT parts in the past but now they are basically using it as the foundation for their rip-off scheme. As always they have not released the corresponding source code to the subscribers, not even on request.
In reaction to this obvious GPL violation, OpenWRT posted this NOTICE OF LICENSE TERMINATION. Basically this means that Sveasoft has no right to use any parts of OpenWRT in their firmwares anymore.
There is a discussion going on about this on the OpenWRT forums as well as on digg.com.
Feel free to join it and make sure to notify your favourite news sites about this issue. Sveasoft has been violating the GPL for a long time now but they have gone one step too far this time.
The new version of Freeman (1.04) is now available for download!
Last time Sveasoft apparently had unintentionally released an unprotected binary on which Freeman 1.02 was based. This time Sveasoft didn't make the same mistake, the MAC protection had to be hacked and removed.
Kudos to the people responsible for that!
Most 1.02 bugs should be fixed in this one, you'll find the changelog here.
It still doesn't support WRT54Gv1.x and there's still no Talisman source code available to subscribers.
Now enjoy the firmware and please share it on eDonkey or other P2P networks!
Current mirrors (thx to all supporters):
It was bound to happen. After pissing of the entire open source community with their scam, it was only a matter of time until Sveasoft's latest baby - Talisman - would be hacked and made public.
An anonymous fan supplied me the file, apparently it has been released on eDonkey (P2P network) simultaniously.
I do not know who those guys are but they certainly did a good job. They removed the 5-MAC-limit and made some funny "tweaks" to the web-GUI.
Also they were nice enough to include a link to my journal and the forum.
I guess I must have found some new allies, let's hope they keep this stuff coming. Sveasoft claims they will release Talisman source code soon, I'll add it as soon as I can get my hands on it.
Please share the file with others via your favorite P2P network.
Enjoy Talisman - over and out.
Sveasoft is already spreading FUD about the firmware breaking routers. This is a lie, my source told me the code is identical and my tests verified that everything works just fine.
Sorry for not updating this journal in a while. On April 21st, Sveasoft decided to drop work on Alchemy and release it to the public as it is. It is called final and it should be somewhat stable.
Also, after not releasing any source code to the subscribers for 5 months, they finally made the Alchemy sources available.
Both files will appear on the mirrors shortly.
Development at Sveasoft now focuses on Talsiman, the new firmware. As I previously reported, they added an activation system to their download manager.
A subscriber now has to enter the MAC adresses of the devices he/she wants to install the firmware on (up to five). It was also suggested, that the specialised versions of Talisman (VPN, Mesh, Voip) will cost per unit.
Obviously this implies that there will be no more full source code releases in the future, giving subscribers no option to compile their own limitation free firmware.
It is sad that it came to this and even more sad, that Sveasoft blames me for this. They always stated that the 20$ charge is only for support and forum access, not for the firmware. By this logic, releasing the firmware shouldn't do any damage to them since my releases don't give you access to the paid service.
Turns out Sveasoft lied to their subscribers once again, 20$ is now for 5 units (per WRT version) and installing the firmware on a router you don't own is not allowed anymore.
thanks to two fellow suppliers I had the chance to make a tag-free version of Alchemy pre7a. You may notice the name change, apparently Sveasoft decided that having seven release candidates durin a feature freeze is a little embarassing.
This version, as always, has been tested before release. Please read the included text files for further information, post questions or comments in this forum thread
Another thing worth mentioning: Sveasoft hasn't released any source code since last christmas (rc5a). I assume this is due to the great and truely free Alchemy fork DD-WRT. Sveasoft declared they don't want them to make a build based on their buggy pre-release code.
I wonder why they release buggy firmware in the first place if they don't want their beta code to be used...
Sorry for the delay, I had expected Sveasoft to release a public version soon so I didn't bother.
However they now claim that it is delayed due to "illegal" copies of Alchemy. Sounds to me like a really bad excuse but who cares, I hereby declare Alchemy 6 RC5a a public version
On other news James (=Sveasoft) continues sending out DMCA copyright violation notices to mirror hosters. A few of them are still trying to explain the GPL to their ISPs and hosting companies and removed the HTTP links to the files temporarily.
So what can YOU do to help our cause?
- Mirror all files in your favourite edonkey-client and set them on a high share priority
- Open a HTTP mirror of your own if you're not afraid of some swedish dude using a law that doesn't even exist in Sweden.
I also would like you to read my statement regarding Sveasofts latest accusations.
Thanks to everyone involved, especially to the guy who made RC5a available on ed2k in the first place. I counter-checked it with a legit firmware I got from another subscriber.
Today I am proud to present you the second firmware without any tags. It is Wolf's CVS offspin of Alchemy 6rc1 with lots of bugfixes.
Sveasoft increased the security measures and I found the following tags in the filesystem: GIFs with hidden information (replaced),webgui-pages with information encoded in whitespaces (edited) and an all new hidden
I really hope I found them all. The rebuilt firmware works fine on the test machines (thx guys) but remember to reset to Factory default before flashing.
A note about the upcoming activation system, apparently it's going to be completely offline and there will be no communication with the server. So worst case is we have to sacrifice one subscription for each release.
Anyways, Sveasoft has plans to make a modular firmware system: a free core with all current Alchemy functions and non-free, Sveasoft-written add-ons.
As long as Sveasoft doesn't use GPL'ed code in those extra modules, I welcome this change because it could once and for all settle this situation.
Sveasoft's admittedly excellent support as well as the extra modules should be enough motivation for some to pay 20$ a year. Anyone who doesn't need support and/or those modules will hopefully get the firmware for free.
Maybe it's all working out towards a proper solution in the end...
Sorry for the delay. Here's the source code for Alchemy pre5.4 which Sveasoft released at the same time as Alchemy 6rc1.
Speaking of which, I am going to skip that release since apparently some people can't even connect to their ISPs with it. A new firmware should be out soon anyways.
I also added a draft of Sveasoft's Alchemy manual, it should cover the most frequently asked questions. There's also the old firmware guide but some of it is outdated by now (was written in April).
But there's also some bad news. Apparently Sveasoft intends to add an activation system to the new Talisman firmware. I had posted more details about it in a forum thread, it is obviously another step to prevent free redistribution.
I highly doubt the FSF would approve of locking down GPL'ed code like that. If Sveasoft gets away with this, I am sure other vendors will follow and abuse the GPL this way.
Well that was faster than expected. Thanks to two nice forum members (chiles & MyGPL) who pointed me to my mistake, I have successfully rebuild a hopefully tagfree version of Wolf's w38 release.
Let's hope I haven't forgotten any tags and that my kind supplier will keep his subscription.
A good day for free software...
I have been gathering details about how Sveasoft tags the firmware for a while now.
However when I tried to rebuild a firmware with a modified (cleaned) SquashFS, it failed to flash on my WRT54G. Therefore I decided to publish all my information about the subject and ask for help of the community.
If you're interested in the stuff or if you want to help, it's all posted in this forum post.
Oh and to encourage you guys (and girls?) a little: James thinks he has an IQ of 170 (quote) and that his tagging scheme can't even be broken by the NSA... maybe we should prove him wrong on both issues ^_^
Today I added the pre5.3 source code to the site(s). The file should be on all mirrors shortly.
My inside source tells me that there might be a real public release of Sveasoft's Alchemy soon. Also work on the new firmware edition, Talisman, has apparently begun.
In addition I can happily announce that there's two new mirrors. Thanks for hosting, guys!
Apparently James keeps making friends. A former subscriber who got kicked out by him asked me to make his copy of Wolf's pre5.3 fork available to the public.
So here it is, as promised. This build offers IPv6 support, a Chillispot GUI and many bugfixes over pre5.3. It is a little older then 5.4 but the differences should be minor.
Big thanks to my source, if you want your name mentioned here let me know
Coming up next is the source code for pre5.3, if you're a subscriber and able to provide me with a comparison MD5 sum of the file Firmware_Alchemy-pre5_3.src.bz2 please email me (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I have a theory that it's impossible to prove anything, but I can't prove it.