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raikun

Got my Netduma R2: First thoughts

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Posted (edited)

Hey all.

 

I caved and bought the new Netduma. I'm quite happy with it, but it wouldn't be myself if I didn't have some initial observations:

 

  1. Overall, the firmware feels responsive and much more finished than it did on the R1. I'd chalk it up to hardware, but I also believe that the maturity shows more resources poured over it. I'd criticize it if it didn't make sense both from a technical and business standpoint.
     
  2. The fact that symbols aren't allowed on either the admin or wifi passwords truly boggles the mind. It's almost like encouraging users to type weak passwords out of desperation. I saw this initially back on the R1 3.0 Beta, but only on the admin password, and at the moment, I assumed it was a weird quirk. nothing more. Now. I feel absolutely weird having to change the password on all my devices simply because my usual symbols aren't allowed. I noticed a similar issue on a different post, where it was stated it would be corrected on a future firmware. I truly hope so, since it's a security hole waiting to happen. Perhaps I'm overreacting but I get paid to overreact . 
     
  3. I really hope that frequent firmware updates become the norm on the new device (kinda gave up on that happening on any other). If every feature, bug or hotfix relies on an update that never comes, the goodwill that comes from releasing a truly unique product will fade fast, and let's face it, it's barely there. I may sound harsh but I truly want the product to succeed to the point where I now have a love/hate relationship with it.
     
  4. From the beginning of my Netduma experience, the lack of a config backup option has been a noteworthy issue, specially coming from OpenWRT where you could backup the entire customized firmware as a BIN file. I half expected to find it in 3.0 yet here we are. Not super pressing, but as someone who enjoys tinkering with different options, having the option to rely on a backup is surely missed.
     
  5. A very overloooked aspect of Netduma is how well the Hybrid VPN works. To me, it almost seems like magic. I sorta replicated it using OpenWRT and policy based option, but it never came close to the level of performance Netduma offers. I'm overjoyed to find it working even better on the R2. A thousand kudos from me.
     
  6. The Adblock option finally works! It never fully worked on the R1 Beta but here, it almost rivals my PiHole setup, with the added benefit of not having to have an external device. Excellent work!
     
  7. The Offline devices bug is no longer an issue on this release. From a development perspective, whatever happens on the R2, feels like it should cascade to other devices, as long as the hardware supports it. I hate to admit it, but the R1 may never have the capabilities for some of the newer options.
     
  8. Absolutely love the concept of Rapps. Modular applications on your router a la OpenWRT? Yes please! Can't wait for the new offerings.

That's it for now, I'm sure more will come up. Excuse the cynicism but you should read my reviews on the products I actually despise :)

Edited by raikun

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Thanks for the review, really glad you're enjoying it!

  1. Thank you, we weren't lying when we said it was optimized for the R2!
  2. Already fixed for WiFi and will be in one of the next versions.
  3. We've had a few firmware updates that are available but we're giving it to people with specific issues at the moment and working closely with a number of people to implement fixes that will go in a proper public release.
  4. That is on our roadmap so I'd expect to see this in future.
  5. Great to hear that, thank you!
  6. Thank you! 
  7. The R2 does have the very latest build from all the DumaOS routers currently so it's porting that to the other routers that is the tricky part but we're working hard on that.
  8. We're just as excited as you are!

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