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I hate my Linksys "Smart Wi-Fi" router. (But don't buy Netgear.)

Here we go again... I'd be programming right now if it weren't for having to fight the Linksys "Smart Wi-Fi" router that I purchased to replace my aging and always problematic Netgear router. So, yeah, this is about hardware, but I feel obligated, when I come across a completely stupid piece of junk, to warn others to avoid it...

Specifically, this is a Linksys EA6350 purchased at Staples sometime around January 7th, 2015. At first, I was quite happy that the connectivity problems I'd had for years with the Netgear router were finally fixed. Everyone in the house was quite happy with their connectivity.

But today, when I went to login to access the settings, I got the apparently infamous message, "Linksys Smart Wi-Fi service is not available at this time."

Excuse me?!

Their "Smart" service is designed to allow you to configure your router from anywhere. Let's not even get into how stupidly insecure that is, at no point in the installation process does it explain what the service is for, what the drawbacks might be, and the alternative for configuring router access. Apparently -- I'm now founding out -- you can also set a router password that gives you LAN-only access. That's what I need, and I need to disable the "Smart" service login, but -- and here's the punchline you've been waiting for -- it won't let me in. Until their cloud service is back online, I'm effectively locked out.

No, that's not exactly right, so let me clarify: accessing just hangs. At this point I'm not even getting the "we're out to lunch and you're screwed" message. I'm not getting anything.

Oh how I long for the days of my WRT54G. It was solid, it didn't give me any grief, and I would have kept it forever if the radio hadn't finally died.

Update: After rebooting the router, I was able to get in through the Wi-Fi login. FINALLY. It even starting recognizing the external USB drive which, up until now, it refused to acknowledge. Progress! I made a bee-line for the Connectivity settings and attempted to set the router password... but lo and behold, it already has one....? Okay. Well, it didn't give me that as an option. I tried changing it as a way of sussing out what the current password is, but it won't accept any password I put in, including the router's default password printed on the bottom of the device. I assume setting that will require a factory reset. smh...

Todd Grigsby