Alt-F / News: Recent posts

Security warning: only the first eight characters in users passwords are taken into account.


Alt-F has been using since its beginning the classic UNIX password encryption scheme
for validating system users passwords.

That scheme only takes into account the first eight characters of the supplied password.
During password creation or user authentication the remaining characters are ignored
without any error or warning. There are no other security issues, but see below.

This might mislead users into thinking that they are using long enough and secure passwords,
what is not true. Thanks to Bill Rosenberg to uncover this.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2017-10-31

Alt-F-1.0 is released

=== October 13, 2017: Alt-F-1.0 is released


I'm pleased to announce Alt-F-1.0.

Alt-F has now more than seven years old, is stable since several releases ago,
and is even showing some grey hairs, so it would be unfair to not make a 1.0 release.
Here it is!

In this release most, if not all, issues reported by users that tested the RC6 and 1.0
Snapshots are fixed, and most pre-installed packages have been updated to their last released version.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2017-10-13

The Alt-F Google users group has restored normal operation.

After the complain Google has promptly restored the forum to its previous state.
No explanation was given for the "Banned Content" classification. Was it a "robot" decision? Luckely no weapons were on board.

Posted by João Cardoso 2017-09-13

Alt-F Google group has been mysteriously and erroneously classified as "Banned Content"!

The Alt-F Google group has been mysteriously and erroneously classified as "Banned Content", and a "Request Review" has been sent. Waiting...

While waiting for the reopening, you can meanwhile use the Discussion Forum at

Posted by João Cardoso 2017-09-12

WARNING: possible issue when upgrading firmware under RC3/RC4/RC4.1/RC5


If you have setup the Administrative HTTP or HTTPS servers to run in "server mode" instead of the default "inetd mode" under Services->Network, http, Configure, undo that, as during the firmware upgrade procedure the webUI will not display the upgrade progress or errors.

Another side effect is that after hitting StopAll under System Utilities, Services, the webUI will stop responding. If that happens, telnet or ssh the box and login as the 'root' user, same password as the webUI, and issue the 'rcall start' command.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2016-12-30

WARNING: Network data corruption on RC5


On some situations there is network data corruption when reading data from the box on RC5. This is a kernel issue and all boxes models are affected.

Mandatory fix: see the WARNING: Network data corruption on RC5 topic and apply the fix.

Posted by João Cardoso 2016-07-09

Alt-F-0.1RC5 is released

=== June 25, 2016: Alt-F-0.1RC5 is released

This release fixes some bugs and adds a few new features.
Most Alt-F packages have been upgraded and they require RC5 to be installed.
Not all packages have been thoroughly tested, please report any issue.
All users are encouraged to upgrade.


Some user relevant news and fixes:

-DNS-327L-rev-Ax support. Some CPU capabilities are not yet used.
Thanks to Fernando Gomes for donating it.
-Linux kernel upgraded to 3.18.28
-Basic support to btrfs
-Firmware Upgrader now optionally checks firmware file integrity using SHA1
-Most packages in the base firmware have been updated to their latest version,
disk installable packages will follow, make your request.
-The ntp package was removed from firmware, due to lack of flash memory space,
and is replaced by busybox ntpd.
-The All-F folder for disk-installable packages can now be de-activated or moved to another filesystem
-Most servers which were under inetd control can now be run standalone
There are some pending issues when making the transition from inetd to server mode and vice-versa.
-minidlna removed from the DNS-321 base firmware due to lack of flash memory space
-Some webUI security vulnerabilities fixed, thanks to Ondřej Surý for reporting.
-Fixes for 8TB disks on the Disk Partitioner and Disk Wizard
-The Disk Partitioner can now handle out-of order (D-Link inherited) partitions
-Filesystems can now be forced to be checked on the next boot
-Allow to recreate swap and specify partition-based swap priorities and swap aggressiveness
-Support users cron jobs; if saved as ~/crontab.lst, they will automatically be started
-The user script to execute at powerup can be edited using the webUI
-The box-model-MAC-address is used as the default hostname on the first boot
-The orange disk leds will be turned on when (some) detected system errors are detected.
-Fix installed/pre-installed packages version conflict when firmware upgrade is detected... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2016-06-25

Alt-F-0.1RC4.1 is released

=== February 3, 2015: Alt-F-0.1RC4.1 is released

This is mainly a maintenance release, with all fixes for RC4 applied
and with some other minor fixes and improvements.
All users are encouraged to upgrade.

The DNS-320L/LW-rev-Ax and the DNS-320-rev-Bx support is now complete.
The circuit boards for the DNS-320L-rev-Ax and DNS-320-rev-Bx are
identical apart from a smaller amount of memory in the DNS-320-rev-Bx,
so any of them can use the other firmware.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2015-02-03

Alt-F 0.1RC4 is released

=== June 24, 2014: Alt-F-0.1RC4 is released

-The DNS-320/325 is now supported. Supported devices are the DNS-320-rev-A1/A2, DNS-321-rev-A1/A2,
DNS-323-rev-A1/B1/C1, DNS-325-rev-A1/A2, Conceptronic CH3SNAS, and Fujitsu-Siemens DUO 35-LR

-Preliminary support for the DNS-320L/LW-A1, thanks to Steven Samson collaboration and
Andreas Böhler work (
More work is needed, please report any issue.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2014-06-24

RC4 Snapshot available for testing on the DNS-323-rev-A1, DNS-323-rev-C1 and DNS-321

In order to support the DNS-325 (and probably the DNS-320), a more
recent linux kernel (3.10.11) is needed, and that can cause some issues
that need to be solved before a release.

The Alt-F-0.1RC4-DNS-323-YYYY-MM-DD.bin is a snapshot of the current
Alt-F development status and is intended for testing the DNS-321 and the
DNS-323 with hardware rev-A1 and C1 boards.

There is no need to test it on rev-B1 boards, as I have one myself.
Although packaged for the DNS-323, the firmware file should be accepted
by DNS-321 boxes running Alt-F.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-09-16

Alt-F-0.1RC3 is released

Mar 23, 2013

One year after 0.1RC2 and three years after 0.1B1, I'm pleased to announce 0.1RC3.
This will be the last release before the final 1.0.

This release has many bug fixes, some improvements and a few new things

Use to download it.

-Before upgrading to RC3, remove the stunnel package, now part of the
base firmware, as well as all packages that overrides the base firmware
in RC2, such as samba, samba-extra, vsftp, gptfdisk...... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

The DNS-321 is now supported

Nov 26, 2012

The DNS-321 is now supported, thanks to Matt Hayden.

The procedure is not yet polished, but is fully working, follow the discussion here.

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

New Alt-F package feed

Oct 24, 2012

The default Alt-F package feed is now deactivated. Please use the new package feed following this instructions

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

Alt-F-0.1RC2 is released

Feb 22, 2012

-All packages in the base firmware updated to the last version (but e2fsprogs and samba, which is now at version 3.5.12; samba-3.6.3 and e2fsprogs-1.42 just don't fit
the available flash space)

This package update has subverted the Release Candidate (RC) concept,
and although care has been taken, there might exists incompatibility
with some RC1 configuration files. New users should have no problems.
No update fix script will be made available.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

Alt-F-0.1RC1 is released

Oct 13, 2011

-Alt-F can now be directly flashed using the vendor's firmware, no need for fun_plug
(tested with D-Link firmware 1.09 on a rev-B1 hardware box)

-Support for greater then 2.2TB disks (with UEFI GPT partitioning)
Disk Partitioner and Disk Wizard support
Conversion from MBR to GPT and vice-versa

-Secure (https) web pages through the optional package 'stunnel'
Both http and https are active (swat uses port 902 for https) ... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

Alt-F-0.1B7 is released on Alt-F first anniversary

Mar 26, 2011

In the previous 12 months Alt-F has seen 6 releases, which gives an average of
a new release every 2 months.

During the previous year, thanks to many user reports and suggestions,
and to many bug-fixes and improvements, Alt-F has evolved in a way that
means that it is now mature and ready to leave the Beta status, what
will hopefully happens in the next release.

Online documentation, Wiki entries, packages updates and bug fixes will be the priority
for the next release.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

Alt-F-0.1B6 has been released

December 20, 2010

What's new:
-kernel, nfs-utils back to version 1.2.1
-terse report from vaughnd12 confirms that rev-A1 boards are now
(tanks to Philster76 and KRH for initial testing)
-partitioning and filesystem web pages spliced and RAID web page
-Filesystems, RAID, and Partitioner web pages are now simpler
-Disk Partitioner and Wizard now unconditionally aligns partitions on
4K boundaries
-Disk Partitioner now has an advanced mode
-Directory Browser web page with enhanced (but slow) browsing and
with directory copy/cut/move/create/delete capabilities
-Directory Ownership and Access Permissions web page
-backup support and Backup Manager administering web pages
backups local directories and directories mounted by NFS/CIFS
-Remote syslog support and administering web pages (contribution from
Augusto Bott)
-Firmware updater web page now enables recovering original vendor's
settings from backup
(untested if effective, there are some differences between backup
and original)
-Status web page only shows what exists
-Spaces allowed in paths in /etc/fstab and /etc/exports (use\040as
and processed by smb and nfs web pages. NFS complains but works.
mounts by filesystem labels still replace spaces with underscores.
-Speed improvement in web pages that deals with disk
-Countless improvements and bug fixes.
-Users with an Alt-F flashed box should use the TryIt option in the
Firmware Updater
web page before actually flashing it, as incompatibilities might
happen. Its Beta! ... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

Alt-F-0.1B5 has been released

Oct 22, 2010

What's new:

    -finally works with 100Mbps and 1Gbps switches or routers
    -support for rev-C1 boards through backported 2.6.36 patch
    -fan support for rev-C1 board, using a post by Benjamin Herrenschmidt
     (Thanks to Alexey Boyko for collaboration with all rev-C1 testing)
    -squashfs-lzma is back, thanks to forward patch
    -kernel, nfs-utils 1.2.3, kexec to 2.0.2,
    -No job is finished until the paperwork is done:
            -descriptive help support with some help pages already written
            -tooltip support with demos in some pages
    -disaster recovery:
            -no password asked when connecting through the serial port
            -back button opens telnetd without password on port 26, or clears flash
    -DHCP/DNS web page splited and Hosts page created
    -simplified samba configuration web page (swat is still there)
    -several improvements and bug fixes
Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-09

Alt-F-0.1B4 has been released

Sep 22, 2010

What's new:

    -owners of A1 hardware boards should try this.
    -no lzma squashfs backported patch, as it turns the kernel
    unstable; as a result there are less 11MB of RAM available :-(
-sftp and ftps support
-ftp administering web page (AWP)
-wget proxy AWP (untested)
-disk wizard AWP
-disk maintenance AWP redesigned, more disk/raid operations supported
-disk partitioning AWP bugs fixed
-remote web administration AWP (untested)
-redesigned side menu and added drop-down menus on AWP
-Board revision level detection
-several other fixes and improvements.... [read more](/p/alt-f/news/2013/05/alt-f-01b4-has-been-released/)
Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-08

Alt-F-0.1B3 released

Jul 22, 2010

What's new:

-Kernel, libraries and apps compiled for execution speed instead of
space saving (as a result, and because of lack of flash memory space,
uShare and Transmission are now packages)
-Filesystem Maintenance web page
-Disk Partition/RAID creation web page
-improved DHCP support
-improved fun_plug for ffp users
-improved Alt-F packages installation and administration... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-08

Alt-F-0.1B2 has been released

Apr 22, 2010

What's new:

-NFS setup web page done.
-Native package manager based on ipkg, and administering web page.
-Added a temporary and experimental package feed with some packages available (some of them were not even tested)
-Fixed fun_plug

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-08

Alt-F-0.1B1 has been released

Mar 26, 2010

I'm pleased to announce Alt-F, an alternative firmware for the D-Link DNS-323 and compatible NAS.

Alt-F provides an alternative firmware for the DLINK DNS323, that can be either run "on top" of the vendor firmware, not voiding your warranty, or flashed into the hardware, probably voiding your warranty.

Alt-F has Samba and NFS; supports ext2/3/4, VFAT and NTFS filesystems; RAID 0, 1, 5 and linear; rsync, ftp, ssh, lpd, DNS and DHCP servers, DDNS... and more.... read more

Posted by João Cardoso 2013-05-08