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Guide: Unlocking and Modding Telstra Routers (Technicolor hardware)

Mussels

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Hi Mussels,

I tried to use Tch-exploit to get root access of my Telstra Smart Modem Gen 3, or Technicolor CorbraXH. Unfortunately, I forgot to remove the SIM when I turn it on and the firmware was updated from 20.4.0319-MR0-RA to the latest 21.4.0439-MR2.1-RA, which I believe is the reason why my root failed. I was stuck at the same 4b step as Goody mentioned,


I followed every step such as setting static IP 58.162.0.1, connected to Red WAN port rather than LAN port, but still failed. Do you know why? Is that because my firmware version is not rootable?
Very likely, what versions work and do not work are all documented in the links above.
 

Mussels

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Cooling Alphacool Apex UV - Alphacool Eisblock XPX Aurora + EK Quantum ARGB 3090 w/ active backplate
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VR HMD Oculus Rift S + Quest 2
Software Windows 11 pro x64 (Yes, it's genuinely a good OS) OpenRGB - ditch the branded bloatware!
Benchmark Scores Nyooom.
Can anyone link a detailed video to downgrade the firmware of the Telstra dja0231. Also what does it mean when “turn off the gateway” and how do I do that?


Could you help me with this process, I am in the same boat as you and need help.
Theres a lot of misunderstanding about what a router is, thanks to telcos screwing with people.

A modem changes one signal type to another - DSL, LTE etc to ethernet.
A router routes that traffic to multiple devices, by splitting the traffic up via DHCP and NAT.
Wifi access point and ethernet switch come after this - all wifi AP's with DHCP are routers, managed switches with DHCP are routers, etc.

These are called a gateway because they have multiple WAN and LAN connections - it may just be their marketing, but with ethernet, DSL and LTE inputs and ethernet and multiple wifi networks out that can all work independently, they needed a name to show it did more than a plain router and modem combination.



As for downgrading the firmware, they have a program to do it for you
Firmware Repository - Hacking Technicolor Gateways (hack-technicolor.readthedocs.io)

Find the latest rootable firmware for your device in the repository


They list the firmwares as type 1/2/3 because the methods to root them changed over time, these gateways we're using here are always type 2 or 3.

Type 3 is the kind you must downgrade first, root, then upgrade to (to have the update and keep root)
Replacing Type 3 - Hacking Technicolor Gateways (hack-technicolor.readthedocs.io)

The software and guide for BootP flashing is here - you send the firmware you want to the router as it powers on, forcing it to up/downgrade
Recovery - Hacking Technicolor Gateways (hack-technicolor.readthedocs.io)
 

Tikur1

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DJA0231 is a gen 2 router, i've got several of those

20.3.c *432* isn't rootable

You'll need to downgrade to the "20.3.c.0389-MR20-RA" firmware from here:
Firmware Repository - Hacking Technicolor Gateways (hack-technicolor.readthedocs.io)


Theres a guide here
Recovery - Hacking Technicolor Gateways (hack-technicolor.readthedocs.io)
That has instructions on how to use BootP to flash a stock firmware (even older ones) to rollback the unit to 389, which will then work with the rooting program.
You can then use one of several methods to update to 432 and retain root, it just cant be done directly.

Instructions start at "Setting up the Server"
Hello Mussels,
If my DJA0231 is already on the firmware "20.3.c.0389-MR20-RA" I'm assuming it's fine to go straight into "Getting Root Access" steps ...?
Similar to "Goody" back in July my screen has been 'stuck' at 4b for some time.
Not sure how long it is supposed to take to get to 4c -- will just leave it running anyway.

All I'm trying to do is be able to set VLAN = 2 (apparently that is required to use it for TPG NBN on HFC connection)
 

Mussels

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Motherboard Asus x570-F (BIOS Modded)
Cooling Alphacool Apex UV - Alphacool Eisblock XPX Aurora + EK Quantum ARGB 3090 w/ active backplate
Memory 2x32GB DDR4 3600 Corsair Vengeance RGB @3866 C18-22-22-22-42 TRFC704 (1.4V Hynix MJR - SoC 1.15V)
Video Card(s) Galax RTX 3090 SG 24GB: Underclocked to 1700Mhz 0.750v (375W down to 250W))
Storage 2TB WD SN850 NVME + 1TB Sasmsung 970 Pro NVME + 1TB Intel 6000P NVME USB 3.2
Display(s) Phillips 32 32M1N5800A (4k144), LG 32" (4K60) | Gigabyte G32QC (2k165) | Phillips 328m6fjrmb (2K144)
Case Fractal Design R6
Audio Device(s) Logitech G560 | Corsair Void pro RGB |Blue Yeti mic
Power Supply Fractal Ion+ 2 860W (Platinum) (This thing is God-tier. Silent and TINY)
Mouse Logitech G Pro wireless + Steelseries Prisma XL
Keyboard Razer Huntsman TE ( Sexy white keycaps)
VR HMD Oculus Rift S + Quest 2
Software Windows 11 pro x64 (Yes, it's genuinely a good OS) OpenRGB - ditch the branded bloatware!
Benchmark Scores Nyooom.
Hello Mussels,
If my DJA0231 is already on the firmware "20.3.c.0389-MR20-RA" I'm assuming it's fine to go straight into "Getting Root Access" steps ...?
Similar to "Goody" back in July my screen has been 'stuck' at 4b for some time.
Not sure how long it is supposed to take to get to 4c -- will just leave it running anyway.

All I'm trying to do is be able to set VLAN = 2 (apparently that is required to use it for TPG NBN on HFC connection)
If you're stuck on that step, it's one of a few things

1. You're not connected to the red WAN port
2. You didnt static assign the right IP address settings in windows (windows 11 does look different, i use the old interface for this only)
2a. (You didn't close and restart that tool after changing those settings)
3. You didnt press the WPS button when asked
4. You didnt scroll down to see if the text went off the window

It should only take 1-3 minutes after scanning begins, and 1-5 minutes once you press the WPS button
 

Tikur1

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If you're stuck on that step, it's one of a few things

1. You're not connected to the red WAN port
2. You didnt static assign the right IP address settings in windows (windows 11 does look different, i use the old interface for this only)
2a. (You didn't close and restart that tool after changing those settings)
3. You didnt press the WPS button when asked
4. You didnt scroll down to see if the text went off the window

It should only take 1-3 minutes after scanning begins, and 1-5 minutes once you press the WPS button
Thanks very much!!
I'll give it another crack.
Definitely did #1 and 2 that you mentioned. (I did exactly this --> 3. You need to change your network cards IP address and default gateway to 58.162.0.1 with DNS to 255.255.255.0
.... my initial screen for tch-exploit-win looks just like the image at 4a in the instructions. Only the 'port' (5 digits) after the IPv4 address are different.
Don't think I did 2a ... not sure what "that tool" refers to. Assume it's where I "Change adapter options"

Also, I've tried factory reset via the outside button (to start from scratch) but the "new" adapter options are still saved.
I hope I haven't "bricked" it ...

Edit: For "Use the following DNS server addresses" should 'Preferred' and 'Alternate' be left blank?
 
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Spankmier

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Thanks very much!!
I'll give it another crack.
Definitely did #1 and 2 that you mentioned. (I did exactly this --> 3. You need to change your network cards IP address and default gateway to 58.162.0.1 with DNS to 255.255.255.0
.... my initial screen for tch-exploit-win looks just like the image at 4a in the instructions. Only the 'port' (5 digits) after the IPv4 address are different.
Don't think I did 2a ... not sure what "that tool" refers to. Assume it's where I "Change adapter options"

Also, I've tried factory reset via the outside button (to start from scratch) but the "new" adapter options are still saved.
I hope I haven't "bricked" it ...

Edit: For "Use the following DNS server addresses" should 'Preferred' and 'Alternate' be left blank?

Hi Tikur

I went through the process of unlocking a DJA0231 yesterday and there are a few tricks to be aware of. Resetting your network adaptor for a fresh start is advisable as this resolved my connection issues. You don't need anything in the DNS fields when configuring the static IP, leave it on automatic.

I eventually managed to get tch-exploit to progress by allowing the device to fully boot (verified by plugging into a LAN port and loading the router login page), then unplugging the LAN cable and setting the static IP with the cable unplugged before plugging into the WAN port and starting tch-exploit with admin privileges as soon as I saw the adaptor become active within the settings window (Control Panel\Network and Internet\Network Connections). You also may need to set the connection to private and restart tch-exploit if you are unsuccessful in progressing further.

There's a wealth of additional information on the Whirlpool forums, including the master thread "Technicolor Gateways - Rooting and customisation discussion" which is often responded to by the person who wrote the exploit along with a host of other knowledgeable individuals. Best of luck!

Let me know how you get on :)
 
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Tikur1

New Member
Joined
Dec 19, 2023
Messages
3 (0.04/day)
Hi Tikur

I went through the process of unlocking a DJA0231 yesterday and there are a few tricks to be aware of. Resetting your network adaptor for a fresh start is advisable as this resolved my connection issues. You don't need anything in the DNS fields when configuring the static IP, leave it on automatic.

I eventually managed to get tch-exploit to progress by allowing the device to fully boot (verified by plugging into a LAN port and loading the router login page), then unplugging the LAN cable and setting the static IP with the cable unplugged before plugging into the WAN port and starting tch-exploit with admin privileges as soon as I saw the adaptor become active within the settings window (Control Panel\Network and Internet\Network Connections). You also may need to set the connection to private and restart tch-exploit if you are unsuccessful in progressing further.

There's a wealth of additional information on the Whirlpool forums, including the master thread "Technicolor Gateways - Rooting and customisation discussion" which is often responded to by the person who wrote the exploit along with a host of other knowledgeable individuals. Best of luck!

Let me know how you get on :)
Hey Spankmier,

I shelved this project for a while when I couldn't get it sorted.
I have a laptop with Windows 10 Pro and a desktop with Windows 11.
Does it matter which system I use? Pretty sure the OP instructions (Mussels) are on Windows 10. I was trying on my laptop previously so I could enable/disable wifi and use the lan cable for connecting to the DJA0231.

I really want to get the DJA0231 working for me (on my TPG internet).
Anyway, I'll try again and also check out the Whirlpool forums you mentioned.
 

Spankmier

New Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2024
Messages
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Hey Spankmier,

I shelved this project for a while when I couldn't get it sorted.
I have a laptop with Windows 10 Pro and a desktop with Windows 11.
Does it matter which system I use? Pretty sure the OP instructions (Mussels) are on Windows 10. I was trying on my laptop previously so I could enable/disable wifi and use the lan cable for connecting to the DJA0231.

I really want to get the DJA0231 working for me (on my TPG internet).
Anyway, I'll try again and also check out the Whirlpool forums you mentioned.

How did you get on with this? Hopefully you're all sorted now, but in case you aren't...

I presume it will work just as well on W11, but I've only used W10 Pro. Have you confirmed you're on a rootable firmware? If not you'll need to flash a rootable version in the inactive bank and force the device to boot from it. Don't bother with WiFi, just move the LAN cable back and forth between WAN/LAN on the router as necessary. Once you gain root with TCH Exploit you can plug the WAN port of the DJA device into a LAN port on your existing modem and your computer into a LAN port on the DJA to pull the latest scripts for unlocking the full firmware and blocking Telstra... Make sure you set the optimal bank plan too. I've gone hunting and added my cheat sheet below, this unifies a lot of information that is spread between forum posts. I highly recommend the previously mentioned Whirlpool thread for any further issues you face, they're quite responsive and extremely knowledgeable :)

GAIN ROOT ACCESS
Start by resetting device to defaults by holding in reset switch until device "clicks".
Check the firmware installed onto your device in your web browser, usually http://mygateway (both), http://192.168.0.1 (DJA0230), or http://192.168.1.1 (DJA0231).
Find your Modem/Router @ https://hack-technicolor.readthedocs.io/en/stable/Repository/
Compare firmware version installed, you are ok to proceed with rooting if it's listed as method C (TCH-EXPLOIT), otherwise perform optional flashback.

OPTIONAL
If detected version showing as "-" in the table you will need to flash back using "Tftpd64" with below guide to a version which can be rooted using TCH-EXPLOIT.
DJA0230 use: vbnt-v_20.3.c.0389-MR20-RA.rbi
DJA0231 use: vcnt-a_20.3.c.0389-MR20-RA.rbi

Once flashed back force Gateway to restart to bank 1, 0231 procedure is included in above guide, 0230 can be power cycled via rapid plug/unplug or using buck method.

------------------------------------------------------------------

Root with tch-exploit-win.exe via WAN port after setting static IP.

Set network interface to private if unable to kick exploit procedure:
Get-NetConnectionProfile
Set-NetConnectionProfile -InterfaceAlias Ethernet -NetworkCategory Private

------------------------------------------------------------------

POST ROOT - USING TCH-GUI-UNHIDE SUBSET & FIRMWARE UPGRADE:

1. Download latest scripts:
curl -skL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/seud0nym/tch-gui-unhide/master/get | sh -s --

2. (OPTIONAL) Load Technicolor logo.gif to root directory with WinSCP.

3. Safely disable Telstra access and re-open GUI (step 1 will need to be repeated first):
A. Disable Telstra phoning home, set Cloudflare DNS, disable Guest WiFi, and enable DumaOS QoS package (remove "-gy" for no Duma):
./de-telstra -A -nc -G -gy
B. Enable interface visibility in dark theme with 5 cards per line:
./tch-gui-unhide -tn -a5

4. Set optimal bank plan:
./set-optimal-bank-plan

5. Perform firmware upgrade from USB (once complete, perform step 3 & 4 again):
DJA0230:
./safe-firmware-upgrade -c -d "/mnt/usb/USB-A1/vbnt-v_20.3.c.0432-MR21.1-RA.rbi"
DJA0231:
./safe-firmware-upgrade -c -d "/mnt/usb/USB-A1/vcnt-a_20.3.c.0501-MR22.1-RA.rbi"

6. Load rootable firmware to second bank
-

7. Set to boot from latest firmware

RESET TO DEFAULTS:
./reset-to-factory-defaults-with-root

TO DO
1. Learn how to load rootable firmware to second bank and set load plan so old firmware only loads as fallback.
 
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