Changing Firmware on a Netgear Router

Netgear releases new versions of its firmware on a regular basis.
... Ethan Miller/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Updating your Netgear router’s firmware can fix bugs, add features that are not in the firmware’s current version and increase the general performance of the device. You can check to see if there is a new version of the firmware -- and install it -- through the Firmware Upgrade section of the router’s Web Administration Interface. You need to connect your computer directly to the router with an Ethernet cable to perform the update, because performing a wireless network update may corrupt the new firmware.

Connect your computer directly to the Netgear router with an Ethernet cable. Insert one end of the cable into an empty LAN port on the router and the other into the Ethernet port on your computer.

Open a Web browser, and then enter the router's IP address in the browser's address bar. The router’s default IP address -- for example, “” -- is usually printed on a sticker located on the back or bottom of your Netgear router. You can also find the IP address by referring to the router’s documentation or navigating to the Support section of the Netgear website (see link in Resources).

Press the "Enter" key. Enter “Admin” in the Username box, and “Password” in the Password box -- which are the default login credentials for most Netgear routers. Again, you can find your router’s default login credentials by referring to the device’s documentation, navigating to the Support section of the Netgear website or checking the sticker on the back or bottom of the device. Click the "OK" button to open the Netgear Genie Web Administration Interface.

Select the "Advanced" tab, and then click "Administration."

Select "Firmware Upgrade" from the Administration menu to open the Firmware Upgrade page.

Click "Check," and then wait for the router to detect the new firmware and display the Firmware Upgrade Assistant.

Click "Yes" to update the router's firmware.

  • Do not interrupt the firmware upgrade process because it may corrupt the firmware.
  • Information in this article applies to N450 Netgear Wireless Router WNR2500. Instructions may vary slightly or significantly with other Netgear router models.
  • You can also manually update the firmware on your Netgear router. Download your router's updated firmware from the Netgear Download Center website, and then navigate to the firmware from the router's Web Administration Interface's Firmware Upgrade page. Click the "Upload" button to upgrade the firmware.

An avid technology enthusiast, Steve Gregory has been writing professionally since 2002. With more than 10 years of experience as a network administrator, Gregory holds an Information Management certificate from the University of Maryland and is pursuing MCSE certification. His work has appeared in numerous online publications, including Chron and GlobalPost.