On Wednesday, Asus router users across the world started reporting that their devices suddenly crashed for no apparent reason and when restarted, it crashed again within a few minutes.
Those were frustrating days for many users trying to fix the issue. Asus’ silence during this time only added to the frustration.
Two days later, the manufacturer finally responded to requests for help. According to the companythe problem was due “an error in the configuration of our server settings file”.
During routine security maintenance, our technical team discovered a configuration error in our server’s configuration file, which could cause interruption of network connectivity by the routers.
Our technical team has urgently fixed the server issue and the affected routers should be working normally again.
After fixing the bug, most users just needed to restart their devices. In case this failed to resolve the issue, the company’s support team advised users to save their current settings and perform a factory reset.
“On the 16th, Asus distributed a corrupted definition file for ASD, a built-in security daemon present in a wide range of its routers”wrote a person. “As the routers self-updated and got the corrupted definition file, they started running out of space and memory on the file system and crashing.”
The explanation answered the question of what caused the routers to fail, but raised a new one: Why were routers affected even when they were configured not to update automatically and no manual updates were performed?
Asus has yet to comment on this, but the most likely answer is that the ASD definitions file, which resides in memory and scans devices for security threats, is updated regardless of whether automatic updates are enabled or not.
In short, the 48 hour mystery surrounding the Asus routers malfunctioning has been resolved and a fix has been implemented.