Unlock Airtel E5172Bs-925 4G LTE Router

I've had this 4G router or gateway for a while and have been looking for a way to unlock the router and use it with other operators. The Airtel branded firmware has blocked unlocking, it shows zero available attempts to enter an unlock code. So like other routers and modems from Hauwei or similar brands, we need to flash a firmware which allows you to enter an unlock code or comes unlocked.

huawei-e5172

The firmware which worked for me was named MPWUDPUPDATE_V200R001C284SP100.BIN however once flashed, the device displays the version as V200R001C209SP100. My guess is that, the metadata of the BIN file was updated to reflect a firmware version which passes the internal firmware update checks. Big thanks to whoever came up with the idea!

Below image shows the details after the update.

post-upgrade-info

Click here to download the firmware update.

Steps to unlock the device

  • Reset the device and connect to the PC over ethernet (updating over WiFi is not really recommended). Remove the SIM if any or use an Airtel SIM.
  • Open the router configuration web UI. The default URL is http://airtel4grouter.cpe/ or http://192.168.1.1/
  • Navigate to Home --> Update. Select the extracted update file MPWUDPUPDATE_V200R001C284SP100.BIN and press Update. This might take 5-10 minutes.
  • Once the update completes, reset the device again using the option in the System page. The UI would now change to that of Megafone (a Russian operator)
  • Insert non-Airtel SIM and it should be detected. You can now proceed to create a profile for your operator (Internet -- APN Management)

Note

  • The router seem to support only the 2300 MHz or the TDD-LTE Band 40. So this would work only with operators supporting this band -- Airtel, Jio. For the same reason, you may not be able to use 2G or 3G networks.
  • If it asks for an unlock code on inserting a non-Airtel sim after the update, please leave a message and I will try to get it for you. For me, there was no prompt for the unlock code and it worked straight away.

connected-to-jio


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