How to reflash the AR-1200 with new firmware, on Debian/Ubuntu Linux

This is blatantly based on Downgrade from Lightweight to Autonomous Using Linux, and the a note on the Cisco site.

Install tftpd-hpa

sudo apt-get install tftpd-hpa
sudo mkdir /srv/tftp
sudo chmod 755 /srv/tftp

Edit the file /etc/default/tftpd-hpa so it looks like this:

# /etc/default/tftpd-hpa
TFTP_USERNAME="tftp"
TFTP_DIRECTORY="/srv/tftp"
TFTP_ADDRESS="255.255.255.255:69"
TFTP_OPTIONS="--secure -vv"

Then restart with "sudo service tftpd-hpa restart".

Next, snag a copy of a recent firmware for the Aironet 1200. Look at the last letters of the filename (before the tar.gz) and you're lookging for endings like JAD1 or JA if you want "autonomous" mode, and JEC1, JEE, basically anything with an "JE", for "enterprise" features. My exampls are all based on the JEE firmware.

What you don't want are firmwares with a -mx in the name. These firmwares require that the access point connect to a server that will control the device.

By the way, by "snag" I mean steal. Cisco.com will let you download this old software if you have an account with them. That costs money. It seems silly to me, because it's end of life software. So use your wits to find the upgrade.

Take the file and copy it to /srv/tftp

Then copy it to the filename: c1200-k9w7-tar.default

Finally, power down the access point, and then press MODE, and power it up. The LED on the AP will go amber, then after 30 seconds or so, it'll go red. The red means it's going to try and download the firmware. Release the MODE button, and wait.

The whole process takes several minutes. Do not interrupt it!

If you want to see what's going on, use a console cable and watch the messages scroll by.