Here is how to unbrick your tplink TL-WR1043ND (and possibly others too)
First you will need to download and install putty and tftpd32 server
Alternate to putty Termite: http://www.compuphase.com/software_termite.htm
next you will need to find a USB to TTL cable lots on ebay.
To understand how to open your router, follow the excellent guide on the OpenWRT wiki: http://wiki.openwrt.org/toh/tp-link/tl-wr1043nd#openingclosing.the.case.
Once you have your cable and opened your router refer to this picture to locate and connect the cable correctly
REMEMBER TO REVERSE THE Tx and Rx with your cable !!! IMPORTANT !!!
NOTE: I didn't use the VCC connection only the GND Tx and Rx if you use the VCC use +3.3v connection
Once you have hooked up your cable correctly follow these instructions and you will be fine.
1. Download the sysupgrade firmware. (/use latest build/ar71xx/generic/openwrt-ar71xx-generic-tl-wr1043nd-v1-squashfs-sysupgrade.bin)
You can download the latest firmware from here http://downloads.openwrt.org/attitude_adjustment/
2. Gain access to the serial port and hook it up to your computer using RS-232 / USB --> TTL adapter.
3. Run Putty, setup Serial connection, set COM port appropiately to your adapter in step 2 and do not click Open yet (baud rate: 115200 8N1 and set Flow Control to None)
4. set networkcard of computer to ip address: 192.168.0.5 , subnetmask 255.255.255.0 and no gateway
5. Run TFTP32 server on your computer, connect computer with ethernet cable to LAN switch port on router.
6. Make sure the "Current Directory" in TFTP32 is set to folder with modified original firmware renamed to "code.bin"
7. In Putty, click open and plug in Power cord to router... you should see bootloader coming up now...
8. You will see something like this:
No valid address in Flash. Using fixed address
: cfg1 0xf cfg2 0x7114
Autobooting in 1 seconds## Booting image bf0200000...
Then type following fast: tpl
Now you will get into the command prompt and you're able to execute commands.
9. Erase the firmware before writing it again using following command: erase 0xbf020000 +7c0000
10. Download new modified original firmware from computer to the router: tftpboot 0x81000000 code.bin
11. Write the downloaded firmware to flash using: cp.b 0x81000000 0xbf020000 0x7c0000
12. Boot the original firmware again: bootm 0xbf020000
13. Let the router finish booting up and wait for everything to stop loading
14. push ctrl + c than hit enter and now you should see the openwrt login screen
Your router should be unbricked again!
(Last edited by phukit on 13 Dec 2012, 00:50)