Despite many tries with various combinations of clicking and holding the reset button during early boot, it does not appear that the AR300M-Lite has a failsafe mode in the way that OpenWrt routers do (password-less ssh access without the overlay file system mounted, just the ROM). Namely, a way to enter “single user mode” and make modifications to configuration and/or file systems that might otherwise prevent the router from booting or otherwise being unreachable. In my opinion, this is a significant failing of the GL.iNet firmware.
Pressing and holding the reset button with the router running, as described at Repair or Reset - GL.iNet Docs has been tried multiple times and has no effect.
The uboot recovery does not even provide an option to reset to default, so this is no help. Imagine a situation where the GL.iNet is required for Internet connectivity and you don’t have a current copy of the firmware image. Yep, you’re stuck.
It should work… it does on the AR300M (NAND) at least - was a bit tricky, and I had to use Windows, for some reason, it wasn’t happening with Ubuntu…
The video isn’t very obvious - press and hold reset, then apply power, and wait the five LED blinks, and it came right up.
If you’re on travel, keep a copy of a known good image handy, and an ethernet cable… Again, if one is doing builds in the field, having a handy USB-UART cable handy, and solder the pin headers ahead of time.