Dealer Re-programming entire computer system? Concerns? - BMW M5 Forum and M6 Forums
E60 M5 and E61 M5 Touring Discussion 2005- Advertiser's Forum

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post #1 of 8 Old 5th May 2011, 02:05 AM Thread Starter
messex
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Dealer Re-programming entire computer system? Concerns?

Ok, so, when I bought my M5 a few months ago, the guy only had one of the keys - a Comfort Access key. Even though he assured me the other would show up, I went ahead and bought a new one a couple of weeks ago. Well, apparently it has to be programmed at the dealership (Comfort Access portion only), as they said that you can only have 2 active CA keys for the car, so they have to deactivate the one missing key, and program the new one in. Well, I've been there twice now, and both times they have been unsuccessful. My SA today told me that it they were having trouble deactivating the old key. He then asked if I could schedule another time to bring the car in, drop it off (and leave it - i've been staying and waiting the last 2 times). Said he would get me a loaner, but that they needed to completely reprogram the entire computer system - all the systems - basically start from scratch, with NO keys, and then add the two keys in. Said that this would be an upgrade to the entire system. So, I know others have taken their cars in to have the computer 'updated', and I assume that is what will be happening here, but I have a couple of questions:

1. Any concerns I should be aware of?
2. Is there any benefit (other than fixing my key situation) with having this update (my car is MY 2007). As far as I know, it hasn't been done before, but don't know that. Just wondering if things like SMG Updates or IDrive updates will be done.

Thanks,
Mark

PS. I told him to surprise me with a good loaner. At least something interesting.
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post #2 of 8 Old 5th May 2011, 02:31 PM
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I had my ABS module recently replaced. In order to code it to match the car they had to reprogram my entire car. Apparently the dealer doesn't do it, they plug your car into the internet and BMW downloads the program to it. The dealer is just the interface, apparently. The only thing I think you would have to worry about is if you had some sort of custom software modification that would essentially be overwritten.

Mine is a 2008, but manufactured in 2/07. The main thing I noticed that changed were:

1. Oil level indicator in instrument cluster screen no longer says "0.7L" or whatever, it now just says "OK" unless you have to add oil. You still get the bar graph. The IDrive oil display is not affected.

2. I had to get a new music Ipod (I had a GoGear), as the new USB software made it incompatible. I just went and bought a $17 4GB Sony thumb drive and put all my music on that. Same file format (*.wma) but the hardware is compatible.

3. Spark plugs, which are regular maintenance on M5, no longer show up as maintenence items in the service info. My service department said that when they are due, they will show up at the oil change reminder.

But there is no programming of one module. From what I was told, BMW either reprograms the whole car or doesn't reprogram anything. The dealer cannot ask for just one module to be reprogrammed.

Other than what I listed there is no difference in my car's behavior (that I have noticed, anyways).

Last edited by DaveCM5; 5th May 2011 at 02:38 PM.
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post #3 of 8 Old 5th May 2011, 02:34 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the detailed information! That is very helpful. I haven't done any custom programming (yet), but not sure if the previous owner did anything - don't think they did. Was just about to have a tune done, so I'll wait on that until I get it back. I'll update this thread if I notice any differences other than the ones you described.
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post #4 of 8 Old 10th May 2011, 03:00 AM Thread Starter
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Well, after the 3rd visit, this time for the 'Complete re-programming', I am being told that my CAS Computer needs replacing (Comfort Access Computer). $800 for parts, labor, and programming. All this to get my new second key to work with Comfort Access. Something about that doesn't sound right to me. Told me that they can't clear the 'lost key' from the computer. They also told me they re-flashed everything, but the old keys stayed in there. I find that hard to believe. in addition, when I looked at, say, the oil Indicator, it is still the old way, showing a level of how much is left. So, sounds like to me they didn't do anything. I'm not paying $800 for a second key. I'll just keep using my main key, and keep the second for emergencies, at least until I have some other programming that needs done.

Does anybody know if any of the software out there allows access to the Comfort Access section? I've got the cable, but haven't hooked anything up yet. Was going to dabble in something of the programming (I'm a programmer by trade). Just wondering if anybody that has done any programming of the M5 has messed with the CAS module?
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post #5 of 8 Old 20th May 2015, 06:18 PM
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I have a 2009 bmw 528xi which needs a engine computer. They are on the internet to buy for less than 200. A new one is over 1200. However, no one seems to know how to program and flash it to the vehicle. They say you can not put a used one in because it does not match the vin on your car. Can you shed come light on this for me. Why do they sell used ones then?
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post #6 of 8 Old 20th May 2015, 06:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MRUSSO View Post
I have a 2009 bmw 528xi which needs a engine computer. They are on the internet to buy for less than 200. A new one is over 1200. However, no one seems to know how to program and flash it to the vehicle. They say you can not put a used one in because it does not match the vin on your car. Can you shed come light on this for me. Why do they sell used ones then?
For the E60 platform, there are 3 pieces locked to each other:

- The DME (engine computer)
- The CAS module (Car access system i.e. anti-theft)
- the Key Fob

The DME and CAS both have an ISN (serial number) encoded to them during installation. When the key is inserted, the CAS queries the key then the DME to make sure the DME matches. If not, the CAS does not allow the start solenoid to be activated and the DME will not enable the starting routine of injectors, ignition, etc.

A used DME and CAS may be paired if not already matching, but this is beyond dealerships ability and requires use of aftermarket (gray market) software. From the dealership's perspective, a new CAS and DME must be purchased together and come from BMW AG pre-paired.

Keys are the other problem, the CAS must be programmed to accept the Keys. This can be done at the dealership for new keys (uncertain on used keys).

After (gray) market software (AK300) allows reading and writing of Keys to the CAS, but there aren't many people out there advertising (for obvious reasons) how to do so.

If you are truly in need of a new DME, your best bet is to get a full set of DME, CAS, and keys. The CAS and DME can then be programmed using WinKFP (with UIF write enabled) to program your car's VIN into them. At that point the only thing that will be mismatched is the KOMBI module (gage cluster) odometer reading to the CAS/DME odometer reading. That's another obstacle to overcome.
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post #7 of 8 Old 20th May 2015, 09:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveCM5 View Post
3. Spark plugs, which are regular maintenance on M5, no longer show up as maintenence items in the service info. My service department said that when they are due, they will show up at the oil change reminder.
Do you have this Warranty/Service booklet? It clearly states (page 6) spark plugs are not monitored/displayed in the CBS/iDrive and are due every 37,000 miles. You may need to show this to your SA when the time is due.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 2008 Warranty Service Booklet.pdf (1.23 MB, 2 views)

2009 BMW E63 M6 SMG Coupe
2004 BMW E60 545i 6MT Sport Sedan (Sold)
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post #8 of 8 Old 21st May 2015, 03:10 AM
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Do you have this Warranty/Service booklet? It clearly states (page 6) spark plugs are not monitored/displayed in the CBS/iDrive and are due every 37,000 miles. You may need to show this to your SA when the time is due.
Don't think he's been on in nearly a year.

Last edited by jcolley; 21st May 2015 at 03:10 AM.
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