After countless hours of reading, experimentation, chats with other experts from various forums, I finally have succeeded in doing what the guys over at the E60 and E90 forums have done. Code our cars with options that exist in various modules.
If you haven't ventured into this topic, here is a short version of what we will now be able to do at home.
- Communicate with individual modules in the E63-64
- Change parameters to enable or disable things like; the Legal Disclaimer start up screen; Auto folding and unfolding outside mirrors; disable that annoying door open with key in ignition 'gong'; DVD in motion (2008+), Seat belt chime; bulb testing upon startup and/or during operation; enabling a digital speed icon as an added option when you press the bc button on the left stalk; these are just a few
I am not a computer code writer. I know OHM's law, use common sense, and read a lot to get this working. Getting this to work was the challenge I wanted to accomplish. This may not be for everyone and there is some risk in killing a module I suspect. But if you can read instructions, and have a basic knowledge of a PC, you can do this.
The short version of what took so long is that the E63-64 writes the code changes slightly different than other models. In the end, the compilation of information required minor changes in a program known as NCS Expert. It also took me some time to figure out how to get the cable below to communicate with the car using USB and not a serial adaptor, which many use on the other boards.
So if this wets your appetite, or any other bodily function, I will be doing a DYI in minute detail during the next week or so. It's actually very simple, once you begin to understand it, but it is a slightly different procedure than has been written for other models.
Here is a taste and some pictures of what I did today until I got distracted by a rustling noise in my garage. Thought it was the hot water heater expanding and contracting; until a saw Ben and his wife. A couple of very large rats. Seems the usual sunny L.A. weather (which has been rain) do not agree with rodents, so indoors they come. So I got diverted with a trip to Home Depot for some traps and a calming session with the wife. I kept thinking about an older thread where another member had them chewing hoses and cardboard undercarriage parts on his M.
Anyway, back to the project. While I deal with my rodent friends, and until I get to a thorough DYI written, including links where to d/l the sw and drivers you will need, here are some pictures of what I accomplished today.
. A K+DCAN USB OBDI connector, which you will need and are available from many sources. (I have the drivers that allow it to operate with the USB cable vs others who used a serial adaptor). I will add a link where I got mine.
. A picture of my new boot up screen without the legal disclaimer (after the usual BMW screen appears) it also starts at the last function it was in when the car was turned off
. A picture of the additional option of digital speed (just for fun) when pushing the bc button on the left stalk. It now changes from time>miles til empty>oil level>digital speed>etc.
. Turn signal indicators on the HUD display (when not in M Mode)
I have a list of other changes I'm going to make including auto folding outside mirrors; turn signal frequency when pushing turn signals up or down in the momentary mode; cold and hot bulb check elimination (I have LED's everywhere and where I don't have resistors, they blink for a few seconds. Drives me crazy, Side markers as an example); HUD entertainment display option; Seat belt 'gong' disablement. Thats just a taste. Once I gain more confidence in German to English, I can see there are many more options I will change.
I read all the modules and backed them on on a thumb drive, in case I want to return to stock. I checked for errors with my BT (Bavarian Technic) cable and sw. No errors with these changes, so they would be undetectable by the dealer, although they would be over written, if a SW upgrade were performed by the dealer. By the way, the BT cable will not work for this. It's wired differently than the cable in the picture. Even the professional version. Two different uses.
So just a taste, and more to come...