To make the most of your BMW you need to configure some of the control units with their very own software. For the E…-Models, like my old 535d Touring, I did this with an otherwise decommissioned Windows XP machine. You could activate the MP3-decoder in pre-facelift cars, get the indicators displayed in the HuD and so on (german).
The old interface via CAN was hopelessly outdated however and with the F…-Models there was a new one introduced. And this one speaks Ehternet!
Catchphrase for changing the configuration of the ECUs is still “coding” (“codieren”), and seems to mean toggling some bits in some register, which then define how that control unit works. The old packages already provided some assistance by interpreting the configuration for you: It could be read out as a text, modified and re-loaded to change some values. The new “E-Sys” package makes it a lot easier by providing a better GUI. Of course it is still a development tool and therefore that GUI is outdated by one generation: INPA / EDIABAS / NCS Expert had a “Windows 3.11”-Style one, so E-Sys looks like it was made for Windows XP. 😉
As it doesn’t need any CAN-Transceivers to access the F-Series cars you can build your own Cable. A good starting point is the description at http://f30.bimmerpost.com/forums/showthread.php?t=696777, which contains a detailed PDF-attachment (ENET Cable Build.pdf). => Concentrate on that one!
These cables consist of twisted pairs and mine won’t be too long, so I startet with an old BBAE-cable from already discarded DSL-equipment and an OBD-plug.
First hint: Do not get an angled one like I did – at least not if you are planning to use it on an F20 (1-series)!
Interestingly the sepcification (first page of the PDF mentioned above) clearly states a power rating of 600mW for the resistor and everybody seems to ignore it. Not me however. 510,8 Ohm and 1W should be close enough. ^^
After the wiring I successfully tested the cable and glued the solder joints and wires into place.
If you plan to use a Version of E-Sys from the web on your own car you can e.g. ask (yes, ASK) Tokenmaster to help you with his “E-Sys Launcher” at http://tokenmaster.blogspot.de/ or register at http://cartechnology.co.uk/showthread.php?tid=9478 to get “ESysPlus”.
[Edit:] By 2019 “Plus2.8” didn’t work anymore and TokenMaster has published an old version of his “E-Sys Launcher PRO 2.8.2” for personal use, currently useable until April 2020 at http://tokenmaster.blogspot.com/2019/05/e-sys-launcher-pro-282.html. [/Edit]
These programs will restore the comments on the individual parameters – and you are lost without those comments (when everything is labeled with “.” instead of human-readable parameter names).
Not every combination of E-Sys and PSdZData (for “coding” the “light” versions are sufficient) will work however. E-Sys 3.26.1 with PSdZData 3.55.1 lite worked for me in 2016, but for the F-series cars everything seems to hve settled at E-Sys 3.27.1 and PSdZData Lite 4.20.30 by 2019.
There are enough tutorials out there. If you speak german I can recommend these:
http://www.prologik.de/was-brauche-ich-zum-codieren-der-f-serie/ (Wayback Machine)
And this List of changeable parameters for the F20, also german:
English landing page for getting the proper E-Sys 3.27.1 & PSdZData Lite combination:
But what can you do with it?
Well, that should be considered before actually doing something.
If you don’t have alarm in your vehicle you might be able to add the menu to set “acoustical lock confirm”, but you won’t be able to activate it.
And there is no point in activating shift point visual display (SPA_IST_GANG_ENABLE or SPA_SPORT_ENABLE) if you have automatic transmission – your instrument cluster will never show that info.
BTW: The “KOMBI” (Kombi-Instrument / instrument cluster) is a drama queen…
Sensible stuff? As the light sensor will never be perfect I think adding the tail lights to the daytime running lights is a good idea. You can dim it down a bit.
And I think dimming is what Firefly1337 saw and described here and in Post #1960: The center will dim stromger than the edges.
Yes, I coudn’t resist to activate “LaunchControl” (the prepossessor ordered the “sports” automatic with -unneccessary- paddles and a shorter stick) – but even trying to test is quickly gets embarrassing. 😀
So, did I do this just for fun? Partly.
There is something I missed compared to my old 5-series: Sending all heating to the backrest of the seats, so you don’t get your bollocks boiled. And with E-Sys you can configure the temperatures for surface and rest individually to half a degree for each of the three levels. 🙂
And while I was on it I could also change the first fuel warning from 90 to 100 km (90 km are useless, if you travel 97 km a day), the number of turn indications to four (three is a bit low for a lane change with a proper shoulder check) and zero the delay between opening the front and rear windows by remote. If I choose to ventilate the car, then I want to do it properly (others might want to increase the delay to protect the sun screen for their kids).
Nice side effect: I am now sure that my car doesn’t use “Active Sound Design”, but it already uses brake drying ex-factory (pre-facelift 120d).
Addendum regarding TokenMaster’s “No support of any form is provided, and zero fucks given” release of E-Sys Launcher PRO V2.8.2 Build 162:
After trying out various “dependency walkers”, double installing every software and triple-checking .NET framework up-to-dateness and Java paths, I found the infamous “Loading: E-Sys Launcher PSdZ API Module Failed! Error C:\ProgramData\TokenMaster\E-Sys Launcher Pro\bin\PSdzAPI.dll: Can’t find dependent libraries.” error to be caused by a missing 32bit “Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable für Visual Studio 2013” (AKA vc_redist.x86.exe) installation – at least on my Win 10 Home x64 machine.
…and, like TM, I’m just dropping these lines here FYI and won’t do support on your failed installations here. 😉