NCS Expert: Basics To Reading And Writing To Modules
As you may or may not know, NCS Expert is simply a program used to read and write (program) parameters to a vehicle. Below is a basic flow chart that shows one of the methods a person might use to read and write information to a module (computer location) in the vehicle.
Selecting the Chassis type simply tells NCS Expert what type of vehicle it is dealing with so it can retrieve your car’s VIN number. For us that own an E90, we will always choose E89.
Step 2 – 3
Some have mentioned that Step 2 is not that important, and that you can select any of the ECUs (CAS, FRM, or NFRM), but it has become a common practice to just select the CAS module. We need to select one of the modules so that NSC Expert can pull the vehicle’s VO (Vehicle Order). The VO is simply a string of numbers that represent what modules are installed in your car, where your car was made, and other useful information needed so NSC Expert knows how to code your car. So once you select the module, you will notice beside FA a series of numbers and characters. This string of data if basically your car’s DNA. One of the most important points to remember is, the module selected in Step 2 has nothing to do with the module/s you select in Step 3. Selecting the module in Step 2 is used to only pull your vehicle’s VO. The module you select in Step 3 is the module you will be reading or writing (programming). This is something that confused me and others for the longest time. Another important point to know is, once you select a module in Step 2, and NCS Expert reads your VO, it will also store a copy of all the parameters programmed in every module in a FSW_PSW.TRC file, located on your computer in the NCS Expert WORK folder. If you are confused about what the FSW_PSW.TRC file is for, that’s okay, let me try to explain. NCS Expert was programmed to create/write the FSW_PSW.TRC file automatically to our computer when it reads information from a module/s. NCS Expert gives us programmers the option to rename that generated FSW_PSW.TRC file with a .MAN extension (i.e. FSW_PSW.MAN); which is the file we make changes to. After we make changes to the .MAN file, NCS Expert is programmed to look for that FSW_PSW.MAN file when you are ready to program your car. So think of it this way, the .TRC file is always created/overwrote “by” NCS Expert when you read information from your car. The .MAN file on the other hand is created “by the end user (you)”, and is the file NCS Expert looks at when it is time to code a module.
Once a module is selected from Step 3 and you read the ECU, NCS Expert will read a copy of the selected module, and the information to the FSW_PSW.TRC file. If the file already exists from Step 2-3, NCS Expert just overwrites the file automatically. However, compared to Steps 2-3, in Step 4, NCS Expert will only copy the data from the selected module instead of all the modules in the vehicle.
Step 5 is optional depending on what you are trying to accomplish. It is a good common practice to make a backup of the FSW_PSW.TRC file NCS Expert generated in case you ever needed to. Some people simply open the FSW_PSW.TRC file in a text editor and after making any coding changes, they will save the file with a .MAN extension instead of .TRC (i.e. FSW_PSW.MAN). However, some people will go ahead and simply rename the generated FSW_PSW.TRC file to FSW_PSW.MAN and open the FSW_PSW.MAN file in a text editor.
In Step 6-8 is where all the coding modifications are being done.
In Step 9, you have to tell NCS Expert that you want to take the information in the FSW_PSW.MAN that you just modified, and program that information to the car. Changing the Job Name to SG_CODIEREN simply means, you want NCS Expert to execute a job that will take the information in the FSW_PSW.MAN file (located in your NCS Expert WORK folder) and copy that information to the module selected to get coded.
After selecting what Job Name you want to execute, the final step is to actually make NCS Expert run the job. Clicking the Execute Job button does just that.
Want To Learn More?
A good helpful source to learn a little more about NCS Expert can be found here: Click Here