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Author Topic: Free ME7 Logging with VehiCAL Logger  (Read 22719 times)
prj
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« on: January 17, 2023, 09:45:28 AM »

Many are probably familiar with the J2534 based VehiCAL Logger for newer ECU's as a paid tool.
Today I release a full free protocol for ME7.

You can download the tool here:
https://download.vehical.net/logger/LoggerInstall.exe

The whole installation and usage part is described in the documentation:
https://docs.vehical.net/logger_getting_started

After you register and get an API key, just select the "VAG ME7 C167 K-Line (Free) - Advanced" protocol.
Please do not fill garbage data during registration. I will never ever send you any unsolicited e-mail or share your details with third parties unless ordered by a court (the GDPR in EU is extremely strict about this).
But this is a commercial tool interacting with my servers, and I am required to have knowledge about the users. Any garbage accounts will be deleted without warning.

Here are a few benefits of my solution:
* Better ease of use, no need to generate or edit any files. All the heavy lifting is done by the server.
* Full UI for measurement adding/removing/displaying and you can add or remove measurements in real time while connected to the ECU.
* Configurable format of log headers.
* Optional translation of German variable names to English.
* Automatic init type and baud rate detection, or you can select it in the connection dialog
* Runs using J2534 hardware. No messing around with COM ports.
* Automatic 5120 file detection and variable re-scaling
* File patching built-in, that allows connecting with double slowinit even when engine is running.
* Variable side loading support through the "Add custom..." button in the measurement selection screen, instructions here:
https://docs.vehical.net/logger_custom
* GitHub with explanation of the logging method, and the ECU code: https://github.com/prj/me7log

There are also a few downsides:
* Requires a J2534 interface, which is much more expensive than KKL cable. However, it is a very good investment, and likely many already have one.
* Requires registration and signup in the billing system
* Requires an internet connection during the initial connection, but after that you can start and stop logging as many times as you like and no internet is needed.

Finally, keep in mind that this stuff is completely free, and currently in beta.
I am happy if you find some bugs or details and post about them, but please do not expect any timely support for this protocol.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2023, 06:04:17 AM by prj » Logged

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aef
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« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2023, 10:43:13 AM »

tested, thx  Grin
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Blazius
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« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2023, 10:56:23 AM »

Nice, thanks, seems pretty cool specially the 5120 detection and the fact you dont have to generate ecu files and such which might be good for the noobs.

Oh and the logging patch is nice too since most people dont even know how to find the required code via disassembly.


Cheers.
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prj
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« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2023, 11:03:52 AM »

I tried to make it as simple as possible, because with ME7Logger it was every time generate files, then try to find init method and baud rate that will work.
Then if your dash only supports double slow init you had to every time turn off the engine to start logging, and patching is non-trivial.

In the end it saves much time.
Did not feel like charging for it, since ME7Logger is free anyway, so let it be a gift Smiley
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fragolas
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« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2023, 11:24:32 AM »

Awesome.
Will you only be supporting vag me7 or other ecu's in the Future?
Is this using the same method that you described in another post?
Edit: I had to read better,this last question is already answered in the first post

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prj
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« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2023, 12:12:29 PM »

It depends really. Maybe the Fiat ME7.9 is interesting to do.
The problem is getting all the measurement data.

Right now I parsed the table that is the same on all VAG ME7 to get the data.
No such thing on other ECU's usually. So that means to get the data exact a2l is needed.
I actually have an a2l generator but it does not support C167 instruction set, adding it is a lot of work, and not sure it is financially worth it.

Most likely the next I will work on are other K-Line protocols for which I already have the data. Like BMW and Merc.
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mtb703
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« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2023, 12:23:45 PM »

I tried to make it as simple as possible, because with ME7Logger it was every time generate files, then try to find init method and baud rate that will work.
Then if your dash only supports double slow init you had to every time turn off the engine to start logging, and patching is non-trivial.

In the end it saves much time.
Did not feel like charging for it, since ME7Logger is free anyway, so let it be a gift Smiley

Its also a good way to get your logger out there.  Its like handing free food out at Costco, gets people in the store.
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fragolas
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« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2023, 12:28:49 PM »

I understand. When I started reverse engineering my me7.3.1 I was a complete noob, so I used the a2l and hex of an Alfa 2.0 as a guide. Most of the functions are the same, except anything related to the turbo side of things, and cats ( Alfa uses bank 1 and 2).
The rest of the functions are very similar to s4 7.1.1 (ggsdas), etc.
There are patterns,but to implement this in a program is not easy I imagine.
There are some interesting cars using this ecu, Alfa GTA  and 20v turbo lancia (and fiat soon)
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fragolas
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« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2023, 12:32:38 PM »

I will keep using readmemorybyadress for the time being, when I have time I will try to implement your method in this ecu

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prj
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« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2023, 12:42:01 PM »

Its also a good way to get your logger out there.  Its like handing free food out at Costco, gets people in the store.
That's the idea of course.
Maybe someone will like it on ME7 and then pay for it on a newer ECU.

And even if not, then it's at least one way to give back to the community, that's also why I posted the whole method on GitHub instead of keeping it private.
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« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2023, 02:19:10 PM »

Awesome and thanks for the contribution, as always. I will be after an J2534 interface to use your logger.
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prj
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« Reply #11 on: February 15, 2023, 08:53:41 AM »

Added support for ECU's that have security access. E.g. 40mhz 1.8T on 8E.

Next that could be done is ST10, but for that I need to implement C166 instruction support into my a2l generator and this won't be free, but rather a normal paid protocol, since there is no ME7Info for these.
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nyet
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« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2023, 03:13:17 PM »

Outstanding work.. I did a bit of initial digging in to a J2534 -> FTDI (or bare bitbang rs232) shim, and it's non trivial, even if doable.

Maybe something to do if i retire or lose my day job.

Thanks for this, regardless, prj.
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prj
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« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2023, 04:45:35 PM »

Yeah you can make a J2534 DLL for a K-Line interface.
The only downside is that the best reliable timing you can get on Windows without spinwait is 0.5ms via some API's.
But it's not too bad. I have ISO-TP implemented in software for my CAN multiplexer tool (log multiple ECU's at once), and it's barely slower than a hardware implementation.
TP2.0 runs in software as well using the same timer.

You only have to do a few things like taking care of P2/P3/P4 timings and then implement the fast and slowinit.

But how much sense does it make really? All the newer CAN cars require a J2534 device anyway.
These days you can get cloned Tactrix Openport and Mongoose for 20 euro on aliexpress with free shipping, and they work just fine. Barely more expensive than a KKL cable...
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sda2
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« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2023, 01:58:12 PM »

It was worth a try, but unfortunately it fails to connect to BMW ME7.2

[21:53:45] Connecting using VAG ME7 C167 K-Line (Free) - Advanced...
[21:53:52] Reading ECU data...
[21:53:52] HW: 0261207106
[21:53:52] Bosch SW: 1037368796
[21:53:52] VAG SW: 011195005A012401
[21:53:52] Checking ECU...
[21:53:54] ERROR: Unsupported ECU: Address verification failed.

Not that I was expecting it to work, but I had hope Cheesy
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