Here is some additional info.
Here are all the features available to Level 1 users (as of the version shown).
Is it licensed by VIN and what if my VIN is bad?
The software is attached to a specific VIN. If your VIN is generic (ends in all 0's) or does not match the car, don't worry you are ok. There are two parts to the software, a firmware patch and the "tune" itself. The firmware patch is customized to have the VIN you tell BOE. It will write the new VIN to the ECU. This is all done through the Fastworks software and does not require you to remove the ECU.
Does the software call home?
Yes, the software will try to connect to the Fastworks/BOE server upon first starting up. If it cannot connect to the server the software will close and provide no functionality. Here is my suggestion if you are planning to go out driving and doing dataloging or going to a dyno. Start the laptop up at home. Load the Fastworks software and login and let it validate. Then simply close the lid on your laptop so it goes into hiberbate mode. I have raised this concern with Michael, and as I said to him hopefully there is a balance where we can use the product and he can protect his intellectual property.
How long does it take to do a flash?
The initial flash takes a while since it rewriting the firmware in the ECU. This one took me maybe 5-10 minutes total. In which you are turning the ignition on and off. Once you get passed that one, writing a "tune" only takes about 20 seconds.
Can I use the Tactrix Openport cable for other things?
Yes! It is still a completely useable cable. You can use it hack into other cars [see their forum
]. The cable also has a slot for a Micro SD. CUrrently there is no use for this with Fastworks, but Phil says they have some ideas for the future.
Will I need to buy a USB cable for the Tactrix Openport?
No! it comes with a 2 meter mini USB cable from an online vendor that I greatly recommend!
Can Level 1 options be changed in real time?
No. In order to modify the tune, you open the file and make changes to the desired parameters. You then write it to the ECU. The engine can not be running during the write process. My understanding of the Level 2 is that you can make temporary changes (volatile memory), but must do a normal write process to make the changes permanent.
Can I use this if I have a Vision Function supercharger or a custom turbo/SC kit?
Yes, absolutly! However, to get the best out of it you will need to additionally get the IAT sensor kit from BOE. It is about $50-$60 for the sensor and harness. This will allow the ECU to see the actual air temps instead of seeing what the MAF sees. Though if you have a MAF in a blow through configuration, consult with BOE as you may be able to preserve that setup.
Here is my helpfull hint for installing the wire into the ECU harness. The pin has a slender area in the middle. The locking tab that you slide out has a split down the middle. That split fits over the slender spot on the pin. So the pin needs to be rotated in such a way that the split will fit around it. Also that being said, until you push in the retaining clip, the pin will slide in and out pretty easily. Thats normal. It doesn't catch like a Molex pin does.
Can the Fastworks software make my emmisions pass?
Yes and no. Phil had previously posted a screenshot showing that "Ready Tests" could be individually enabled or disabled. This allowed the ECU to function as if that particular test never existed. This includes the Catalyst, O2 Sensor & Evaporative system. That feature is not available to users at this point in time, and most likely never will be. However
, if you have a particular need, please consult with Phil as I guarantee you he can most likely take care of you.
Moving on to the individual "P0xxx" codes that can be disabled in the Level 1 software. In my limited experience playing with these, if you disable a particular POxxx code you will not get a check engine light related to that code, however the emissions ready test related to that code will not set. For instance Po171 (lean) came disabled with the tune I got. My O2 sensor test would not set until I set the code to enable. Something else kept my catalyst test from setting, but in the state of Texas you are allowed 1 not-ready state to pass emissions. So between the first pargraph and your states laws, you can probably work out a way to get the car passing.
How Does The Datalogging Work?
Once the ignition is on, connect to the ECU (engine does not have to be running to datalog). Open the Gauges menu under View. Select Datalog from the ECU menu (or just hit Ctrl-D if your driving). The software will start writing to a comma delimited CSV file. Any texteditor can view this, though Excel is a better choice. You can choose to view many parameters that the ECU is looking at. However, at this time you cannot save the layout you create.
Some Notes About Datalogging
- On my laptop (i5 & SSD harddrive,though may not matter) the software writes at about 26 frames per second!!
- It's about 100 Kilobytes per minute of writing.
- The gauges bar only grows horizontally, can't add another row.
- To add a guage, right click on the existing gauges and add/new. Then right click on new one and change properties.
- Hackish has stated that the dataloging section will be revamped with the release of the T4 update.
- Side note, the default save spot was in the Layout folder, not the datalog folder.
Currently, the datalog uses the Epoch of when the you started datalogging for the file name. See here
for an understanding on Epoch. The "frames" in the csv file do not appear to relate to any trackable time measurement. As I noted I was seeing about 26 frames per second on my laptop. So at that point, each "frame" would be equivalent to 38.5 milliseconds.
Can Fastworks read or clear CEL codes?
Yes, though it is basic. It will only tell you what fault codes are active. It will not tell if your emmisions Ready Tests are set or not. You can erase the codes (which also resets the Ready Tests) and you can clear the "memory" of the various fuel and timing trims. You should select this when writing a new map that has new tables
. You do not need to do if you are just changing level 1 features.
If I have Level 1, can I buy different injectors without worrying about getting a new map?
Yes, Hackish says the Fuel Injector Scalars can be used if you buy injectors that are a different cc size.
Will the Level 1 or 2 software license transfer to another owner if I sell the car?
For the injector scaling, yes it's possible and works very well. For example I did 2 force fed cars, one with 450cc and the other with 550cc injectors. The tune required no adjustments other than injector size and latency table.
I do not know the answer to this, as I have not asked.
What if I fry my ECU, will my software license transfer to the new ECU?
I do not know the answer to this, as I have not asked.
I got paid on Friday, will I be able to show off to my co-workers on Monday!?!?
One thing about most vendors in this particular scene is you need to learn to be patient. Getting ahold of Phil or Andrew at BOE can be a very daunting task sometimes. However, based on my experience, I believe they are too busy making sure previous customers are getting exactly what they need. I have dealt with BOE on several occasions and everytime Phil has contacted me either through phone, email or text to communicate extensively to make sure we are on the same page and that I understand everything. They will get back to you, just don't expect
it to be quickly. Also the intial setup of your software requires manual work, no automation. So once you pay you will still have to wait for Phil to get time to authorize your account (and wait for the cable as well).
Known Issues, Bugs, Concerns
- The "MAF airflow" datalog currently just starts counting quickly until it hits the 12bit value of 4096 and stops.
- The software is supposed to be able to do a "ECU Dump", but currently is not working. ETA is with T4 update.
- Software will not work over a network that uses a proxy.
- Vehice Speed (VSS) will stop at 62MPH/100KPH and say ">62MPH" on the viewer, but it will continue writing actual value to file.
- The software does upload your tunes to the server, but currently the "server" download button is not active. So save locally.