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      11-13-2012, 02:03 PM   #1
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FAQ: ESS E-Flash ECU Performance Software Tune

Included is a quick overview for those not familiar with the ESS E-Flash Software Suite, which is best suited for S65 M3 platforms.



ESS was founded 1995 in Aremark, Norway. ESS E-Flash ECU software is a result of extensive testing and exact calibration of ECU parameters to allow conservative performance gains on an otherwise stock car. The ESS software is developed and tested in extreme heat in the Arizona desert as well as extreme cold temperatures in Scandinavia. The end user can select between 2 different power levels and cat/no cat in the DirectFlash unit. ESS E-Flash also includes full engine diagnostic functionality and code clearing capabilities.



Overview Video: Table of Contents
0:00-0:22 ESS Tuning Software Installation
0:23-1:04 E-Flash Cable Marriage
1:05-1:53 DME/ECU Backup - Initial Read
1:54-3:09 DME/ECU Programming (OS update, if provided)
3:10-4:08 ESS Tuning Performance File Flash
4:09-5:06 Codes and Adaptations

Instructions
1. Install ESS E-Flash Software Suite software on your laptop or netbook
2. Connect the provided cable to your OBDII port and read your ECU
3. Email the file to either EAS or ESS directly, along with your vehicle's details/configuration
4. Performance tune will be provided to you via email, in which it can be flashed at your own convenience

You have full control over the read/flashing process - ZERO downtime from sending DMEs back and forth in the mail!

ESS E-Flash optional features
- Optional 8600 RPM limiter (raised from stock 8250RPM)
- Horsepower: (+15-20hp on average, depending on modifications)
- Improved Torque: (+10-15ft/lbs on average, depending on modifications)
- Removed cold start cat heat cycle/camshaft phasing (for smoother cold starts)
- Remove Check Engine Lamp (CEL) for those running catless and/or track setups
- Removed top speed governor/VMAX
- Reprogrammed torque management
- Reprogrammed throttle response
- Reprogrammed ignition, VANOS and fuel parameters for optimum performance

Models Supported
S65: E9X M3
S54: E46 M3
S65: E9X M3
S62: E39 M5
S63: E70 X5M, E71 X6M
S85: E60 M5, E63/4 M6
N54: E8X 135i, E9X 335i, E89 Z4 S-Drive35i, E60 535i, E82 1M, E9X 335is, E89 Z4 S-Drive35is
N52B30: E8X 130i, E9X 325i/328i/330i, E60 525i/528i/530i, E63/4 630Ci, E65 /30i, E83 X3 3.0i, E70 X5 3.0i, E85 Z4 3.0i, E89 Z4 SDrive30i
N62B44: E60 545i, E63/4 645Ci, E65 745i, E53 X5 4.4i

A lot of discussion has been made on DME software versions, such as we brought to light late last year when 231E first arrived at BMW dealerships, seeing substantial gains on vehicles that have never been updated (part of normal maintenance schedule) vs 231E, which is now being updated to 240E at time of this posting. EAS first brought this to light back in December 2011..

The primary intention of this thread is to inform and educate on the ESS tuning platforms, as well as serve as an ongoing FAQ for those current using the E-Flash software suite, or simply for those searching for more information. We will be posting dyno sheets, as well as product updates and other news as info is made available.

Feel free to respond with questions as desired.
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      11-13-2012, 02:03 PM   #2
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ESS E-Flash Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) / Table of Contents

Current ESS E-Flash Software Suite Version: Build 0654 (v14)
Current BMW OS/Software Version: 240E


Current version of E-Flash can be downloaded here

FAQ: Installation

What is included with E-Flash Package? What specific equipment is needed to flash my M3?
Included will be the E-Flash USB/OBDII Cable, USB Flash Drive with instructions & E-Flash Software Suite pre-installed. A Laptop/Netbook fully charged equipped with Windows XP/Vista/Win7 is required.

Can E-Flash be installed on Windows 8?
WIN8 is a little tricky as the driver signature enforcement used needs to be disabled. Here’s an article that overviews the process:
http://www.fotoclubinc.com/blog/how-...-on-windows-8/. Once disabled, the E-Flash program can be installed.

Is E-Flash Apple/Mac Compatible?
E-Flash is compatible with Mac computers running Fusion/VMware or similar installed.

Do I need to use a battery charger or power supply while reading/flashing?
Sufficient battery power is essential when reading and most importantly - flashing. E-Flash will perform a hardware compatibility check upon launch to confirm battery/processor power to warn you of any issues before the process is started. Turn off Bluetooth on your cellular phone before flashing process is started. As an added precaution, you should turn off all loads before reading and/or flashing: headlights, air conditioning/heater, radio, etc. A 2-amp battery charger is recommended for power stabilization for vehicles with 3+ year or older batteries, but not required in all cases.

Is the E-Flash cable intended for only one vehicle? Can I use the cable on other vehicles?
The E-Flash cable can only be used on one vehicle. As soon as a read is performed, your VIN is written to your cable, thus being "married" to your BMW.

I plan on upgrading to an ESS Supercharger in the near future. Can I use my current cable to flash the provided supercharger software file?
Yes, the same E-Flash cable used for N/A vehicles is also provided with the ESS Supercharger systems.

I received a "BETA Version Expired" notice after launching the ESS E-Flash Software Suite. What should I do?
Newer versions of the E-Flash suites are released periodically. If you are receiving this message and are a registered ESS E-Flash user or purchased the cable from us directly, please contact EAS or ESS with your full name and previous build version for a current version of the E-Flash software suite. Current software versions will be posted at the top of this post as reference.

Latest E-Flash version download link can always be found at http://www.esstuning.com/pages/Support.html

FAQ: Reading/Writing Process

How long does it take to receive my tuned file?
Please allow 1 business day for files to be returned. In most cases, files are returned within hours of submittal.

Does E-Flash have OBD2 readiness for those catless setups?
ESS has this ability but chooses not to. Setting up a catless car to have OBD readiness is against federal law and carries a $250,000 fine per vehicle if caught doing so. ESS does not recommend customers doing this and do not offer this option. E-Flash allows you to return the vehicle to it's original stock map if needed. We suggest re-installing your cats and stock file to legally pass state OBD inspections.

Can E-Flash correctly identify my DME's current software version?
Yes! When a [Full program + calibration data only] read is being performed, the software version of the DME is embedded within the file name.

Let's use the following filename as an example, which was saved using the [Full program + calibration data only] option:

SiemensDMEMSS60_7846409_7846397_0569QT0Z220EEKUV0_ WBSWD93509PY00000.full.bmw.org

DMEMSS60 = BMW ECU Type
7846409 = BMW Hardware Number
7846397 = BMW Software Number
0569QT0Z220EEKUV0 = Hardware Reference Number
WBSWD93509PY00000 = VIN Number

The 0569QT0Z220EEKUV0 portion of the filename is what will determine your ECU Software version. Digits 9-12 show [220E] which correctly ID this ECU's software version. This would identify that this DME needs to be brought up to date, at ESS's discretion. ESS or EAS may ask for your full file number if other information is required during troubleshooting.

I do not want a tuned file, only a software update. Is this possible?
Yes, you are able to flash only the updated BMW software version if desired. If local to our facility in Anaheim, CA - we can perform this service via autologic, which does not require a cable purchase (this service is also performed as part of our prepping service before ESS Supercharger systems are installed). For those outside our regional area, the ESS E-Flash cable is necessary.

I am currently on software version 231E now. Are there any benefits to updating to 240E?
If 190E or earlier, we recommend updating to at least 231E, preferably 240E. At this time, the update path from 231E to 240E seem to be primarily focused on emissions, with no change in performance. However, there is no harm in updating to 240E if desired.

Does the key/vehicle need to be on while flashing?
Key needs to be in KL30 mode (KEY ON, ENGINE NOT RUNNING) during all interaction with ESS E-Flash. Vehicle with Comfort Access (CA) should have the key inside the ignition.

ESS E-Flash is prompting me for [Calibration data only] and [Full program + calibration data only]. Which should I choose?
Is this is your first time using the E-Flash, a [Full program + calibration data only] read should be taken and sent to ESS Tuning, as well as keeping a backup copy safe - usually on the provided thumbdrive with your ESS E-Flash kit. This file will be needed if you should ever wish to return the vehicle to stock programming in the future.

When would [Calibration data only] selection be used when performing a read?
This selection can be used only after ESS has a [Full program + calibration data only] file archived. When in doubt, always perform a [Full program + calibration data only] read.

How long does does the Read process take?
A [Full program + calibration data only] read should take approximately ~35-40 minutes. For vehicles with a 3+ year battery, we recommend placing a 2-amp battery charger to provide a steady power supply during the read process, remembering to turn off Bluetooth on your cellphone if linked to your BMW.

How large is a [Full program + calibration data only] or [Calibration data only] file?
A typical [Full program + calibration data only] file is 5MB. A [Calibration data only] file is 2MB.

What file format is the [Full program + calibration data only] or [Calibration data only] files saved in? What format is my tune provided in?
Files backups are saved in *.ORG format. Your provided performance tune (and OS update if required) will be sent in *.MOD format.

Can my backup/performance files be shared with anyone else?
No, these files are locked to your specific VIN and cannot be used with other vehicles.

How large is the tuned file that will be provided to me?
Depending on your current DME's Software Version, you may receive an OS update file along with your performance tune. The OS file is typically 5MB with the performance file being 2MB in size - sent in a compressed ZIP or RAR format. Once unzipped, you will see the file(s) needed to perform your flash. If you do not receive (2) files, then you are currently up to date and do not require an OS update.

I received (2) files, do they need to be loaded in any particular order?
If an OS update is required, the files will be clearly labeled in what order they need to be loaded in. Once your OS file is loaded, please retain a backup copy (usually on the included thumbdrive) in case you should wish to return the vehicle back to stock tune in the near future.

I have successfully performed a [Full program + calibration data only] read. What's next?
Your 5MB *.ORG file must be compressed (either in ZIP or RAR format) and emailed to software@esstuning.com or directly to us at info@europeanautosource.com along with the following information:

Vehicle Year:
Make:
Model:
Transmission Type:
Octane Rating (91/93):
VIN Number:


Vehicle Engine/Exhaust Modifications (check those that apply, please be as descriptive as possible)
[ ] Performance Air Filter installed and/or Intake System
[ ] UnderDrive Pulley System
[ ] Performance X-Pipe: Please state whether catalytic converters are present or replaced with HFC versions (example: Akrapovic Evolution Exhaust system)
[ ] Performance Muffler: Please indicate brand
[ ] Other: Indicate all other performance modifications that do not fit into above categories such as track-oriented setups

ESS E-Flash optional features
[ ] Optional 8600 RPM limiter (raised from stock 8250RPM)
[ ] Remove Cold Start Catalytic Heat Cycle/Camshaft phasing (for smoother cold starts)
[ ] Remove top speed governor/VMAX
[ ] Remove High Emissions Check Engine Lamp (CEL) for those running catless/Track setups

Free file compression software can be found at www.winzip or www.rarlab.com for use when emailing. Once received, your performance tune will be compiled and provided to you via email, in which it can be flashed at your own convenience.

What if I plan on changing my current configuration at a later date? How much does this cost?
If you have a desired hardware configuration to be set at a later date, include this info with your initial file request and an additional file will be provided if there is a file required for the change. If the request is provided at a later date, there is a service fee charged for file modification.

The dealer wiped out my E-Flash tune while at a service appointment. What do I do?
Likely, there was an ISTA/P update that applied to your vehicle, which wiped your DME. Simply reapply your [Full program + calibration data only] file that was read beforehand to reapply your flash tune. If an update was applied to your DME, please contact ESS for an updated file that applies to your OS using the steps above to correctly identify your DME's software version/OS.

Troubleshooting/Codes

A Check Engine Lamp appeared on my instrument cluster/iDrive display, what do I do?
Good news! Your E-Flash OBDII cable also serves as a diagnostic cable to read/reset trouble codes. Simply go into the [Diagnostic Option] section of the E-Flash suite and choose [Diagnostics], which can be seen at 4:09-5:06 of the included video. Codes can be read, cleared and saves for archival purposes or to aid in troubleshooting with your preferred technician.

Can my E-Flash cable be utilized for other uses like Coding/Personalization?
The ESS E-Flash cable is to be used with the E-Flash Software Suite only. It is not compatible for coding/personalization.

I am receiving a "Device May Be Incorrectly Coded" error when attempting to read my DME/ECU? What should I do?
For those that receive a "Device may be incorrectly coded" error when attempting to read your DME, you may be using v.9 or earlier software. If you have purchased your E-Flash interface from eas, please contact us (or ESS) for an updated version of E-Flash Software Suite.

Note: FAQ is intended to be an ongoing process and questions will be added periodically. Questions not in this FAQ can be directed to software@esstuning.com, info@europeanautosource.com or posted within the thread.
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      11-13-2012, 02:16 PM   #3
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The following are examples of E9X M3s with ESS E-Flash tunes.


Vehicle: 2011 BMW M3
Trans: 6MT
Mods: Akrapovic Evo system w/ GT4 X-Pipe (no cats), Gruppe-M Intake, Dinan Intake Charge Pipe, ESS Flash
Octane: 91 Octane



Vehicle: 2009 BMW M3
Trans: DCT
Mods: Challenge Street X-Pipe (secondary 200cpsi cats removed), Eisenmann Sport Muffler, ESS Flash
Octane: 91 Octane



Vehicle: 2011 BMW M3
Trans: DCT
Mods: Akrapovic Evolution Exhaust, Macht Schnell S2 Intake, ESS Flash
Octane: 91 Octane



Vehicle
2009 BMW M3 DCT

Modifications
Macht Schnell Performance Filter
Fabspeed Resonated X-Pipe (primary catalysts intact)
Rogue UnderDrive Pulley
Remus Race axleback

Options
[X] Update to 240E (previously on 200E OS)
[X] Remove cold start cat heat cycle/camshaft phasing (for smoother cold starts)
[X] Retain OEM Rev limiter (customer specified)
[X] Remove top speed governor/VMAX

M3 was originally on 200E OS, which was updated to 240E before applying the ESS flash tune. Plugs were already changed approximately 500mi ago as part of scheduled maintenance.

Forum members: feel free to post your ESS dyno results within this thread.
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      11-13-2012, 02:29 PM   #4
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I can personally say this Tune is awesome! I saw huge improvement over stock and the car ran a lot more smoothly IMO. Here is a link to my review of the ESS Tune

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=656660

I also can say Tom and the EAS crew are top notch. I recently stopped by there yesterday to get some things done to my M3 before turning it back in and his entire crew was very knowledgeable and respectful. I was very impressed with the whole place.

for those of you who are interested in a Tune the ESS Tune is a great way to go!
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      11-13-2012, 02:54 PM   #5
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As you guys get more customers with this tune, would be interesting to see before/after dynos for the software alone (no other mods before/after).
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      11-13-2012, 03:01 PM   #6
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does this tune have obd readiness for catless setups like the evolve tune?
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      11-13-2012, 03:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GOLFFRR View Post
I can personally say this Tune is awesome! I saw huge improvement over stock and the car ran a lot more smoothly IMO. Here is a link to my review of the ESS Tune

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=656660

I also can say Tom and the EAS crew are top notch. I recently stopped by there yesterday to get some things done to my M3 before turning it back in and his entire crew was very knowledgeable and respectful. I was very impressed with the whole place.

for those of you who are interested in a Tune the ESS Tune is a great way to go!
Your turning it in already??? You just got it!
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      11-13-2012, 03:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longuyen88 View Post
does this tune have obd readiness for catless setups like the evolve tune?
We can do it but we chose not to. Setting up a catless car to have OBD readiness is against federal law and carries a $250,000 fine per vehicle if caught doing so. We do not recommend customers doing this and we do not setup customers cars with this option.

E-Flash allows you to return the vehicle to it's original stock map if needed. We suggest re-installing your cats and stock file to legally pass state OBD inspections.
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      11-13-2012, 03:41 PM   #9
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This is a dyno of a car running the Akrapovic Evolution exhaust with stock software before and our Akrapovic tune after.


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      11-13-2012, 03:46 PM   #10
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Excellent consumer protection Roman
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      11-14-2012, 12:23 PM   #11
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FAQ added to post #2
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      11-14-2012, 12:38 PM   #12
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I have ESS direct flash unit, would love to upgrade to E-cable, running any specials for upgrading ?
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      11-14-2012, 12:40 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ///Lyubm View Post
I have ESS direct flash unit, would love to upgrade to E-cable, running any specials for upgrading ?
Replying offline to keep discussion tech-related.

Thanks.
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      11-14-2012, 11:33 PM   #14
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"A lot of discussion has been made on DME software versions, such as we brought to light late last year when 231E first arrived at BMW dealerships, seeing substantial gains on vehicles that have never been updated (part of normal maintenance schedule) vs 231E, which is now being updated to 240E at time of this posting. EAS first brought this to light back in December 2011"


I'm missing something here. I asked my local BMW dealer about a software update version 231E and he said that software versions for BMW are like 10 digits long and start with an alphabetical letter such as "E" then the digits.

Is 240E part of a software version number or what? Is this a software version that BMW can update our cars to, even if there are no engine problems?
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      11-15-2012, 10:44 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BimmerRob08 View Post
"A lot of discussion has been made on DME software versions, such as we brought to light late last year when 231E first arrived at BMW dealerships, seeing substantial gains on vehicles that have never been updated (part of normal maintenance schedule) vs 231E, which is now being updated to 240E at time of this posting. EAS first brought this to light back in December 2011"

I'm missing something here. I asked my local BMW dealer about a software update version 231E and he said that software versions for BMW are like 10 digits long and start with an alphabetical letter such as "E" then the digits.

Is 240E part of a software version number or what? Is this a software version that BMW can update our cars to, even if there are no engine problems?
Dealerships will not know much of individual module updates as they are included in ""service packs" (ISTA/P) in which multiple modules are updated in a single session. Dealers cannot update individual modules - only what the service pack calls for. For example, we've seen performance gains from very early software versions 080E to 231E, in which normal maintenance schedules were not followed on a timely basis. Over gradual use, the owners didn't even recognize the power (as well as mileage) was missing.

That being said, your SA or BMW Technician likely cannot ID the DME software version, just overwrite when prompted for an update. Performance software is simply icing on the cake afterwards.

You state you have a 2008 in your details, when was the last time your M3 was serviced? If you can PM me the last 7 of your VIN, I can check if there are any notes in your service history.
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      11-15-2012, 11:39 AM   #16
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2010 BMW M3  [4.33]
Thanks Tom for this post. I have the ESS tune myself and I love it. I'm now use to the tune and searching for more power. ESS SC is my next fix!
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      11-15-2012, 12:17 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mhabs View Post
As you guys get more customers with this tune, would be interesting to see before/after dynos for the software alone (no other mods before/after).
We run ESS on all of our cars, which includes 3 M3s, a 1M and a soon to be tuned F10 M5 and have seen excellent gains through the powerband on all 4 vehicles. Here is before/after, back to back, dyno of my DCT M3.

I also switched from the DirectFlash to the E-Flash and it's so much smoother. I was able to read and tune the car within an hour. It took only about 30 minutes to do a full read. Highly recommend this product.

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      11-15-2012, 12:54 PM   #18
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i already have 231E update with an ESS tune and cable. now when 241E is released how much would i have to pay to update my software to the new version ?
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      11-15-2012, 03:58 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ms372 View Post
i already have 231E update with an ESS tune and cable. now when 241E is released how much would i have to pay to update my software to the new version ?
There is no need to go from 231E to 240E but if you wanted to you can email software@esstuning.com and request it at no charge. We can set up your base file to whichever you prefer.

Last edited by Roman@ESS; 11-15-2012 at 04:27 PM.
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      11-15-2012, 08:29 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom @ eas View Post
Dealerships will not know much of individual module updates as they are included in ""service packs" (ISTA/P) in which multiple modules are updated in a single session. Dealers cannot update individual modules - only what the service pack calls for. For example, we've seen performance gains from very early software versions 080E to 231E, in which normal maintenance schedules were not followed on a timely basis. Over gradual use, the owners didn't even recognize the power (as well as mileage) was missing.

That being said, your SA or BMW Technician likely cannot ID the DME software version, just overwrite when prompted for an update. Performance software is simply icing on the cake afterwards.

You state you have a 2008 in your details, when was the last time your M3 was serviced? If you can PM me the last 7 of your VIN, I can check if there are any notes in your service history.
PM sent!
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      11-15-2012, 09:21 PM   #21
bainjohnop
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I'm now use to the tune and searching for more power.
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      11-15-2012, 10:26 PM   #22
ms372
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roman@ESS View Post
There is no need to go from 231E to 240E but if you wanted to you can email software@esstuning.com and request it at no charge. We can set up your base file to whichever you prefer.
well there be any gains or benefits of updating ? thanks Roman
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