• Beginning of a modern BMW Tuning revolution? Introducing the free BimmerBoost.com Siemens MSD80 / MSD81 'true opensource' N54 flash program/utility

      As many visitors to this website know, the community here pulled together and has developed a truly free and open tuning solution for BMW vehicles equipped with the MSD80 / MSD81 Siemens ECU such as those with the popular N54 motor (135/335). How did this come about? Well, a certain vendor known for milking the community dry at any opportunity to line his own pockets managed to twist what was portrayed as an open source tuning solution into a $400 closed source flashing tablet. He pissed off the wrong BMW community.


      The membership here pulled together and now BimmerBoost.com is happy to present its free N54 flash utility available for download under the downloads tab you should see toward the top of this page. The fact that this community was able to accomplish what nobody else had in record time speaks for itself. BimmerBoost.com proves the best and brightest the BMW tuning community has to offer reside here. Quality over quantity prevails.

      This is a monumental achievement for several reasons. One, BimmerBoost users showed they will not just sit around and complain about vendors taking advantage of them. They will do something about it and do something they have. Secondly, it shows how powerful this network of websites has become essentially opening up tuning for a platform where codes are guarded like nuclear secrets not only by BMW but by tuners themselves. That speaks volumes to the resourcefulness and talent of this community.

      I would personally like to thank the community here and express my respect and gratitude. These members in particular deserve a thanks from everyone for helping make this happen:

      @Terry@BMS @klipseracer @Roy Cormier @ajm8127 @flash guy @lulz_m3

      To the members who donated for cables, spare ecu's, etc., please PM me if you would like to be added to the names listed to get your due credit as I did not keep a list of the names. I will edit you into this post.

      It's interesting to note that it was the vendor who attempted to extort the community (again) that helped this happen as quickly as it did. If it was not for burning the wrong bridges in the past certain people would not be as galvanized as they were. He essentially shot himself in the foot a long time ago. Bravo sir, my hat is off to you. Your own greed and arrogance cost you money and put a forum you try to keep down in the strongest position it has ever been. I want to send you a fruit basket filled with Procede's.

      Regarding source code, due to said vendor stating he wished to take the code others have worked on it will be distributed under a license by BimmerBoost.com to developers. This is also to prevent individuals who have expressed a desire to steal the software and then sell it illegally profiting off the free and honest work of members here. The software license agreement covers distribution, simply look it over. Android ports for mobile devices are in the works as well as specific editions for tuning options such as the BMS JB4. All versions are developed under the copyright BimmerBoost.com holds (AND WILL ENFORCE) on the software.

      Thank you to everyone involved and those who supported the effort. It is interesting the youngest and smallest (by volume) of the major BMW sites is having the biggest impact in real world tuning for its users. Who really is the best? I leave that up to you to judge.

      This is just the beginning. As you have noticed our new downloads section above allows members to exchange files and maps. A member can upload a tune they created themselves to get feedback for example or have others test it. A member can upload a file specifically for a certain type of fuel. A member can upload a private download that only their tuner can access and the tuner can then post this same private file for the user to download. A member can specify what other members can download their file. There are a multitude of options.

      Going forward, BimmerBoost hopes to open up tuning on multiple BMW platforms. The N63/S63 motors hopefully will come next but let's all just be happy for now that this even took place.

      On a personal note, I hope the N54 community in particular realizes the enthusiasm that started this site is alive and well as proven by this collaboration. There is a large difference between playing around and trolling forums and then actually concentrating that energy into something productive. This is the result of positive practice and effort, not irrelevant OT posting/flaming. One should be paid attention to, the other should not.

      Congratulations to the N54 community and the BimmerBoost community, you changed the course of BMW tuning history today.
      This article was originally published in forum thread: Beginning of a modern BMW Tuning revolution? Introducing the free BimmerBoost.com MSD80 / MSD81 'true opensource' N54 flash program/utility started by Sticky View original post
      Comments 230 Comments
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by lulz_m3 Click here to enlarge
        @Sticky, can we use the download section to share Cobb ATR maps as well?
        Are Cobb ATR maps something you create yourself?
      1. uniter's Avatar
        uniter -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        It has already been stated the source code will be released and certain people already have the code.

        What was stated is for now we'll hold off due to others out there wanting to steal this and or profit from it. That was a group decision.

        If someone wants to develop as others are developing just talk to me.
        Thank you for clarifying that @Sticky & @klipseracer . I'm just another one of those paranoid open source nutjobs Click here to enlarge
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nawlinstornado Click here to enlarge
        It would be nice to see the same happen for Mercedes...
        I want to do it for everything.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by klipseracer Click here to enlarge
        Project is not even 1 day into beta. There will be changes needing made, who knows there could still be some serious bugs out there that haven't been accounted for. Once the dust has settled, I foresee the source coming out in a creative commons license or something like that.
        This is why you can't help people. It's never enough for them.

        Guys have been testing and working their tails off and it's 'oh give me more' as if they are owed something for free. Getting sick of the entitlement attitude.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Shogun1122 Click here to enlarge
        I see that you are considering adding the N63/S63, but what about the N55. Will this eventually be released for that?
        What is the N55 ecu?
      1. lulz_m3's Avatar
        lulz_m3 -
        @Sticky Yes, they are flashable by anyone with a Cobb, like the Cobb OTS maps available for download from Cobb's website. All maps use a .ptm file extension. Cobb does all the work for you on preventing piracy of maps(by allowing protuners to lock them at their discretion), so there is no work needed by administration - just hosting.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by lulz_m3 Click here to enlarge
        Yes, they are flashable by anyone with a Cobb, like the Cobb OTS maps available for download from Cobb's website. All maps use a .ptm file extension. Cobb does all the work for you on preventing piracy of maps(by allowing protuners to lock them at their discretion), so there is no work needed by administration - just hosting.
        Ok then, go ahead guys I'll add a .ptm extension right now.
      1. inlineS54B32's Avatar
        inlineS54B32 -
        Need to read the article first... Got it. (re: source code)
      1. klipseracer's Avatar
        klipseracer -
        Everyone needs to focus on Tuning and BIN definitions. Take all this worry you have about the future of this community, and focus it where it matters now. Which is making tunes and creating definition files. By the time you're doing that, which needs to be done anyway, the source code problem you guys think you have will not be a problem anymore. So instead of getting worked up over that, focus that energy you all have on something beneficial and tangible Click here to enlarge
      1. Freon's Avatar
        Freon -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        This is why you can't help people. It's never enough for them.

        Guys have been testing and working their tails off and it's 'oh give me more' as if they are owed something for free. Getting sick of the entitlement attitude.
        You'd get less flack if you hadn't posted so many attacks against shiv's falsely "open source" project. But after toting the "open source" part of this as such a strong reason to support it over the "openflash" tablet, then the team releasing binaries with no source it leaves a lot of questions. No one is asking for anything you did not claim would be followed through on.

        People are just wondering where the "open source" part really is, what the license will really look like, etc. There are certainly questionable "open source" licenses out there, like Microsoft's Windows source program of yore. If it is Creative Commons, Share-a-like, Non-Commercial, etc. then that would be very reasonable...

        I saw this happen already with OpenECU. ECUFlash source was never released... Lots of excuses for a while, and it kinda blew over. Still no source to this day, ~8 years later. It worked and opened the community up a lot, but really it was no different in terms of control over the ROMs and flasher source than shiv's tablet thing, which is what is being bashed so incredibly hard in every thread about this new "open source" flasher.

        I'm really amazed at the level of cognitive dissonance that you maintain, Sticky. You should take a step back and look at your own actions and see if they qualify for the same attack you love to dish out.
        This is why you can't help people. It's never enough for them.
        I think people only expect follow through on the "open source" part of this. It's your words and your drum beating. There is no one to blame but yourself.

        I'm hardly looking for handouts. I'd love to help. I even offered to help before with initial development, but it seems that help was turned down. I'd love to help at some point in the future even now, but I really think that should be withheld until the terms of the source released are discussed and source is actually released. Otherwise, this is just another shiv "open" flash project.
      1. lulz_m3's Avatar
        lulz_m3 -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Freon Click here to enlarge
        Otherwise, this is just another shiv "open" flash project.
        You missed the part where this is FREE.
      1. MrBlah's Avatar
        MrBlah -
        Are the android ports going to also require a BT cable?

        Any plans on error code reading and resetting?
      1. BEAR-AvHistory's Avatar
        BEAR-AvHistory -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Freon Click here to enlarge
        .
        People are just wondering where the "open source" part really is, what the license will really look like, etc. .
        What people are wondering? Software engineers, maybe those who got left out of the development, or pay for download vendors might be worrying for whatever reason. I believe that 99% of the users will just download the free app & give a rats ass about the "source code".

        I like most other people use any number of freeware apps & have no access to the source code. Is that a problem or issue? NO
      1. BEAR-AvHistory's Avatar
        BEAR-AvHistory -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by lulz_m3 Click here to enlarge
        You missed the part where this is FREE.
        You really think he missed that? Looks like an unhappy camper who missed the camp bus.
      1. klipseracer's Avatar
        klipseracer -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Freon Click here to enlarge
        You'd get less flack if you hadn't posted so many attacks against shiv's falsely "open source" project. But after toting the "open source" part of this as such a strong reason to support it over the "openflash" tablet, then the team releasing binaries with no source it leaves a lot of questions. No one is asking for anything you did not claim would be followed through on.

        People are just wondering where the "open source" part really is, what the license will really look like, etc. There are certainly questionable "open source" licenses out there, like Microsoft's Windows source program of yore. If it is Creative Commons, Share-a-like, Non-Commercial, etc. then that would be very reasonable...

        I saw this happen already with OpenECU. ECUFlash source was never released... Lots of excuses for a while, and it kinda blew over. Still no source to this day, ~8 years later. It worked and opened the community up a lot, but really it was no different in terms of control over the ROMs and flasher source than shiv's tablet thing, which is what is being bashed so incredibly hard in every thread about this new "open source" flasher.

        I'm really amazed at the level of cognitive dissonance that you maintain, Sticky. You should take a step back and look at your own actions and see if they qualify for the same attack you love to dish out.

        I think people only expect follow through on the "open source" part of this. It's your words and your drum beating. There is no one to blame but yourself.

        I'm hardly looking for handouts. I'd love to help. I even offered to help before with initial development, but it seems that help was turned down. I'd love to help at some point in the future even now, but I really think that should be withheld until the terms of the source released are discussed and source is actually released. Otherwise, this is just another shiv "open" flash project.
        Just know this, the source will be released. Do you have anything against solutions whose source is not released while in EARLY beta phase?

        I think you have quite a bit to contribute and I am excited to see what you can bring to the table. I also believe that much or most of what you can bring to the table will be within the BIN files themselves, rather than on the flasher. Outside of adding support for other cables there really isn't a whole lot more than needs to be done with this software. I think there is much that the community can evolve this project into. The source just isn't available right now until a waiting period is over. Once there has been an opportunity to squash all concerns of major bugs, made some modifications and or enhancements and the software matures even more into a well rounded and tested state ready for official release, you can expect the source then. This isn't however your typical freeware software when testing is as simple as passing it out to a few testers. There are lots of outside variables from host hardware to target rom types etc. So a public beta is really the only way to get the software tested. And while its in early beta form, there will be no source. I don't think that is asking too much, do you?
      1. klipseracer's Avatar
        klipseracer -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MrBlah Click here to enlarge
        Are the android ports going to also require a BT cable?

        Any plans on error code reading and resetting?
        My initial port will rely on the BT cable.
      1. mykal's Avatar
        mykal -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by klipseracer Click here to enlarge
        My initial port will rely on the BT cable.
        I'm looking forward to this.
      1. bdtsulev's Avatar
        bdtsulev -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by klipseracer Click here to enlarge
        Anything MSD80/81 will be supported by this software either now or in the future. That even includes that European N45 which I believe runs on that DME. Anything having to do with another DME will require totally different software. I'm sure certain knowledge can be shared, however is not within the scope of this software.
        So if i wanted to create a flasher for another ecu (im thinking older stuff but i know most people want to do the newer stuff) would this source code be beneficial in figuring out what to do or is it so different that it really wouldnt help?
      1. klipseracer's Avatar
        klipseracer -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by bdtsulev Click here to enlarge
        So if i wanted to create a flasher for another ecu (im thinking older stuff but i know most people want to do the newer stuff) would this source code be beneficial in figuring out what to do or is it so different that it really wouldnt help?
        It very well could provide clues. However, it depends on the DME/ECU that you are working with. If its a BMW DME, then some of this information may prove valuable, simply from an educational stand point. Zero of the code will be copy and paste status. But it may help you save time in learning how things work, but I can say that I knew a pretty big portion of how this stuff worked. In terms of coding and how to read/write data, etc. For instance on the Android Port I've had to write a driver, none of that is part of the PC application as the drivers are provided by FTDI. There are very small details, valuable details that have to be figured out for each DME, as well as protocol for the interfaces and CAN and DME that were learned. These small things however, are big things. Which platform are you targeting?
      1. BEAR-AvHistory's Avatar
        BEAR-AvHistory -
        Just got deleted at our favorite other site. Took about 30 seconds to get whacked so they are all on it trying to kill what will not be killed.

        The $400 special guys are throwing all kinds of BS in the air. I asked a simple question since what's his name the tuner raised it earlier.
        Its all about who's wallet get filled. The BT tune is a free download & the other package costs $400. Follow the money trail when looking at nonsense charges & scare tactics.