Vehicles 2019 and Newer not supported

   #1  

hytron

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Hello,

When I purchase my first HEX+CAN adapter in 2014 and paid $350 for it, I purchased it with good faith that I will have the tool for many years to come. I am not a repair shop but someone who occasionally help friends who have VWs to troubleshoot the issues and VCDS is a very handy tool. VCDS was used probably handful of times.

I dont have any VW / Audi vehicles that are 2019 or newer but reading the installation notes for the new software made me realize that my current tool is no longer being supported and Ross-Tech is advertising upgrade to the new version (Talking about the hardware). I have used the current HEX+CAN for the period of 5 years (closing with the year 2019), yet it is called Legacy? One of the upgrade options it to return my old tool and re-purchase a new one for $399.

So my main point and question is I want assurance that the new HEX tool will be supported for at least 10 years. Also if something happens and lets say your servers go down or Ross Tech ever goes out of business (Not that I am wishing that), I want to be able to still use the tool obviously on older vehicles. I believe my current HEX+CAN will always work on any laptop with VCDS software lets say dated from 2018, even 20 years from now.
I have seen too many tools on the market that require connections to the server of the manufacturer and the ugly truth is that if manufacturer ever goes out of business all of the people that purchased it are out of luck as they will no longer be able to use those tools. Obviously at that point manufacturer does not care as they dont exist. I have interest to protect my investment.

I used to say to so many people that spending my $350 on VCDS is the best investment I have ever made in a automotive tool, but I am not sure if I can still say that considering the limitations.

Could you please comment and explain my points. Also what was the reason the new VCDS and HEX+CAN is not working on post 2018 vehicles? It is just my honest opinion.
 
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PetrolDave

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I too am a Ross-Tech customer who has had to upgrade my cable from a HEX-CAN (originally purchased so long ago I can't remember exactly, but it was at 2006 or earlier) - I went for a HEX-NET as the replacement.

Ross-Tech have done the very best they can to support the HEX-CAN for as long as possible (at least 13 years from my experience), but they cannot have predicted the sheer magnitude of the changes VAG have made to their firmware from 2019 models onwards would have made it impossible to support them with the HEX-CAN hardware.

VAG could make changes to the firmware in their yet to be introduced models that make the HEX-V2 or HEX-NET unable to support them - remember Ross-Tech do NOT have access to internal VAG plans - so personally I don't see that they could give the 10 year guarantee you are seeking?

Bruce/Uwe - comments?
 
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Bruce

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We cannot and will not give a 10 year guarantee that our tool will be able to adapt to technology not available today.

Let me ask: how many phones have you had in the last 10 years? 5 years? What about computers? Is technology standing still?

We have always made the best effort to provide our users with the very latest and best so that they can work on current models. The HEX+CAN was designed in 2003 and was introduced in the Spring of 2004. We ran that product for 12 years - until 2016 without significant change. Big changes started late in the model year of 2016 and we were already working on the next generation products - the V2 and the NET - so we would be ready for what VAG might do and then did do in 2017. By 2019, everything had changed. In 2021, another change is on the horizon but has yet to migrate into the diagnostic stream so to speak. We are ready for that change with the products we are offering today.

No @hytron, we cannot give you the guarantee you ask to have. VAG does what VAG does. All we can do is reduce your cost to upgrade. No other diagnostic tool company to best of our knowledge offers upgrades nor do they offer free software updates. Think back on what VCDS has saved you in the last 5 years. Does it have value and did it save its purchase cost?

We understand if our lack of guarantee precludes your purchase. We understand your frustration. Should you decide to leave the VCDS family, you will be missed.
 
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Uwe

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I purchased it with good faith that I will have the tool for many years to come.
You do have it for as many years as you care to keep it. It is still fully supported by the latest VCDS software. It still works with all the cars that existed at the time you purchased it, and quite a few model years after that. In fact, you've gotten free software updates now for all those years. Is there anyone else in this business who offers free software updates more-or-less indefinitely?
One of the upgrade options it to return my old tool and re-purchase a new one for $399.
Actually, you can upgrade to a HEX-V2 for as little as $149.
I want assurance that the new HEX tool will be supported for at least 10 years.
Yes, we plan to support them indefinitely, just like we're still supporting your HEX+CAN, but that's not a promise that they will be compatible with cars that don't exist yet. We've never been able to promise that the product we have today will be compatible with cars that don't exit yet, because as Bruce mentioned, we simply don't know what VAG will do in the future.

The same sort of thing has happened in the past. When we started in 2000, all VAG products had a single K-Line and all computers had RS-232 ports. For MY 2002, Audi introduced some models that used dual K-Lines. If you wanted to get access to the modules on the second K-line, you had to upgrade your interface. In 2004, VAG started introducing models that required a direct CAN bus connection for diagnostics. If you wanted to work on those, you had to upgrade your interface. During the same decade, RS232 ports started to disappear from new computers. If you wanted to use the latest/greatest computer, you either had to use an RS232<->USB converter (most of which never worked very well for real-time applications like automotive diagnostics) or you had to upgrade your interface to one that had direct USB support. Here's a bit of history for you:
I have seen too many tools on the market that require connections to the server of the manufacturer and the ugly truth is that if manufacturer ever goes out of business all of the people that purchased it are out of luck as they will no longer be able to use those tools.
That's correct, but VCDS does not require a server connection to function. Thus if Ross-Tech were to go out of business tomorrow, you would still have the tool you paid for and it would continue to function as it does now.
Also what was the reason the new VCDS and HEX+CAN is not working on post 2018 vehicles?
The latest cars use addressing modes that we no longer had any space left to implement in the HEX+CAN's firmware, and have channels that are too big to be able to buffer in the RAM available in a HEX+CAN.

-Uwe-
 
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Boki Ar

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Hello Hytron,

Would you like to share with us a screenshot [About] (of your VCDS program), please?

about.png

 
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hytron

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Thank you all for this fine explanation. I agree you guys have done great job of providing tool that is very useful in troubleshooting VW / Audi vehicles and had ability to change many parameters in different modules. The main reason I purchased this too was when I bought by 2006 VW Jetta TDI back in 2014 and because the vehicle was not taken care of, it had so many issues. Your tool definitely helped tremendously. It also helped me quite a bit with a cruise control issue on my 1 year old 2015 Jetta TDI and it helped me stand against the dealer word as they were not very honest about what the problem is or they didnt even know how to fix it. Needless to say car that was 9 months ago kept going to the dealer every other week for the exact same problem.

When I made this post I was not aware of the changes or so called improvements that were made by VAG and did not clearly understand if the tool HEX+CAN was just being phased out because it had been around for awhile or something else. What I first noticed was the tool that could once do unlimited number of vehicle I paid $350, now that same tool (for unlimited number of vehicles) is $599. That was quite a bit difference in price. And yes you guys made very good and stable software and hardware and I trust your development that is why I always talk good things about VCDS!

Like I said above I am not a shop, I have not charged anyone to attach my VCDS to pull the codes (I wish I did at least to recover my tool cost), I am just electronic / mechanical / IT / car enthusiast, and when you use tool that you purchase on hand full of vehicles that sounds expensive. I am pretty sure many shops made their money using your tool so they would not be complaining.

I am not in urge to upgrade or replace my HEX+CAN right away as I only have 2006 and 2015 VW TDIs so the tool still works on them, it is just if someone ever asked me to look up their shiny new vehicle or change lets say "convenience blinker" bit or anything else, I just wont be able to do it.

Darko
 
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langers2k

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I am not in urge to upgrade or replace my HEX+CAN right away as I only have 2006 and 2015 VW TDIs so the tool still works on them, it is just if someone ever asked me to look up their shiny new vehicle or change lets say "convenience blinker" bit or anything else, I just wont be able to do it.

You might want to check eBay prices on used HEX+CAN's at the moment. They tend to hold their value incredibly well so you can probably sell yours, use the proceeds to purchase a 10-VIN HEX-V2 ($299) and if you're lucky, still have money for a beer:thumbs:

If you're doing work on other peoples cars which uses a VIN out of your allowance, I think it's reasonable to ask for a nominal $10-20 fee towards the 10-VIN to unlimited upgrade ($169).
 
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Boki Ar

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Dear Darko,

Can you imagine how much I, as a man who has had his own workshop since 1988 and lives off vehicle repairs, have invested in that business? How many tools did I buy, how many did I make? Did everyone return the investment in full? No, of course ... but every tool that has made my job easier at least once is valuable to me. It is a great pleasure when such a thing allows the job to be completed elegantly, without much hassle or borrowing from a colleague. Such a tool is cleaned, kissed and put in its place. ;)

I have, among others, one old universal diag. device, purchased in 2006. There has long time been no update for it, at all. It cost almost € 3,000 then. It is not worth anything at the moment, no one wants to buy it. He stands in a drawer and catches the dust. I can't throw it away.

In contrast, my first Hex COM, purchased in 2003, later upgraded to CAN still works. It is still valid, as a license and can be changed (at a minimum charge) for the new generation of interfaces. After 18 years, it has not completely lost its value. :thumbs: Further, I have never heard of anyone dissatisfied with VCDS. All up-dates are absolutely free. In your opinion, what would be the friendly price for one software package? How much is 20.12 worth compared to 18.9, for example? $ 100 ... 150 ... maybe more, maybe less ...

Indeed, if you check e-bay, you will see that the original Hex Can still fetches a great price. I don't think you're in any "minus" with VCDS.:cool:
 
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PetrolDave

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You might want to check eBay prices on used HEX+CAN's at the moment. They tend to hold their value incredibly well so you can probably sell yours, use the proceeds to purchase a 10-VIN HEX-V2 ($299) and if you're lucky, still have money for a beer:thumbs:
I agree - I sold my HEX-CAN last year (I found it at the back of a cupboard after not using it since I bought my HEX-NET) and sold it on eBay for £200 (USD275)which goes a long way towards upgrading to a HEX-V2 or HEX-NET.
 
   #10  

hytron

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Langers2k,

It is difficult to charge friends when you try to help them out and I am always very generous so I never ask for any money. But yes I should.

Boki Ar definitely VCDS is one of the best diagnostic tools I have owned! But If I had to pay $100 or whatever amount every year I would probably not do the updates. Here is one example, I also have Seadoo jetski and tool that can be used for troubleshooting is called CANDOOPRO (Aftermarket of course). Those people charged me $400 to purchase the tool and that includes 1 year of updates and subscription to their forum. After one year you loose ability to post or view their forum. But as long as you have paid subscription they act like tech support if you have any issues. Just the idea of being "kicked out" of their forum after a year is not something I am happy with. I understand for new updates if they charge but the forum should be available for lifetime since you once purchased their tools - kindda just like it is on here...it is always available for VCDS customers and thank you for that! Do I have anything good to say about CANDOOPRO? No I actually dont, I hate their software, it hangs (I have tried on multiple laptops), it keeps wanting to connect to the internet (It is difficult when I am in my garage as it is detached from the house so no WiFi in there), the results from some sensors are very flaky and vary from minute to minute...Absolute garbage if you ask me. Would I recommend CANDOOPRO? Absolutely not!

VCDS is a great diagnostic tool and you folks at Ross-Tech have done a great job. I didnt mean to hurt anyone's feelings on here I just wanted to get some answers or explanation which I did.

Darko
 

stefdds

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it had so many issues. Your tool definitely helped tremendously. It also helped me quite a bit with a cruise control issue on my 1 year old 2015 Jetta TDI and it helped me stand against the dealer word as they were not very honest about what the problem is or they didnt even know how to fix it. Needless to say car that was 9 months ago kept going to the dealer every other week for the exact same problem.
Hytron, this ONE single experience , you described above, should be (or should have been) a "revelation" of the convenience, freedom, autonomy, and thus Information you now have. Have you checked on the value and influence of "information" these days: does Facebook, or any of the other social media platforms ring a bell. That fellow named Mark Zukerberg is doing pretty well for himself.

This Tool ; Support ; Updates ; not to mention world wide comradery is a absolute bargain! I realized this the very first time I used it. If Ross-Tech ended tomorrow, I would be disappointed....... Not with them, but with the power and independence that I have now lost!

Your VCDS has paid for itself several times over - Easily. Just think of ALL the times you have used it (for yourself) , at a minimum it would be $150.00 each time at the dealer, and probably more like a few $500.00 charges or more as well. Hytron, please don't say / write another word.

Perhaps you need another trip to the Dealership...... you know, for more fun.
 

hytron

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stefdds,

I only took the car to the dealership because it was under warranty and had hell with them. That is why I would rather buy used/older cars and fix them myself. I just dont trust those clowns at the dealerships. And yes I would sad and disappointed if Ross-Tech was no longer here. If there were no such tools available to public, I guess we would have no choice but to drive new cars. But that is not me, it makes me proud to fix something vs getting it fixed by someone else.
 
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