VW / Audi / Seat / Skoda diagnostic tools Ross-Tech VCDS
New Products – HEX-NET and HEX-V2 interfaces!
From the beginning of 2017, HEX-USB+CAN were discontinued - http://www.ross-tech.com/vag-com/old-interfaces/discontinued_interfaces.php
They were replaced by modern HEX-NET and HEX-V2 interfaces:
- DTC read and erase
- Control modules identification
- Analysing parameters in real time (Measuring blocks)
- Activation of components
- SRI reset
- Automatic control modules identification
- Basic Settings
VCDS (VAG-COM Diagnostic System)
Using VCDS on a Windows PC, you can:
- read and clear fault codes from all systems within the car, e.g. engine, airbag, ABS, instruments, parking sensors etc.
- view live data from the sensors within the car
- reset service lights (both fixed and variable service intervals)
- read stored and intermittent fault codes
- graph and log live data with the car running
- automatically read fault codes from all car systems in a single search
- perform basic setting functions, adaptations and soft coding
- activate service functions, such as Electronic Park Brake (EPB) to allow brake pad changes
- supports bi-directional output test and component actuation
VCDS software features:
- over 20,820 fault code definitions
- free software updates
Until now, VCDS has always required a Windows PC and a cabled connection to function. The new HEX-NET® interface changes that.
The HEX-NET has been completely re-designed from the ground up to be faster, more secure and more versatile. The HEX-NET is the fastest interface Ross-Tech have ever sold. It can perform AutoScans on 2005 and later models up to 3 times faster than the HEX-USB+CAN interface.
The HEX-NET interface supports USB and Wi-Fi connection so it can be used in several different ways:
- All functions via USB connection to a Windows PC with desktop VCDS software
- All functions via Wi-Fi connection to a Windows PC with desktop VCDS software
- Basic functions via Wi-Fi "Access Point" connection to any computer or smart device using the web-based VCDS Mobile software
- All functions via Wi-Fi "Infrastructure" and cloud connection to any computer or smart device using the web-based VCDS Mobile software (an existing Wi-Fi network with internet access is required for infrastructure mode)
This new, universal wired interface replaces previous KII-USB, Micro-CAN, and HEX-USB+CAN interfaces. Those interfaces served well for many years (in some cases more than a decade!) but their older architectures were inflexible and left no room to grow.
What's the problem? To over-simplify, VW has implemented a new addressing scheme for control modules. There's no longer any room left in the firmware for our older devices to accommodate this. Ross-Tech tried very hard to make the HEX+CAN compatible with the latest cars, but have had only partial success. It’s now time for something new and better: The HEX-V2.
What: The HEX-V2 works on all diagnostic-capable VW-Audi Group passenger cars. The HEX-V2 is a wired USB Interface that draws upon the design of the electronics in the HEX-NET but without a WiFi module, SD card, and complex power supply. All of the security features that have been implemented to make cloning the HEX-NET difficult have also be incorporated in the HEX-V2. The USB wire is replaceable and the packaging has been updated to make the LEDs viewable from almost any angle when installed in a car. While the packaging is not exactly the same as the HEX+CAN, many of the design lines and features of the HEX+CAN package have been maintained.
Improvements over previous generation interfaces:
- Modern, 32-bit processor architecture with plenty of room for expansion.
- Much faster in most operations on modern, CAN-based cars.
- Does not need to be plugged into a car to load firmware updates.
- Tri-colour status LEDs with greatly improved visibility from almost any angle.
- Improved OBD-II connector nose (small design changes plus improved plastic materials)
- Enumerates as an HID device, meaning no device-specific driver is required.
- Detachable USB cable, easily replaceable with a ubiquitous standard cable if it becomes damaged. This also improves flexibility as the days of standard "type A" USB sockets on computers seem to be numbered. There are already plenty of Windows tablets that can run VCDS that only have Micro-USB sockets, and it looks like USB-C might the up-and-coming standard for sockets.
- All the functions previously delivered by our older wired products are also delivered by the HEX-V2 (with the exception of the Crafter)
- The HEX-V2 is faster on CAN based models than our older wired products.
- The HEX-V2 supports all modules in all VAG models of the 2016 and 2017 model year. (The older wired products do not.)
- The HEX-V2 has a new and improved connector which increases life and durability.
- The HEX-V2 uses a detachable/replaceable more robust USB wire. The all new designed wire provides added resilience to breakage at the connectors, an improved insulating jacket which is more flexible while remaining chemical resistant and which also includes a fastener to lock the wire into the HEX-V2 unit.
- The HEX-V2 uses an all new microcontroller which allows for future expansion of VCDS capabilities.
- The HEX-V2 Enthusiast versions for the cost conscious "do it yourself" user, while limited on the number of VINs (Vehicle Identification Numbers) on which they can be used, support all VAG* from 1995 through current model year.
- The all new HEX-V2 design builds on the long successful history of the previous generation wired products, adding new materials to improve looks, use, and longevity.
* with the exception of Crafter
LED behaviour is as follows:
During normal operation, both LEDs work together, so that there is no need to decide which one is which, something that would be difficult on this interface due to the symmetry of the LEDs. In any kind of steady state, the LEDs blink OFF for ~100ms or so every ~1s. This indicates that the software in the interface is alive and running. If there is no blinking OFF, that's an indication that the software has crashed and that the interface needs to be rebooted.
Steady-state: LED Colours:
- Yellow: Interface is plugged into car, but not enumerated via USB on a PC.
- Blue: Interface is enumerated via USB on a PC, but does not see any power from the car.
- Red: Indicates a fault with the connection on the car (generally a stuck K-Line).
- Green: Ready to use (enumerated via USB, and plugged into a car with no obvious faults on the diagnostic socket)
During active communications, the LEDs will alternate red/green in synch with data transmissions, much like the older interfaces did.
During boot-up, just one of the LEDs will flash green for about 2 seconds (while the other LED remains off).
Differences between HEX-NET and HEX-V2
- The CPU architecture is very similar, but the V2 doesn't have WiFi, internal storage, or the fancy power supply needed to feed the power-hungry WiFi module or to support the very low-power mode that allows the HEX-NET to be permanently installed in a car. In addition, the HEX-NET has VCDS-Mobile, and the V2 does not.
- From the user perspective, it's a means of storing data obtained with VCDS-Mobile, so that if you lose your HEX-NET (or it fails) you don't lose that data. It also makes the data accessible from whatever device you log into the Cloud on. In addition, some of the functionality in VCDS-Mobile is actually implemented on the server rather than the interface.
Upgrade HEX+CAN to HEX-NET Pro (Unlimited VIN) procedure
- Contact us and send the serial number to us and we forward it to Ross-Tech.
- Ross-Tech comes back with approval and we confirm it with you.
- You return the old interface to us.
- We replace it to HEX-NET Pro for a price mentioned above.
HEX-NET / HEX-V2 interfaces must be registered by the end-user with Ross-Tech within 10 uses, even when used as an interface for VCDS running on a PC. All cloud functions in VCDS-Mobile require this registration and customers will not be able to avoid registration. Registration must be done on-line using a PC or Mac based utility that will be supplied with VCDS.
Go to [Options] and with USB connection click on [Config], then click [Registration] and fill the form.
Ross-Tech production list
HEX-NET Pro Unlimited
Profesional - Unlimited VIN
HEX-NET Enthusiast (10 VIN)
Enthusias – 10 VIN
Upgrade HEX+CAN to HEX-NET Pro (Unlimited VIN)
HEX+CAN Warranty / "Good Will" Upgrade
This program is for non-functional HEX+CAN interfaces that are two years old or less. Older interfaces are not eligible.
Upgrade HEX+CAN to HEX-NET Pro (Unlimited VIN)
HEX+CAN Trade-In Upgrade
This program is available for HEX+CAN interfaces of any age, whether functional or not.
HEX-NET Enthusiast (10 VIN) to HEX-NET Pro upgrade
HEX-V2_3 Enthusiast (3 VIN)
Enthusiast – 3 VIN
HEX-V2_10 Enthusiast (10 VIN)
Enthusiast – 10 VIN
HEX-V2 Pro (Unlimited VIN)
Profesional - Unlimited VIN
Upgrade HEX+CAN to HEX-V2 Pro (Unlimited VIN)
HEX-V2_3 Enthusiast (3 VIN) to HEX-V2_10 Enthusiast (10 VIN) upgrade
HEX-V2_10 Enthusiast (10 VIN) to HEX-V2 Pro (Unlimited VIN) upgrade
HEX-V2_3 Enthusiast (3 VIN) to HEX-V2 Pro (Unlimited VIN) upgrade
Russian language activation on any interface (cannot be done remotely, needs to be ordered with Russian language activated)
More info - http://ru.ross-tech.com/ (this version will work with both English and Russian language)
VIN-Limited Interface FAQ
Will VCDS count a car's VIN as toward the license limit as soon as I plug into a particular car?
No! VCDS will never count a VIN toward the license limit without the user's explicit permission. It will always ask you first, thereby giving you the opportunity to decline to "register" a VIN in the interface. Besides, there are a lot of useful things you can do on an unlimited number of cars.
What functions are not VIN-Restricted?
A VIN-Limited interface can do Auto-Scans, Clear DTCs, and look at Measuring Values on an unlimited number of cars. This is important because Ross-Tech wouldn't want to keep an enthusiast from trying to doing basic diagnostics on his friends' cars, or to use his VCDS when evaluating used cars he's contemplating buying. You wouldn't buy a used car without doing an Auto-Scan on it first, right? In addition, you can make channel maps on an unlimited number of cars because sending us those maps helps us improve the product.
What functions are VIN-Restricted?
In essence, it's those functions that actually change things in the car:
- Basic Settings
- Changing Codings
- Changing the Gateway Installation List
- Login or Security Access
- Output Tests
- Optical Bus Diagnostic
- Resetting SRI
- Turning Transport Mode on or off
In addition, directly accessing a control module outside of an Auto-Scan will prompt the user whether he wants to "register" that car's VIN, but declining to do so at that point will not prevent access to the module.
What about older cars that do not know their VIN?
Simple: They are free. You can do anything and everything on those cars without them counting toward the licence limit.
Which cars do and don't know their VIN?
Virtually all model year 2002 and newer. Basically those cars with Immo-3 and up. It seems that the only model year 2000 car that had Immo-3 was the Audi A8, but a few others got Immo-3 in model year 2001.
If I sell one of my cars, can I de-register and free up that VIN slot?
No, it doesn't work that way. VINs are stored permanently. They cannot be erased.
Can I upgrade a 3-VIN licence to 10 VINs, or a 10-VIN licence to Unlimited?
Yes, absolutely. There's a provision for that in the pricelist.