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Long post on ViDa/CardaQ/ any software issue (get popcorn)
Posted to Tool & Equipment Forum on 5/27/2015 19 Replies

There is a TLDR at the bottom of this post.

The purpose of this post is to help those who use pass-through devices to help complete repairs on vehicles. This is not a discussion about OEM tooling vs aftermarket tooling. This is a story about vehicle repair and what it takes to make a successful repair. Also note the virtue of patience that it takes especially when dealing with PC software as well as vehicle software. I will try to include everything that I recall taking place during this week and a half process and I will do my best to accurately answer any questions in regards to the scenario. Please feel free to collaborate upon this story so that others can have something to reference to when dealing with situations of their own. And again please keep the my tool is better than yours banter away from this thread, methodical and logical action is imperative to solving any tough automotive issue and emotion only leads to confusion.

If you are not comfortable with managing PC software and control settings then I suggest that before you invest in any passthrough device to get familiar with doing so. Every manufacturer clearly outlines preferred and minimum PC/Laptop parameters and you must not fudge any of those numbers. Would you fudge bearing clearances on an engine rebuild or preload on a differential overhaul? This is just as critical. Also do not assume that the manufacturer's website is going to have one page dedicated to all of the information you need to walk you through implementation of J programing and communication. Assume the worst and take a few nights combing over the website to get a lay of the land. Lastly there are some instances that you can only get further information on successful connection after purchasing the subscription to the required software. The good thing is that every instance that I have run into there were no surprises, hardware or software purchase requirements to complete connection once you attain a subscription and activate it. That being said Volvo has a link that initiates a download of a program to ensure that your platform meets minimum requirements for their software to work, or so it is thought. What can't be covered is the minutia of details and settings within your PC and Laptop that may hinder a successful repair. Just as a small bit of corrosion in a connector can produce a flood of DTCs, settings like "enable protected mode" in a web browser can cause adverse effects. And sometimes these details will require a phone call or an email submission to a help desk. Again if you are not comfortable making these types of changes on your computer read up and be aware of these settings and only make singular, measurable and informed changes until you reach the desired effect.

The Volvo belongs to a loyal customer and she trusts our judgment and repair explicitly. It came in on a hook with a no-crank issue and a message, "Turn Steering Wheel." Our initial inspection revealed that the starter was not getting voltage to activate and the steering wheel did not lock with the key removed. Some brief research indicated that the problem was likely a faulty steering column lock module (SCL) and would require software to activate a new replacement part. We did not possess the key for our Verus to communicate with the vehicle and a quick look up on Drew Tech revealed that Volvo allows for our Cardaq to have diagnostic and reprogram capabilities. Having used the device on GM, BMW, Mini and Toyota we felt confident that it would work just as well with Volvo. And we soon found out different.

Day 1 Friday After careful review of our laptop requirements we register on the Volvo website and we purchase a ViDa license from Volvo in order to confirm a diagnosis of the vehicle. Currently with Volvo they mail you an installation DVD that must be used to gain access to ViDa, this will change soon. The subscription has a 3 day duration once activated and allows parts, repair, diagnostic and software updating for most vehicle platforms.

Day 2 Monday We receive the DVD and install the software on the DEDICATED laptop. DEDICATED meaning we have never installed any other manufacturer software on this laptop. This is critical to help ensure that no other installed software may interfere with the program provided by disc, download or any other means. Some manufactures software plays well with others and some are completely anti-social and want their own space. Install multiple manufacturer software on one platform at your own risk!!!!!!

Day 3 Tuesday We started to use the software and found out, like with any first time with every program, that we were well behind the curve on navigating the software. In short through the course of a normal workday we found that we had to open an administrative program. You receive a different username than the one you have for the Volvotechinfo website and must set up a user password through an email process. Once you are able to open the administrative icon now on your desktop you must activate the software, assign a user and assign a computer that will operate the primary ViDa program. Unless this is the only car you plan on working on for the day it can take a few hours to navigate through the hoops to open the primary program that allows you to "talk" to the car. While by the end of the day we managed to get ViDa to open but had problems communicating with the vehicle as our passthrough device was not showing up in the program. Then I made a huge mistake!!!! Thinking that there may have been a problem with the DVD install, I removed the program from my laptop and reinstalled the program. Even though I used the same laptop, the re-install crated another computer in my Admin program. This locked me out of ViDa completely because it did not recognize my laptop as an authorized computer for the program. Well this should be no problem right? WRONG!!! You must be logged into the ViDa program with an authorized computer to be able to deactivate the computer. This can't be done through the admin panel!! Time to contact support. Initial support for the Volvo software is by submitting a help request which is like watching colonial ships taking shots across the bow, it is like a forum but with only two users. You submit, via message to Volvo's help desk, a question then you wait……. An hour later I get a reply saying that the other computer had been removed and I could proceed with activation. Activated new computer and still the program did not see my Cardaq. I contacted Drew Tech, it was late in the day and at that time they did not have anything to offer but to remote in and check a few basics. Ultimately Drew Tech at that time suggested I contact Volvo, which I did promptly. I fired another shot across the bow to Volvotechinfo and called it a day.

Day4 Wednesday I got a reply from Volvotechinfo that led me to instructions for setting up a DICE device and confirmation that my subscription included diagnostics. After stroll through Adobe lane with those instructions I still did not get the program to work successfully. So I tried Drew Tech once more. Let me start by giving a huge shout out to Dave at Drew Tech. This dude went the extra mile to help me with this issue and even though they do not get much call on Volvo he worked very hard to get me over the hump. However, while Dave adjusted a few things on my platform, I ultimately had to carry my hat in hand yet again to Volvotechinfo. Two hours later I get these instructions.

Did you install .NET 4.0 ?

These are the tips I have written down. If this does not resolve it sometime VIDA has to be removed and reinstalled, or IT has to help us.

This could be one of two things. It could mean you have to remove and reinstall the DiCE tool or a background program called Isoview.

• First, as always, try restarting the computer and open VIDA alone.

• Confirm if you can see the pictures in the parts catalog. If so, then Isoview is working

• If not, then remove Isoview from the Add / Remove programs. Then locate and install the file on the VIDA DVD called d:\3pp\programs\isoview.. You might want to double check the path

• If Isoview is OK, then remove and reinstall the DiCE through the Add / Remove programs area.

• If running IE10, try turning off Protected Mode, under Internet Options

• .NET version 4.5 has been installed. Uninstall .NET version 4.5 from the Control Panel>Uninstall a Program. This will downgrade .NET 4.5 to version 4.0 that was installed by VIDA.

• The Security settings in Internet Explorer is for "Trusted Sites" set to a level above MEDIUM. Lower the Security settings to at least MEDIUM

Following these guidelines I managed to get communication for diagnostics up and was able to verify the diagnosis as a faulty SCL. However my local Volvo dealer was out of stock on the part so it was going to be Day 6 until I could get the part!!!! The subscription only lasts 3 days.

Day 6 Friday The parts were received and as expected my subscription had lapsed. Even if support had resolved my issues within one day the parts could not get to me in time to make the repair and download the software to complete the repair. These were events out of all party's control so I chucked it up as a learning curve expense so I re-upped a three day subscription on the Friday before Memorial Day!!!! The car could not be delivered without software loaded to the new SCL. Once I paid for the renewal of the subscription, and then paid for the reload software for the SCL!!! Oh, yes, by the way you also have to purchase software for replacement components. I began the process of retrieving my software purchase to deliver to the vehicle. And we hit yet another brick wall. ViDa would not retrieve the SCL reload. And yet again a shot across the bow to Volvotechinfo in the afternoon for answers why. This time only 5 minutes later I get a reply with a similar canned response as above with a tip about I.E. protected mode. However the issue was not resolved. Now on Friday before Memorial Day I am hooked on yet another subscription charge, my customer's car is not deliverable and I can only imagine in horror what is to unfold.

Days 7-9 Saturday through Monday I tinkered with what I could, tried removing and installing the software a few times, looked for replies from Volvotechinfo and went about my weekend business. I was frustrated, lacked confidence and uneasy about how this would turn out. I made some contingency plans then completely disconnected form the world. I went canoeing and camping Saturday afternoon and Sunday. Monday morning I checked for replies from Volvotechinfo and none were given. I had resolved that a reasonable solution could be presented to fix the current problem and had backup plans if those solutions did not yield results.

Day 10 Tuesday Kill them with kindness!!!! I cannot stress this enough. You do not know what the person on the other side of the keyboard or phone line goes through in a day, so keep a positive attitude at all times!!!!

Here is a small some of the back and forth.

Message:We have yet another problem. I checked periodically throughout the weekend to see if there had been any replies to my calls for help on this matter. I was fully prepared to come down to the shop and make what changes need to be made in order to provide the SCL module the necessary software in order to complete a proper repair to the vehicle I am working on. I even checked a couple of times yesterday and there were still no replies to my request for help. I was unsure what the operating hours of this help request desk and did not know that you observed Memorial Day. I find it comforting that you did observe a day of remembrance for the fallen heroes of our country. The problem is now that it seems that my subscription has lapsed. I think this could be a great opportunity to underscore the excellent customer service that you provide and give an extension to the subscription so that we can resolve the issues. I am sure we will both learn valuable information from this experience. Have a great morning and I eagerly await your reply.

Date:05/26/2015 08:44 AMFrom:Administrator Message:Are you certain you have not been updated to IE 11?

Date:05/26/2015 08:57 AMFrom:haeynous Message:Absolutely positive. I even disabled automatic updates for Internet Explorer.

Date:05/26/2015 08:59 AMFrom:haeynous

Message: Version 10.0.9200.17357 Update Version:10.0.27 (KB3049563) Product ID 00150-20000-00003-AA459

Date:05/26/2015 09:41 AMFrom:Administrator Message:VTI22---- will be refunded. You will need a new subscription to determine what your problem may be.

Date:05/26/2015 10:01 AMFrom:Administrator Message:Order VTI2---- has been credited.

Date:05/26/2015 10:08 AMFrom:haeynous1 Message:You are awesome!!! I will contact you shortly after putting through a new subscription. Should be within the next hour.

Later in the day after some more shots across the bow I was told that IT would contact me so I made sure they had my phone number.

FINAL DAY!!! DAY 11 Wednesday!!! IT contacted me and we set up a remote in session. BEFORE WARNED!!! Only allow those you know to remote in to your platform!!! It is like a vampire, once you invite them in, they leave when they choose to. Scams abound from remote in procedures but not this one because the caller ID on the phone showed Volvo of America and I was eagerly awaiting that call. Bada-boom-bada-bing the IT guy after a 30 minute session found a software update that tried to download (I noticed it from day one) did not complete. As an afterthought it may not have taken because I removed the software and re-loaded it as part of the process. Once the update completed all functions worked!!!!!


I know long post, but I felt it needed to be done for someone's benefit. Message in a bottle for someone that may need it. Here is the TLDR (Too Long Didn't Read)

-Volvo for aftermarket J tools has a lot to be desired for timely IT support at this time.

-If you mess with the bull you will get the horns so might as well banter with the clowns.

-Software is not for the impatient or faint of heart.

-Drew Tech rocks and I personally see great things in the future from them.

Jonathan from Alabama

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car Vehicle Data

2008 Volvo S40 2.4i 2.4L

Engine2.4 L
Trans5-speed Automatic (Electronic)