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Key Software (and other)

  #1  
Old 07-28-2018, 09:13 PM
AbusedR53
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Key Software (and other)

04 MCS

Anyone know what software is used to program the transponder ID from your key into the ECU? I have one severely battered key, no local dealer, everyone that does programming charges enough to buy software/hardware and isn't local so my car would be out of commission for about 2 weeks with back and forth shipping.

Keys themselves, the 3 button are cheap, 2 button are expensive. Would the 3 button remote work with an 04? Having a hard time finding answers about frequencies.

Keys aside, what other software comes in handy? I know BMW has a lot of different programs out and I'm not sure which apply to my car and what they're best used for.
 
  #2  
Old 07-29-2018, 05:02 PM
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valvashon
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That's tricky business- the program is called easyDIS (to code your car to accept commands from the two- button remote) and it's tricky at best to learn. To create another transponder (Immobilizer) chip, you will need an ID-44 chip coder and the ability to read the data from the car's EWS unit or through the OBD II port. Here's a website written by another NAM member:

https://sites.google.com/site/minian...verremotekeys/

Here's what I would recommend (am I trolling for business? Maybe, but this will also be the quickest and easiest way to take care of the OP's key issues):

1- Do not buy any aftermarket key. The headaches of getting an aftermarket key to work with your car are pretty big.

2- If you have an '04, only a two button key will work. The three button keys are made by BMW and won't work as your existing key is of a Valeo design.

3- The only real place to get a key is at a dealer. They order it via the VIN, and the key arrives with the correctly cut blade and the EWS/Immobilizer chip is correctly programmed to allow the car to start. To get a two-button remote working with your car the car will need to be coded either at a dealer or an independent BMW/MINI coder (or you, if you've learned easyDIS). There is no series of button pushes that will allow a new two button remote to work with your car for the first time, so figure on an hour of shop time ($$$) to get your car coded to accept remote commands.

3- For your car, there is a cheaper alternative from the dealer- the "general, non-remote" key. It has the proper transponder chip in it and the proper cut blade. It just doesn't have the remote board in it.

4- I always recommend MINI of Peabody in Massachusetts (minipartsmass.com) when MINI owners need a second key. A non-remote key runs about $80 USD and the remote key is around $140 USD or so. I believe that they can supply keys to Canadian MINI owners but I may be wrong. Even if you had to order a non-remote key from a Canadian dealer it would still be cheaper and with fewer headaches than trying to create yourself a key.

5- Go to realoem.com and put in the last 7 of your VIN; when your car's parts list comes up go to "bodywork" and then scroll down to the key section. There you will find the part numbers to order on line (the discount isn't available over the phone). After the sale you will need to provide them with a copy of your license and registration to show proof of ownership.

6- I run "MINI Key Hospital" and can probably repair your key for right around $50 or so, unless there is extraordinary damage to it, like sustained water damage.

Send me an e-mail to "minikeyhospital [at] outlook [dot] com" and we'll get the repair process started.

Dr. Bruce Hart
MINI Key Hospital
 
  #3  
Old 07-30-2018, 04:22 PM
rkw
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There are two things to deal with, and you can handle them separately. First is to obtain a key with immobilizer chip that can start the car. If there are no dealers nearby, you can purchase one remotely from a dealer if you provide VIN and documents showing ID and proof of ownership (fax or email). The name and address on the registration must match your drivers license. The dealer can obtain a new key in a day or two and ship it to you. The immobilizer chip will be pre-coded to your VIN and the key will be able to start the car without additional programming.

However, the remote lock/unlock must be programmed to work. For 2005-2006 model it is a simple procedure, but 2002-2004 requires programming from a computer. NCS Expert software (discussed in this forum) might be able to do it — you need to check.
 
  #4  
Old 07-31-2018, 11:08 PM
AbusedR53
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Great info guys! I've got a few things to figure out, but I'm on the right path now. Thanks, will post my findings here for others.
 
  #5  
Old 11-24-2018, 08:04 PM
DrZ
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I just obtained a pair of new 2-button remote keys from eBay seller 'virginkeys', less than $80 each. Obviously still require transponder programming, cutting, coding, etc,
 
  #6  
Old 11-24-2018, 09:33 PM
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valvashon
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A key from MINI of Peabody is about $135; figure in an hour of shop time at a dealer or coder to get the remote working and that's another $100 or so. So that's $235-$77= $158 to spend getting your new key working. The locksmith up the street from me charges $35 plus tax for a total of around $38.50; $158- $38.50= $119.50. An AK90 EWS chip programmer will run you about $30 and the cost of those ID44 chips is negligible, so $119.50-$30= $89.50 (don't forget to use EWS slots 9 & 10!). With that $89.50 you'll have to track down a copy of something called easyDIS and a software cable to code your car to accept commands from the remote. After all that you might be $40 ahead of just getting a key from MINI if you don't count your time and from what I have read the AK90 and easyDIS software and or instructions are confusing and quite time consuming to learn.

That's my take on aftermarket keys and I would love to hear your experience and what your final costs are and if you actually saved any money. I realize that there is satisfaction involved in doing a job like this yourself but I'd still like to know if you thought it was worth it.

Val
 
  #7  
Old 11-24-2018, 10:26 PM
AbusedR53
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Thanks all for the info and assistance. I now have an AK90 and 2 used keys. I've repaired my original fob buttons so I have keyless entry again. When I get around to it I'll order new ID44 chips and get to work programming them and one of the fob chips. My end goal is 2 full functioning keys with fobs and one "emergency" key with transponder only just in case. I'll likely order new bodies/blades and sell one of the keys I've bought as these are hard to find and I'd feel greedy having 3 working fobs lol. I'll post my end results here later. I'm just very busy with work and home and haven't found the time to deal with this yet. Bonus, the car is on the road!!! I'm finally driving my MINI, 4 months after buying it and about $2000 in parts later. Some things still need work but it's functional and fun and that's what matters in the end.
 
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