BMW INPA 240 Internal ECU error (solved with NCS Expert)

Here, i share a DIY guide about airbag control unit replacement. I had the airbag light on in freezing temperatures. With INPA I got the following error: 240 Internal ECU error, which requires the airbag control module to be replaced
AT YOUR OWN RISK to follow...

I used:
1/4" extensions
1/4" ratchet
Sockets (7mm, 10mm)
screw driver

NCS Expert
(the BMW coding cable i got from eobdtool. No issues so far. You can try it. Good luck with Chinese tools :D)

Then this is what i did:
1.Remove the battery negative cable.

2. To remove the rear cup holder lift up the rear vent (1) and pull the cup holder (2) out.

3. Pull down the rear vent (1) and remove.

4. Remove the two screws and two nuts circled in red.

5. Remove the armrest and the tray under it.

6. Remove the two easily accessible nuts holding the airbag control module.


7. The third is a bit tricky to get to. It can be access via the hole circled in red. In the first picture you can barely make out the nut. In the second I've pushed the rear air duct to gain access to the nut. Any of my sockets didn't fit through the hole so I had to put the extension through it and then install the socket on it inside the center console. A bit tricky to do, but not too bad.

8. Remove the Airbag ECU connector. This type of connector is used in number of places on your e39. You'll need to pull the green locking clip towards the rear of the car to release it. If you want to practice how to do it you can find similiar connector on Cd-changer, NAV computer etc.

9. Take out the old Airbad ECU and install the new one. Remember to put back the grounding wire under the nut (1).

10. Assemble everything back together. To install the third nut put a piece of paper between the socket and the nut so the nut won't fall off.

11. Code the new Airbag ECU. I did this with NCS Expert. A great how to code with NCS expert can be found at http://obd2-diag.blogspot.com/2016/06/bmw-coding-with-ncs-expert-user-solution.html

This is from www.eobdtool.co.uk website technical support:BMW INPA 240 Internal ECU error (solved with NCS Expert)


BMW ICOM A2 vs A3 V1.38 vs A3 Pro+ V1.40.05

Newest BMW ICOM A3 Pro+ V1.40.05 diagnostic programming tool is available now. Its internal board is built-in with WIFI chip and the internal WIFI chip works together with a wireless adapter to connect the laptop. ICOM A3 Pro+ mux via WIFI adapter, A3 Pro+ will communicate with the laptop wirelessly and then perform diagnosis programming function on all BMW vehicles e.g BMW Cars, BMW Motorcycle, Rolls-Royce, Mini Cooper. ICOM A3 V1.38 is no Wi-Fi connection.
WIFI Adapter for ICOM A3 Pro+

This writing aims to make clear the differences and similarities among BMW ICOM A2ICOM A3 and ICOM A3 Pro+. So if you are confused about which one to choose, below information may be helpful.
What are the differences between ICOM A2, ICOM A3 and ICOM A3 Pro+?
  • Appearance
BMW ICOM A2 V1.37 outlook and ports (Item NO.SP168 and SP168-BO)

ICOM A3 V1.38 outlook and ports (Item No. SP234 and SP234-B)

SP234-B has no software in package. Users can buy it in addition.
ICOM A3 V1.40.05 with WIFI outlook and ports (Item No. SP234-C1 and SP234-C)

  • BMW ICOM Firmware Download check following:
How to Update Super Version BMW ICOM A2 Firmware
How to Update ICOM, ICOM A1 and Common version ICOM A2 Firmware
What are the similarities between ICOM A2, ICOM A3 and ICOM A3 Pro+?
  • BMW ICOM Software (Authorized)
BMW ICOM A2 and ICOM A3 share the same software version. If there is any upgrade version released please check our website. http://www.obdtool.co.uk
The Newest BMW ICOM Software Instruction:
No.Software NameSoftware Function
1.ISPI-NEXTAdmin tool
2.ISPI Admin Client ISPI-NEXTAuthorization management and environment Configuration software
3.ISTA+Diagnostic and repair guide, including Diagrams and disassembly Figure
4.ISTA-P(ISSS-NEXT)Programming and coding software system
5.HDD-Update  NavigationSoftware upgrade back-office services (function with ISTA-P, need to Import map files)
6.KSDWork software
7.ETKAccessories Catalog
8.E-SYSEngineer Software for F series (available for programming and coding)
9.WINKFPEngineer Software for E series, for programming
10.NCS-Expert toolEngineer Software for E series, for coding E
11.INPAEngineer Software for E series, for diagnosis
12.Tool32Engineer Software for E series, able to run directly
13.BMW Coding ToolAuxiliary Software of Engineer Software for E series (Available to import model data to WINKFP and NSC)
14.Ncs DummyAuxiliary Software of Engineer Software for E series (Available to modify NCS data)
15.ITool RadarUsed to recognize ICOM, activate or release ICOM Port
16.Easy ConnectUsed to Configure the Environment Parameter of Engineer Software for E series, can activate or release ICOM Port
Please do not update ICOM, otherwise it will not work, for example when I click “Diagnose” the system will get prompt saying “send email to obtain ISTA/D license, license warning.”, then the diagnostic function and programming not work. The solution is to send back main unit to the supplier.
  • BMW ICOM Function
BMW ICOM A2 and BMW ICOM A3 share the same main functions: BMW Diagnosis, Programming, Coding and Car Modifying
3) BMW ICOM Support Vehicles:
BMW Cars, BMW Motorcycle, Rolls-Royce, Mini Cooper
4) BMW ICOM Laptop Requirement: EVG7, DELL D630 or others with required configuration.
Reset the computer system date and time to the current time
Set to achi mode
Advise you use Lenovo or Dell with CPU 2.0 above and memory with 4GB.
OS: It depends on which version of BMW Rheingold ICOM interface run with.
Otherwise the ICOM will freeze when boot.
Other Information:
1) BMW ICOM Operating System
Generally speaking, ICOM software is tested ok on Win 7 and win8. It depends on the hard disk you got, usually the supplier will mark the required OS when you purchase.
2) Internal hard disk or external hard disk?
Following are some views from other users:
External hard drive is a much more versatile solution, and it was my initial choice. If laptop broke, you could just plug it into another machine.
Only downside is it's a lot slower than running it from disk, because of VMW are overhead.
Now I have it loaded on a machine-specific hard drive which I have installed in the machine. It is much faster.
If you use it 2 or 3 times a year, a VM solution is perfectly fine. I did that for a few years myself.
If you use it quite a bit (with 3 MB's in the house hold, I use it all the time) then go machine-specific hard drive.
Also remember the external hard drive hangs off the machine and can be damaged as you move the laptop around. If you pick up the laptop, the USB drive unplugs, then it will fall to the ground and you're cooked.
Internal is so much nicer because now I just have the multiplexer and laptop to carry to the car. Nothing needs to unplug or fall off.

  • Common HDD (Hard Disk Drive) or SSD (Solid State Drive)?
Generally speaking, SSD is stable with 256GB at higher price. However, common HDD with 500GB is at lower price.
SSD VS HDD compared at running speed:

SSD VS HDD: What’s the difference?
The content is fully informed at:

BMW ICOM A2 and BMW ICOM A3 share the same software version, functions and support vehicle range but differ in appearance, hardware and operating system. ICOM A3 Pro+ is light weight, small size, more compatible and has stronger stability, better heat dissipation and higher quality hardware. Besides, it has more reasonable price than ICOM A2 now. In a nutshell, choose which one depends on your own need.


ICOM A2 vs A3

1. Appearance

ICOM A2 and ICOM A3 software are named ISTA-D ISTA-P (or Rheingold version).
ICOM A2 current version: V2016.3 - ISTA-D 3.54.12 ISTA-P
ICOM A3 comes with 2016.03 HDD.

3. BMW ICOM Firmware/Hardware
ICOM A2 firmware version: ICOM Application-01.37.00 ICOM Boot-01.23.01
BMW ICOM A3 firmware version: V1.38
If you need free firmware download link of firmware update for BWM ICOM, ICOM A and ICOM A2, please contact us www.eobdtool.co.uk customer service online.

BMW ICOM A and ICOM A2 share the same functions.
While due to the old BMW ICOM A module have problem in the cooling and protection design, ICOM A2 adopts the whole aluminum shell body,using aerial explosion-proof connector; and  ICOM A2 for BMW use the joint connection line which similar to the SDCONNECT COMPACT 4 for Mercedes-Benz .
And the newest version ICOM A3 for BMW has a higher version firmware which is able to receive a significantly more powerful processor and more storage capacity.
ICOM A3 for BMW comes with robust aluminum box will help to avoid damage in harsh environments when using.

5. Operating System
ICOM A2: Win XP and Win 7 O/S , WIN8
ICOM A3: Professional Win7 64 bit (NO win XP)
The newest version ICOM A2 works better in cooling, runs faster and works more stable, not easier broken than older ICOM.
ICOM A3 can program all units for all BMW series, but not media.