Exploring the MB STAR C3

This thread will be devoted to a thorough explanation of the Mb Star C3 system in depth, over time. Another good reference thread can be found here.

First off, some history and background about the system. The MB STAR C3 is a diagnostic system that is provided by the factory for dealerships and independent repair shops, and is used to interface with the cars’ computers to diagnose systems and pull/reset codes, and even to program certain elements of the systems on more modern cars. The system costs upwards of $20,000 from OBD2TOOL, and is applicable for MBs from model year 1989 and newer.

Of course, cars of model year 1989 only had 2-3 computers in the car; however all successive MBs have had an increasing number of computers, and this is where the MB STAR C3 system really comes into its own — with the newer cars. For the purposes of the cars that are the focus of this forum — the 124.036 E500E — and to a lesser extent the 400E/E420 and the later C126 coupes, the computer setups are rather crude and limited when compared to cars starting with the W210 models, which debuted in model year 1996 in the USA.

What I’m saying is that the MB STAR C3 systems are much more suited and capable, coming into its own, the newer the car that it is used with. However, the good thing is that it is able to fully exploit the built-in computer diagnostics as found in the E500E. It does this using a compatibility mode that emulates the Mercedes-Benz Hand-Held Tester (HHT), which was a diagnostic tool that was used for the 1989 and up cars, commonly until about 2001 when the MB STAR system debuted. The HHT is literally a hand-held unit (it is actually quite a handful) that allows the user to pull and reset codes, provides access to “live” engine data on the M119 and M104 engines (though a larger array of live data on the M119s), and generally pull compete diagnostics of the computer systems.

Mercedes Hand-Held Tester (HHT)

The MB STAR system, when it made its debut, was much more capable because it was PC-based (IBM T30 laptop), but it was also very versatile because it incorporated a HHT emulation mode (for backward compatibility) along with a “multiplexer” intermediate unit between the PC and the car, which allowed the connection of a variety of different diagnostic connection cables, depending on which diagnostic system the car in question happened to use. For the oldest cars (i.e. the C126, early R129 SL models, early W124s and W140s, etc.) a “four-pin” diagnostic cable was provided. For second-generation cars, such as the E500E, 400E/E420, middle and later R129s, middle and later W140s, the familiar “38-pin” plug is provided. There are also OBD-2 interface cables for model year 1996 and later cars, as well as a 14-pin cable for European diagnostic systems. All of these cables allow the combination of the MB STAR with the in-line multiplexer unit to fully interface with any particular car’s computers.

As I said, the MB STAR system debuted around 10-11 years ago, in 2001. Because of its expense, it has been very much “out of reach” of most MB owners and enthusiasts. To pull codes and get information about the car, owners were forced to buy limited testers from companies like Snap-On, Trisco, and others that perhaps allowed one to pull and reset codes, and a couple of solutions provided some limited “live data” where the car allowed it. These systems would typically run from $500 to well over $1,000. The other option was to somehow obtain a used HHT (they are occasionally available via eBay, and are quite expensive) or a used MB STAR system – still a huge expense of multiple thousands of dollars used.

In recent years, Chinese forgers, who excel at making fake copies of everything from Louis Vuitton purses to Guess Jeans to Rolex watches, have set their sights on the MB STAR market (and other automotive diagnostic systems for other marques). This has resulted in a cottage industry whereby one could purchase an MB STAR system for anywhere between $600 and $1,200. Over the past year or so, as Chinese copies of the MB Star C4 system have come onto the market, the prices of the MB STAR C3 system have come down to a typical range of $250-450, depending on the vendor and the items included in the package.

These “clone” systems are easily available on sites like eBay and also Alibaba.com from hundreds of vendors. As with any Chinese copy of anything, quality varies and quite often — but not always — one gets what they pay for. The recent reduction in price of the MB STAR C3 systems has made even relatively good quality systems very very affordable for the DIY mechanic and/or MB enthusiast — providing them with the same diagnostic power as the dealership mechanic (but not the same level of training and knowledge). Typical options that are available with MB STAR C3 systems available on the Internet include: an array of cables; a multiplexer; a hard drive containing the MB STAR software package; and instructions on how to set up the system. The software typically includes: MB Xentry, WIS, EPC, STAR Utilities; EWA net; Star Browser; Star Finder; and a recent MB parts price list (which goes out of date quickly). Quite a number of vendors also provide Internet support, including the ability to remotely control systems over the Internet (with the user’s permission, of course) to diagnose installation and software problems.

There has been precious little information on the Internet about the Chinese MB STAR C3 systems, how they operate, and in general how the system operates. This thread will be a thorough, methodical investigation of how the system works, what it looks like, and how it can be used with the E500E (and by extension, the 400E/E420). It is up to the individual owner as to whether they need or would want such a unit. It would be overkill for many if not most owners. However, there are a number of owners who do want to do their own maintenance and want the tools to help them do this properly. For these owners, purchasing an HHT or MB STAR system may be a good idea.

I will not go into the nuances and details of ordering the system. All that should be said is that one should do their research carefully, and pay attention to the ratings from other buyers as to the honesty of a particular vendor. Most of these vendors are based in Hong Kong or on Mainland China. Quite often they speak decent English and are quite responsive and communicative when inquiries and requests are made. It would be recommended that prospective buyers utilize an escrow service to complete the transaction, so as to maximize honesty and straightforwardness of the transaction from both sides.

Some vendors offer free air-mail shipping via DHL or other international shipper. These packages can arrive in as little as three or four days after a payment goes into escrow and the seller is notified by the escrow company that they have received the cleared payment. Once the package is received by the buyer, they inform the escrow company that the package has been received in good order, and the money is then released to the seller. Pretty seamless, and because of the escrow service — a fairly safe transaction. Certainly better than sending off a Western Union or Credit Card payment to an unknown party in a foreign land.

So, the photos below illustrate what is commonly received with an MB STAR C3 package. It is a 4.5kg (10-lb) box that is nicely packed, and includes all of the items described in the seller’s site. A typical package will include the cables, a USB hard drive (or internal hard drive for an IBM or Dell computer, if specified), a multiplexer box and a packet of adhesive stickers that are placed on the multiplexer and the computer-to-multiplexer cable. The box is unpacked and the contents are checked against the web site’s description to ensure that all contents were included. Some sellers also sell individual pieces of the sets, if they are ever needed.

Next, after the contents of the package are ascertained to be correct, the recipient should install the software on a computer. It is HIGHLY advisable that a standalone, separate laptop computer be used for this, seeing as it will be used in a garage (next to the car) environment. For versatility (and because most people don’t own the specific IBM and Dell laptop models that are needed for the internal drives) it is advisable that the buyer specify the external USB hard drive model of the MB STAR C3. This way the hard drive can be plugged into any qualified laptop and used.

Requirements for a laptop that can be used with the MB STAR C3 system are generally as follows:

Must have a SERIAL port
Must have a processor frequency rating of 1.8 GHz or higher
Must have at least 1 GB of RAM; more is highly desirable
Must have a USB 2.0-compatible port
Must be running Microsoft Windows XP

It is best to just purchase a used laptop via eBay or Craigslist that meets these specifications, and use this computer SOLELY as a DEDICATED computer for the MB STAR installation. It can be kept in the garage and used for these purposes. It really doesn’t even have to be connected to the Internet. One can also put the laptop on a dedicated cart, which allows the computer, cables and a printer (if desired) to be rolled around the workshop/garage next to specific cars. Although the cables are quite long, it’s nice to have the computer next to the engine when using it.

12.2018 Xentry install Laptop and SDconnect C4 NOT connected (Solved)

Problem:

Have all install Xentry 12.2018 and no Errors, all activated but the laptop and the head SD Connect C4 is not connected

Software:

I have on my HDD installed on Windows xp with Xentry 07.2015
But i change the HDD whit SSD and install Xentry 12.2018

Firmware:

OS: 2.3.20130523
CSD: 2.11.20150601

Solution 1:

Check LAN property Ipv4 the correct address:
IP:                 172.29.127.100
Subnet Musk:  255.255.255.0
DNS server preferred:  8.8.8.8
then go in C/Program(86)/Mercedes Benz/Xentry/Bin/ZBus.ini and change “java\bin\javaw.exe” to “java\bin\javax.exe” (without quotation marks)

Solution 2:

The problem can be solved by installing sp1, try to upgrade to windows 7 sp1 ultimate..
As it installs the latest Microsoft visuals and so on…

Solution 3:

install fresh copy of win 7 and new Xentry

SDconnect C4 and Xentry installation help:

Use the link and you’ll have no problem of Xentry installation issues

SDconnect-C4-NOT-connected-1 SDconnect-C4-NOT-connected-2 SDconnect-C4-NOT-connected-3 SDconnect-C4-NOT-connected-4 SDconnect-C4-NOT-connected-5

Top Alternatives to Mercedes Star Diagnostic Scanner C3 & C4 Tool

mb-star-c4-1

In our opinion, there are better alternatives for those who like to do their own troubleshooting. Whether you are a repair shop a Mercedes-Benz owner consider these scanners as well.  Note that we do not endorse any of the following OBD II / CAN scanner brands. Links to obd2tool.com listing are provided if you need to check current prices.

If you are looking to purchase a Star Diagnostic System with Xentry for Mercedes-Benz there are a few things you need to consider.

Learning Curve: In order to use the diagnostic scanner properly you need to learn how to use the Xentry software. While reading, clearing fault codes is not very difficult anything besides that requires that you have proper training. Yes, you can find a few guides online on how to perform certain programming using Xentry but if you don’t perform the programming accurately you may end up causing more problem than you solve.

Consider Genuine Scanner: The only problem is that they are quite expensive and require a yearly license. If you are considering to buy a clone of the scanner made in China keep the following concerns in mind.

SCN Online Coding: Unless you buy the scanner from the official Mercedes-Benz source, you will not be able to perform SCN coding of control units. That’s because Mercedes Star Diagnostic scanner will try to connect to Mercedes-Benz database for verification of SCN code in order to program certain control units. That is not possible unless you have purchased a valid license. With that said there may be some basic coding and programming of control units that can be done but this programing can also be performed with other advanced scanners.

Mercedes Star Diagnostic Problems with Software (Xentry) VM Ware Installation: All the setups that you see for sale that state that they use VMware environments are not legitimate hardware and software. Besides the fact that these scanners are not legal copies, they are also prone to crashing and run much slower than direct Windows installations. Yes, you are required to have a Windows XP with a serial port for the MB Star Diag C3 scanner. Many VMWare Mercedes Star Setups experience problems some of which you can see posted on this site: MB SD C4 C3 problems and solutions.

License: In order to get the full features offered by Mercedes Star diagnostic scanner you need to sigh up for a yearly subscription and pay a license fee. This is not financially feasible if you only work on one or two Mercedes-Benz models. If you end up buying a cloned version of the scanner the Xentry software key will expire in a few years and you will not be able to use your scanner at all.

How to pick out a decent SD Connect C5 for Mitsubishi Fuso

Appear right here: How to pick out a decent SD Connect C5 for Mitsubishi Fuso diagnostics

sd-connect-c5-1

FYI, each MB Star SD Connect C5 application share the same main interface when you login.

But the car coverage is different for use. For standard MB SD connect C5, you might have luck with Mercedes and Sensible only!

sd-connect-c5

eCom Compare with SD Connect C4

Here is some feature about eCom, MB Star C4 and Xentry Connect . Hope can help you choose right tool.

eCom – laboratory\development tool. Most cheap and light. Can’t be used with DAS\HHT vehicles. Does not support kline communication. Need to be specially setup on any diag sw installation.

SDConnect C4– workshop\robust tool. Most universal in use. The only limitation is kline communication in Vediamo from ver5* Easy to setup. In most cases work as is. As for China clones, SDconnect has the best PCB design, the winner.

Stardiagnos Connect – workshop\robust tool. Very big and heavy. Most expensive. Similar to SDConnect because it is like PC+multiplexer in one housing .Has very specific setup as update blue ray disk has not installer but full HDD image with OS + user application. Complicated in installing additional software as you do not have direct assess to operating system.

MB SD Connect C4 requires to update VCI

We have a customer whose MB SD Connect C4 diagnostic system runs great but suddenly require an VCI upgrade.

He rename the VCI update file, but still failed to run Star diagnostic self test (Error screenshot attached)

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Solution:

Re-install mb sd c4 battery, update MB SD C4 firmware to V2.3.2.

Some users feedback that SDConnect from OBD2TOOL with serial number 101044 will take firmware update risk. If you use our DAS software without internet connection, it will work.

SDconnect C4 DTS-monaco user manual

MB SD Connect C4 DTS-monaco user manual:

1.What is DTS-monaco?
2.Which MB sw version comes with DTS-monaco?
3.Why do you need DTS-monaco?
4.What’s the difference between DTS-monaco and Vediamo?
5.Where to get DTS-monaco confirmed to work?
6.Where to download DTS Monaco for free?
7.How to install DTS Monaco on Windows 7?
8.Any good success with DTS Monaco?
9.How do people think of DTS Monaco?

1.What is DTS-monaco?

DTS Monaco enables the comprehensive testing of diagnostic communication, diagnostic data and diagnostic sequences in the areas of engineering, testing and preparation of manufacturing tests. It can be adapted flexibly both for a whole range of different test tasks and for different user groups.

2.Which MB sw version comes with DTS-monaco?

12-2017, 03-2018, 05-2018 (newest)

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3.Why do you need DTS-monaco?

1)Areas of Application
* Development of diagnostic and control functions for ECUs
* Function test and validation
* Integration and system test
* Preparation of test sequences for Manufacturing and Service
* Analysis of returns and Quality Assurance

2)Flexibly Adaptable to the Relevant Task

DTS Monaco is part of the Diagnostic Tool MB Star C4 Set product family and is based on the DTS Base System. Monaco stands for Modular Analyzer for Vehicle Communication. A clearly laid out start page enables simple and fast access to the functions required most frequently. The actual workspace is divided into two: one area with a fixed layout and one with layouts that you can toggle between. A status display below shows communication server messages. The various functions are realized using special, configurable interface elements. These “HMI Controls” can be arranged freely in the layouts in configuration mode and comprehensively configured.

3)Early Detection of Problems and Errors

In execution mode, a configured workspace can be “started”. In doing so individual functions can be started automatically and communication can be established in advance if so required. Self-generated test sequences enable both simple and very complex function tests. This makes it possible to detect, and remedy, communication problems and function errors at an early stage. Communication data and test results can be documented in entirety in the process.

4)Fast Results

For typical use scenarios predefined templates including an universal database for the OBD self-diagnosis as well as various protocol templates (WWH-OBD, J1939-73 among others) are supplied. In Demonstration mode, all functions can be tested, even without an interface and a license, using a detailed example including simulation. Furthermore, the tool has a completely integrated OTX runtime for running complex test sequences in accordance with ISO 13209. An authoring tool for creating such OTX sequences can be started directly from SD Connect C4 DTS Monaco.

4.What’s the difference between DTS-monaco and Vediamo?

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DTS-monaco vs. Vediamo

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DTS-monaco wins, definitely!

5.Where to download Star Diagnostic DTS Monaco for free?

https://mega.nz/#!p9ZDGKwS!VTn9fB80Z9-YKpV8aj9PkRXR3KinAT6RFiW13GGdOHI It’s free but with unknown security.

6.Where to get DTS-monaco confirmed to work?

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Here you go.

http://www.obd2tool.com/category-163-b0-MB+Star+Diagnostic+Tools.html

7.How to install DTS Monaco on Windows 7?

When installing DTS Monaco to communicates and works with SD connect c4 all user installed SDconnect Toolkit version 2.1.3. And no one tried to force the work SDconnect Toolkit version 2.1.4.2, which is installed together with the installation of Setup_Addon_DAG. And I did it.

Checked only on the system without DAS/Xentry.

DTS Monaco 8.03.12.

Windows 7 x64.

Follow the next steps:

1)  Install Monaco
2)  Install Setup_Addon_DAG
3)  Go to С:\ProgramData\I+ME ACTIA\Toolkit\
4)  Open and edit toolkit.ini

Code:

ShowInTray=2
NetworkIcon=2
DeviceIcon=1
ConnectionState=1

1)  Save file and reboot Windows
2)  Connect SDconnect MUX via cable
3)  Start System Configurator
4)  Go to Licenses and you will see your MUX as DCDIPartW with your serial number. After editing in Interfaces type of MUX will change to MVCI_IME_ACTIA_GmbH_SDconnect
5)  Go toInterfaces

Code:5

eCOM_SMR
Interface name – > SDconnect_SMR
Bus system interface – > D-PDU API
D-PDU API version – > I+ME ACTIA GmbHXS_D_PDU_API_FOR_DTS_8_03_12
Module type – > MVCI_IME_ACTIA_GmbH_SDconnect
Cable – > CABLE_OBDII_SDCONNECT
Physical links: CAN1, CAN4, CAN8

1)  Click Save and close System Configurator
2)  Now you can connectto the car or single ECU

8.Any good success with DTS Monaco?

DTS Monaco works good – Mercedes W205 coding
Mercedes-benz W205 coding with DTS Monaco

SDconnect C4 (C5) 2018 05 Software Released Notes

Since 03.2018, DTS-Monaco and Vediamo were added to 05.2018 SDconnect C4/C5 software. That is the biggest difference from old versions.

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05.2018 XENTRY/DAS Released Notes:

* DAS Standalone Activated.
* W(2014) Activated in DAS.
* Offline Programming Activated.
* LKW EOL OFFLINE MENU & VMAX for Tucks activated.
* Smart Cars VIN reconfiguration PassFree Activated.
* Added SMART 451 & 454 OFFLINE KEY TEACH-IN program
* Added Development Data & Development Data (inside control unit adaptation) SAM451(SMART)
* Added Development Data & Extra Coding(inside control unit adaptation) ESP451(SMART)
* Added Development Data and Read coding-string in ESP 454
* Add extra functions: Writing VIN & Development Status (inside control unit adaptation).
* Audio Video Navigation and telematics – add Dev menu in DAS COMAND APS menupurpose: Add developer menu in DAS Command APS menu.
* Audio Video Navigation and telematics – HU Exchange Audio 50 to COMAND password free
* purpose: No password required, F3 to continue.
* DAS Special Function Password Free PKW and SMART. special functions, e.g AB or ABR ecu in DAS W204, you are asked to insert password. With this system, you can enter any character, minimum “1” and F2 to continue.
* Erase SCR/ADBLUE fault code (in MR) with correct New FDOK XN.
* * – Erasing of emission-relevant (SCR/ADBLUE) fault code: No need FDOK encrypted random number, F3 to continue.
* * Calculate correct nueu-FDOK XN internally, and change the encrypted random number to correct one in memory
* NFZ SonderFunktion Password Free purpose: password free for NFZ when doing SonderFunktion (Flash/Programming).
* Nox Torque Limit Setting (FR/CPC0) with correct New FDOK XT
* purpose:
* – Nox Torque limit Setting: No need FDOK encrypted random number, F3 to continue
* – Calculate correct nueu-FDOK internally, and change the encrypted random number to correct one in memory
* – Added value: UNLOCK Legal speed limit direct edit without going to special function
* Special Function Password Free Transporter
* -purpose: Special Function Password Free for Transporter
* TRANSMISSION or GETRIEBE – EGS1 Special Function password free
* purpose: No password required, F3 to continue.
* TRANSMISSION or GETRIEBE – EGS2 Diagnosis Routine password free
* purpose: No password required, F3 to continue.

05.2018 Xentry/DAS 100% Tested with MB Star Diagnosis SD connect C4 (C5):

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MB SD Connect C4/C5 software V2018.03 has released

MB SD Connect C4/C5 software V2018.03 has released

Software display:

You can also choose different laptop,for example,EVG7 tablet,Panasonic CF52 Laptop,DELL630 laptop

2018.3 SD connect c4 software Xentry Das 100% Performs

New software program come!2018.03 MB SD Connect C4 computer software (XENTRY/DAS) is verified to perform together with the sd c4 diagnostic tool without having problems. Here is definitely the test report of it.

This can be the functioning mercedes software 2018.03

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http://www.obd2tool.com/category-163-b0-MB+Star+Diagnostic+Tools.html

256GB Full New SSD, Good quality!

Most current software program version: V2018.three
Help Windows 7 technique.
NOTE:
Do not download something towards the software program, don’t update something with the computer software, otherwise the computer software will break down.(Specifically browser for example Google Chrome)
Mercedes bus diagnosis & programming can be done via DAS only, NOT Xentry.
Computer software languages: Chinese, English, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finish, French, German, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Swedish & Turkish.

V2018.3 mercedes diagnostic tool MB SD C4 Software Functions:
1.1989~up to now Car, Bus, Truck, Sprint, Smart ;
2.All electric technique Diagnostic;(Do not include flash code)
three.reading trouble code
4.erasing trouble code
5.live-data
6.adaptation
7.component testing
8.maintenance
9.information consultation
10.component location diagram
11.wiring diagram

Testable systems:
ENGINE
AUTO-SPEED
AIRCONDITIONAL Method
SRS
ABS
ASR
MPL
GM
Bz ORIGINAL ANTI-THEFT
DASX Technique
KEYZESS GO Technique
OBD-II Program

Product computer software includes: (Version: 2018 )
1. D-A-S / Xentry 2018.3: the automatically Diagnosis Assistance System
Concise interface and straightforward operation with IB M high-quality computer can realize the quick and accurate code reading and the whole car program testing
2. W-I-S net 2017.10: Workshop Information System
Supply the whole view from the wiring diagram in a car, component location diagram and maintenance method. What you do is to enter the chassis number, and then you will get the manufacture data, engine configuration and the car model -all in detail.
3. EPC.net 2017.10: Electronic Parts Catalog
4. ST Finder: Part Location Finder options: 2008 and 2016
5. STARUTILITIES : the movement management method and self-test
6. SDMEDIA 2014
7. PL71: 2016 Mercedes application with PL70

Function With:

SD Connect C4 Mercedes diagnostic tool from

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Note: there are many versions of sdconnect china clone; please check the PCB design and make sure your mux is operating with all the application before you wanna purchase the software program.

BTW:another verison:2018.three MB SD Connect Compact C4 Software HDD Version link

http://www.obd2tool.com/goods-5197-MB+SD+Compact+4+Super+Engineering+Software+DTS+monaco++plus+Vediamo+V050006+Support+Offline+Programming.html