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Things to consider before you buy MB Star tool

If you own a Mercedes-Benz and are looking to do your own repairs you may have heard about Mercedes Star Diagnostic System (SDS) scanners C3 and C4. In this article, we discuss the advantages of Mercedes Star Diagnostic scanner including things that you need to keep in mind before you buy a MB Star Diagnostic scanner. A list of top alternative scanners to Star Diagnostic is included as well.

Mercedes Star Diagnostic Tool and Software

Let’s first explain what Star Diagnostic SD (C3 or C4 SD Connect) tool is for those who may be wondering. This is the diagnostic scanner that is used at Mercedes-Benz dealerships and some auto repair shops. It can also be purchased by independent shops. These scanners include the hardware and Xentry which is the software that is used to troubleshoot the problems in any Mercedes-Benz.

Mercedes-Benz Scanner MB-Star Diagnostic allows you to read and erase fault codes from any control unit in your Mercedes-Benz. With Star Diagnostic scanner you can read the actual configurations in each system, stream real time sensor data, activate sensors and perform SCN online, SCN offline coding and programing.


Advantages of Star Diagnostic Scanner

This scanner is used by the dealer and it allow you to access and troubleshoot any system or control system in your Mercedes-Benz. Activate any sensor in the car, perform initiation test, stream live sensor data and also read and clear fault codes. If you own a shop who focuses on Mercedes-Benz cars then this is a must for you. Get it via official channels so that you can perform online SCN coding. All MB SD Connect control units are accessible, like engine ECU, ABS, Airbags, SRS, Aircon, Immobilizer, Keyless Entry and the rest of 40+ control units used in MB cars. You can Read / Delete Faults, Live Data, perform sensor actuation, read current configuration, initialaztion and a lot more.

 

Things to consider before you buy one!

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.

Reference:
How to activate/install/update Xentry/DAS, EPC, WIS
How to use star c3/sdconnect c4 for diagnosis, coding or programming (online/offline)
How to solve all kinds of error message when using...
--> all tips can be found at mbstartool official blog. Go there and search anything you need.

Online SCN Coding: 
Unless you buy the scanner and online SCN coding service, 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. With that said there may be some basic coding and programming of control units that can be done.

Mercedes Star Diagnostic Problems with Software (Xentry) VM Ware Installation: 
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.

The PART D mux(STAR C3) is a serial ported mux---that's the reason for the Dell and IBM older laptops.
The PART W mux(SD connect C4) is and Ethernet/wifi connected system and that is the reason for use on other laptops---the issue is the operating system currently DAS Xentry only runs on XP.

 

Mercedes Benz MB Star C3 vs SD Connect C4

MB Star C3: It requires a laptop so that you can troubleshoot your Mercedes-Benz via Xentry software. While on paper it is slower than MB Star C4, it has proven to be a very reliable and robust scanner that is not plauged with WiFI connectivity issues like the Star C4.

MB SD Connect C4 is the latest Mercedes-Benz wireless multiplexers that can connect to your PC via wireless connection. Being the latest Diagnostic Scanner for Mercedes-Benz it works faster, once you resolve any connectivity issues that is.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is DAS? – Diagnostic Assistance System – This is the full diagnostic system for Mercedes-Benz vehicles. All functions for diagnosis including reprogramming, configuration, initialization, fault diagnosis and guided diagnostic tests are contained within DAS.

    • All control unit software (reprogramming calibrations) is contained within the DAS software which is distributed monthly via DVD media.
    • All access and functionality required in regard the configuration via SCN Coding and/or CVN Coding is covered.

What is WIS-NET? – Workshop Information System – This is the complete workshop information system as developed by DaimlerChrysler for use in the servicing of Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Contained within are installation instructions, procedures, functional and technical specifications. There is some linkage from certain procedures in DAS to respective documents in WIS.

What can Mercedes Star Diagnostic Tool do? The system offers total diagnostic coverage of all engine, chassis and body systems:

  • Reading and re-setting of diagnostic trouble codes (DTC)
  • Real-time reading of dynamic data
  • Full component activation clearing and re-setting of adaptation values
  • Coding of all engine, chassis, body and instrumentation modules
  • Key configuration
  • Procedure for fitting Mercedes- Benz accessories through the D2B ring and MOST bus
  • Total ASSYST / ASSYST + control (Active Service System) to update on board service history

What is Workshop Green Key? This is a unique one-time key from the factory which is necessary in certain situations such as: 

  • Disabling a key track
  • Replacing the ECU
  • Replacing security related control units
  • Replacing EIS

Typically the workshop key and EIS must be ordered togheter and the green key is used to perform the final programing of the EIS.

What does it mean MARRYING  a VIRGIN ECU and EIS? The ME (ECU=Engine Control Unit)  and  EIS (Electronic Ignition System) control module are electronically permanently married to each other after 40 engine starts. There is no factory procedure to undo this. This means that a used engine EIS or DAS control unit cannot be used on another vehicle. A new control unit can be installed for testing provided the 40 engine starts are not exceeded. Note that the new control unit must be variant coded before it can be used. If the 40 engine start cycles are not completed successfully resetting the counter to 0 (removing the version coding) is possible if  you disconnect the power from the ECU for at least 45 minutes. 

What model years does Star Diagnostic Scanner work with? The Star Scanner should work on cars from 1989 up to 2015 for Mercedes Cars, Buses, Trucks, Sprinter Vans, Smart cars, Etc.

What can I do with Star Diagnostic SD Connect Scanner C3 & C4? 

  • Reading/Erasing Trouble Codes
  • Read Live Data
  • Adaption of Modules
  • Coding/Programming of Modules
  • Component Testing
  • Maintenance Information Consultation

 

What is Xentry? New software released by Benz Company after 04/2009 by diagnosis new cars. WIS.net : Workshop Information System EPC.net: Electronic Parts Catalogue STAR UTILITIES: the movement management system and self-test DAS: the automatically Diagnosis Assistance System ST Finder 2008: Part location finder

What is Smart TAN Code? It openes special function in DAS program with Smart cars 450/451/452/454 Developer model: Mercedes-Benz engineer mode, remove limitations and open more functions.

What is Benz Disassembly system? Video lessons to teach you how to remove each part from Benz cars with details order steps.

Which control units can MB Star Diagnostic Scanner with Xentry troubleshoot? 

  • Engines (All Gasoline & Diesel Systems)
  • Transmissions and Electronic Selector Modules
  • Airmatic and Active Body Control Suspension Systems
  • Traction Systems: ESP / ASR / ETS / ABS / BAS / SBC braking systems
  • Supplementary Restraint Systems (SRS) / Airbag, All body modules OCP / UCP / LCP / SCM / SKF / KFB / RCM / DCM’s
  • Drive Authorisation System
  • Sam (Signal Acquisition) Modules
  • Electronic Ignition System (EIS)
  • Pneumatic System Equipment and ATA functions
  • Air Conditioning / climate control Systems
  • Instrument Cluster
  • Tyre Pressure Control
  • Parktronic System
  • Keyless Go
  • D2b Command & Audio Gateway (D2B and MOST networks)
  • TV Tuner
  • Headlamp Range Adjustment
  • Seat Electronics
  • Rvc, RST & Vario Roof modules
  • Automatic Clutch System ACS
  • M-Class Body Modules (AAM / EAM / DAS / SEM / VG Transfer Case)
  • Assyst & ASSYST + systems