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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
We have had a few questions recently from new owners interested in learning about FORScan, and found that we have a few posts in random threads that can help, but not really a dedicated FORScan thread that new owners can reference. I did start an earlier thread on FORScan Adapter recommendations back at the end of 2018 that got corrupted and the admins could not recover, so probably the most comprehensive thread we had on choosing a FORScan adapter no longer exists.

There is a ton of information out on the FORScan website and on other F150 forums, but both are almost too much information (= think lips around a firehose)

I know that all three (3) Super Moderators here (@wreedsvt, @kdjapser and myself) have all figured out how to do FORScan programming, but all three of us also work in the IT industry and aren't afraid of a computer. I know when I initially went out to the FORScan website, the number for choices for H/W (Hardware) adapters and S/W (Software) applications was over-whelming and took me even some time to sort out what should work and what won't. I would have loved if there was a single thread that said: "Here's exactly what you need to do and is guaranteed to work..."

I also know we have some older owners who may or may not be tech-savvy, and for anyone who is not, I can understand how trying to figure out what you need is near impossible without someone explaining what combination of H/W and S/W actually works together and how to use FORScan for monitoring and/or programming once you have everything installed.

I am starting a new "sticky" thread here to hopefully demystify what you need from a H/W and S/W perspective in order to do FORScan monitoring and programming. These are my notes and documentation on what combinations are currently working for me and how to use FORScan for basic monitoring and programming.

I am going to add posts to this thread on the following topics:
  • H/W requirements
  • S/W requirements
  • FORScan Installation
  • Using FORScan for Monitoring
  • Using FORScan for Programming
  • FORscan F150 spreadsheet
My recommendations/notes can be found following the JMP tag

This is my first pass and I'm looking for some feedback on if these instructions helped or how they can be improved.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
H/W requirements

In order to use FORScan, you need two (2) pieces of H/W (hardware):

1) Monitoring/Programming Device
a) For Monitoring only:​
i) Laptop: Windows​
ii) Tablet: iPad or Android​
iii) Phone: iPhone or Andorid​

b) For Programming only:​
i) Windows 10 (only) laptop (any make/model)​

JMP: I picked up a used Lenovo X1 Carbon laptop thru work for a decent price​
=> This particular laptop is p̶r̶o̶b̶a̶b̶l̶y̶ WAY overkill for what is needed here​
=> ANY Windows 10 laptop w/Bluetooth capability or USB port (depending on which OBD adapter you choose) is adequate​
=> FORScan Programming is not possible on Mac or Linux Operating Systems = must be Windows 10 laptop​


2) OBDii adapter:
or​
JMP: I have only used the above adapters for my monitoring and programming​
=> ODBLink EX adapter is a hard-wired adapter that plugs into a USB port on your laptop and eliminates the "CAN" switch found on the cheaper knock-offs​
=> OBDLink MX adapter is compact wireless Bluetooth-enabled predecessor to MX+ that works for Windows monitoring/programming but doesn't work with iOS devices
=> OBDLink MX+ adapter is compact wireless Bluetooth-enabled that can be left plugged into the OBDii port and gets good reviews on Amazon (compared to others)​
=> OBDLink also makes a Wireless LAN version (which should be faster/better) but most of the reviews claim it doesn't work!​
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
S/W requirements

Visit the FORScan website for latest FORScan downloads for the following operating systems:

1) FORScan Lite for iOS (for iPhone or iPad devices)
a) FORScan Lite 1.5.2 for iOS (Core 2.3.25) <= $5.99 in Apple Appstore
b) FORScan Viewer for iOS <= FREE in Apple Appstore​
2) FORScan Lite for Android
a) FORScan Lite 1.5.2 for Android (Core 2.3.25) <= $5.99 in Google Play Appstore
b) FORScan Demo for Android <= FREE in Google Play Appstore​
3) FORScan for Windows
a) FORscan version 2.3.25 Beta for Windows (FREE)
b) Get Free extended license (2 month trial) for PROGRAMMING (FREE)
c) Buy Extended License for PROGRAMMING
i) 1-year ($10)
ii) 3-year ($20)
iii) 5-year ($30)
iv) Lifetime ($50)​

JMP: Depending on whether you want to do monitoring or programming:
=> If you only want to do monitoring, any of the 3 options above will work
=> If you want to do FORScan programming, you need a Windows 10 laptop + FORScan Extended license (only #3b or #3c above)
=> For a comparison of all of these different applications, please see: Comparison of FORScan applications
=> Examples of FORScan programming:
a) Exposing DPF Full% or OCR in your IPC (Instrument Panel Cluster)
b) Changing fuel tank size for DTE calculations
c) Anything listed under FORScan mods in my signature​
=> I develop software tools for a living, so I:
a) Do not pirate software
b) Help the developer wherever I can (= I bought Lifetime Extended FORScan license)​
 
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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
FORScan Installation

1) Download the latest FORScan for Windows version (See #3a above in S/W Requirements post above)

2) Get Free extended license (2 month FREE trial) (See #3b above in S/W Requirements post above)
or​
Buy 1yr/3yr/5yr/Lifetime Extended license (See #3c above in S/W Requirements post above)​
3) Turn your vehicle ON to ACCESSORY power (Just hit start button w/o foot on brake pedal)

Bypass Steps #4 and #5 and skip to Step #6 if you are using a hard-wired USB OBDii adapter

4) Enable Bluetooth on your laptop via: Settings -> Bluetooth & other devices -> Flip Bluetooth slider to ON

5) Add a new Bluetooth device on your laptop via: Settings -> Bluetooth & other devices -> Add Bluetooth or other device
a) Select "Bluetooth"​
b) Select "ODBLink MX+" from list of discoverable devices​
6) Find folder where latest FORScan for Windows version was downloaded to in #1 above

7) Double-click on FORScan for Windows version exe file e.g. FORScanSetup2.3.##.beta.exe where ## = latest modification/beta level
a) Hit "YES" to allow install​
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b) Select English in Select Setup Language window​
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c) Click on I Accept and Next> in License Agreement window​
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d) Click on Next> in Select Additional Tasks window​
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e) Click on Install in Ready to Install window​
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f) Click on Finish in Setup Wizard Complete window​
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8) Activate Extended license with Activation code e-mailed back you from MyCommerce (A Digital River Company)
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Discussion Starter #5
Using FORScan for Monitoring

In order to monitor PIDs in FORScan, you need to configure the PIDs you want to display:

1) Select the Monitoring icon circled in red on the left

2) Make sure PCM shows up in the pull-downlist in the orange box on the bottom => This will filter the list down to PCM-related categories

3) Click on the Settings icon in blue on the bottom

4) Select the DPF-related PIDs => You should find the DPF-related PID names in the screen capture below
a) Select PID​
b) Click on right arrow to move to monitor​
c) Move up & down arrows to order how you like​
5) Click on the Play icon in green on bottom

You can take a look at this screen capture I mocked up with the colors for what icons to click on: FORScanSetPlayDPFrelatedPIDs#2
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After hitting the green Play button, you should see values populate a table:
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or gauges: (showing an Active Regen in progress in this particular screenshot)
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Discussion Starter #6
Using FORScan for Programming

In order to change/alter default factory settings, you can follow these instructions (which are specific to changing fuel tank size)

1) Select the Programming icon circled in red on the left (only available with FORScan Extended license)

2) Select IPC in the pull-down list in the orange box on the bottom => This will filter the list down to three (3) IPC related categories

3) Select/click-on IPC Module configuration (AS BUILT format) line in the list of Modules under Configuration and Programming notebook tab

4) Click-on the Play/Run service procedure icon in green on bottom
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5) Click-on Save All to save all values before making any changes
=> It is imperative that you backup any "As-built" configuration files before making any changes with FORScan
=> It is also a good idea to keep a log of what changes you make in what modules in case you need to back-off any change
=> Only make one change at a time, backing up each file before the change and documenting the change
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6) Type in filename with IPC and abt (for as-built) as file suffix
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7) Change bytes values to make your change(s):

e.g. For changing the fuel tank size, find row with IPC 720-03-01 and changes Bytes 4 thru 6 accordingly:​
IPC 720-03-01 xxx5 EAxx xxxx​
3D9 = 26 gallon (what you should see before changing)​
5EA = 40 gallon for 5.5' bed​
719 = 48 gallon for 6.5' bed​

8) Click on Write All to save the changes
=> Once you click on Write All the system will internally reboot to pick up the changes; e.g. IPC screen will turn off/on and you will hear one or more chimes
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9) Click on Stop service procedure icon (next to the Play icon) to exit FORScan programming
 
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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
FORScan F150 spreadsheet

Now that can see how to use FORScan to program/change a single setting, explore the following spreadsheet to see what else is programmable: FORScan 2015-2019 F150s

This thread here on our forums has the most comprehensive list of favorite owner FORScan mods: FORScan Mods confirmed working
 
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@jmperlik - this was a great write up on software and hardware. It gave me the confidence to make the changes to my truck.
I have a 2019 F-150 PS platinum. I eliminated auto start stop, added temps to my engine and tranny gauges, added heated and cooled seats to my home screen, bumped up to the GT peformance screen (which was a pretty cool look), up my blinkers to 6 flashes, disabled the double honk feature when I leave the truck running and my key in my pocket. My neighbors will appreciate that. Added the DPF filter status. And now in just keep researching whats next!!!
THANKS FOR A GREAT WRITE UP!!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
@mccoy54 - glad the instructions helped! It took a few hours to write up everything that worked for me, but I am glad to see that they gave you the confidence to tackle this yourself, as that was my intent when creating this sticky thread = it's not that hard once you know what H/W and S/W you need and a few screen captures to show you how to use FORScan. Good luck with your future FORScan programming!
 

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Fantastic write up! I've read a ton about FORScan but not much out there for iPhone/iOS only programming. Did I miss it here? There is also a lot out there on the fear of changing something and it reprograming something you didn't mean to. Ive also run across threads where they STRESS backing things up before changes are made but I don't see any of that here either. Is the backing up talk about older FORScan versions?

Thanks!

2018 F150 Lariat PS 3.0
 

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Discussion Starter #13
@carapace - first order of business: Welcome to the forums!

Pretty sure I made both of your questions clear in my write-up but I will make clearer:
1.) You can only monitor PIDs with iPhone/iOS
==> H/W Requirements #1b: Windows 10 laptop only for PROGRAMMING
==> S/W Requirements #3b or #3c: If you want to do FORScan programming, you need a Windows 10 laptop + FORScan Extended license
2.) Backing up As-Built configurations before making any changes:
==> Using FORScan for Programming #5: Click-on Save All to save all values before making any changes

I have added the following note in bold red regarding making backups before making any changes:
=> It is imperative that you backup any "As-built" configuration files before making any changes with FORScan
 

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The guidelines are excellent, in addition I keep a running log of changes and that really helps, especially with a conflict that might occur. Makes any trouble shooting real easy.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The guidelines are excellent, in addition I keep a running log of changes and that really helps, especially with a conflict that might occur. Makes any trouble shooting real easy.
Good idea Doug! I also added the following note in green in that same section:
=> It is also a good idea to keep a log of what changes you make in what modules in case you need to back-off any change
 
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I got the OBD II bluetooth reader, downloaded FORScan, loaded it on a Windows 10 laptop, connected the OBD II via Bluetooth, and launched FORScan. When I tried to connect, I got an error message: "No ELM detected." Any idea what I am doing wrong?
 

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Made all the usual common changes to mine such as fog lights on with high beams, auto folding mirrors and the important regen percent screen and temporary disable of regens. Super easy to do, and really adds convenience to the driving experience. Highly recommended to do.
 

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OK, big FORScan question. With the forum's help I made a lot of the common changes. Now I have one more I would love to do. It takes a lot of button pushing to turn the 8" display off. I'm a former police officer, and I often like to have my interior lights as dark as possible or off. Anyone figured out a way to put the display off button on the home screen, just like the heated steering wheel button?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
OK, big FORScan question. With the forum's help I made a lot of the common changes. Now I have one more I would love to do. It takes a lot of button pushing to turn the 8" display off. I'm a former police officer, and I often like to have my interior lights as dark as possible or off. Anyone figured out a way to put the display off button on the home screen, just like the heated steering wheel button?
@cheetah4570 - glad to hear you made it over the hump and have almost all of your FORScan changes implemented....

In terms of your question, have your tried "Police Dark Car" mode in BCM?
=> See attached screen cap the BCM (BdyCM) tab in FORScan 2015-2019 F150s
=> Please post back if this is what you were looking for and how it works
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@cheetah4570 - glad to hear you made it over the hump and have almost all of your FORScan changes implemented....

In terms of your question, have your tried "Police Dark Car" mode in BCM?
=> See attached screen cap the BCM (BdyCM) tab in FORScan 2015-2019 F150s
=> Please post back if this is what you were looking for and how it works

OK, made the change but I'm not sure what this one does or how to use it. Will wait for night and check again.
 
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