Adventures with Shimano Di2 firmware updates (long winded)
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  1. #1
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    Adventures with Shimano Di2 firmware updates (long winded)

    Groupo is Ultegra 6770 Di2
    BMR1 battery module (external)
    Base firmware was 1.x.x (Each module has its own version) The BMR1 was 1.1.2
    Upgraded firmware versions are 2.x.x

    I thought I would share my first adventure with the Shimano Di2 diag/config/firmware update software. It didn't work out like I thought it would and maybe this might help somebody else seeing the same behavior.

    Since I do 90% of my bike maintenance I popped for the Shimano "PC Linkage Device Di2" SM-PCE1 box (I am calling it the LD from this point on). Downloading the software and hooking up the LD to the open left shifter plug wasn't a problem.

    When I launched the"E-Tube Project" software things seem to go well until I tried to update the firmware. The update would fail on the battery module (BM) which is the first thing it wants to update. The error message recommended I disconnect the BM from the network (my word here) to prevent a possible firmware corruption. Rebooting the Windows 7 system hosting the LD didn't change anything.

    The manual shows how to connect to a single unit like the BM to the LD. So I unplugged the BM from the network and plugged it directly to the LD. I also unplugged the LD from the shifter port. The first connection rescan failed warning about a loose connection. This continued until I disconnected the cable between the BM and the LD (to be safe) and removed and replaced the battery (rebooted if you will). The next scan found the BM and after clicking yes at the firmware (FW) update prompt the BM FW updated. Great.

    So being an optimist I hooked the BM back to the network and the LD to the shifter port and ran a scan thinking the rest of the firmware updates should be cake. Ah not fast, during the scan the LD reports there is a problem with the BM. Running the Diag on the BM reports the battery could be low or bad. Funny though the electric shift works fine? So I disconnect the LD from the shifter port and R&R the battery (reboot). Connecting the LD back to the shifter port the scan still shows the battery bad (what the heck).

    Thinking I had some kind of firmware conflict between the BM and the other parts (old FW versions) I decided to upgrade the other modules using the direct connect method like I did for the BM. I was able to upgrade the front and read derailleurs without any problems but my attempt at doing the shifters failed (connection issues). Being an optimist I connected everything back to the network and the LD cable to the left shifter ports and ran a scan. It failed with some connection issues.

    So when all else fails try a reboot. I disconnected the LD from the left shifter port and R&R the battery. After connecting the LD back up the scan shows everything is fine and I was able to update the shifters and junction unit. The diag checks showed everything is good. I then ran the through all the gears and everything worked fine.

    The new firmware gives me the multi-shift option so I adjust my RD to shift two gears when holding the button and use the fast speed. With a 50/34 the shift to the 34 can be 2-3 gears too low at times. So pressing the RD up shift button I can quickly jump up two gears (or down if needed). I haven't ridden the bike enough yet to see how well this works. At some point I can see the technology evolving where it can have preset automatic rear derailleur shifts combined with front derailleur shifts.

  2. #2
    Happily absent RBR Member
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    I've warrantied a decent number of DI2 battery mounts - so if you're having problems with the LD saying there's a problem, take it to a dealer and have them check and warranty it.
    Get a better saddle: www.kontactbike.com

  3. #3
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    I don't know anything about Di2 specifically, but I work in the electronics field and the symptoms you're describing are often caused by a faulty/intermittent cable rather than a problem with whatever the software claims is bad (LD, battery, etc.). You might try different cables for the connections between the LD and bike and the computer and LD (if I understand how things connect correctly). May very well not make any difference, but sometimes that's all it takes.

  4. #4
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    A half twist of the barrel adjuster should clear that right up. Oh, wait....

    J/K. Couldn't resist.
    A good habit is as hard to break as a bad one..

  5. #5
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    The potential for a bad battery module or cable makes sense. My frame has internal cables so that makes cable troubleshooting more interesting.

    Went for a 73 mile ride yesterday and the shifting was flawless. I ran the diag check last night and everything was fine. I am going to roll with it for now. My plan is to convert to 11-speed when I can get a deal on the 6870 derailleurs. I want the GS RD with a 11-32 cassette.

    Even though it was a pretty bumpy road working through the firmware updates I am still a big fan of Shimano electric shift. The automatic front derailleur trim is a joy to have.

  6. #6
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    same problem here. everything works just can't update new firmwares. .

  7. #7
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    My experience has been that the operating system you are using matters. There seems to be issues with systems with USB 3.0. Also, another potential difficulty can be the cable that is connected to the PCE1, there is no locking mechanism like the standard cables, so you may have to reseat them and even manually use your hand to push the connector in to make sure it is connected during updates.

    Just in case, did you update to the latest etude software?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by albert1028 View Post
    My experience has been that the operating system you are using matters. There seems to be issues with systems with USB 3.0. Also, another potential difficulty can be the cable that is connected to the PCE1, there is no locking mechanism like the standard cables, so you may have to reseat them and even manually use your hand to push the connector in to make sure it is connected during updates.

    Just in case, did you update to the latest etude software?
    Previous firmware updates worked flawlessly on the same setup.

    SOLVED by uninstalling 2.5 and installing 2.2.3 (both are on E-Tube page) and updating from 2.2.3.
    Last edited by h4nc0; 02-25-2014 at 08:26 AM.

  9. #9
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    Hey, Do you think is a good investment to get the ' LD ' programming tool?
    Thanks you.

  10. #10
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    Its a little more flexible because you can hook it up to individual components. The battery charger for internal seatpost battery will update firmware but only connects to the network via the junction. As well, the "LD" can perform diagnostics. I've got both but seldom use the LD now that I've got the seatpost battery charger.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by h4nc0 View Post
    Previous firmware updates worked flawlessly on the same setup.

    SOLVED by uninstalling 2.5 and installing 2.2.3 (both are on E-Tube page) and updating from 2.2.3.

    Thanks!!!! This solved my update issues as well.

  12. #12
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    Jesus. . Give me a proper mechanical drive-train any day.

  13. #13
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    Predictable troll ot response in a di2 discussion.

  14. #14
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    Try IT

    Quote Originally Posted by Notvintage View Post
    Jesus. . Give me a proper mechanical drive-train any day.
    I would suggest you try it, if have not had a opportunity to do so.
    Then, pick your group as you would like.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by dkilburn View Post
    I would suggest you try it, if have not had a opportunity to do so.
    Then, pick your group as you would like.
    I rode a guys Dura Ace setup. It's cool and all, I like the front derailleur being electric. On a time trial bike, the electric would be a no brainer, but on a normal road bike, not so much. These new mechanical drive trains like Dura Ace 9000 and Super Record make electric seem totally unnecessary.

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