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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This goes out to all the other computer geeks...

Has anyone reprogrammed the Vehicle Information Center (VIC) on their ZJ? And I mean reprogrammed as in rewriting the computer code to change some of the things on it and perhaps wiring some extra sensors in there to add different error messages and options...
 

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Now that would be slick but I doubt it could be done without replacing the entire VIC console itself as the graphics on the thing are whole objects rather than pixellated. I'm guessing the PCM sends the correct signals to the VIC that determine which of the lights are to be lit as well, so its a PCM reprog rather than a VIC reprog.

If you find out otherwise and get some of it done, I'd be interested in hearing about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well I would think you could reprogram the text part since that IS pixelated. Anyways, I'll see what I can find. I'd assume that there is a chip in the VIC that is either ROM or reprogrammable that handles the incoming signals from the wires. But anyways it'll give me something to do.

In the mean time, let's assume that the VIC can be reprogrammed. What features would you like?
 

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you should make it read:

this vehicle will self distruct in 5..4..3..2..1.. BOOM
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Here are a couple preliminary ideas of what I was thinking:

1) A display of the engine error code when the check engine light comes on
2) A lookup table that shows the error message associated with the error code
3) A "fun" program that pretty much just lights up the display like a crazy party

I have a feeling that 1 and 2 would pretty mcuh require a complete redesign of the circuitry of the VIC since I don't know that I have the check engine signals at my disposal.

3 would be a good program just to test interfacing with the display and buttons.
 

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Re: Reprogram

Top Gun said:
[smilie=1cool.gif]
# 1 on your list already comes up in the registered miles display on your speedometer.
Not on my '95 it doesn't.



Though on my '95 the service codes are available so you should be able to send them to the VIC if you're an electronics wizard.

I'd also like to be able to disable some of the warning messages such as Windshield washer reservoir empty (or something to that effect) as I've removed some of these sensors from my Jeep and hate to rip the sensor from the reservoir and plug it in and then spoof a full condition just to get the thing to shut up.

All in all, this looks like a great project and I look forward to seeing how you do with it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have a 93 and it doesnt have one of those advanced digital displays for the miles ;)

This is an idea that popped into my head a few days ago, and I'll be starting back up with classes next Monday, so I dunno how much time I'll have to play around with it. Maybe I can convince my advisor that this is should be a research project :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just for the heck of it, I asked for some information on the VIC from Dr Z (schematics, etc) and they pointed me to the factory service manual. I don't think my Haynes manual has it.

Can someone who has a facotry service manual for a ZJ (any year) tell me if there are schematics for the VIC in there? You can send me the schematics if you want :p, but I really just want to verify that the information IS in there. I may go head an purchase one for myself.
 

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What in chicken $hit is the VIC?? is that the area by the transfer that lights up and tell what your in?? all mine does is says "part time" when im in 4Hi, and shows the Jeep with either 4 or 2 tires lighted. I must not have that fancy of a ZJ i guess... Ive torn mine apart and all i have behind that is just a big hole, nothing back there at all. Im guessin i dont have it??
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
1993GrandZJin said:
What in chicken $hit is the VIC?? is that the area by the transfer that lights up and tell what your in?? all mine does is says "part time" when im in 4Hi, and shows the Jeep with either 4 or 2 tires lighted. I must not have that fancy of a ZJ i guess... Ive torn mine apart and all i have behind that is just a big hole, nothing back there at all. Im guessin i dont have it??
Its the console underneath the fan controls that tells you the time and date. Also notifies you if doors or tail gate is open. Keeps track of your mileage until the next oil change, etc...
 

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SirFuego said:
1993GrandZJin said:
What in chicken $hit is the VIC?? is that the area by the transfer that lights up and tell what your in?? all mine does is says "part time" when im in 4Hi, and shows the Jeep with either 4 or 2 tires lighted. I must not have that fancy of a ZJ i guess... Ive torn mine apart and all i have behind that is just a big hole, nothing back there at all. Im guessin i dont have it??
Its the console underneath the fan controls that tells you the time and date. Also notifies you if doors or tail gate is open. Keeps track of your mileage until the next oil change, etc...
ohhhh that sounds fancy...all i have is a pic of a ZJ and it shows the rear tires lighted when in 2Hi, and all 4 are lighted when im in 4wheel. And then it says Part time also when im in 4wheel. Makes my ZJ sound not so fancy any more...
 

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no problem....if you need anything else on any car or truck let me know, I am paying $350/month for alldata at my shop!
 

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I do embedded systems engineering for a living, so I find this topic interesting.

In response, I pulled out my VIC today to give it a look-see. There are two circuit boards, one with a bunch of analog electronics, and one with two chips and the display. Unfortunately the display is soldered in and mounted on top of the two chips, so I couldn't see what the chips were. However, they appear to have the form factor of Intel 8051 microcontrollers.

There are some other considerations. Chances are the microcontrollers have the security bits set to prevent downloading the programs on them. But if not, one still needs to desolder the display, which has around 100 pins, just to get to the chips, which also need to be desoldered. Then, of course the program on the chips is probably written in assembly language that will be hard to reverse-engineer.

I'd be willing to give it all a shot, but I would only do so on a spare VIC, which I don't have. Also, I'd like to see that schematic...
 
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