Our OBD diagnostic software for macOS, Windows and Linux got new version update yesterday. Along other changes, the version 3.1 includes important improvements for Bluetooth connectivity.
OBD Auto Doctor mobile apps have included support for Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) dongles already. Now, we are happy to provide the support on all supported platforms. This includes support on Windows, Mac OS X / macOS and Linux. The selected BLE dongles work now with OBD Auto Doctor regardless the computer or phone you use.
BLE support on Windows
Windows 8 is the first Windows version to support Bluetooth LE. This means that you need to have Windows 8 or newer to take advantage of the new feature.
Before OBD Auto Doctor can connect to the BLE dongle, you need to pair the dongle in the system settings. In Windows 10, you can find Bluetooth settings by ‘Settings’ -> ‘Devices’ -> ‘Bluetooth’. Make sure you have paired the dongle successfully before launching OBD Auto Doctor. OBD Auto Doctor will now find the device and take care of the rest.
BLE support on Mac OS X
OBD Auto Doctor can use Bluetooth LE on all supported OS X versions. Remember to check that your Mac has Bluetooth 4.0 hardware included. Macs started to have the hardware around 2011-2012. No pairing or other manual actions are required outside of the software to use these dongles.
BLE support on Linux
Bluez is the library in Linux that provides Bluetooth support. You need to have version of Bluez that has the support included. Check your distribution for more details.
Scanning BLE devices needs special rights. You can use superuser or root for that. Or you can give the application the needed permissions just once:
After running the previous command, you can run obdautodoctor as normal user. Notice that some Linux distros require that you need to be part of the dialout group to able to use Bluetooth. To add an user to the group, issue:
sudo adduser username dialout
If you install the software using the .deb package, these actions will be taken care of automatically for you.
Our car diagnostic software for PC and Mac was updated about a month ago. The latest OBD Auto Doctor is now labeled as version 3. It took few weeks to publish this blog post. But it’s never too late, right? Let’s go through the change log for the update.
Improved User Interface
The new version has redesigned and improved user interface. This is of course the main visible change for you. We clarified the views with more white space and trimmed down the titles. We also reorganized the views under new categories. The new categories are summary, trouble codes, diagnostics, monitoring and extras. The categories have new flat style icons too. These changes make it easier for you to find the stuff you are looking for. We also added help texts to the views. They provide you helpful details about the information that the views provide. Just move your mouse over the small white question mark to get the hints.
On-board System, Test or Component activation
The software has now support for OBD2 mode 8. The mode 8 is the on-board system, test or component activation service. This service allows bi-directional communication to start or perform specific tests. This is different from the most OBD2 services because they just read information from the car. In that sense, this service or mode is a rather powerful tool.
The current version of the OBD2 standard defines only two tests. OBD Auto Doctor supports these both:
Evaporative system leak test
Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) Regeneration
It’s expected that more tests are added to the standard in the upcoming updates.
Sensor Graph Grid
The graph grid is the newest addition to the monitoring tools. You can now track up to four different sensors side by side with the Sensor Graph Grid. Each sensor has separate graph with it’s own scale. This makes it easier to interpret the data in some cases.
We did a lot of other smaller changes for the software too. The following list highlights the most important ones.
Increased number of the simultaneous sensors in the graph. You can now update up to 6 sensors at the same time. We also improved the automatic scaling of the graph scales to make it easier for you to interpret the values.
Added support for the Readiness Monitor status for the current drive cycle. This is in addition to the monitor status since the trouble codes have been cleared and the MIL has been reset.
Verified support for the new Windows 10. We also tested the OS X El Capitan preview version for possible compatibility issues.
Improved internationalization with all the strings updated by native speakers. Because of high maintenance work we had to remove support for some languages with fewer users.
Improved functionality with some clone adapters. The problematic adapters reporting version 2.1 will work now too. We do recommend though that you use a high quality genuine ELM327 adapter. Some clone adapters have serious issues delivering data from the car.
OBD Auto Doctor for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux was previously updated to version 2.0. The new version contains a lot improvements. Some of them are visible to you but there are several improvements done under the hood, too. The latest version has now better support for the new Windows 8.1 and Mac OS X 10.10 Yosemite operating systems.
One of the additions to the software was the data export capabilities. You will be now able to export Diagnostic Trouble Codes and Freeze Frame data to a text file. You can then easily share the file, or archive it for documenting the history of your car.
Moreover, you can export the sensor live data to a *.csv file. The csv file can be opened with spreadsheet software such as Microsoft Excel, Google Sheets or LibreOffice Calc. You can record a whole drive cycle and review the results afterward to detect some abnormalities with the sensors of your car. You can even draw a custom graph with these external tools from the data you collected with OBD Auto Doctor.
We did an example drive with 2014 Audi A3 1.4 TFSI and recorded the car data during it. The granularity of the data is rather coarse because we recorded 28 sensors simultaneously. Dropping the amount of different sensors will improve the granularity significantly. That’s because it leaves more time to update the interesting sensors more frequently.
OBD2 data graph exported from LibreOffice Calc
Click the image for full size.
OBD2 data graph exported from Google Sheets
Click the image for full size.
Other new features
In addition to the export functions, the latest version added support for 16 new OBD2 parameters. It’s also now possible to graph more than one sensor or parameter simultaneously with the oscilloscope. Last, OBD Auto Doctor user interface was translated to Polish.
You can download the latest version of OBD Auto Doctor from the download page.
We are pleased to announce the release of OBD Auto Doctor for Mac OS X. Mac support has been requested by many of you and therefore we are especially happy about this release. It delights us to fulfill your wishes!
OBD Auto Doctor is the only true multi platform OBD diagnostic software available in the market. It’s available for basically for every operating system there is; Windows, Mac and Linux. Users who have purchased a desktop license earlier are able to use the same license key with the Mac version. This is true advantage for many of our customers who have PCs and Macs in their households.
The Mac version supports all the same adapters that our Windows and Linux versions also support. These include wireless Bluetooth and WiFi adapters, USB and serial cable adapters.
OBD Auto Doctor is now available for download from our own site. The software requires at least OS X 10.7 (Lion) to operate correctly. It has been tested to work on the new 10.9 Mavericks too.
Since this is our first release for Mac, we would be very happy to receive any feedback of the software; positive or negative. Leave your feedback to the comments or send us e-mail.