VCDS New User Info


Active Member
VCDS Map User
I just thought I'd post some info about VCDS to help clarify things for other new users.

I am fairly new to VCDS myself, but I am a user of some powerful OBDSs' in my professional life.

The main thing I found out was that VCDS is essentially an emulation of the VAG diagnostics machine. This means that if you download the manuals (ELSAWIN etc) for your car, you can follow the steps for diagnosis or replacement exactly.
All the fault codes are equivalent, as is coding and adapting procedures. I know Ross-Tech say to use the factory manual, but they don't actually spell out how useful it is, or how VCDS ties in with it.

When I started working on my Audi, I read many posts on different forums asking various questions, but nowhere did I pick up that using the workshop manual would resolve a large number of VCDS diagnostic problems until I did it myself.

I would advise somebody new to VAG cars to download the correct manual for their car, and get the best version of VCDS lead they can afford (I have a Ross-Tech KII) and then start trying to diagnose problems using both.

Hope this is of use.


Ross-Tech, LLC
You make a great point and we will look to do better on our web site. We do have a VCDS brochure that does make it clear that the tool is like the factory tool. But I do agree, I had to really dig to find that information. We'll have to see what we can do to revamp the text. We are planning an update to our web site - possibly a new look. All we need is time!!!!! Thanks for the good info.


Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat
Site Sponsor
VCDS Map User
Ooooh new website, be watching this space :)

1 thing to note though, there are somethings that vcds has access to that VAS at dealers dont, eg. coding the brake system on an 8P newer cluster, as I found out on my car, dealer couldnt tell car I had 2 brake systems instead of 4 that 4wd cars have, thus went home coded with vcds & voila, fault code gone, for me that alone was worth the vcds expense as dealer would of wasted hours with no success & at average £100 per hour would of been prohibitively expensive, so although its emulated as such, it is infact better imho for my specific usage to date, whereas dealers are locked out of allot of these system options by VAG now & vas given used number of times is actually very unuser friendly imho.
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Ross-Tech, LLC
Don't get your water too warm! The project list at the moment is daunting and we're not sure when we will be doing work on the site. We'll let you know when something new pops out from us! (And yes, it is like having a kid!)