Cloning method Discussion Thread: How to install a map update directly to a SD card.

 

NOTE: This article has been updated and added as a FAQ. Please refer to the updated article here:
FAQ: Garmin Maps | Cloning Method: Install a Map Update Directly to the SD Card.

I posted this over on the GPS Review forum and thought it might be useful to the POI Factory members. This technique was suggested by member Boyd on that forum. I took his idea and tested it with my two nuvis (755T and 855).

You may have already noticed a certain peculiarity in Garmin software. If you have a removable drive on your computer (SD card or thumb drive) and create a \Garmin folder at the root of this drive, then copy the file GarminDevice.xml from your nuvi into this folder, the Garmin programs like POI Loader and my.Garmin.com seem to recognize the removable drive as a nuvi. Boyd speculated that you might be able to use this quirk to fool the map update installer and directly install a map update to a SD card.

It took some experimentation and several tries, but I was able to install the complete map on SD with both of my nuvis. Both nuvis operate correctly with ALL of the NA map data on the SD card. Here is a summary of the steps I used to install maps directly to the SD card:

1) Do a complete backup of your nuvi BEFORE you attempt this procedure. This MAY allow you to recover your nuvi if something goes wrong.

2) Use WebUpdater to make sure you have the latest software on your nuvi before you try this. If you have old software, you will have trouble with the map download because my.Garmin.com will try to do a software update on your (fake nuvi) SD card prior to the map download!

3) Start with a clean SD card in your computer or SD card reader. Make sure it is formatted FAT32. Create the \Garmin folder. Connect your nuvi to the computer in data mode and copy file GarminDevice.xml from the \Garmin folder on the nuvi into the \Garmin folder on the SD card. [Nuvi 8xx series only: Copy the complete ASR folder and its contents from the \Garmin folder on the nuvi into the \Garmin folder of the SD card.]

4) Safely remove the nuvi from the computer, but leave the SD card mounted on the computer. Log into my.Garmin.com. To verify that the SD card is recognized as your nuvi, go to the myDashboard tab and click on "Scan for devices". Your SD card should show up as your nuvi model in the drop down box. (Note: If you didn't remove your real nuvi from the computer as suggested, it will appear twice in the drop down box ... once for the real nuvi and once for your fake nuvi SD card. You won't be able to tell which is which!)

5) On myGarmin, click on the myMaps tab, select the map download link and use option 2 (Map update installer). Proceed to download and install the map files to the SD card. When the map update installer completes, all new map files are on the SD card in the \Garmin folder: gmapprom.img, gmapprom.gma, gmapprom.unl. On some models you will also have files gmaptz.img, gmap3D.img and DnnnnnnnA.JCV (in the \Garmin\JCV folder). Make sure all files are sucessfully downloaded to the SD card before continuing.

6) If your nuvi supports Junction View, this would be a good time to check the DnnnnnnnA.JCV file that was downloaded to the SD card. If you got the small file and want the large one, you may as well replace it now. Use the link provided elsewhere in the forum to download the large JCV file and copy it to the SD card in the \Garmin\JCV folder. Delete the small JCV file that was downloaded by the map update installer.

7) Connect the nuvi to the PC in data mode and delete the following files from the \Garmin folder on the nuvi internal drive: gmapprom.img, gmapprom.gma, and gmapprom.unl. Also delete file GMAP3D.img and the complete \JCV folder and its contents if they are present on your nuvi. [Nuvi 8xx series only: Delete the ASR folder and its contents from the \Garmin folder of your nuvi.]

8) If present, copy file gmaptz.img from the SD card back into the \Garmin folder of the nuvi. [Nuvi 8xx series only: Copy the entire updated ASR folder and its contents from the SD card back into the \Garmin folder of the nuvi.]

9) On the SD card rename the following files gmapprom.img to gmapsupp.img, gmapprom.gma to gmapsupp.gma and gmapprom.unl to gmapsupp.unl. Delete file GarminDevice.xml from the SD card, so it will no longer show up as a fake nuvi in Garmin software.

10) Safely remove the SD card and nuvi from the computer. Install the SD card in the nuvi.

11) Boot the nuvi, go to Tools > Settings > map > map info and make sure the full NA map (and 3D map if your model supports it) show up and are checked.

12) Test the nuvi to make sure all map detail is working.

On the 755T, the detail NA maps, 3D map, and JCV file all work correctly from the SD card. The only file from the map download that has to be on the internal drive is the gmaptz.img time zone file. After completing this procedure with CN NA 2012.30, I had 3.5 GB of free space on the 755T's 4 GB internal drive.

On the 855, the speech recognition files are updated as part of the map update. The easiest way I found to handle this was to copy the ASR folder to the SD card, perform the map install, then copy the updated ASR folder back to the nuvi. These steps are included in the above procedure.

This procedure worked well for me, but be aware that you are removing your detail map files from the internal storage of your nuvi. TRY IT AT YOUR OWN RISK! Note that these steps are for the older 7x5 and 8x5 nuvis that do not have the hidden .system folder and enhanced map naming features. It seems likely that the procedure can be easily adapted to the other nuvi models of this generation like the 2xx, 7xx and 8xx. I am not sure what additional considerations there are for the newer 1xxx, 2xxx and 3xxx models that have the .system folder. If anyone tries this, please post your results here.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon
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Nuvi 855 ... cloning still works for CN NA 2022.20

As a follow up to the two previous posts, POI Factory member Melaqueman has successfully used cloning on the CN NA 2022.20 with a nuvi 855. At this time, I have no explanation for why Melaqueman has been successful and I have not, but I have apparently made a mistake in the procedure or my particular nuvi 855 has a problem. So if you own a nuvi 8xx model, don't be discouraged ... give cloning a try and let us know your results.

I am going to give this another try with my nuvi 855 and will post the results.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

Cloning nuvi 855 ... more troubles with 2022.25

Has anyone had any luck installing the FULL CN NA 2022.25 map version on a nuvi 8x5 series. I had problems with 2022.20 but was able to get them resolved with Melaqueman's help. But this time, I can't get Garmin Express to offer anything but the lower 49 map version when doing a clone update of my 855. And when I proceed with that, I do not get new files for the ASR and SRX voice recognition files that should download with the map. I of course also just get the puny JCV junction view file, so I doubt whether the large JCV file that comes with my nuvi 755 full NA map will work either (haven't tried that yet though).

At this point I think I will just stick with the 2022.20 map on my 855, and forget the update to 2022.25. I rarely use the 855 any more, so it isn't a big deal if it doesn't have the newest map. It is more just a case of curiosity to see if this old unit is still updatable.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

Update 855

As I am writing this I am doing the full 2022.25 SD clone update to an 8 GB SD card. This download is HUGE.
I'm wondering what I may run into with my 2797 or the DriveSmart 50 as far as size is concerned. A new cloning method???
I want/need the full NA version i.e Canada, USA and Mexico though this year as last year I am flying south.

Might I suggest that you use an older version of the
GarminDevice. x m l file.

My thought is that there may be something in the GarminDevice file limiting the map file download.

--
Nuvi 2797LMT, DriveSmart 50 LMT-HD, Using Windows 10. DashCam A108C with GPS.

Worth a try ... thanks.

Melaqueman wrote:

Might I suggest that you use an older version of the
GarminDevice. x m l file.

My thought is that there may be something in the GarminDevice file limiting the map file download.

That's a good thought. I will have to look at some of my old backups to see if I can find an older version of Garmindevice.xml. My thumb drive that I use for cloning has plenty of free space, so I know that isn't causing my problem.

I don't think cloning will be required for your 2797 or DriveSmart. Garmin Express should handle it natively and use the SD card only if needed.

If the CN NA map ever exceeds the 4 GB file size and starts being delivered in two files as the CN EU map currently is, I am guessing cloning will no longer be viable. I have not heard if anyone has ever tried cloning with the full CN EU map since it has been delivered in two files.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

installing map on SD card

thanks for the information

Thanks again Melaqueman!

alandb wrote:
Melaqueman wrote:

Might I suggest that you use an older version of the
GarminDevice. x m l file.

My thought is that there may be something in the GarminDevice file limiting the map file download.

That's a good thought. I will have to look at some of my old backups to see if I can find an older version of Garmindevice.xml. My thumb drive that I use for cloning has plenty of free space, so I know that isn't causing my problem.

Well Melaqueman, once again you nailed it! I found a 2018 version of my nuvi 855 GarminDevice.XML file, and sure enough ... that enabled Garmin Express to install the full CN NA 2022.25 map to the clone including the associated .ASR and .SRX speech recognition files. I was able to copy these files along with the large JCV file from my nuvi 755 to the 855 and it seems to be working as well as can be expected. I tested in simulation mode on a long route and was getting correct routing, map display and junction views, although the 855 did crash part way through the route simulation. It rebooted and continued the route from where the simulation left off.

With my map update issues, your recent 855 problems requiring a device reformat, and some of the flaky performance history with the 855 (even in its better days) I will not be surprised if the time will come sooner rather than later that this device is no longer workable with new maps. As I indicated in my earlier post, keeping the 855 going is mostly a curiosity for me these days. It served me well when it was my main driver and probably deserves a respectful retirement. grin

Thanks again for your advice.

Edit: Here is another interesting quirk about the 855. After doing the successful map install of CN NA 2022.25 using cloning, when I bring up Garmin Express with the 855 plugged in, Express still says that I need the 2022.25 map update. It is apparently not recognizing the updated map from the GarminDevice.xml file. I have the gmapsupp.* files on the SD card, and the .ASR, .SRX, and .JCV files on the internal memory. I suspect this is somehow what has caused my map update issues on the last two updates. Maybe I should never let Garmin Express see my "real" nuvi 855.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

Interesting

Interesting Alan. I was doing a long simulation on my Smartdrive 60 with 2022.25 maps and it crashed like you had happen with your 855. Wonder if it an update issue with this new map..

--
Nuvi 350, 760, 1695LM, 3790LMT, 2460LMT, 3597LMTHD, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, DriveSmart 61, Garmin Backup Camera 40 and TomTom XXL540s.

Newest Garmin Express expects SD card on device

Map 2022.25 is 4+GB. New Garmin Express wants to install directly to an SD card **IN** the GPS. But we all know that that "takes forever". Any work around to be able to install directly to an SD card as this procedure has worked so well before?
Or, so I need to find an older Garmin Express or MapInstall that does not have this new restriction?? (anyone have a source?)
OH, I am installing to a Zumo 660 - old but quite reilable.

Nuvi 660.

Actually, the CN NA 2022.25 map file is still less than 4 GB. I think the reason you need a SD card is because the total map download for the Zumo 660 includes other files including the large JCV file. The combination of these files exceeds the amount of available internal storage, so the SD card is required. Your best option is to install a SD card of 8 to 32 GB and let Garmin Express do its thing.

You can use cloning if you wish to have the advantage of the faster copy time, but you still need a SD card of 8 GB or larger, so for most users it is best to just let Garmin Express manage it.

It is my understanding that a few of the older Zumo's that had OEM logos from specific motorcycle manufacturers like Harley actually had a 2 GB file size limit, so that is a different problem if you have one of those. But if you have a standard Garmin zumo 660, a SD card should do the trick.

Edit: In rereading your post, I am not aware of any restriction in the newest Garmin Express that would require installing directly to the device instead of using cloning. But I suppose it is possible they could have added that restriction in the latest version of Express. I used cloning on my nuvi 855 for 2022.25 when it was first released and didn't have any issue with cloning with the version of Garmin Express that was used at that time. It is possible to install a back leveled version of Garmin Express if necessary, but that does require some tinkering with your network connection to get around Express trying to force an update.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

results of Garmin Express update of Zumo 660 with SD card

So I decided to just try it. I left my SD card 'as is' (from my last update having used the clone method) and ran Garmin Express.
What got added in this order are:
gmapsup1.img (3,850,368kb)
gmapsup1.unl (1kb)
gmapsup1.gma (3kb)
gmappupdate.gsd (0kb)
What, if anything, can I do about the old map files? can I erase the old ones, and rename the new ones without the ending "1"? I'd certainly like to free up unused space.

Oh, the following files were changed/updated on the device itself:
.express
gmap3d.gma
gmap3d.unl
gmap3d.img
GarminDevice.xml
gmaptz.IMG

Thanks.

Cleaning up zumo 660

cj02139 wrote:

So I decided to just try it. I left my SD card 'as is' (from my last update having used the clone method) and ran Garmin Express.
What got added in this order are:
gmapsup1.img (3,850,368kb)
gmapsup1.unl (1kb)
gmapsup1.gma (3kb)
gmappupdate.gsd (0kb)
What, if anything, can I do about the old map files? can I erase the old ones, and rename the new ones without the ending "1"? I'd certainly like to free up unused space.

Oh, the following files were changed/updated on the device itself:
.express
gmap3d.gma
gmap3d.unl
gmap3d.img
GarminDevice.xml
gmaptz.IMG

Thanks.

Let me start with a couple points of advice for whatever it's worth.
First, don't delete anything without backing it up. Second, I would suggest starting out by renaming the files you are considering deleting, then reboot and carefully test the device to see if there are any unexpected consequences. If there are and you can get back into mass storage mode, you can put the files back to their original names. For example, if gmapsupp.img is one you want to delete, rename it to something line gmapsupp.imx. If after testing you are convinced that everything is OK, go ahead and delete the files (but I would still back them up just in case).

Ok, that said, here are a couple of things you should check. In addition to the files you indicated that were updated/replaced, the .jcv file in folder Garmin\JCV should have also been updated. Look in Map Info in your settings menu to make sure the current installed map is indeed 2022.25 Full NA. Do you have other supplemental maps installed that you use and need to keep? Usually Garmin Express will not use the gmapsup1 name on these older devices unless gmapprom and gmapsupp are already in use by other maps.

You should be able to rename the active map files to gmapsupp (if on SD) or gmapprom (if internal) but I would be tempted to leave them as they are if everything is working and deal with it when the next map update comes out.

Good luck in getting it straightened out, and let us know how everything turns out.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

Backup, then test!

alandb wrote:

Let me start with a couple points of advice for whatever it's worth.
First, don't delete anything without backing it up. Second, I would suggest starting out by renaming the files you are considering deleting, then reboot and carefully test the device to see if there are any unexpected consequences. If there are and you can get back into mass storage mode, you can put the files back to their original names.
[snip]

Thanks, Alan.
Yes, always back up! I did do before the upgrade.
Just wanted to say two things.
1. I'll do the experiments as you suggest and report back, but it may be in Jan 'cause the holidays are upon us (me) and I'm gonna be busy.
2. I was impressed/pleased at the speed with which the update occurred - total time less than an hour, whereas 'back in the day' it might take overnight to have a new map installed directly to the gps and computer.
-ceej

Interesting read, thanks

Interesting read, thanks

--
. 2 Garmin DriveSmart 61 LMT-S, Nuvi 2689, 2 Nuvi 2460, Zumo 550, Zumo 450, Uniden R3 radar detector with GPS built in, includes RLC info. Uconnect 430N Garmin based, built into my Jeep. .

Zumo 950 - SD Card Clone issues

Followed your CLONE process. Garmin Express identified my SD Card as my Zumo 950 and installed the latest Map 2023.10 (Software Version 3.30) on the SD Card. Suprise, it installed the .System foldes and files. Problem is my Zumo 950 does NOT have a .System folder. I'm looking at Apples and Oranges. Your thoughts?

--
SpyderNut

MTP

wingnut wrote:

Followed your CLONE process. Garmin Express identified my SD Card as my Zumo 950 and installed the latest Map 2023.10 (Software Version 3.30) on the SD Card. Suprise, it installed the .System foldes and files. Problem is my Zumo 950 does NOT have a .System folder. I'm looking at Apples and Oranges. Your thoughts?

Have you switched your Zumo from MTP to MS?

http://www.poi-factory.com/node/41416

http://www.poi-factory.com/garmin/problemsolver#system-folde...

zumo 950?

I am guessing your device is a zumo 590. I don't think there is a 950 model of the zumo. That said, the advice given by CraigW should resolve your problem. Be sure to follow the instructions at the end of the cloning FAQ for newer devices that have a \.system folder.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

Thank you for sharing! This

Thank you for sharing! This is helpful.

--
Garmin DriveLuxe 51 LTM-S

Great

Great to have threads with 368 comments that go back to the beginning of time resurrected.

--
Lives in Edmonton AB A volunteer driver for Drive Happiness.ca and now (since June 20 2021) uses a DS65 to find his clients.

prior update

Alan, et al,
Well - "Life Happened" and I got delayed.
First - this link might be useful to post somewhere - I found it very useful - it lists SD card size for all garmin devices: https://support.garmin.com/en-US/?faq=UsL6MuMMCM8PpgAhUUCqp7...

Second - I have had Garmin Express 'disappear' on me 4-6 times in my recent attempts to upgrade to 2023.10. I am currently trying a 'plain vanilla' install - without having changed/cleaned my SD card to see what it does. (and yes, I backed up both the 660 and the SD card!).

Third - I'm doing this because when I copied the new supp files to my real SD card in the 660, I only got the 2022.25 base map! I had to completely restore my backup to get full maps to show.

Fourth - I did first try the clone process - and I only got 3 files - the gmapsupp gma, unl, img files. No JCV folder as in times past. I did (finally) get the maps loaded onto my computer and useable by BaseCamp - but that took several tries as well (G.E. again never completed the process).

I will report back - in a timelier fashion this time.
-ceej

My Results - working!

A reminder - I have a Zumo 660 (motorcycle) GPS which is at least 10-12+ years old. But still works like a charm.

When I went from 2022.10 to 2022.25, I used Garmin Express (GE) directly to the device+SD card. It left the 2022.10 map files untouched and essentially "added" the 2022.25 map files as gmapsup1.img+gma+unl to the SD card. (that is, gmapsup[one]) It updated the 3d files, the tz file, and .express on the device memory. So I had 2 almost-4-gb map files.

When I went from 2022.25 to 2023.10 using GE directly, on the SD card it replaced the gmapsup1 files with the 2023.10 versions, and left the 2022.10 files alone! It also added a gmappupdate.gma file. On the device memory it updated the .express, 3d, and tz files.

In neither of the above did I get a change to the JCV folder.

I really do not see the need for two 4gb map files!
So I plugged the GPS back in, went to the SD card, put an 'x' in front of the supp files, and then changed the sup1 files to supp. Esentially removing the 2022.25 map files. I made no changes to the device storage.

I ejected the GPS, powered it on, and I seem to have a working 2023.10 map!
I'll leave things alone for a while until I've used the GPS and feel that the map is solid (though I cannot see why it would not be). Then I'll actually erase the x'ed files.

BTW, the whole process seems much faster than it did 5+ years ago. Maybe it is just my internet speed. But maybe Garmin actually made GE better.

Finally, my thanks again to this thread, this web site, and this community of helpful folks.
-ceej

PS
does anyone know what 'chart files' are and what they are named? When GE was searching for my device, it found two "invalid chart files" as well as my Zumo. I'd like to find/erase them if I knew what to look for.

Sounds like Garmin Express problem.

Since you have been unable to get Garmin Express to finish to completion, I am guessing the gmapsupp files you copied to the SD card were corrupt or incomplete. I don't know why your Garmin Express is not working correctly ... perhaps sussamb or someone else can offer some help with that.

For the past several map updates, I have had issues with cloning on my old nuvi 855. With others help, I was able to determine that the cloning only works on this device if I go back to a very old version of GarminDevice.xml (one I had on a backup that is several years old). I doubt that this is the issue with your zumo 660, but it might be worth a try if you have an old backup.

EDIT: It appears my post was superceded by your latest post. I am glad you got it figured out and your zumo 660 is working again with the newest maps.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

Nope

No idea why Express didn't work but Express will only correctly delete an older map prior to installing a new one IF a user hasn't made a change to the map files in some way. So for example if a map file has been moved to a sd card to give more free space on the device Express will leave it alone when it next updates.

--
Where there's a will ... there's a way ... DriveSmart51LMT-S, DriveSmart50LMT-D, Nuvi 2508LMT-D, 1490LMT, 1310, Montana 650T, Etrex 20
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