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#762626 - 09/22/08 08:37 PM Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
There are apparently 3 version up procedures, per the VS-840 service manual.

1) Normal version-up via MIDI.
2) Normal version-up via ZIP 100 disk.
3) The "Compelling Version Up" via ZIP 100 disk.

Here's what the Roland Service Manual, dated Feb. 1999 has to say.

 Quote:

VS-840EX SYSTEM SOFTWARE UPDATE

* CAUTION!!
Do not turn off the VS-840EX during it's system software updating. If not, the program in the flash memory is destroyed. In this case, perform the compelling version-up procedure to recover it.

The VS-840 sytem software is supplied in the standard MIDI file (SMF) data format (P/No. 17048943)

Each system disk contains the following SMF data. Load these data to VS-840EX, starting with Disk 1 (VS84EX-1.MID).

VS-840EX System Ver. *.** SMF Disk 1

VS84EX-1.MID
VS84EX-2.MID
VS84EX-3.MID
VS84EX-4.MID

VS-840EX System Ver. *.** SMF Disk 2

VS84EX-5.MID
VS84EX-6.MID
VS84EX-7.MID
VS84EX-8.MID

Update the VS-840EX by following the procedure described below.

1. Connect the MIDI OUT of a MIDI sequencer capable of playing back SMF data in sequence (e.g., SB-55) to MIDI IN of VS-840EX, through a MIDI cable.

2. Holding MODE, INPUT and ENTER buttons, turn on VS-840EX.

3. The message "Receive MID-EX?" will be displayed. Press YES button.

4. Verify that "Now Waiting ..." is displayed. Playback all SMFs in the order of number.

5. The message "Version Up?" will appear. Press YES button.

6. The message "User Area Update? will appear. Press YES button.

7. When the message "END!!! Please POWER OFF/ON" appears, Turn OFF and then ON VS-840EX.

This completes updating.

Initialization, User area, VS-840EX system software update using the ZIP DISK (P/No. 17048942)

VS-480EX can also be updated by using the System Data ZIP DISK. hen using the ZIP DISK, VS-840EX can be upgraded either of the following 2 ways.

1. Using standard version-up procedure. This procedure keeps the user data unchanged (no initialization).

2. To initialize the user data or loading the factory presets, the compelling version-up procedure must be followed.

Standard version-up procedure

1. Insert the latest System Data ZIP DISK into VS-840EX ZIP drive. Turn on VS-840EX.

2. The message "Version up?" appears. Press YES button.

3. When the message "Are you sure?" appears, press YES button. The program displays "SYSTEM WRITE", indicating it starts version-up sequence.

4. Upon "END!!! Please POWER OFF/ON" message, turn OFF and then ON VS-840EX.

This completes updating.

Compelling version up

1. Holding down TR1, TR2, TR3, TR4 and RIGHT buttons, turn on VS-840EX. (NOTE: The TR1, TR2, TR3, TR4 buttons are the round buttons labeled A, B, C, D below the TRACK CUE rotary faders).

2. The message "Clear Flash?" will appear. Press YES button.

3. The message "Are you sure?" will appear. Press YES button.

4. The program displays "SYSTEM WRITE", indicating that it is clearing flash memory.

5. Upon "END!!! Please POWER OFF/ON" message, turn OFF VS-840EX.

6. Insert the System Data ZIP DISK into the drive. Holding down PLAY, REC and ENTER buttons, turn ON VS-840EX.

7. The program displays "BAD FLASH!!" and then "SYSTEM WRITE", indicating that it is starting compelling version-up sequence.

8. Upon "END!!!! Please RESET!" message, turn OFF and then ON VS-840EX.

This completes compelling updating.

To recover the unit after Error Message has been displayed

When error messge "Don't match CPU" or "Can't Version Up" has been displayed and locks up from the power off during Eject or Shut down, you need to re-load the System program. Please refer to the following procedure.

1. Insert the System Data ZIP DISK into the VS-840EX drive and then turn ON the VS-840EX.

2. The display may show "BAD FLASH!!" and then "SYSTEM WRITE.". The compelling version-up starts.

3. After "END!!! Please RESET!" is displayed, turn the power OFF and ON again.

4. Complete.

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#770418 - 10/07/08 11:59 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Update to the information above.

I ordered the ZIP DISK (P/No. 17048942) referenced in the Service Manual Procedure, above. What Roland US parts and service sent me, was a 1.44Mb floppy disk, marked "Roland VS-840EX Update Disk V. 2.05 - 10933". I tried the floppy disk in all 3 of my WinXP computers and each reported that the floppy disk was not formatted. So I've no way of knowing what system update file was supposed to be on the disk. Note that the Packing Sheet that accompanied the disk, said it was the Standard MIDI Files (SMF) for version 2.00.

In the last week, member BASSBALL reported HERE that the "Compelling Version Up" procedure (press A+B+C+D+RIGHT and power on) would NOT update with a standard (user made) ZIP 100 flash update disk.

Accordingly: DO NOT DO THE COMPELLING VERSION-UP PROCEDURE WITHOUT THE SPECIFIC ROLAND ZIP DISK REQUIRED ABOVE.

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#770421 - 10/07/08 12:01 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Monday morning, October 6th, 2008, I filed a support request with Roland Support as follows:

 Quote:
I own a VS-840 and actively support VS-840 users at VSPlanet.com. Regularly, VS-840 owners request support for units that have failed with a BAD FLASH or DON'T MATCH CPU error, caused by 1) improper shutdown, 2) failed flash update, or 3) power failure. A few users have reported that the recovery is as simple as re-setting / re-flashing the failed 840 with a service level ZIP 100 disk. Can this disk be made available to the user community for a nominal fee? Thanks, Jack Helser


Shortly after filing the support request, Roland answered and closed the support request with:

 Quote:
"At this point a 'Can't Version Up' or 'Don't Match CPU' is still a service call."


That afternoon, I opened a new support request to ask:

 Quote:
VS-840 users with the bad flash failure, have watched authorized Roland service technicians fix their failed 840's with a ZIP 100 disk and nothing more, then charge them $150 for 5 minutes work. Whom should the community ask within Roland to make the disk available for us? Thanks, Jack Helser


As of Tuesday, October 7th, the 2nd request is still pending.

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#770426 - 10/07/08 12:11 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
In the meantime, I have penned a letter to the president of Roland US, as listed by the Better Business Bureau BBB of Los Angeles, to request a change in policy concerning the repair of flash-ROM based errors. Specifically, to make the service level ZIP 100 disk available to the user community at nominal cost.

If Roland Support responds favorably, there will be no need for the letter. I just wanted to be prepared for the next step. Here is the draft of my letter to Mr. Houlihan, president of Roland:

 Quote:
Mr. Dennis Houlihan, President
Roland Corp. U S
5100 S Eastern Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90040

Dear Mr. Houlihan,

In 1999, I purchased a Roland VS-840 for $1100. Like many musicians, I found the VS-840 easy to use and with it I recorded 2 original albums and several singles. In 2003, I joined the VS-840 support forum at VSPlanet.com where I have been helping VS-840 owners use and maintain their recorders for over 5 years. There is an active re-sale market for the VS-840 and many new users are introduced to Roland products when they purchase one on eBay, for under $100 these days.

Frequently, VS-840 owners log-in to VSPlanet.com to ask for assistance with a machine that has been rendered inoperative by a BAD FLASH, CAN'T VERSION-UP or DON'T MATCH CPU error. For many years now, our advice has been consistent with the stated policy of Roland Product Support, that these Flash ROM-based errors require a trip to the Roland Service Center.

User community experience suggests that the errors are caused by a power disruption, failed flash update or untimely disk ejection. Owners who have taken their failed recorders to the shop, have typically been charged $150 for repair, which is more than the VS-840 sells for these days. A few owners have reported watching the service technician perform the repair, where the fix took less than 5 minutes and involved nothing more than cycling a system level ZIP 100 disk through the failed VS-840 to re-flash the ROM. Understandably, those owners have felt gouged by the excessive cost to repair, especially since the fix was so simple and quick.

VS-840 owners are familiar with the flash ROM update process, whether by ZIP disk based flash ROM update or by SMF files transmitted through a MIDI sequencer. What few users who have reported back to the forum after their machine was fixed at a Roland Service Center, say that applying the service level ZIP recovery disk is no different than the flash update process.

We realize that the VS-840 is nearing the end of its service life and Roland no longer offers such optional accessories as the VS-840 Video Owners Manual and VS4S-1 SCSI Interface. Still, the VS-840 is a viable recorder for countless thousands of musicians.

On behalf of the VS-840 user community, I request that Roland US would make available, at nominal cost, the same ZIP 100 recovery disk used by Roland Service Center technicians to repair flash ROM based errors in the VS-840, VS-840EX and VS-840GX recorders. This we ask is in the same spirit of end-user support by Roland US who has made available the VS-840 user manuals in PDF format and ROM update files through the RolandUS.com.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,

Jack Helser



I considered mentioning the fact that Roland US is directly responsible for some of these flash update failures, because they previously offered the ZIP disk-based update files, but provided NO WARNING to the user community that a VS-840EX formatted ZIP 250 disk was NOT compatible with Microsoft Windows used to write the update file to the VS-840EX formatted disk. Every user who attempted to flash their EX from 2.0x to 2.05 with a ZIP 250 disk made under MS Windows, received a BAD FLASH and CAN'T VERSION-UP error.

If I can figure out a non-threatening way of stating that, I'll include it in the letter.

Any thoughts or comments?

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#771507 - 10/09/08 12:33 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Roland support still has not responded to my 2nd request on their 'help system', above. So I take that as a 'blow off'. The letter to Dennis Houlihan, president of Roland, goes out today. I've revised it as follows.

 Quote:
09 October 2008


Mr. Dennis Houlihan, President
Roland Corp. U S
5100 S Eastern Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90040

Dear Mr. Houlihan,

In 1999, I purchased a Roland VS-840 for $1100. Like many musicians, I found the VS-840 easy to use and with it I recorded 2 original albums and several singles. In 2003, I joined the VS-840 support forum at VSPlanet.com where I have been helping VS-840 owners use and maintain their recorders for many years. There is an active re-sale market for the VS-840 and many new users are introduced to Roland products when they purchase one on eBay, for under $100 these days.

Frequently, VS-840 owners log-in to VSPlanet.com to ask for assistance with a machine that has been rendered inoperative by a BAD FLASH, CAN'T VERSION-UP or DON'T MATCH CPU Flash ROM-based error. For many years now, our advice has been consistent with the policy of Roland Product Support, that these Flash ROM-based errors require a trip to the Roland Service Center. Realistically, with the cost to repair averaging $150, while the current resale value of a VS-840 is under $100, many owners simply discard their failed machines.

Review of the entire Roland DAW message base at VSPlanet.com suggests the most common causes of a VS-840 flash ROM-based error is power disruption, untimely disk ejection (improper shut-down) or a failed Flash ROM update. Also, the knowledge base indicates these Flash ROM-based errors are unique to the VS-840 series, thereby suggesting that the rest of the VS line of recorders has a more robust / fault-tolerant OS than the VS-840 series.

Some of the owners who paid to have their machines repaired have reported that it was as simple as cycling a system level ZIP 100 disk through the unit to re-flash the ROM. Understandably, the owners felt taken advantage of by the excessive cost to repair, since the fix took less than 5 minutes and didn't even require opening the machine.

Accordingly, the VS-840 user community requests that Roland US make available at nominal cost, the same ZIP 100 recovery disk used by the Roland Service Center technicians to repair flash ROM-based errors in the VS-840, VS-840EX and VS-840GX recorders.

We realize that the VS-840 is nearing the end of its product life and Roland US no longer offers such optional accessories as the VS-840 Video Owners Manual and VS4S-1 SCSI Interface. Still, the VS-840 is a viable digital recorder for countless thousands of musicians. Timely and cost effective Roland Product Support for these Flash ROM-based failures is requested in the same spirit of support wherein Roland US has made available product user manuals in PDF format and ROM update files through the RolandUS.com web site.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,

Jack Helser

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#775404 - 10/17/08 12:58 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Roland answered my Support request Fri, Oct 17, 2008 at 12:14 PM. Their reply follows:

 Quote:
Jack,

Unfortunately, it is a protected disk that is no longer available even for local service centers that do not already have a copy of it. At this point, most VS-840s that "Cannot Version UP" would have to be sent to our main service center in Los Angeles.


It appears that the only option left, would be for the President of Roland to initiate a policy change to make the disk available to the user community, or, put an end to the price gouging and fix the VS-840s for a nominal fee.

Otherwise, the 840 has reached the point where the cost to repair them exceeds the marketplace value of a used 840.

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#795865 - 12/02/08 12:41 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
DrJugband Offline
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Registered: 03/20/07
Posts: 40
Loc: Australia
Any further news??? Any luck , Bassball? Are you still fired up, Cornjerker?
Otherwise I have a dead VS80 and a CF card reader (and CF cards) up for grabs.
(sniff)
_________________________
DrJugband

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#795933 - 12/02/08 08:22 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: DrJugband]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
No reply from Roland / Mr. Houlihan yet, Dr. J.

Not replying to a letter from a customer, esp. one that claims to speak for a group of customers, is foreign to my business training. How well I remember working for a large aerospace company, who bent over backwards to reply to every customer inquiry. They understood the value of a lifetime customer relationship.

In my view, Roland's non-response and inaction puts them on a par with snake-oil salesman. I damn sure will never buy another Roland product.

Jugband, since I sent the letter to them on the 9th of October, I'd like to give them a few more weeks to reply. If nothing by the first of the year, I'll file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and amend this thread with the information for other users to file a similar complaint.

At the very least, we'll have the satisfaction of documenting Roland's non-support and in particular the ROM-based failures unique (and chronic) to the VS-840.

Jack

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#813765 - 01/17/09 10:55 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
UPDATE:

As of this date, Saturday, January 17th, Roland US / Mr. Houlihan, has not responded to my letter of October 9th.

Accordingly, I'll be filing a complaint with the BBB in California some time next week. I'll post a copy and reference number of the complaint when it's been filed.

Jack

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#824582 - 02/10/09 12:06 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
This morning, I filed complaint with the Better Business Bureau. The complaint follows:

 Quote:
TYPE: Product Quality

SUMMARY: Roland VS-840, VS-840EX and VS-840GX digital recorders are rendered inoperable by power outage, disk ejection and failed ROM flash update.

DETAIL: Roland digital recorder models VS-840, VS-840EX and VS-840GX are rendered inoperable by an unexpected power outage, disk ejection prior to shut down, or a failed ROM BIOS flash update. The LED of an inoperable recorder reads either BAD FLASH, CAN'T VERSION-UP or DON'T MATCH CPU. Roland requires these units to be sent to an authorized Service Center where owners report paying up to $150 for repair.

For perspective, imagine sending your PC to Microsoft or IBM for repair whenever a power failure or ejecting a floppy disk caused the BIOS to become corrupt?

Some VS-840 owners report watching the service technician repair the inoperable machines by cycling a system level disk through the drive to re-flash the ROM. Understandably, these owners felt ripped off by the excessive cost to repair, for 5 minutes work, that didn’t require opening the unit.

Note that Roland is directly responsible for some flash update failures, because they previously offered the ZIP disk-based update files through RolandUS.com, but provided NO WARNING to the user community that a VS-840EX formatted ZIP 250 disk was NOT compatible with the Microsoft DOS/Windows file system used to write the update file to a VS-840EX formatted disk. Every user who attempted to flash their EX from 2.0x to 2.05 with a ZIP 250 disk made under Microsoft DOS/Windows, received a BAD FLASH and CAN'T VERSION-UP error.

RESOLUTION SOUGHT: Make the service level disk available to VS-840 owners at nominal cost (for media), or as a digital download on RolandUS.com, or fix the units for free at Roland US. This request is on behalf of the Roland VS-840 user community at VSPlanet.com. Many of us believe these failures are the fault of poor design quality. A power failure or disk ejection should NOT render a unit inoperable.

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#825249 - 02/12/09 08:04 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
BBB acknowledged the complaint this morning

 Quote:

February 11, 2009

Re: Complaint #98383965 - Roland Corp. U S

This is to let you know that we have sent your complaint to the company for a response, which is the first step in our complaint resolution procedure. We will notify you of the company's response as soon as we receive it, but please allow at least 14 days to hear from us. In the meantime, if the company should contact you directly, please let us know. You may do this online or by fax or mail, using the contact information on this letterhead. If you have any questions, please call us.

Thank you for using the Better Business Bureau.

p.s. Do you know if you just want to let others know about your good or bad experience and aren't seeking a specific result, you should join our TrustLink Community. You can write reviews, see what others have said, connect with friends, and check out BBB Reliability Reports. Visit http://www.trustlink.org and link up!

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#831545 - 02/26/09 09:16 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Received the following reply from RolandUS (RUS) late last night, Wednesday, February 25th:

 Quote:
Company's Response
Company's Initial Response - Posted 02/25/2009

The VS-840, VS-840EX and VS-840GX all use Zip disk drives to store data and also for updating the system (system is stored on a FLASH ROM chip). We are aware of a very sporadic problem that may occur when updating using a Zip disk, crashing the system and rendering the VS-840 inoperable. This can easily be fixed by our service center with a special update disk that re-writes the system correctly. On very rare occasion, the CPU is also affected when the crash occurs and this results in a bigger service problem that requires the CPU to be replaced. Because of this possibility, RUS has not (to this point) made this disk available to the public. The disk also has protection included on it that does not allow it to be duplicated (or uploaded to our website for later download). The best course of action in these cases would be for the customer to call Customer Service at 323 890-3700 and request a return authorization number (RA)-to send the unit to our service center in Los Angeles. If the RUS technicians determine the problem to be the one described above, RUS will complete the repair and return the unit at no charge (to the original buyer with proof of purchase — regardless of date). Ancillary repairs, including wear and tear (switches, drives, cleaning, etc) would be considered outside of the warranty responsibility of RUS and a repair estimate would be presented to the-customer before any work is done. The customer would also bear the cost of returning the, unit to RUS. Aside from the extension of the warranty period, this policy is consistent with normal RUS warranty practices and procedures. We have rarely had a call on this particular issue in Product Support (maybe once a year) and Service reports similar timing on this issue in their area. Therefore, Roland will not extend this offer to our outside service center network to address this issue, as the accrual of data and quality of repair will be crucial to Roland US. We hope this solution is agreeable to all parties.

Initial Response Summary

Roland will not extend this offer to our outside service center network to address this issue, as the accrual of data and quality of repair will be crucial to Roland US.


Per the BBB web site, I have 7 days to accept or rebut Roland's response above.

I'm hoping some of you will weigh in with your thoughts before I submit a response early next week. I figure our reply should be submitted no later than Tuesday evening, March 3rd.

There are a few things that come to mind for our rebuttal.

1) Since 840 users have always had the choice to use either RolandUS in L.A. or a local authorized Roland repair center, many of which quote outrageous repair prices, wherein the 840 owner decides simply to trash their 840, it's not accurate of Roland to say it's an infrequent problem. Rather, it should be said that it's the infrequent 840 owner who decides to spend the dough on the fix ... how many 840 owners are presented with a $150 estimate to fix their blown 840 at a local service center and opt not to repair because the 840 is going for <$100 on eBay? How many turn to VSPlanet for help, or the 840 forums on Yahoo? There is certainly more than 1 occurrence per year.

2) I'd like to ask Roland to publish a service bulletin or the like to the RolandUS web site under 840/ex/gx support sections about fixing the BAD FLASH/Can't Version Up/Don't Match CPU errors for original owners, at the RUS L.A. facility, for free (owner pay's shipping).

3) With the statement concerning "original buyer with proof of purchase — regardless of date", it appears 2nd hand owners will have to pay for the repair themselves. No problem for those of us who popped $1000 for the 840 new, but for the droves of eBay buyers who pick up a used 840 for chump change, they are at the mercy of Roland for repair costs. Accordingly, I'd like to ask Roland for a trouble shooting guide to assist with recovery before sending it to RolandUS in L.A. via return authorization number (RA).

4) As for making available the ZIP 100 service disk because of "protection included on it that does not allow it to be duplicated (or uploaded to our website for later download)", I'd like to ask Roland 1) for a copy of the disk and/or making an ISO type image of the disk that can be written by disk imaging / burning software. I've checked out a few such programs, freeware - perhaps one of these would work to transmit the disk image and create a service disk.

Are there any other ideas / comments?

Jack

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#831735 - 02/26/09 03:57 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Philph Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 02/10/09
Posts: 46
Hi Jack as they are responsible why should we have to pay postage and or repair, whether it is second hand or we have lost our receipt. I am new but you have a point below I quote you:-

[/quote]
I considered mentioning the fact that Roland US is directly responsible for some of these flash update failures, because they previously offered the ZIP disk-based update files, but provided NO WARNING to the user community that a VS-840EX formatted ZIP 250 disk was NOT compatible with Microsoft Windows used to write the update file to the VS-840EX formatted disk. Every user who attempted to flash their EX from 2.0x to 2.05 with a ZIP 250 disk made under MS Windows, received a BAD FLASH and CAN'T VERSION-UP error.

If I can figure out a non-threatening way of stating that, I'll include it in the letter.
[/quote]
Keep up the good work, I wish I could understand it all, hopefully i won't have to, not sure i want to risk an update. Is how Roland want to be seen as I am not convinced it is a sign of good customer relations.

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#831888 - 02/26/09 06:34 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Philph]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Yeah, I agree, Phil, but Roland did the typical business thing on that ... Jim Y reported the problem to Roland some years ago and Roland responded by simply deleting the ZIP-based v2.0x flash updates from their web site, leaving only the MIDI file updates on their site.

I believe they should have offered to fix blown VS-840EX's for free, but they didn't.

Some of us still had the v2.05 ZIP file update and so I put it on my web site, AFTER I revised the TXT file in the archive with a warning about using ZIP 250 disks and recommended using a ZIP 100 disk only.

I'm not certain, but I think Roland US can only make/honor this policy change for US owners. A change to the European Roland franchises (?) can only come from them or as directed by Roland in Japan, I suspect.

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#832810 - 03/01/09 12:23 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
I posted a 'rebuttal' to RolandUS' reply on the BBB web site:

 Quote:
Roland's offer to repair affected machines is appreciated. We ask Roland to consider the following.

In the past, owners chose between sending machines to Roland or taking them for repair locally. Upon receiving a phone quote, some owners discard their machines because the cost to repair exceeds re-sale value. Few owners will spend $150 for repair, which explains the low numbers seen by Roland. Instead, they turn to free help sources, such as VSPlanet.com forums, where failed 840's are reported more often than 'one per year'.

Accordingly, we request:

1)Please post a support bulletin on RolandUS.com with any information to help owners repair their machines, if such is possible, before calling for an RA. This also benefits 2nd hand owners not covered by the new policy.

2)Please post the repair policy on RolandUS.com.

3)Please consider sending 1 or more service disks to VSPlanet.com, with permission to attempt duplication, for free distribution to 840 owners on request. We have the hardware to effect duplication and experience with sector based disk imaging software.

Thank you for your consideration.

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#837392 - 03/11/09 02:00 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSLOVER Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 6

This is confusing and infuriating to me. You say you are familiar with sector based copying, but you on your own volition copied in M$ windows and screwed up your unit and that is somehow the manufacturer's problem?


Edited by VSLOVER (03/11/09 06:16 PM)

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#837402 - 03/11/09 02:25 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
 Originally Posted By: VSLOVER
This is confusing and infuriating to me. You say you are familiar with sector based copying, but you on your own volition copied in M$ windows and screwed up your unit and that is somehow the manufacturer's problem?


Yes, it is.

Roland put the ZIP disk based flash ROM update file on their web site, which when VS-840EX and GX owners downloaded and wrote to their ZIP 250 disks, PER ROLAND INSTRUCTIONS, then flashed their machines, corrupted the ROM BECAUSE the VS-840EX/GX ZIP 250 file system is NOT compatible with the MS Windows/DOS file system. It has to do with the block size Roland uses.

Roland continued distributing the update archive with instructions that didn't work, for some time, until one of our UK users brought it to Roland's attention, who then only deleted the update file(s) from their web site, leaving only the MIDI-based update files for users.

Did they offer to fix machines that were corrupted by users who used the files/instructions Roland provided?

Nope.

Instead, they've orphaned the VS-840/EX/GX line and owners and charge $150 to repair the "BAD FLASH/Don't Match CPU/Can't Version Up" errors, some of which are their fault and / or are the result of an apparently poorly designed OS that allows for corrupting the ROM-based OS by nothing more than an untimely disk ejection, power failure, or flash update that didn't take, even the ones done from a ZIP 100 disk, which IS Microsoft OS compatible.

VSLover, I'd recommend you search ALL the VS machine and BR machine archives, for any evidence of a similar flash ROM update problem in ANY of the other VS/BR line. The problem described is unique to the VS-840 line and we've been gouged by Roland for years.

A complaint to the BBB is most appropriate, the outcome of which I'm hopeful Roland will come clean to those of us who have and still use VS-840's.

And yes, I am familiar with Linux/DD, et al. It is however, not necessary to make a flash update disk on ZIP 100 media.

DD will however be required to duplicate the Roland Service Disk, with protection, IF they ever release it to the 840 user community.

Good luck with the 2480 - but do tell - how would you feel if you turned it off one evening, came in the next day and turned it on, only to see the LED flashing "BAD FLASH / Can't Version Up" ... are you under the impression that you should be able to turn your VS-2480 off and on without rendering it inoperable?

Jack

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#838609 - 03/13/09 11:26 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
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FOLLOW-UP

The BBB gave Roland 2 weeks to reply to the rebuttal (above). Sadly (though not surprisingly), Roland did not respond.

The BBB has administratively closed the complaint as 'Roland not responsive' and has dropped their BBB rating to an "F" grade.

See http://www.la.bbb.org/BusinessReport.aspx?CompanyID=55956

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#838693 - 03/14/09 08:42 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Philph Offline
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Registered: 02/10/09
Posts: 46
Ha ha, good work that must be such an embarrassment for Roland, wonder what it will do to their share price. All they needed to do was reply and the could have got a D or E.
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#844243 - 03/27/09 04:02 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSLOVER Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 6
?
Where does it say they got an F?

The BBB actually does something? Amazing!

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#844311 - 03/27/09 05:34 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Cornjerker Offline
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Their rating, as of my post above, was an "F". The summary of complaints at that time, listed a number of complaints that were NOT answered by Roland. It was a "C" or "C-" at the time I filed my complaint.

Now it's an "A-".

So, does that mean the BBB scrolls off the negative reviews of a company faster than the positive reviews, or, has someone jacked their rating?

OK - Just checked the response again, after the BBB administratively closed it a few weeks ago as "non responsive" with an "F" rating. Roland posted a new response just yesterday, and I received NO notice of their new reply from the BBB.

Roland's 'final' reply follows:

 Quote:
Company's Final Response
Company's Final Response - Posted 03/26/200

Roland states, via email; We started shipping VS-840 Digital Recorders in 10/97. At some point in time we made the update disk avail for the VS-840 to Roland authorized service centers. Which are independently owned & operated & contract with Roland to provide standard warranty repair. Because of long life of product, we reached a point where all units were out of warranty, thus we no longer paid service centers to perform warranty work on those units, as we do with any products once product is discontinued & past for warranty repairs. Some service centers might have been charging a fee to repair the VS-840 once they're out of warranty. Roland Service has never charged for the update. We have only one of the update disks at our service center in LA. It's possible that some of our authorized service centers around the U.S. also have this disk & they may still be charging for the update. These centers are independently owned & operated, & free to charge what they wish for any repair. Call Roland Customer Service & ask for an RA for the VS-840 update disk procedure. Send unit to Roland with noted RA & Roland will cover the cost of the update & ship back to our customer at our expense.


You'll notice that they did NOT address my questions at all. My request that they post notice to their web support page for the VS-840 or knowledge base, or providing a copy of the repair disk. Their answer talks about the "update" disk, not the "repair" disk for FLASH ROM corruption, which is the subject of the complaint. They have the disk; one is all they need to make copies, but by their reply, it's clear they won't.

Would that Roland's reply were more helpful, though I'm not surprised by this. It's typical of what I saw from subcontractors for 20+ years as a Quality Assurance investigator in the aerospace industry. It's evasive and demonstrates a lack of concern / commitment for owners and reluctance to engage an owner / user in good-faith dialogue to help the community.

As for you, VSLOVER - isn't it interesting how you showed up here and chastised me (then deleted your remarks), only AFTER I posted the complaint to the BBB in which I mentioned VSPlanet forums, and again the day after Roland posted another reply. You have 2 posts, both in this thread - both concurrent with Roland's replies on the BBB site.

So, you're a Roland employee, right?


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#844317 - 03/27/09 05:38 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Philph Offline
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Registered: 02/10/09
Posts: 46
They are suddenly an A- from an F. How did they do that within 3 weeks? Have they been replying to all your complaints or is it too large a company for the BBB?
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#844984 - 03/29/09 01:52 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Wish Administrator Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Cornjerker
As for you, VSLOVER - isn't it interesting how you showed up here and chastised me (then deleted your remarks), only AFTER I posted the complaint to the BBB in which I mentioned VSPlanet forums, and again the day after Roland posted another reply. You have 2 posts, both in this thread - both concurrent with Roland's replies on the BBB site.

So, you're a Roland employee, right?



I traced the IP address of VSLOVER and it came back with AT&T WorldNet Services ATT which is the internet provider I guess, and then ROLAND CORPORATION US ROLAND based out of Los Angeles for his specific IP address.

Here's a tip - Roland employees might not want to post from work if they wish to remain anonymous.

Good call Cornie!!! And pretty lame VSLOVER. VSLOVER, maybe you could help provide some support to resolve the situation instead of bashing people who are trying to help others to fix a problem with their VS units.

Wish
_________________________
Q: Is it good music?
A: I Wish Art

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#844997 - 03/29/09 02:26 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Wish]
Cornjerker Offline
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Thanks Wish. I thought something smelled funny.

It's one thing for the business unit of Roland to make a decision not to support an old piece of equipment, but quite another to actively seek out a user(s) who are trying to keep their machines going, to help the users Roland has abandoned, and chastise / harass them.

VSLOVER's original message (before he revised it) really unloaded on me about the BBB complaint and blamed ME and other VS-840 owners for causing the problem in the first place and then expressed indignation that we would suggest Roland should repair the problems he alleges we caused.

I can assure you, after witnessing the CONTEMPT Roland and its employees have for VS-840 owners, I will NEVER buy another Roland, BOSS, or Edirol product.

This is funny, just checked the Internic WHOIS for "RolandSUCKS.com" domain name, as well as .net and .org. Roland registered them all, about the time they released the VS-840. ;\) \:D


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#844998 - 03/29/09 02:32 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Wish Administrator Offline
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I never saw his orignal post before he edited it, but that kind of behavior is pretty much stalking IMO - to seek out VSPlanet and create a user ID with the only intent to harrass you. At least that's how it seems.

Maybe he will come back and try to help, but somehow I doubt it. I don't think VSLOVER is going to come back here and respond now that he has been outed.
_________________________
Q: Is it good music?
A: I Wish Art

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#845023 - 03/29/09 04:09 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Wish]
Cornjerker Offline
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Yeah, I should have quoted his original message in its entirety ... he claimed to be a business owner, hassling with an unreasonable customer about fixing something ... the part I quoted above, was the last paragraph in a several paragraph rant.

I didn't quote it all, because I was trying to be reasonable and polite in dealing with Roland and clearly, VSLOVER doesn't understand the problem ...

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#845317 - 03/30/09 03:54 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSLOVER Offline
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Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 6
hahahhahha! no i dont work for roland! hahahaha!

ill just go back to lurking. i dont want to be accused of shooting jfk next!
wow.

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#845325 - 03/30/09 04:27 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Wish Administrator Offline
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Yes, VSLOVER? I didn't get a chance to read your post from today before you edited/deleted it.

Do you have anything you want to contribute here?

Wish
_________________________
Q: Is it good music?
A: I Wish Art

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#845330 - 03/30/09 04:54 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Wish Administrator Offline
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 Originally Posted By: VSLOVER
hahaha i dont work for roland!! hahahaha i was just going to ask where i can pick up my paycheck if i work for roland, but decided against it.


It's funny how your IP address says it's from Roland in Los Angeles. I trust the IP address more than your word.
_________________________
Q: Is it good music?
A: I Wish Art

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#845336 - 03/30/09 05:03 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Wish Administrator Offline
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 Originally Posted By: VSLOVER
no i dont work there, or i wouldnt own an 840 to begin with!


So you own an 840? You have a 2480 listed in your "profile."

That seems a little odd.
_________________________
Q: Is it good music?
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#845341 - 03/30/09 05:26 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Wish]
Cornjerker Offline
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VSLover's original message (dtd 3/11/2009 @ 1:00PM), which he revised (by deleting about 90% of it) AFTER I posted my reply above (dtd 3/11/2009 @ 1:25PM), claimed he owned a 2480, and if I recall correctly, disparaged 840 owners suggesting we should buy a 2480.

The suggestion makes perfect sense to me. Sell our $1200 (original) VS-840's (now worth $100), that have been ABANDONED BY ROLAND, to spend $4500 (original) on a VS-2480 (now worth $1500 +/-), ALSO ABANDONED BY ROLAND.

Yup. VSLoser is the smart one. Though I must admit, I'm jealous that he can turn his machine on and off without corrupting the ROM/OS.

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#845347 - 03/30/09 05:30 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Wish]
VSLOVER Offline
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Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 6
the 2480 is my main machine now. i originally signed up because i wanted to add a cf to my 840 but it looks too dangerous and expensive.

want to buy my 840? works! 100mb zip \:\(

believe whatever man. im sorry i started a flame and sorry to confuse anyone. just askin questions...

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#845358 - 03/30/09 05:46 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Wish Administrator Offline
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See ya around Roland guy, now posting from his mobile phone instead of Roland IP.
_________________________
Q: Is it good music?
A: I Wish Art

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#845359 - 03/30/09 05:49 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Philph Offline
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Registered: 02/10/09
Posts: 46
Easy to do the upgrade on the 840, just get all the facts right first and remember you will get no help from Roland.
However you will get very good help from this vsplanet site. I have only just recently upgraded my 840, I will probably upgrade to a bigger machine, when needed at some point but it is unlikely to be a Roland, mainly because of their bad customer service.

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#845360 - 03/30/09 05:51 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
VSLOVER Offline
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Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 6
i too am disappointed theyve killed the vs line. i cross my fingers every namm, but all theyve done is that cubase mixer thing.

this whole thread is now ot. i hate being the guy that did it too. believe it or not im on your side.

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#845400 - 03/30/09 07:19 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Cornjerker Offline
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Every thread goes OT.

Post some tunes. My stuff is at http://www.soundclick.com/jackhelser and http://www.soundclick.com/vjamband

Jack

PS - info on the CF / SD drive upgrade for the VS-840 can be found at http://vs840.vjam.net/vs840cf_install_revH.pdf



Edited by Cornjerker (03/30/09 07:25 PM)
Edit Reason: Added PS

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#845403 - 03/30/09 07:29 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSLOVER Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 6
ok...i will!
be warned...its "heavy"! now where and how to post free streams? whats recommended?

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#845405 - 03/30/09 07:40 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
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Some of the guys who collaborate online here, use http://www.yousendit.com/ to park files for downloading, in MP3 (128K/16bit/44.1kHz) format. Never used it, but I imagine you just send the file to yourself, then share the link.
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#851541 - 04/17/09 09:53 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
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Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
Another success upgrading a VS-840 version 1.02 to the VS840-EX.

Discovered a couple things... I also changed out the sliders in this unit (I have several now from Ebay purchases).

I discovered that the 1.05 version up needs to be done with the MIDI to get consistent results.

After the 1.05 version up was done, I tried several times without success to have the 2.05 file read from a zip disk and do the version up.

The procedure I found to finally WORK is this: First format the 100 zip disk in the VS-840. THEN on a PC delete ALL the files from this zip disk. THEN copy ONLY the $SYSPRO2.VS1 file from the site given by Cornjerker. Place the resulting disk in the VS-840 that has 1.05 in it and it seems to upgrade consistently.

My problem was not deleting the several files that the VS-840 placed on the disk when formating before copying the $SYSPRO2.VS1 file to the disk.

I suspect that one must use a freshly prepared zip disk for each upgrade attempt.

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#851604 - 04/18/09 07:57 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSfredy]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
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Loc: CornvILLe
VSFredy - that's strange about the ZIP disk with v2.05 not working - you're fortunate that the first attempt didn't frag your OS ROM with a "BAD FLASH" which is not always recoverable by users.

Note that once a disk has been used to flash update a VS-840, the VS-840 writes a marker file to the disk that prevents it from being used again. I suspect that has to do with using a standard VS-840 formatted disk with a song on it, otherwise the VS-840 would always default to updating the ROM thereby rendering the song inaccessible.

In deleting all the files but $SYSPRO2.VS1 from the disk, you may have deleted the 'marker file' which allowed it to work (if you tried it before and it didn't work, but wrote the marker file to the disk?)

It's been years, but when we were exploring what made the 840 tick, a few of us poked around the ZIP disks with a sector editor to examine the boot track, which is nothing special - a string of zeroes as I recall.

Seems like a few of our odd ball tests demonstrated your experience - taking a PC formatted ZIP disk and then dropping all the VS-840 files on the disk, the VS-840 wouldn't recognize it so clearly there's something in that boot track the machine recognizes (or not). Also deleted some of the files and folders and logged the results somewhere in the archives ...

One of the things we discovered by accident (copying a VS-840 disk too the root of the C: drive), the BR8 to WAV Converter program will see the files in the SONG0000.VS1 folder and convert them just as if your C: drive were a ZIP disk. So as far as the BR8 to WAV Converter software is concerned, the boot track is irrelevant. At one time I had all my songs on C: for accessibility - all that was required was to make a SONGLIST file with as many entries as there were SONG000x.VS1 folders ... (just hit the EZ MENU and create as many NEW SONGS as you need, in the same sample rate as the original, then put that SONGLIST file on your hard drive) ...

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#851640 - 04/18/09 10:08 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
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Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
I have had to recover one by MIDI of 1.02 then 1.05, then ZIP 100 pf the 2.05. I have never tried to use a 250 disk for the upgrade which they have warnings about. I am not sure if MIDI will restore that.

Yes, in the song file placed during the format by the VS-840 was a file named "marker".

By cleaning the disk of any "files" left by the formating I think that is the best plan before copying the version up file.

I have two VS-840 that I have converted to EX now and another coming from eBay.. Also have an 840GX. Have an 880 coming from eBay.

Do you know any sources for the SCSI cable for inside the unit?

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#851675 - 04/18/09 11:15 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSfredy]
Cornjerker Offline
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SCSI adapters are rare as hens teeth. Maybe see 1-2 per year come up on eBay. In the past, most haven't made it to the end of the auction, so I guess people are making private deals with the seller rather than risk loss to auction.

Honestly, SCSI is of little value if you convert to a flash media adapter - mine is Compact Flash, though I have a Syba SD adapter and would install it permanently if I had a back plate to mount the thing. See http://vs840.vjam.net/vs840cf_install_revH.pdf

About the ONLY time SCSI comes in handy, is when someone sends me music on a ZIP 250 disk and I have to get it off the disk to the CF as the PC will only grunge a ZIP 250 disk formatted by an 840EX ...

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#851746 - 04/18/09 01:52 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
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Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
I got several of the ACS IDE to CF adapters down at RE-PE in Tukwila for $4 each... haven't tried them yet. I understand that the VS-840's are fussy about what CF cards are used...
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#851773 - 04/18/09 03:08 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSfredy]
Cornjerker Offline
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 Originally Posted By: VSfredy
I got several of the ACS IDE to CF adapters down at RE-PE in Tukwila for $4 each... haven't tried them yet.



Seems funny they're in a Tukwila outlet, when ACS is in Sarasota (IIRC)

 Quote:
I understand that the VS-840's are fussy about what CF cards are used...


They are that ... when I found a couple 512 cards that worked, I bought a bunch. If they ever stop working, I'll switch to the SD adapter and just leave the thing flapping in the wind ...

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#851866 - 04/18/09 09:12 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
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Registered: 04/14/09
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Loc: Washington, USA
The Tukwila RE-PC store is a computer SALVAGE company. They had a whole box of them removed from equipment... most are gone now...
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#852556 - 04/21/09 08:37 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSfredy]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
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This morning, I filed the following with the L.A. BBB, by email:

 Quote:
RE: Complaint ID: 98383965 filed 2/11/2009 and closed 3/26/2009

When I filed the complaint against Roland Corp. U S, of 5100 South Eastern Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90040 (Phone: (323) 890-3700), the BBB info on the company had at least 3 unresolved complaints and the company had a "C-" grade, if I recall correctly.

Following Roland's initial response on 02/25/2009, I submitted a rebuttal on 02/28/2009 because their reply was deceptive concerning the frequency of problem occurrence and failed to adequately address the fatal operating system design flaw owners and users of their VS-840 series of digital audio recorders have suffered with for years. Specifically, on behalf of VS-840 owners, I made 3 simple requests in the rebuttal 1) post a service bulletin on their web site, 2) post the repair committment information on their web site, 3) provide a copy of the repair disk to the user community to enable users to repair their own machines. Roland failed to respond by the 2 week due date established by the L.A. BBB, so the complaint was administratively closed as non-responsive and Roland's grade was dropped to an "F".

Approximately 2 weeks after the due date established by the BBB, Roland on 3/26/2009 sent an email to the BBB, which failed to answer any of the questions and requests put to Roland in the rebuttal. Their reply did nothing for owners and users of the VS-840, whose machines have failed from nothing more than turning the unit off, ejecting a disk, or experiencing a bad flash ROM update. Note that I didn't receive notice of their new reply until several days later, when the complaint was closed and Roland's grade had ZOOMED from an "F" to an "A-" and the record of unresolved complaints had been changed to "0".

You should also be aware of other despicable action on Roland's part. The VSPlanet.com user support forums for Roland VS recorders has rarely had any assistance from Roland. All help at VSPlanet.com is volunteer, from owners and users of Roland recorders - we are a 'user to user' support type group. On March 11th, someone at the Roland corportate office, whose computer IP address was traced by a VSPLanet forum moderator, created an account under the handle "VSLOVER" and posted a message chastising and attempting to discredit me for filing complaint with the L.A. BBB. I posted a courteous reply to the message from "VSLOVER" who then revised their original message and deleted the inflammatory statements. Typical of trollish behavior often seen on forums, "VSLOVER" did not follow up on my reply and then on 3/27/2009 "VSLOVER" logged in again to post another message to chide us about the change of Roland's grade from an "F" to an "A-". You can see the discussion thread here:

http://www.vsplanet.com/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=837392#Post837392

Aside from tracing VSLOVER's IP address to the Roland corporate office, the dates of VSLOVER's replies on the VSPlanet.com forums coincide with the responses from Roland to the BBB complaint and "VSLOVER" has only posted messages in the discussion thread for the BBB complaint against Roland.

The consensus of VS-840 users and owners I know is this: Roland has a disk that would fix this problem. Roland admitted as much in their reply. Disks can be copied. Disks can be mailed, or the software thereon can be archived and transmitted electronically for disk creation by users who download the archive. Roland claimed the disk was copy protected. Disks can be unprotected. Someone wrote the original program to repair the unit, the software program that repairs the problem cited in the complaint, resides somewhere in Roland's software program vault. All it takes is a little effort and good will from Roland to make a new disk, or an archive and provide it to users who suffer from the problem cited in the complaint. Since Roland is NOT charging for the repair of machines still owned by the original owners with proof of purchase, it should be NO issue to provide a copy of the repair disk or electronic image for ALL users, whether original or 2nd hand owner.

Roland's response and subsequent trollish behavior on VSPLanet.com forums by the user VSLOVER, is contemptuous toward VS-840 owners. Accordingly, I believe Roland deserves an "F" grade, not an "A-". Their 2nd reply was 2 weeks late, it does not satisfy the complaint, nor answer the questions in the rebuttal, so at the very least, Roland's grade should NOT go up beyond the C- they had when I filed the original complaint. Or does a 1 reply, regardless of acceptability, wipe out all negative history with the BBB?

Thank you for ongoing attention to this matter.

Jack Helser, etc., etc.

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#852785 - 04/21/09 07:22 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
dhart Offline
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Registered: 12/19/01
Posts: 569
Loc: albany, ny
Gee, it really gives you faith that the system works. I have not expected much from Roland because although it wouldn't cost them much they already have our money - why waste any time or money on us? But I thought the BBB would deal with this in a more honorable fashion.

It's a shame, seems much more efficient to keep a customer than to tick off him and his friends. But then I never went to business school.

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#852847 - 04/21/09 10:51 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
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Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
I noticed this year old post and it occured to me that the 1.44 disk they sent you might be meant to be played in one of their floppy MIDI players, hence proprietary formatting and not Windows compatible... just an idea...
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#852853 - 04/21/09 11:18 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSfredy]
Cornjerker Offline
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Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Hey VSfredy, yeah, they sent me a 1.44Mb floppy disk, rather than the ZIP 100 disk p/n specified in the user manual that I ordered. The disk has apparently gone into "substitution" ... the floppy was no good in any of the 4 PCs I have here ... the Standard Midi File player Roland uses, is Windows PC based and is available for free download from the Roland web site.

The subject of the BBB complaint, is the "Can't Version Up / Don't Match CPU / Bad Flash" error that we often see around here. At least Roland was forthcoming with the admission that it is NOT user recoverable and requires a trip to the service center, to be cycled with the closely guarded special Roland Service-Only ZIP disk, which force-flashes the ROM with v1.05, I suspect.

Once in a while, the ROM OS of a VS-840 has enough left in it to respond to a MIDI SYS-EX update - which takes 8 SMF files played through their SMF player. In fact, it happened to me with my 2nd VS-840 and I lucked out to recover it via MIDI. Others aren't so lucky as the BAD FLASH is *really* bad and completely frags the VS-840.

It isn't something we've been eager to troubleshoot / replicate since it potentially trashes the machine, and where Roland authorized dealers have been gouging owners up to $150 to douche the machines with the 'special' disk.

If you search on any one of the 3 bold terms above, you'll see there's a long history of mystery and frustration with that error and more than a few users have junked their 840 (present value $75) rather than spend $150 to have them repaired.

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#853140 - 04/22/09 04:59 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Here is the email response from the worthless BBB of L.A.:

 Quote:
Jack,

We have received your recent correspondence regarding your complaint. Unfortunately, your complaint has already been pursued to the fullest extent possible through our system. We will note in our files that you are not satisfied and that the complaint is unresolved. If you are still not satisfied with the outcome, your next step would be to take legal action against the company. You may also contact your State Attorney General’s Office and/or the Federal Trade Commission at: (877) 382-4357 for further assistance. Please keep in mind that your complaint will stay on the company’s record and be reported for the next 3 years.

The rating the Better Business Bureau assigns a business is determined by our composite score of such factors as its type of business, length of time in business, compliance with competency licensing requirements, complaint volume, complaint history, seriousness of complaints, how the company responds to complaints, whether or not a company has committed to our standards, and our experience with the company's industry in general. The scoring system takes into account the importance we feel each factor is to the company’s reliability.

Thank you,

Elizabeth Barroso | Customer Service Representative

Better Business Bureau of the Southland

315 North La Cadena, CA 92324

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#853147 - 04/22/09 05:13 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
And here's the email I just sent back to them (like it'll do any good - surely the 'clerk' at the BBB is the expert...)

 Quote:
Thanks for your reply, Elizabeth, and I appreciate you making note in the files that I am not satisfied with Roland's response to my complaint.

However, I am at a complete loss to understand how Roland went from a C- with several unresolved complaints BEFORE I filed my complaint, to an A with no unresolved complaints when I and the user community I represent, found their response unsatisfactory?

Could you tell me please, did you reopen all those old complaints and Roland provided satisfactory responses to all thee customers they've ignored in the past?

My professional background is in Quality Assurance Analysis in the aerospace industry (Boeing) and my experience with quality trend data causes me to suspect someone at the BBB has entered incorrect data or erased historical data from your grading system, that caused Roland to jump from a C- to an A- with multiple unresolved complaints. Certainly, a credible quality rating system would have caused Roland's grade to go down with an increase in unresolved complaints, not up.

Thanks for your continued attention to this matter.

Jack Helser

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#853885 - 04/24/09 11:44 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
OK - heard from Elizabeth at the South L.A. BBB last evening. She writes:

 Quote:
Jack,

It is unfortunate that the outcome to your complaint did not come to a satisfactory closure on your part. We do the very best we can but we can not predict or guarantee the outcome to a complaint whether or not the company happens to be a member or not.

As you’ve recognized we take a company’s response at face value. We also do the same when we accept a complaint. We’re not a party to the transaction and we are not present during any of the relevant issues nor are we during any settlement.

I apologize if you believe we could have done more to be sure that the business performed, but frankly – it isn’t possible. Your complaint against this company will stay on file for 36 months. You may wish to pursue with your State or Government agencies.

Respectfully,

Elizabeth Barroso | Customer Service Representative
Better Business Bureau of the Southland
315 North La Cadena, CA 92324



And here is the reply I sent back to Elizabeth this morning:

 Quote:
Greetings again, Elizabeth.

I guess I wasn't clear enough in my last email.

My question has to do with Roland's grade.

At the time I filed my complaint, Roland had a "C-" with 4 unresolved complaints, as best I can recall.

I filed my complaint and rejected their answer as unsatisfactory. Their 2nd reply was 2 weeks late and still did not provide a satisfactory solution.

That SHOULD have increased their unresolved complaints by 1 and lowered their grade, one would think.

So, WHY does the number of unresolved complaints for Roland now say 0 (ZERO) and WHY was Roland's grade changed to an "A-"?

That's the question I want answered. Roland's complaint record and grade is IN ERROR.

Thanks for answering my question.



Maybe I'll file a few more complaints against Roland to bring them up to a SOLID "A" from an "A-".

Seriously, IF they aren't forthcoming with a reasonable explanation for erasing Roland's record and increasing their grade to an "A-", I'm going to drop a line to the National BBB office to complain about the South L.A. BBB office - as it appears they are either 1) the "Bureau of Bungling Buffoonery", or 2) on the take. Certainly, their credibility is shot to hell with this example of ineptitude.

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#854030 - 04/24/09 06:53 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
Maybe I can find one of the trashed ones to experiment and see if I can fix it. That 1.44 floppy probably plays in one of their proprietary players. Look carefully as some of those proprietary disks actually were 720Kb as well... When I say "player" I mean a special hardware player, not their SW MIDI player.

I just got another VS-840 that was very clean but version 1.01 firmware. I had no trouble updating it to 2.05 by MIDI to 1.05 and then a zip 100 disk with the $syspro2.vs1 file on it. It was important to first physical format the zip in the VS-840. Then delete all files as seen by windows on the PC. Next copy the $syspro2.vs1 file to the disk. Next insert the disk while VS-840 is off and turn on. After it reads the disk and ejects press "yes" to the version up question.

AFTER this has been done, reading the zip disk on the PC will find a file has been added by the VS-840. It is $USERIDV.S1.
THIS FILE CANNOT be deleted by windows due to some protection so to do another update, one has to again physically format the disk in a VS-840, delete the files resulting from that, then copy the lone file $syspro2.vs1 to the disk.



Edited by VSfredy (04/24/09 06:56 PM)

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#854037 - 04/24/09 07:08 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
There is a very simple answer why the BBB is doing what it did.

The BBB is near useless as they are so afraid of lawsuits they cave in to any company with clout.

I called them about a financial company once and they would not say anything other than the had "reports".

The best way to resolve this problem is to find out the procedure being used and reverse engineer what it takes to repair these units.

I noticed that in the VS-880 I just got and replaced sliders in they have a slide switch to enable ROM or FLASH... and the unit was set to FLASH... I suspect one uses the ROM setting to recover if needed.

I have wound up with three VS-840's all converted to EX's and a GX and an VS-880 now. I thought one of the ones on eBay was a fraud and would not deliver but it came through, so wound up with one more.

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#854070 - 04/24/09 08:50 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSfredy]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
So, what are you gonna do with all them recorders, anyway? Planning to individually mic the Seattle symphony there? ;\)

BTW - they can be ganged with MIDI - somewhere in the archives I described the gang setup I used with 2 VS-840's ... it was not my plan to buy a 2nd one, but a friend of mine crashed my place for a week and conned me into recording a CD for him - funny how it blossomed from 1 or 2 songs to 10, some with a dozen tracks ... so I bought the 2nd one, grouped the tracks on separate units according to the FX I planned to use in mixdown, ganged them, and mixed down to a PC. Worked fine, then I traded one of the 840's for an 880 which I gave away to a student-friend who formed a band ...

The 880 so discouraged him, the band broke up, he gave up music, and went to work for a grocery store.

Jack

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#854077 - 04/24/09 09:04 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
I printed the manual for the 880 and I can see why it would discourage some. There is so much capability in all of these that it can be hard to understand. My electronics background helps a lot. I just updated the VS-880 to the 3.205 version via MIDI. Yes, planning on ganging them.
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#854819 - 04/27/09 01:45 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
Here is the final reply from the BBB:

 Quote:
Jack, I am sorry that you were very dissatisfied with our services.

However, the BBB is not a government entity or enforcement agency. We are a private, non-profit organization that provides third-party mediation and reporting services. We serve to facilitate a dialogue between the consumer and company, which is based upon voluntary participation and is documented through written correspondence. Although we do our best to assist both parties in resolving the matter, we cannot force an outcome nor do we make a decision on the matter other than ascertaining for our reports whether or not the company has properly addressed the allegations of the complaint. This service is offered free of charge to consumers as a vehicle for potential complaint resolution and an alternative to expensive legal proceedings.

Thank you and no further correspondence will be provided,

Elizabeth Barroso | Customer Service Representative
Better Business Bureau of the Southland
315 North La Cadena, CA 92324



THREE TIMES I asked them to explain Roland's grade and THREE TIMES they evaded the question.

There is no longer any doubt in my mind, that the BBB is ON THE TAKE, for having brought to their attention the facts concerning Roland's grade IMPROVEMENT with yet ANOTHER unresolved complaint and the ZEROING of all unresolved complaints against them, the BBB SHOULD have corrected it. Since they didn't, there can be little doubt about who butters their bread.


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#854886 - 04/27/09 04:16 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: Cornjerker]
VSfredy Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 04/14/09
Posts: 49
Loc: Washington, USA
Yes, the BBB is useless... I get calls all the time wanting me to join (pay a fee of course). I can't imagine they are not-for-profit. They are on the take for sure...

We will have to solve the bad flash problem ourselves. I am looking around to find a trashed unit to experiment with.

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#921038 - 11/15/09 04:21 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
aliensporebomb Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 02/18/01
Posts: 4
Loc: Minneapolis, MN USA
Another thought: make friends with your friendly neighborhood repair service bureau person and see if you can make a copy of said disc or at least get the part number so it might be available from Roland.
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#925830 - 12/01/09 08:54 AM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: aliensporebomb]
Cornjerker Offline
Planeteer


Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 5597
Loc: CornvILLe
For the record, I have the service manual where the part number of that disk is listed and called Roland to order the disk. What they sent me was a floppy disk with the standard midi files on it.

Roland, in the response to my complaints to the BBB, said their shop has 1 disk, it's not sent to dealers / local repair agents any more. Other than Graham P who is in the UK and found a local guy to have it repaired with that disk, I have not heard of another shop with the disk.

My intent is to use the 840 until it dies and then move onto something else. It is, after all, 10 years old.

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#1210552 - 04/14/13 02:28 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
merald Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 04/14/13
Posts: 3
Do anyone have a diskimage (ie. for dd or something) for a working "system data zip disk"? Is stuck after clearing rom in compelling option. Tried to update from 1.02 to 1.05 via zip100-disk. Just say first "BAD FLASH!!!" and then "Can't version up".

Have made disks with 1.02, 1.05 and 2.x My goal is to run a compact flash reader i've installed.

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#1212300 - 04/22/13 02:14 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: merald]
merald Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 04/14/13
Posts: 3
I went for "Compelling version up", but get just "Can't versionUp!" message. Tried to make zip disk with the file for 1.02 version and 1.05 version and 2.05 version EX.

It start up with message "Bad flash!!", accessing zipdisk like it looking for some file while showing new message that is show so short time I cant catch what it says, and then going to "Can't VersionUp!" dialogue again.

So it appear to don't find what it expect on the zip disk. Is System data disk the same as System update disk?

Please help me what to do or tell me what disk I should try to get from Roland support team. My only vs-840 formatted zip disk broke now, how do i make a new one without vs-840? I know its fat16 12bit, but what label, extra files?

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#1431325 - 11/18/15 01:00 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: VSLOVER]
S20MAN Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 11/18/15
Posts: 1
Loc: Hungary
Hello everyone! Please help me! I have cleared the flash rom. Roland VS-840. At startup, the BAD FLASH is displayed. I have two vs840 formatted disks. Please send me service system disk file! How to restore the system? Please write it down!

VS-840/VS-840S
SYSTEM ZIP DISK
(for Service)
Version 1.02
P/N 17048691

Thanks!

S20MAN

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#1467546 - 05/14/16 02:11 PM Re: Recovering from CAN'T VERSION UP and DON'T MATCH CPU [Re: S20MAN]
Skippy72 Offline
Space Cadet


Registered: 05/01/16
Posts: 10
Have you been able to recover since?
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