Sync3 Udate Fails Due to Error in .xml File

Screens are basically interchangable… If you mantain the size, you can use the same screen for “any” APIM… Those are plug and play, no configuration is required…

What’s really odd about your case is that based on your comments, the unit got a black screen while on 3.4, 3.3 was installed and 3.4 tried to reboot so that 3.3 would start… But 3.3 never started… If that’s the case, this is not a MY20 screen issue… Why?, because MY20 issues arise when reformatting MY20 hardware, being that either the APIM or SCREEN.

This is because the reformat tool used by Syn3updater has been leaked in the past from Ford, but it cannot handle MY20 hardware (lacks of drivers for MY20 screens, different type of eMMC on the APIM and such things)…

So, you see, if you never got to the point where the reformat package was installed, then MY20 is “out of the window”… That’s why I was insisting to confirm at which point you got the black screen…

Making things simpler, from the steps I linked before:

  1. Sync3 3.3 is being installed
  2. Installation is finished, and while on 3.4 it will reboot into 3.3
  3. The APIM starts on 3.3 and continues reading the installation USB, which tells the unit to install the reformat package.
  4. The reformat package is installed and once again, it’s telling you it will reboot.

So, if you never got to 3, then I’m not sure what’s going on, but does not seem MY20 related, since you never got to even installing the reformat package.

It could however be related to ASBUILT configuration incompatible with 3.3 that’s preventing the APIM from booting, that’s why I suggested changing the THEME values since it may be related to that… But you did that, and did not work either…

About the unit being in the current state, that’s expected for a MY20 reformat scenario: USB ports briefly light up, then nothing… no bluetooth, nothing… I would expect a THEME configuration issue not “kill” the unit like that, to be honest…

So it’s a bit of a mystery…

No, the MY20 thing is at a hardware level, not software.

The screen is just a monitor, you can’t access or modify that via software… I was talking about the APIM… if the process somehow got broken because the screen is MY20 (but the APIM is not), if the reformat package is active it would not work because it lacks the drivers needed to use a MY20 screen as a display… Using a not-MY20 screen on your current “dead” APIM would fix the issue… But as I said before, based on your comments you didn’t even get to the reformat phase…

It should work, as long as the APIM works. Screen is like I said, just a monitor that reflects whatever you connect to it.

No, not really, no. Screens are “dummy”…

Another thing to consider is that your APIM being so old, didn’t like the upgrade… but yeah, G series APIM are really old, but a simple autoinstall should not had killed it… But again, everything works until it does not, right?..

Finally, since you are NA based, we have a forum member that knows about this stuff, he repairs and also sells components… So once all your cards are played before spending some money on it, you may consider contacting him… His site is and this is his profile here .
We are not affiliated with him, but he’s been around quite a bit.

Thank you SaNdMaN for your thoughtful, complete, and helpful reply. You and Scott have really gone “above and beyond” trying to help me and I honestly appreciate this. I’ll go ahead and get the new APIM and let you know how it works out. And, I’ll contact the other forum member if all else fails.

I never got the Nav on this unit to track my movements properly, although it WOULD finally sync with my stopped position once I quit moving. And, I’ve tried three different antennas including one recommended here. As I said, there’s a DTC that says something like “open circuit” which sounds to me like a fault in the APIM. I really like the installed nav better than either Google Maps or Waze, so maybe a new APIM will give me that too.

Thanks again!

  • Jack

Well, I reinstalled the fuse. I’ll NEVER take it out again! What an impossible location to get to and service!

Sadly though, the hard reboot after all power was off for over 24 hours did not fix my problem I also tried the “Push volume control knob and right seek for 5 seconds” trick, but that didn’t work either.

So, now I’m waiting for a new APIM, and will see if that gives me Sync3 back.

  • Jack

Bummer. Please remember to take a picture of the id tag on the screen when you replace the APIM and share it with us.

Oh, OK. I hadn’t thought of doing that. I’ll take a picture of the old and new APIMs and, the screen model ID too.

  • Jack
1 Like

Well, I got motivated and took the old Sync3 unit out of my truck today. The process seemed easier for some reason this time.

The first picture is of the back of the screen. There is NOTHING there to tell us what date it was manufactured or what model it is. There’s nothing on the edges of the screen case either.

The second two, are, of course the labels on the APIM both screenside and outside. Interestingly, neither shows the Part Number that Forscan showed. But the manufacturing date is Jun 2019.

Now, this may or may not be significant, but: When I ordered this unit, it originally came with a Sync4 screen, that was supposed to work with Sync3 but it was “better”. Unfortunately, it could not be mounted in my truck (the mounting system was completely different) and so I was sent a replacement screen that would fit (at no cost) and this is the one I’m showing here.

Possibly, there’s something inside the case of the screen that tells us something (on the circuit board), but I’m reluctant to try to pry that thing apart.

  • Jack

Thank you for the picture. It all makes sense now: that’s a counterfeit / fake / clone APIM… And that’s why it died…

So, you are going to need a new APIM after all…

1 Like

Interesting! So even though the case is stamped FOMOCO, it’s a clone? And both labels look genuine too.

How can I tell if the new one is fake?

  • Jack

I do not want to discuss this publicly, just in case they are watching… I do not want to tell them how to produce better fakes… but there are 5+ things wrong with that sticker… :wink:
And also, the casing has some things to tell as well…


CL-MJ35N2GLC is the part number for a 2016 Edge.
Strongly doubt it was made in 2019, does this thing have 1 usb port or two?
It should look like a G or H series.

Warlock, it has two USB ports, one black and one grey.

  • Jack

What you more than likely have is a third party refurbished unit.
The calibration showing above is from a 2017 (HB5T) and the tag in Chinese confirms either a China refurb or a fake (you can buy new & used castings there as well as units shipped there to be scrapped).

Warlock, when you say: “tag in Chinese” are you referring to the tiny tag on the back of the screen? If so, I’m guessing that is a potential source of problems too?

  • Jack

This has all been quite an education - is there a “reputable” place from which to buy hardware?

  • Jack

I would look at some of the salvage yards on eBay where you can you can see the actual part number, you can take that and match it against the APIM database to make sure you get a NAV unit.
eBay seller that seems to have a good rep would be one called “SimplyMichigan” alternatively NaviUpgrade frequents this site and also supports it.

You’ll want to backup the current APIM AsBuilt using ForScan so that you can drop it into the “new” one and not go through trying to get things working since this was originally an MFT to Sync3 upgrade.

Thanks, warlock - I’ve bookmarked both their sites. And, I have the backup of the current AsBuilt so, I can use it if necessary.

  • Jack

All right! I’ve received the new Sync3 APIM from Amazon. In my new “educated” way of looking at things, I’m sure it’s a Chinese knockoff too, but they did a better job with this one. First, it was shipped from China (that’s kinda a giveaway, isn’t it?) Second, it shows an assembly date of Nov 2019, but the case design is pre-2018. And third, there are two tiny stickers over the two middle rear screws that look to be Chinese (I think it voids the warranty if they are removed.) I’m enclosing a picture of the unit here.

However, they did a MUCH better job with the sticker - to me, it looks genuine. I think the part number represents a unit that is 2019+, it says “Assembled in Mexico” and there is a Ford logo. All of these could be spoofed of course. But still, it was packaged very well, was sent International UPS and it arrived very quickly. My VIN number was stamped on a label affixed to the internal padding too.

So, I think there’s some care in the creation of this unit and most importantly, it WORKS! Everything works, including the Navigation tracking. So, unless I suddenly think it will fail soon, I’ll probably keep it. Not ALL Chinese made electronics are bad. Think - most of the solar power hardware and LiFePO4 batteries. And, other electronic devices we use every day come from China too.

Hope I’m not being naive; you are all welcome to share your thoughts on this and I’ll pay attention!

  • Jack

If it works for you great! I personally agree that it is a knock off for a couple reasons I will not disclose.

Well, there’s a reason I said this before:

I’m sure you didn’t pay your current new APIM what Naviupgrade charges, but then you didn’t get a proper APIM either, so it makes sense, right?. You can’t go wrong with Naviupgrade, he does not sell knockouts…

As said before, if it works, it works…
But if it’s cheaper, it’s cheaper for a reason…

1 Like

The OP needs to understand how the electronics industry works in China.
While some items are made in full blown ISO factories (like say an iPhone by Foxconn), repairs/refurbs/knock offs are done by little mom/pop operations some of which are literally just mom/pop & the kids in a room of an apt. When units are made at the factory, the components are glued to the board and then the assembly is run through a solder bath, it’s not somebody sitting at a bench with a soldering iron in his hand. The original failed unit shows that it came from a larger operation due to the QA sticker.

The quality varies tremendously and by walking down the street you can buy APIM castings, bare circuit boards, QA failed units, recycled components, printed labels, etc. Hence the reason that the folks here always warn about units from China.

1 Like