Help! I may have "killed" my Garmin Oregon 550!

Discussion in 'Garmin GPS' started by DAP, Jan 17, 2024.

  1. DAP

    DAP

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    Hey!

    I will freely admit, right at the start, that I did something rash and stupid and destructive. I am a complete fool and in serious need of some kind soul's help.

    It all started with my having a problem installing the newest update, Garmin City Navigator North America NT 2024.20. I could not seem to get rid of the existing Garmin City Navigator North America NT 2024.10 because it did not show up in MapInstall, probably because I had, at some point, uninstalled the map from my computer.

    That was Strike One.

    Strike Two was that, in searching for the ".img" file on the Garmin Oregon 550, I mistakenly accessed the root directory of the device and deleted a different ".img file from the "Garmin" directory of the internal storage of the device, whose name I do not completely recall but was something like "gmapsupp.img" or something vaguely similar, with a file size of about 50,500 kB.

    Okay, that was more likely Strikes Two AND Three. In any case, I was out of luck and now my Garmin Oregon 550 will boot to a blank map and a locater icon with a question mark.

    I am asking for someone with an old Garmin Oregon 550 laying about to find the file that I am missing (There are only two .img files in the "Garmin" directory off the root directory of the Garmin, the other being the "gmaptz.img" file that represents the time zone data.) and copy it, making it available to me so that I may replace it and, hopefully, get my device running again.

    I realize that this is a big ask, but this unit is a godsend to me and, at today's prices (And my fixed senior's income!), there is no way that I can afford to replace it.

    I thank you, in advance, for whatever assistance you may be able to provide.
     
    DAP, Jan 17, 2024
    #1
  2. DAP

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    Q : How were you installing the newest update ?

    If you was using Garmin Express to install free lifetime updates, why don't you just repeat the process ?, eg. use Garmin Express again to install 2024.20

    I would suggest using the option in Garmin Express (fig3) to install to computer only and then use Garmin Basecamp to send the new map to your 550, this has the advantage of examining maps currently on the 550 and erasing any you don't want before sending the new map, you can also check free / available memory space to ensure the new map will fit
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Jan 18, 2024
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  3. DAP

    DAP

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    Hello.

    Thanks for the prompt response,

    Sadly, the problem I am having does NOT involve the map update itself. I did, eventually get that onto my device.

    The actual problem, which was described further down i my post, was that I foolishly deleted the "gmapsupp.img" file from the root directory of the Garmin Oregon 550 unit itself.

    What I need now, is a copy of that file from another functional Oregon 550 to replace the one that I, in my ignorance, deleted.

    This is not available on the Garmin website, nor anywhere else on the internet that I can locate.

    Sorry for the confusion.

    DAP
     
    DAP, Jan 18, 2024
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  4. DAP

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    gmapsupp.img, as its name suggests is a map supplement file, it is a file that contains extra maps that work in addition to the main map, I have gmapsupp.img files on my GPS units but they won't be the same as the file on your unit because ALL supplement maps use the same name, this name is used on Garmin units to identify any add-on map

    EDIT
    I have found where the confusion has arisen, I think the file you have deleted is the gmapbmap.img file not the gmapsupp.img file, the gmapbmap.img file is the worldwide base map and is usually about 50mB
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Jan 18, 2024
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  5. DAP

    DAP

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    EDIT
    I think I have found where the confusion has arisen, I think the file you have deleted is the gmapbmap.img file not the gmapsupp.img file, the gmapbmap.img file is the worldwide base map and is usually about 50mB[/QUOTE]


    That sounds exactly right! Whenever I first turn on the unit, and open the "Maps" link, I used to get a map with a location pointer on my current location in the centre of the screen. Now, all I get is the pointer in the middle of the screen with a completely blank white background with the icons indicating the zoom in, zoom out and back functions.

    Now, the big question: Is there any way that I can recreate that file or, failing that, do you know of any place that I can download that base map file gmapbmap.img? Otherwise my beloved Garmin Oregon 550 is nothing more than a paperweight.

    You've managed to pin down the problem and many thanks. Now, can you suggest a solution?

    DAP
     
    DAP, Jan 18, 2024
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  6. DAP

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    This link may be of use :-
    http://www.poi-factory.com/node/15809

    You download an exe file that needs to be run on a Windows computer, any generated img file would need to be named gmapsupp.img
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Jan 19, 2024
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  7. DAP

    LostAgain

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    The Oregon should run without a basemap (gmapbmap.img), all my Garmin devices do, both without a basemap on the device or with a basemap on the device but not selected in map settings.

    What you describe at startup almost sounds like there's no map enabled in the map settings, or maybe the city navigator map is missing or perhaps corrupted and unable to be read, especially if there was an issue during the update, it happens sometimes.

    When you go into the map settings on the Oregon to select what maps are used/shown, what do you see listed?
    Get to them by tapping Setup > Map > Map Information, there you should see a list of what maps are there and whether they're enabled or disabled.
    To enable/disable any desired just tap it's entry then tap Enable or Disable.
    If there's no maps listed there's no maps on it.

    I've never used Mapinstall so I don't know how it does things, but I do use Garmin Express to update my Garmin devices, and this installs any relevant map updates, removing the older versions automatically during the process, there's no need to manually remove anything that I have seen while using Express to update.

    It will of course only do this with Garmin maps that come with updates from Garmin, any other maps must be user updated.
    I do that by deleting the older maps from the device, then adding the new ones manually.
    I always do this by plugging the device into the computer via USB and using a file explorer, browsing to the desired location to find the maps or whatever I wish to delete.
    I delete the ones I want to delete (fully deleting them not just putting them into the Recycle Bin or Rubbish etc.), then I copy and paste the desired maps from where I have them stored into the correct location on the device via the file explorer.

    The basemap is mainly used when zooming right out with other maps enabled.
    From Garmin:
    Garmin Express will, in some instances replace the basemap if it finds it missing while doing an update, perhaps try updating the device with Garmin Express?
    If that doesn't replace the basemap for you you'll have to replace it manually.

    Here's the worldwide basemap if you want to install it manually by pasting it to the Garmin folder on the device.
    Click the link below, then click the Free Download (1MB/s) button should start it downloading, it'll be a little slow but should work ok.
    Once you have the downloaded .zip file it must be extracted.
    During extraction you'll be asked for a password, use BaseMapPassword
    And you should be able to extract it ok, you'll then find a file named gmapbmap.img, copy and paste the file gmapbmap.img to the Garmin folder on your Oregon.
    Then go Settings > Map > Map Information and you should see an entry for "Worldwide DEM Basemap, NR"

    Good luck!

    https://ufile.io/gaj6sxsl

    Password = BaseMapPassword
     
    LostAgain, Jan 20, 2024
    #7
    DAP likes this.
  8. DAP

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    The startup sequence takes your current location and displays it on any enabled map it can use, however when the unit first powers up it doesn't have a current location yet so it either uses a previously stored location or a default location say North 1 degree West 1 degree, if you only have Canada maps installed then North 1 West 1 can't be displayed so you get a blank screen, the base map can display this default location, the Canada map can't

    As soon as a 'real' location is received (in Canada) then the GPS changes to an enabled Canada map, if the basemap is missing I would expect the default location to be displayed against a blank screen until a real 'fix' is received and then the GPS would operate nornally, it should not turn your GPS into a 'paperweight', you just have to wait until the GPS calculates your real location and stops using the default one
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Jan 20, 2024
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  9. DAP

    LostAgain

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    Yes you are correct and what you describe as "a default location" is normally only used if a device has been reset, or the user has initiated one of the manual "new location" functions after startup but before a GPS fix is obtained, otherwise it's the stored location from the last time the device was shut down that is used.

    DAP doesn't mention resetting the device, but could have.
    And I missed the bit about "the problem I am having does NOT involve the map update itself. I did, eventually get that onto my device."...oops, my mistake.

    I guess we wait with bated breath to hear how things go :D
     
    LostAgain, Jan 21, 2024
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  10. DAP

    DAP

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    BRILLIANT!!!

    Thank you all so much! You have managed to teach an old dog new tricks.

    Thank you LostAgain for the copy of the basemap and, most of all, explaining things so well. I had thought that I was somewhat “tech savvy” but I am sorely lacking in “things GPS”, I fear. And thank you Nuvi-Nebie for pinning down the REAL source of my problems that first started off my search for answers.

    Well… I now have a basemap installed in the Garmin folder on the device itself and the basemap is now performing as LostAgain described that it should, so… SUCCESS!

    Or, is it?

    I have used MapInstall to once again install Canada TOPO v.4 and City Navigator North America NT 2024.20 into the Garmin folder on the microSD card (At least, MapInstall SAYS that the map transfers were successfull.), but, when I do look at the “Map Information” on the Oregon 550 itself, it lists ONLY the “WorldWide DEM Basemap, NR” as present and now I am wondering if this is the result of the missing gmapsupp.img file on the device internal storage. I can plainly see the Canada TOPO and City Navigator files in the Garmin folder on the microSD card using Windows File Explorer, but the unit does not see them there.

    And then there is the fact that when I re-open MapInstall immediately after the “successful” transfer, the software shows me a list of maps that CAN be transferred to the device, including the two that I have just transferred! When I customize the installation, the check boxes beside the two that were just transferred are empty. It used to be that maps that were already sent to the unit were check-marked as installed (You would uncheck the box to have it removed.).

    Curiouser and curiouser.

    Any clues as to what that is all about? Hard to enable a map that cannot be seen to be present…

    I turn to you for possible suggestions about this.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2024
    DAP, Jan 21, 2024
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  11. DAP

    DAP

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    Okay. I have been reading about all this.

    From what I can understand of what is a bit complex for me, a single map .img file will show up on the device, either in the internal or the external (microSD) storage as a gmapbmap.img file. If multiple maps are loaded on the same device, a gmapsupp.img file is created that contains the two or more individual gmapbmap.img files as gmapbmap.img, gmapbmap1.img, gmapbmap2.img, and so on.

    Does that make any sense?

    Okay. I had the two maps, Canada TOPO v.4 and City Navigator North America NT, on the Oregon 550 originally and had a gmapsupp.img file on the internal memory. I lost (stupidly deleted.) the original gmapbmap.img and gmapsupp.img files and lost all my maps.

    With the help of several very kind members, I managed to restore the gmapbmap.img file. I transferred the Canada TOPO map and City Navigator North America maps from MapInstall back onto the microSD card (I can see them there using Windows File Explorer.), but, and this is a BIG but, the Oregon 550 does NOT see them there in the Garmin folder on the microSD card.

    I can only assume (And you know what they say about making assumptions.) that the device does not see them there because there is no gmapsupp.img file either in internal memory or in the Garmin folder of the microSD card to tell it that the other maps are present. The only map that it registers is the gmapbmap.img of the original Garmin base map (DEM, NR).

    Now, I am NOT at all sure that I have this all correct, but it makes sense to me.

    So, my problem, as I see it, is how do I reconstruct the gmapsupp.img file for the two maps since MapInstall does not seem to be creating it and transferring it to my device?

    Anyone out there have any ideas?

    Your ideas will be much appreciated.
     
    DAP, Jan 23, 2024
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  12. DAP

    LostAgain

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    You are welcome for the basemap, DAP.

    I'm not sure with regards to the maps not showing, only times I've seen that happen is when creating my own maps and I'd messed something up when creating them, or I'd renamed them and got the file extension wrong or forgot it altogether.
    I don't have an Oregon of my own to play around with.

    I'm not sure the gmapsupp.img thing is the cause as the Oregon should be new enough to enable the maps to be named anything, so long as they have the correct .img extension.

    Maybe try putting a .jpeg image on the SD card, then try viewing it via the Oregon's Photo Viewer, if it can't read and display the picture from the SD card it might mean there's a problem with the card.

    Perhaps check that the map files on the SD card actually have the .img file extension, you might have to turn that option on in windows explorer's settings to see the file extensions.
    If those maps are on the SD without the .img extensions the Oregon will ignore them and they won't show.
    Another thing I've seen happen some time ago was for some reason a map put on a device's SD card ended up with a 'double' extension, so it looked like mapname.img.img, removing the 2nd .img fixed it.

    Another thing to try might be pasting the map files directly to the SD card using windows explorer and avoiding mapinstall completely.
    Or even pasting one of the maps to the Garmin folder on the Oregon itself (if there's enough room) and seeing if it then shows up in Map Information.

    Maybe try switching profiles, on the main menu tap Profile > Change, change it to another one and restart the Oregon.

    I guess if that fails there's also the master reset option.
    Backup your personal tracks and waypoints before doing that as you'll lose them during the reset otherwise.
    With the Oregon powered off, press and hold the upper left corner of the screen and power the unit on.
    You should be asked if you want to reset user data.
    Answering 'yes' should invoke the master reset.

    EDIT:
    From the manual - Restoring Factory Default Settings.
    You can restore your Oregon to the original factory settings. Changes you have made using Setup are restored to the default settings. To restore factory settings, touch Setup > Reset > Restore Defaults to Factory Settings > Yes.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2024
    LostAgain, Jan 24, 2024
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  13. DAP

    DAP

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    All are very good suggestions that I have tried already, except for the .jpeg thing. And, sadly, that "master reset" thing only wipes the user data. I have tried it a couple of times. Thing is, if there is a corrupted or missing system file on the unit, deleting the user data will not correct the problem. A true "factory reset" restoring the whole system to its original condition would, but I don't think that Garmin ever planned for this eventuality because I have found no existence of a reset button/switch/hole on the device and nowhere can I find a firmware update file to "flash" onto the unit to overwrite the current firmware/operating system and restore lost/corrupted files.
     
    DAP, Jan 24, 2024
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  14. DAP

    DAP

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    Ah....

    I was under the impression that that option was simply to reset ALL of the preceding options all at once rather than individually.

    If you are certain (Have you ever done that factory reset before yourself?) that that is the complete factory reset then it is exactly what I need to put my mind to rest after all my initial stupidity and the brain-wracking effort that followed.

    To think that I blindly overlooked that simple thing all this time, thinking it meant something else.

    I will try it as soon as possible.

    I did try the .jpeg test by moving the DCIM folder from the internal memory to the microSD card and the Photo Viewer was able to find and display them.

    Perhaps this is my lucky day.

    Once again, many thanks. Though unlikely, I hope that I may return the favour one day.
     
    DAP, Jan 24, 2024
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  15. DAP

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    Early Garmin GPS units only used the files gmapbmap.img and gmapsupp.img, gmapbmap.img contained the basemap and gmapsupp.img contained ALL the other maps so if gmapsupp.img contained a couple of maps and you wanted to add a third Garmin Basecamp or the Map Install program used by Basecamp would edit the current gmapsupp.img file so that it contained the new map as well as the old two, newer units can handle multiple 'named' img files and do not need to use the gmapsupp.img file, although it can be used as well as the named img files
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Jan 24, 2024
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  16. DAP

    DAP

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    Huh....

    But the Garmin Oregon 550 does use "named" maps because when I look in the Garmin folder on the microSD card, I can plainly see TOPO Canada v4 in two parts and City Navigator North America NT, also in two parts.

    The Garmin folder on the internal storage has the basemap .img and the time zone .img but nowhere do I see the gmapsupp.img file that I was expecting.

    In any case, this has all become academic at this point.
     
    DAP, Jan 24, 2024
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  17. DAP

    DAP

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    SUCCESS !!!

    My heartfelt thanks and congratulations to you, one and all, for all your kind suggestions, advice and patient hand-holding as I worked my way through this.

    With the eventual realization that the Setup > Reset > Restore Defaults to Factory Settings option did actually perform a complete factory reset, and not a reset of all user data as I had thought, I was soon on my way to getting the Oregon 550 back up and running as it should.

    After the factory reset restored settings and replaced any missing or corrupted files, the device booted into the basemap i remembered. I then used MapInstall to reload my maps to the microSD card and, as it always had in the past, the unit recognized both maps as being present as available to be enabled in Setup. So, TA-DAAA, I was back in business and the Oregon 550 was back in business without me having to replace my trusty guide with a new unit which, if you ask me, have become outrageously expensive (Does Garmin now have to actually pay for GPS signal use? Just kidding.) and way beyond my meagre means.

    I have taken a page from your book and now copied over the full contents of the internal storage drive and the microSD as well onto my NAS drive for safekeeping in the however unlikely event that I ever again foolishly mess with the files on the device.

    So, once again, my profuse thanks to all of those who contributed to this successful "adventure" (An "adventure" is defined as an endeavour or undertaking where everything goes horribly wrong.") that culminated in the resurrection of my Garmin Oregon 550.

    I hope some day to "pay it forward".

    DAP
     
    DAP, Jan 24, 2024
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  18. DAP

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    Yes I know the Garmin Oregon 550 uses named maps, I'm trying to say that it doesn't need a gmapsupp.img to function so if you have deleted it, it doesn't matter, you don't need one
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Jan 24, 2024
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  19. DAP

    LostAgain

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    Excellent news DAP and congrats on getting it working again.

    [humour]
    I don't think Garmin currently has to pay for GPS signal usage, though I believe they're adding the extra costs to cover any possible future scenarios :D
    [/humour]
     
    LostAgain, Jan 25, 2024
    #19
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