I'd like to know how dose the OTA update system work in tesla car.
Dose anyone know technical information or documents about it ?


reed_lewis | 27 oktober 2017

On a semi technical level this is how I think it basically works (This is the way Linux updates work and it must be about the same)

1. The car polls Tesla' servers for an update
2. If there is an update, the car downloads the update package
3. When the package has completely downloaded into the car, the car presents the update option
4. When the update happens, it:
a. Unpacks the update file
b. Executes a pre install script (if there is one)
c. Copies the new files in the appropriate place
d. Executes a post install script (if there is one)

Now the last 3 items may execute multiple times for different subsystems if they need to be updated of course.

bp | 27 oktober 2017

Unfortunately, step 2 is unpredictable. Updates are typically made available to cars in batches, which can result in some cars getting frequent updates and others waiting weeks or months. Only Tesla knows the logic they use for determining when each car will get a specific update.

reed_lewis | 27 oktober 2017

Step 2 is where Tesla determines if your car should get an update. Where I work we did the same thing as what Tesla does since we have a hardware piece that lives at customer's locations. When we have a new version of the software, we trigger the update for a small percentage of known customers who we know and can 'beta test' with first. Then when it passes that level, we open it up to a few more. We keep adding devices until we have completely finished the update for everyone.

it is a simple matter of a table that contains every device (car), and what version that car should have. You just update the rows when you wish more devices to get the newer software.

But as @bp points out, that is the $64 question. Who gets the updates, and who does not.

Should_I | 27 oktober 2017

To muddy the water more I wonder if there are multiple beta batches later rolled into larger updates so two folks with the same car one might see 3 updates then by the time they get to the other car they are bundled together?

My car got an update when in for service but I have yet to see an OTA but mine is a P85 that is pre-AP so less to be updating and mileage wise is out of warranty. | 29 oktober 2017

@reed - Nice overview!

Keep in mind many updates are for specific hardware. If a feature or bug fix is only needed on Model X's built from Jan-16 to Apr-16, then only those vehicles get the update. As updates are rolled out, a bug could be discovered and the update is halted. The bug fixed, and only those vehicles that got that bug are updated quickly. There are many moving parts to the update queue selection process, and those of us in the forum are not given the nitty details :)

Lately, newer cars get frequent updates (every 4-8 weeks), primarily to improve AP2. If your car doesn't have AP2, then these updates are not sent to your car. You may only see an update every 2-4 months.

reed_lewis | 30 oktober 2017 - Exactly.

The small subset beta/beta/beta upgrade path has been done where I work also. We have had a few 'releases' that needed multiple upgrades before the final product was ready.

But it all comes down to a list of all cars, and the version number that it is supposed to have.

adesai | 27 januar 2018

I was out of town about 8 weeks ago and saw that an update was available for me to download, but by the time I got back home a few days later, there was no notification on the touschsreen, I contacted my SC rep who told me that if we don’t download it in a set period of time, the window closes and you have to wait for the next notification. He told me that I connect via wi-fi I will get updates faster because Tesla now prefers to push them over WiFi. But I don’t have WiFi that reaches my garage, and haven’t put an extender in yet. It’s pretty annoying to me that when I bought the car (mid-2017) the promised me regular OTA updates, and now they appear to have changed that to “if you don’t connect to WiFi you are last in line”

SCCRENDO | 27 januar 2018

@adesai. Don’t sweat. Soon you will get the next update and all will be forgotten. I guess the moral of the story is that shouldn’t go out of town for 8 weeks if you are going to get depressed about missing an update.

EVRider | 28 januar 2018

Being on wi-fi doesn’t guarantee quick updates either. My car has wi-fi access in my garage but I typically don’t get updates until late in the cycle.

jordanrichard | 28 januar 2018

There is no way to know whether or not wi-if or the car’s cell signal downloads the updates any faster than the other. You are not given any heads up that the update is being downloaded to your car. The only thing you are really doing is installing the update when you get a notice that an update is available.

Tesla would certifiably like it to be pushed out via wi-if because it isn’t using up any of the data on the plan they have with AT&T.