Garmin 2455LMT GPS – Map Updates
Posted by Joseph Lo
After using our trusty Garmin Nuvi 260 for more than 4.5 years, it has decided to die a slow death. First, it started to exhibit a case of memory loss where it will randomly lose all the settings and stored locations once in a while. Upon resetting, it will work fine for a while and then the issue starts again. It is quite a hassle to having input all the favorite locations every time it crashes. As we have a Melbourne trip coming up at the end of this year, we decided to upgrade to a later model. We tried several GPS models in the store and concluded that we don’t quite like the user interface of the Navman. The TomTom and Garmin remain the top contenders. We decided we still like Garmin a little better.
The 4.3″ Garmin Nuvi 40 is on a special price of $88 and the 5″ Nuvi 50 cost $124. Very tempting. Also, the behemoth 6″ TomTom Via 620 costing $194 looks to be a pretty good choice too. But finally we decided that the TomTom 620 is rather large for a GPS (this is afterall not a tablet) and the Nuvi 40 and 50 both do not have lifetime map guarantees. So we finally ended up with the 4.3″ Garmin 2455LMT costing us $138. It hasn’t got bluetooth capability and to get that feature, we will need to pay extra to get the 4.3″ 2495LMT or the 5″ 2595LMT. So we convinced ourselves that the 2455LMT should do well for us for the next few years. Personally I think $138 is not too bad a price, considering that we pay about $250 for the Nuvi 260 4 years ago. Prices have tumbled a lot since then.
So after a test run on the road, and after all the initial excitement of using a better GPS, we feel that while there are some nice improvement, there are also some quirks if we may say so. The first one is that we kinda miss the “Re-calculating” voice alert everytime you miss a turn. The 2455LMT does not give you this alert if you miss a turn or miss an important junction. It will just continue to update its route as you move along, so if you are not attentive enough, you may not even realize that you are actually going on the wrong way. I do not want to over dramatize this as it is really not a biggie and definitely should not be a deal breaker if you are considering the 2455LMT.
So we got home and I decided to update the map (afterall, we bought this GPS for its lifetime map guarantee). The quick start manual suggest that I should connect the GPS to the PC and then browse to www.garmin.com/dashboard. I did so. As I have already registered on the Garmin website previously, I signed in accordingly. The garmin website will prompt for the installation of the Communicator Plugin v4.04 in order to detect the GPS. I obliged. To update the map, Garmin website will prompt for the installation of the Garmin Map Updater v3.1.20. I followed the instructions accordingly. But for whatever reasons, the updater kept crashing on me.
My initial thought is that this could be related to Windows 8 which I am running the updater on. So I move to a notebook running Windows 7. Same issues. I have no idea what went wrong. Buggy Garmin software so I thought. Here are some screenshots showing how the crash happened to me.
Here Garmin Map Updater is running initially. All good.
A prompt to accept the EULAs. Who actually reads this stuff by the way…..so I clicked “Continue”.
The Map Updater will then connect to Garmin. Still good.
And the wonderful crash effect (sorta remind me of the Windows Solitaire game of Windows 3.1) which I cannot do anything but hit “OK” for it to exit.
I even tried to run this in VirtualBox under Windows 8 and the result is still the same. For whatever reasons, the Garmin Map Updater kept crashing no matter what I tried. After a good 45mins or so trying to troubleshoot the problems, I gave up and decided that I should consult the google oracle.
Finally I came across this forum thread that saved my day – http://forums.gpsreview.net/viewtopic.php?t=23423. I would highly recommend that you have a good read before you update the maps on your Garmin GPS (of couse assuming you are using similar models as described in the forum thread). Garmin also authored a guide to using this tool. You can find this here – http://static.garmincdn.com/pumac/Updating_Maps.pdf.
In short, this method requires you to install a Garmin Lifetime Updater Installer from Garmin’s website by going to this link: http://www.garmin.com/lifetimeupdater. I did so, and when I run the app, it will detect the presence of the GPS and determine if the maps are up to date or not. In my case, it detected that there is a latest map available. Follow the on screen instructions and it will proceed to download the maps from Garmin directly. No need to sign in. Very straight forward. When the download is complete, it will say the following:
I just hit the “Install” button.
The software will then install the updated maps onto the GPS.
I must admit that it is not all roses to get to this stage. There are minor hiccups along the way as well. The software updater in my case happens to also locks up at some point and I have to start the procedure again somewhat. So be prepared to try a couple of times to succeed.
To check if the map is really updated, I restarted the updater program and this time it says that there are no new maps available and the GPS is up to date.
Now back to Garmin’s dashboard page, this is a screenshot.
And the dashboard is also saying that the GPS has the latest maps available. But you will notice that it says there are “Software Updates” available. I am not sure why Garmin’s Lifetime Updater did not update the underlying software in one hit (maybe there are reasons), so I hit the “Update” button as well. This will bring up a couple of options, such as these:
These are all optional components so I select the components I need (or like) and follow the prompt. There seems to be some bugs on this as well….as after the software update, the dashboard is still reporting that a software update to the GPS is still available. I am clueless how this happen and what I am missing.
In summary, I like the Garmin L2455LMT so far. But while the GPS hardware is brillant, the PC support software and web based tools do require a lot of work.
I hope this post is helpful to you.
Thanks for dropping by.