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Maps / versions / updates / Garmin software

Device: nuvi3597
Purchased in Europe; EU maps not at issue here. Updated to CN EU NTU 2016.20
“owner”: nuMaps Lifetime NA (CN NA NT) / DVD/CD purchase
At issue: North American maps

myMaps - as shown in map info on device (listing only NA maps here, which are on an sd-card):
3 maps (2 for portions of Canada; 1 of Hawaii)): 2015.40
1 map of Hawaii: 2014.4

According to Garmin Express v4.1.9.0 (Mac):

photo ex_zpsaqccq6vk.jpg

Given, of course, the option - as the only option - to re-install the map that is currently on this device..

So, heading on over to Garmin Map Update v4.5.1:

photo mu_zpsvixkuofe.jpg

Haven’t I read - on another topic - that this hasn't been issued at this time? The map to which I am entitled - the NT version?

And - by the way - what does NT and NTU signify? Or is it just an internal Garmin thingie?

What’s a girl to do? I'm just trying to update my North American map.
Please help me sort this out. Thanks.


  • alanb 541 Points
    edited October 2015
    Not sure why Garmin Express thinks your NA map is up to date when your nuvi shows it isn't. SInce you keep your NA map on SD, I would probably try to use cloning on a fresh SD card and let Garmin Express do the "reinstall" of the NA map to the card. That way you can test out the results without affecting the maps currently installid on your nuvi or existing SD card.

    Note: If you use cloning to install the map directly to the SD card, you will have to do some moving/renaming of the map files on the card in order for them to be read by the nuvi.
  • Ramaprem 112 Points
    edited October 2015
    Thanks for the reply. If needed, I will certainly do it.

    I feel like getting some more input regarding this before I do that; don't take it personally. (I also would have to actually leave my home in order to purchase an additional SD card.) #:-S
    Anyone else have anything to add?

    And it's not just Express; Map Update is also reporting false information.

    Is there a "place" to which I can go to see Garmin's latest map versions - and the release dates?

    Actually, I'm not sure that all of the NA maps are on the SD card. I installed the card in order to have space for it.
    Perhaps "some" of the NA maps are in internal storage. Possible?
  • alanb 541 Points
    edited October 2015
    AFAIK, Garmin Express and Garmin MapUpdater do not automatically split the map file between internal storage and SD card when doing a map update. You would need to install the map to computer and use MapInstall to accomplish that. Maybe you know of some other method and can explain how you got "3 maps (2 for portions of Canada; 1 of Hawaii)): 2015.40 1 map of Hawaii: 2014.4".. In any case, I think your best option is to get rid of all these partials and let Garmin Express do a clean install (or reinstall) of the full 2016.20 NA map to a SD card.
  • Ramaprem 112 Points
    I will be getting an additional - and larger - SD card today, and will follow your instructions.

    And/but, before I do that:
    Are there any invisible files on an SD card? Or are invisibles limited to System software components in internal storage?

    I ask, because I can simply drag-and-drop those visible files from my present SD card onto my desktop or other card - unless there are invisibles. That method isn't producing a true clone - but perhaps is what you mean by cloning. (I need to see if my Mac cloning software can clone a FAT32 volume.)

    Here is the complete (visible) contents of my present NA card:

    photo card_zpsyzmqrtke.jpg

    And here is the contents of the "map" folder in internal memory:

    photo internal_zpsbwvc4kun.jpg

    As you can see, there is also a NA map located there - in internal memory. It shouldn't be there, should it?
    This unit - as mentioned in my original post - is my EU unit. There is no EU map in internal; clearly it is - in its entirety - on my other (EU) SD card.

    Given this info, is it still your advice that - after preserving the contents of my present SD card, I go for a "clean install" on an empty card? I want to buy a larger card. My present one is only 4GB; I will get an 8GB.
    What about these other files - the non-map files - on my card? They should be "re-introduced" onto a new card?

    I'm fearing a mess if I start removing stuff; I want to be very clear about what I can do - what I should do.
    I appreciate your - and other's - help.
  • alanb 541 Points
    edited October 2015
    AFAIK, there are no hidden files on a Garmin SD card. But as long as you have the folder options on your computer set to show all files, you should be able to see all the files. In any case, you could copy the contents of your SD card to another SD card, then test the copy in your nuvi to make sure it still operates OK and nothing was lost. I don't see any non map files on your SD card other than ID.txt. The .Gma files are part of the map file sets.

    This forum has a list of the NA map release dates in the announcement section: The POI Factory forum has a list of the release dates for CN NA and CN Europe maps from 2009 forward.

    I understand your fear about messing something up, so you will need to decide if you want to take the risk. In my opinion, if you keep your current SD card as a backup, make a full back of your nuvi internal storage and use cloning to test a clean download on a new SD card, your risk would be very low .. but it is you taking the risk so you must decide for yourself.
  • Ramaprem 112 Points

    Regarding this"
    "As you can see, there is also a NA map located there - in internal memory. It shouldn't be there, should it?"
    does someone have an answer?
    Do those two files - the .img and .gma files - belong in internal storage?
  • alanb 541 Points
    edited October 2015
    Map files can be in either Internal storage and/or SD card. The .GMA file is the map authentication file and is tied to a specific map file. Normally there would also be a .unl file (map unlock file) for each map. You have not explained how you installed all these partial map regions and versions, so it is difficult to advise you on whether certain files should be where they are on your nuvi. Normally, when a map is updated by Garmin Express or Map Updater, it will delete the previous version.
  • Ramaprem 112 Points
    edited October 2015
    I just successfully installed the full coverage of Europe onto a blank 16GB SD card - using Express. It worked. I had, last week, installed only the Central Europe map - because Express told me that the full map would not fit on my (8GB) card.

    Emboldened by this (unexpectedly good) outcome, I am - in the moment - using Map Update to install NA 2016.20 onto a blank 8GB card. I manually removed the two map files from my internal memory first. Pretty gutsy (er, stupid), huh?

    So far, it is downloading a 3,18GB file. So far, so good. Does that sound like the full NA map?

    I'm using Map Update, because Express offered only to reinstall the map presently on the device. Map Update offered to install the latest map.

    "The .GMA file is the map authentication file and is tied to a specific map file."
    Well, I deleted it from the device, as I said, but saved it. Will have to wait until the download is complete, in order to see if it installs.

    "You have not explained how you installed all these partial map regions and versions..."
    You know why? Because I can't!
    The initial installation was from the DVD - and probably involved MapInstall or MapManager. After that, it's anybody's guess.

    So many Garmin map apps:
    Map Update
  • alanb 541 Points
    Yes, if your NA map is a supplemental map (not the primary map that came on your nuvi), you won't get the support files (like junction view and voice recognition), so 3.18 GB sounds about right for the full NA map. If NA is your primary map (the one that came on the nuvi when it was new), then the download would be more like 6 GB.
  • Ramaprem 112 Points
    I had to jump through hoops, but the end result is a success.

    Map Update, on three attempts, simply stalled before downloading the entire map. A good percentage would download in a reasonable amount of time – only for many hours to go by with no further downloading. This happened three times, and then I gave up on Map Update.

    Then I went back to good old Express. Of course, it again only offered me to reinstall the maps that were already on my device. And, of course, I did not want to reinstall; I wanted to update.
    But I ignored its false information, and chose to reinstall. For some reason – which I do not understand – I was told I could not install the download directly onto the device, but had to download to my computer.
    This I did, and then launched MapInstall to do the rest. Which it did.

    One little thing that I still do not understand is:
    in myMaps from the device, the map NA NT 2016.20 reads:
    Western Alaska, Eastern Alaska, Hawaii, Honolulu.

    This is similar to my initial report of having maps reading:
    3 maps (2 for portions of Canada; 1 of Hawaii).

    Despite this, I do in fact have the city maps of all of NA. I don't get why myMaps show the 2016.20 NA map with those "locations". The map is not limited to those locations.

  • Boyd 1985 Points
    edited October 2015
    Ramaprem said:

    I don't get why myMaps show the 2016.20 NA map with those "locations". The map is not limited to those locations..

    I think that's just because you used MapInstall. When you use it or Garmin's older program Mapsource, the individual "tiles" of the map will be listed in the map info menu on the Nuvi. But this is just the first few tiles, not the entire list (which would be very long).

    Bottom line is that "Western Alaska, Eastern Alaska, Hawaii, Honolulu" tells you nothing useful about what was actually installed. It would be like buying a whole cart full of groceries and getting a receipt that only listed the first four items. ;)
  • Ramaprem 112 Points
    That sounds like a good explanation. It might even be accurate! :)>-
    Thanks, Boyd.
  • alanb 541 Points
    edited October 2015
    I don't know why you are getting partial map installs instead of the full NA. One problem with using MapInstall is that you will not get the support files (junction view, 3D terrain, voice recognition, traffic trends, etc.). Of course if this is a supplemental map and not your primary map, you don't get those files anyway, so it doesn't really matter. What size is shown for the .img file for the map you installed?
  • Ramaprem 112 Points
    This has been discussed and settled earlier in the topic.

    I had no choice regarding MapInstall; Express would not install directly to my device.
    I'm not getting partial installs; those tiles listed has been shown to be just a partial grocery list.
    And I'm not entitled to those features that you just listed. My NA map was a DVD purchase.

    The map file (.img) is about 2.5 GB.
  • alanb 541 Points
    Sounds like you got the full map then ... good to know that MapInstall will give misleading map naming. I was not aware of that anomaly
  • Ramaprem 112 Points
    All Garmin apps give wrong and misleading and inaccurate information - at least from time-to-time.
    That is one of the issues of this topic:
    Maps / versions / updates / Garmin software

    Every single step of the way, the apps have failed to give correct and appropriate info.
  • Boyd 1985 Points
    edited October 2015
    alanb said:

    good to know that MapInstall will give misleading map naming. I was not aware of that anomaly

    I wouldn't call that "misleading", you just need to know how to interpret what is displayed. :)

    Mapsource has always behaved this way, and there was a time when Mapsource was the only way for users to install maps at all. It just shows the first few tiles because there isn't room for the full list. If you run Mapsource (not MapInstall) and select everything with the map tool, the Maps tab will show you the full list of what is installed on your computer.
    Now if you used Express to install the whole map, that is a completely different process. It builds a single big file and sends it to the Nuvi instead of a collection of tiles.

    So I don't think it's "misleading" info on the Nuvi, it tells you that MapInstall was used and individual tiles were sent. It would be nice if you could click for more detailed info, IIRC you can do this on a handheld. But it shoudn't be surprising that the Nuvi lacks advanced data management features. ;)
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