I have read, read, and read some more but still unsure as to what I can expect to be able to read/do, and also a query about the connection method.
Car is a 2001 156 JTD 2.4, from what I can gather, I am going to be somewhat limited as to what I will be able to do (both diagnose, and play!). Previous car - not an Alfa, had software that allowed you to do pretty much anything - how long the lights stayed on after the doors were locked, if the window went all the way up or down if you held the button for 2 seconds, etc)
I still have the cable, its a standard VAG cable that plugs into the 16 pin plug near the fusebox, I am unable to find any 3 pin plugs that I often hear about.
I modded the cable connections as per Multiecuscans diagrams, downloaded the free version and was able to connect to the ECU and examine air flow, temperature, rpm etc. I then added a switch to swap over the pins so I could reset the airbag light. I figured Id be better off buying a new device rather than adding more switches or keep on resoldering pin connections.
From what I can gather, there are 2 main options, one similar to the way I did it, but with either a modified (KKL VAG?) device that may have a switch, or a bunch of coloured cables.
The other option, and I cant seem to figure out if I still need the various adaptor cables with this, is the modified ELM 327 OBD2 option.
I think the second option seems the way to go (no idea why, I've read that much my mind is going blank!), but what concerns me a little is in the title "OBD2", and "CAN". Im not sure if my car will connect ocer the CAN bus, I hope it can because if so I should in theory be able to interpret the serial data and be able to display "stuff" lol on an LCD.
In addition to the ELM 327, if I go down that route, I would also like to get one of the Bluetooth/wireless ones too - just to make like easier once I get the hang of it as my lappy is getting on a bit and needs plugging in after 1/2 an hour or so.
Hope that makes sense, all advice welcome !