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November 2014

Cascading for Autodesk Utility Design 2015

Please check out this issue for cascading for Autodesk Utility Design 2015.  This is only an issue if you have the Autodesk Utility Design and a Suite that has Autodesk Utility Design on the same server.

Thanks to Efim Tetelman for sharing this tip with the community.

How to Install Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Offline in Windows 8 and 8.1 without Internet Connection?

One of our customers send me the following link on how to Install Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Offline in Windows 8 and 8.1 without Internet Connection?  Please check it out here:

Thanks to Stephen Vecchi for sharing this tip with the community.


Quick Start: Setting up your Autodesk Desktop Subscription [Rental] Software

I am going to thank LEGO Star Wars Snowspeeder for inspiring this blog post. This model kit has 279 pieces in it and it is divided into 3 bags so even a 7 year old can build it.  As you know, Lego kits are almost devoid of any text in it.  So in this episode of the Quick Start series of blog posts, I wanted to make an addition (pictures) to the following the Autodesk Knowledge Article on how to install Desktop Subscription Software.

NOTE: Please apply this Hotfix before launching your Autodesk [2014/2015] product. 


1.  Choose your software in the Autodesk Store and buy a Desktop Subscription.

Desktop Subscription Buy

2. Once you get your confirmation email, you will need to create an account and log in to:

By default, the user that bought the software will be the Contract Administrator and you will be automatically assigned to use the software.  In the example below, there are 3 x AutoCAD LT licenses available and one of the licenses will be assigned to David Lau.


3.  If you have purchased more than 1 copy of Desktop Subscription, it's best to choose a Browser Download of the software.   Conserve your internet bandwidth.  You can basically re-use the installer for your 3 users.  If you use the Install Now method and run the setup.exe at a later time, you will get a Communication Error.  Any folder in C:\Autodesk with "wi" or "WI" in it's name is not re-usable.


a. Expand widget for Product.
b. Choose 32 or 64 bit.
c. Select Browser Download.



4.  Install the software using the serial number and product key noted when you expand the widget.


NOTE: AutoCAD 2015 or AutoCAD LT 2015 for Mac Users, please review this article:

5. You need to assign users to AutoCAD LT by clicking on the User icon.


6.  Click on Add to invite users to run AutoCAD LT.



If you try to add a user but it doesn't show up in the list, you will need to Contact Us > Account Creation & Sign in > Chat or Submit a Support Request.

7.  You will need to assign AutoCAD LT to the user so that they can run the software.  If the user is no longer employed by your company, you can remove them from the list of users.  For example, David Lau may have bought the software but doesn't actually need to use it so you can uncheck the Assign button to give the license to someone else on the team.


8.  When you invite someone, the grey circle icon means that you have sent them an invite to use the software but they have not logged in and set a password for their unique user account.  A green check mark means that the user is OK.


9. When running the software for the first time, you will need to login based using the account that was created in steps 6, 7 & 8.  The Autodesk Desktop Rental product will need to connect to the internet once every 30 days to check the account status.


14 days

In some instances, you may need to review this solution if the, login window is missing.

10.  If get the following error:  Establish an Internet connection to continue.



There are 4 articles that you can use to solve this problem:

a. Please apply this Hotfix before launching your Autodesk [2014/2015] product. Also, review this article if you get File Access Denied when applying this patch.

b. Establish an Internet Connection Error

Windows: Desktop Subscription Licensing Error: "Establish an Internet connection to continue"
Mac: Establish-an-Internet-Connection-to-continue-MAC

c. You can also use Fiddler to troubleshoot the connection error.

d. If you are using enterprise antivirus [McAfee] software, please check out How to set up McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator to allow Autodesk Products to work with Desktop Subscription.


11.   If you get the following error: Renew your license.


You may have not chosen the option to auto-renew monthly and this error is indicating that the serial number used to install the software is not valid anymore.   In some instances, a new serial number may need to be assigned to you.

Please check out this article if you get a License dialog box appearing when using a new Desktop Rental serial number.  This is a confirmed solution via Matt Bellin.

12   If you get the following error:  Contact your administrator to request permission to use this product.


This means that you need to add a user to your account or the user's access has changed.  Please refer to steps 6, 7 & 8.

13.  If you are getting this error:  Connection Error.


Please refer to the following article:  Connection Error: This error can be caused by an inaccurate time on the system clock, or by temporary system unavailability.

Environment Variable on the Mac + maya.env + Options files on Windows


Some key concepts are covered in this post:

  • Advanced Options File setup (LM_PROJECT) for all users in a group called AUS
  • Maya Environment Variables (maya.env)
  • Adding an Environment Variable on the Mac (10.9 - launch.conf | 10.10 - autodesk.environment.plist)

The Story...

We have this site that has setup a very sophisticated options file that uses LM_PROJECT.  A really good description of LM_PROJECT can be found here:

In this scenario, we want an Autodesk product that runs on the Mac to use the LM_PROJECT environment variable.  The LM_PROJECT environment variable is allotting a group of licenses for a group called: AUS.

If you are a Maya user, it is pretty easy to add an environment variable in Maya.  It is a matter adding it into a maya.env file and this workflow works in Windows, Mac or Linux.  What makes this story interesting is that we added a licensing environment variable (LM_PROJECT) to the maya.env.

Adding an Environment Variable for Maya on Mac [Screencast video]

The next trick is to add the LM_PROJECT to AutoCAD on the Mac.  The problem is that the maya.env only works with Maya so this means we need to add a system wide Environment Variable on the Mac.

Adding an Environment Variable for the Mac [Screencast video]



Thanks to Matt Haugen for contributing & confirming the workflow for  Mac OS 10.10 [Yosemite]. 

1. Create a plist file in /Library/LaunchAgents.i.e. autodesk.environment.plist. 
2. The contents of the plist should be similar to the following. The only variable that would change would be international to be whatever project you want to set.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "">
<plist version="1.0">
launchctl setenv LM_PROJECT international