ALERT: Desktop Rental Security Hotfix [POODLE]

For users of Autodesk products [2014/2015] using Desktop Subscription, please download and install this hotfix ASAP:

For more information on the importance of the update, please go here:


Tip: Distributed Servers + Options Files + Cascading


We recently published some info on distributed licensing this week and we are using the Autodesk Knowledge Network (AKN) to keep them up-to-date.

For this scenario, customers were wondering why a product is going to use a particular license server in a licensing pool.  It appears to be random but it is actually just following the cascading 'rule' [order]. 

How does cascading work with a Distributed License environment?
[via Tech Guru David Dembkoski]

This one is an advanced tip for setting up an options rule, it is rarely used and there is a reference to it here (Pre-AKN).

Can I reserve a certain amount of AutoCAD licenses to a specific group of users?

Here are some helpful reference articles:

Choosing a Network License Server Model for your Autodesk Product

Installing distributed server model

TIP: Optimizing performance for Mobile Workstations [laptops] + Desktops + Drivers


Autodesk products work best with the Professional GPUs (Graphics Processor Unit). There are some instances in which you can get adequate performance on Consumer GPUs but be prepared from some drawbacks. i.e. intermittent crashing, display issues, etc.

Nvidia Geforce (Consumer CPU)  vs   Nvidia Quadro (Professional GPU)
AMD Radeon (Consumer GPU)    vs   AMD FirePro (Professional GPU)

We often will use the following sites to show you what we have officially tested our software on:

Some notable articles for each graphics vendor is noted below:


800px-AMD_Logo.svg  via Zarchary Travis (AutoCAD guru)


When re-installing a video driver, I prefer this old school method:


Maya crashing and Preferences


I used to support Maya way back and when Maya crashes, the #1 tip is to solve the problem was to use Maya with default preferences.  The location of the Maya preferences is noted in this article.

ENHANCED TIP:  Please rename the preferences instead of deleting them!

"I would like to ask everyone to stop fully deleting preferences folders when trying to isolate an issue. If deleting preferences fixes the problem, we just lost the evidence of what caused the problem in the first place.

If there is no issue being investigated, feel free to delete them. But when investigating an issue, a better habit is to rename the preferences folder with a descriptive name. Maya will launch with default preferences after that. The renamed folder can be sent to QA/DEV by logging a case into Product Support.   We can use preserved preference files many times to discover what was original software defect/problem." via Maya QA Ryan Harvey.


The easy way to restart the licensing service [NLM] on Mac OS X

Mac OS XDuring our recent Webinar on Setting up a license server on Mac and Linux, we were able to set up an automatic restart of the license server the easy way on Mac OS X. Please check out the article below:

Please check out our Webinar at:

Thanks to the guru Avto Chachava for sharing this tip with the community.

Autodesk Screencast is now available for Mac!


Awesome, I just found out that Screencast is now available for the Mac:

Just a note that you may need to change your settings in Gatekeeper before you can install it.

For more info on what it does, please check it out here:

Desktop Subscription + Mac = Establish an internet Connection to Continue

We just updated this solution for solving this Desktop Subscription issue on the Mac:

Mac Proxy-

I also updated the workflow on our blog post below:

I wanted to thank William Weiss for helping us solve this problem and sharing it with the community.

Some newly published Mac Solutions + Mac Webinar


We recently did a Webinar on Boosting your Apple Mac IQ: Everything you need to know about installing & uninstalling Autodesk Software on the Mac.  A replay of presentation is on our Youtube Channel.

We also published some solutions in the last week to add to your arsenal of Mac knowledge...

AutoCAD LT 2015 or AutoCAD 2015 | Autodesk 360 crashes during launch (via Technical Troubleshooter Jeremy Hanson)

Alert: The Serial Number or Product Key don't Match Valid format for serial number

RegisterPkg Error when installing Maya 2015 on Mac OS X



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.