Options File

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?http://knowledge.autodesk.com/search-result/caas/sfdcarticles/sfdcarticles/Can-I-reserve-a-certain-amount-of-AutoCAD-licenses-to-a-specific-group-of-users.html

Here are some helpful reference articles:

Choosing a Network License Server Model for your Autodesk Product

Installing distributed server model

Options File - Should I use PACKAGE or FEATURE (Component)?

I have created this video in a previous blog post on how to create an options file for your license server:


One of the questions we get is which part of the license code can we use to get an options file to work correctly. The answer is noted in the License Administration.pdf located In C:\Program Files\Autodesk Network License Manager folder.

If you go to Chapter 13 Managing the Options File >  Table 13.2, you will notice the following:


This means that with the FEATURE (COMPONENTS) of the license file is to be used to get this option work correctly.

In Table 13-3, you will notice the following:


This means that with the PACKAGE or FEATURE (COMPONENTS) of the license file is to be used to get this option work correctly.

Please note that there we have 2 types of licenses the the system will generate, Subscription and Non-Subscription.  The Subscription licenses have PACKAGE in them to support the current version and 3 versions back [2015-2012] and the non-Subscription will only support 1 version.  The easiest way to extract the license code is to use the license parser.








General Licensing: What is "linger"?

When you borrow a license from the license server, and you Perform a Status Inquiry, the log file will have the following information:

"85536ACD_2011_0F" v1.000, vendor: adskflex  floating license

Administrator LAUD-W7ENU64 LAUD-W7ENU64 (v1.0) (TOR2UA13809X0/27000 202), start Tue 1/10 13:30 (linger: 221280)


The linger value is in seconds.  So this means that the license will be borrowed for 2.56 days via the Google calculator.

Additional reference posts:




Licensing: options file when there are multiple FEATURE lines for a single feature in the license file

If you have the a license with multiple feature line for a same feature code, applicable when you have some package license and some temporary license in the package


#AutoCAD Mechanical Package License.

PACKAGE 64400AMECH_PP_F adskflex 1.000 \

    COMPONENTS="85733AMECH_PP_2012_0F 85545AMECH_PP_2011_0F \

    71800AMECH_PP_2010_0F 59200AMECH_PP_2009_0F" OPTIONS=SUITE \


INCREMENT 64400AMECH_PP_F adskflex 1.000 permanent 17 \

    VENDOR_STRING=commercial:permanent SUPERSEDE DUP_GROUP=UH \


#AutoCAD Mechanical 2012 Temporary License.

INCREMENT 85733AMECH_PP_2012_0F adskflex 1.000 24-feb-2012 6 \




If you create an options file with RESERVE command

RESERVE 5 85733AMECH_PP_2012_0F HOST_GROUP Myeng_group

It will actually reserve 10 Licenses for the same group, because feature code 85733AMECH_PP_2012_0F is repeated in the license file.


In order to specify the exact seats to reserve one has to distinguish a particular group of license by using the option Keywords

The following option keywords are used as feature name modifiers to denote a specific group of licenses:




• KEY=




• VENDOR_STRING= (if configured by the publisher as a pooling component)

• dist_info=

• user_info=

• asset_info=

(http://www.globes.com/support/utilities/fnp_LicAdmin_11_10.pdf page 116)

In the above example we could use either one of the following line depending on if the permanent or temporary license which needs to be reserved.

RESERVE 5 85733AMECH_PP_2012_0F:VENDOR_STRING=nfr:extendable HOST_GROUP Myeng_group


RESERVE 5 85733AMECH_PP_2012_0F:VENDOR_STRING= commercial:permanent HOST_GROUP Myeng_group


Trouble with combining license files. Missing licenses or Multiple Suite licenses in the same file behavior

Please read following solutions regarding combining the Autodesk licenses files.





What if a feature is repeated twice in the license file and the licenses are issued the same day?

If two licenses contain an identical feature code of the previous versions, the order of the feature within the license file, determines which license is issued first.

o                     I.e.: PrDS-Premium 2012 and PrDS-Ultimate 2012 both contain the AcadM 2010 feature code. In the license file, when you combine the licenses make sure Premium is on top so that starting AcadM 2010 it will take the Premium license first.


General Licensing: Using the www.licenseparser.com to help create an options file

The license parser is a website that will parse out your network license file into plain english!

The Product Support Team has been using the license parser website for about a year and as far as I am concerned, it's a fully functional beta website.

So what else is it good for?  You can use it to help you create your options file!

The basics for setting up an options file for licensing can be found here:


Another useful Technical Solution (TS)  is here:  


Basically, when creating an options file, you do not require the Package part of the license file. It only requires the Components part of the license file.





Here is a sample adskflex.opt file that means that Revit Structure Suite 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 can only be borrowed for 144 hours.


You can then use Google to convert hours to days via search.


In some instances for the newer Suites, you actually can use the PACKAGE codes instead of the each 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 INCREMENT codes.