How to Move to Autodesk Subscription without Reinstalling

managing existing autodesk installations
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With pricing increases for Autodesk’s current Move to Subscription program announced for May 2018, many eligible customers have chosen to renew early. Not only does renewing early let you avoid that price increase, it also provides an opportunity to lock in pricing for as much as three years. Because of these economic benefits, many customers have taken advantage of renewing early, but doing so has also presented several questions.

Autodesk Move to Subscription Program Overview

If you’re unfamiliar with Move to Subscription, it’s a program providing a way to recognize your previous investment in Autodesk software. With it, you can move your perpetual licenses with an active maintenance contract to a subscription at a discounted price. A key part of the program is the way it allows you to move from a single-product (like AutoCAD, Civil 3D, or Revit) or Design Suite and move to an Industry Collection. Although Industry Collections essentially replace Design Suites, in either case, choosing an Industry Collection will provide you with several new software products like ReCap, FormIt, Vehicle Tracking, InfraWorks, and more at the time of renewal.

When will I gain access to the additional software in the (AEC) Industry Collection?

Although Autodesk allows you to renew and take advantage of today’s Move to Subscription pricing early, doing so does not provide early access to the additional software that’s part of the AEC Collection. What does that mean to you in practice? Take for example a customer whose Building Design Suite renewal is on May 14.

Although that renewal date makes you eligible to renew early, you’ll remain under a maintenance contract with the Building Design Suite Premium until May 14. On May 14, your contract will update, and move your Building Design Suite licenses to an AEC Industry Collection subscription. It’s not until that switch occurs you will gain access to the additional tools provided by the Industry Collection.

Should I delay installing 2019 products until my contract renews?

Since both your license/serial number and products you have access to will change in a short time, many clients have asked whether they should delay their 2019 upgrade plans until some point after their contract renews? The short answer to that question is no. Upgrading today will not require you to uninstall and reinstall the software when your contract renews (on May 14 in the example above).

Assuming you upgrade today, what you need to do at the time of renewal varies depending on the type of subscription you have. To help with this, I recommend bookmarking our Autodesk Subscription Resources page. Not only does that page collect the most commonly requested resources related to subscription, installation, and licensing, it is also regularly updated by our team with the latest information you need to know.

Updating Network Licenses to a Multi-User Subscription

Customers who currently own network licenses and take advantage of the Move to Subscription program will have a multi-user subscription when their contract renews. Under this scenario, it’s only necessary to update the Autodesk License Server and obtain a new license file when your contract renews. Your existing software installations between the 2016-2019 release can remain as is.

The following resources from our Autodesk Subscription Resources Page will help you make this change:

  • Step 1: Get a new License File
    This process will generate a new license (LIC) file used by the Network License Manager. Complete this step after your renewal date to ensure the license is for your new subscription (AEC Collection), not your old perpetual (Design Suite) license.
  • Step 2: Uninstalling the Network License Manager
    Although the user interface is practically identical, it’s critical you update the Network License Manager whenever Autodesk releases a new version (like 2019). It is possible to complete this process during business hours provided the uninstall and reinstall is completed within 20 minutes.
  • Step 3: Reinstall the Network License Manager
  • Step 4: Configure the Network License Manager

Completing the above steps, making sure to maintain the license server name in the process, will ensure existing installations are able to get a license after the switch.

Updating Standalone Licenses to a Single-User Subscription

Since standalone and single-user licensing is managed from each individual workstation, not a central license server, the switch to a single-user subscription must occur from the workstation itself. Additionally, when making this switch, it’s important to note the key difference between standalone and single-user licenses.

Under Autodesk’s former perpetual licensing model, standalone licenses were activated by workstation. If several people shared a single machine, each could use the Autodesk software installed and activated on that workstation. This differs from the way single-user subscriptions function. Under the single-user model, access to the software is granted to an individual, not a machine. While that means each person sharing a single workstation must have their own subscription (license), it also means each user can use the software from whichever workstation they’re at.

The importance of this switch is, unlike standalone licenses where entering a serial number and product key activated the software, single-user subscriptions require individuals sign into the software. To sign into the software, users must be assigned access to the software they need to use.

The following resources from our Autodesk Subscription Resources Page will help you make this change:

In Summary

Renewing early and choosing a multi-year subscription is the most economical choice when considering a switch to subscription. Although renewing early lets you lock in today’s pricing for up to three-years, it does not provide advance access to the new software you’ll receive as part of an Autodesk Industry Collection. Despite this, there is no need to delay any plans your team may have for upgrading to 2019. By following the steps outlined in this post, you can move to subscription without uninstalling and reinstalling your software. While we’re happy to answer specific questions in the comments below, please reach out to our professional services team if you would like help implementing these changes at your company.

Have a question about making the switch?

Let us help! Our team of experts can help install new software, as well as provide training for those who will be using the software. By working with us and taking advantage of our direct partnership with Autodesk, you are guaranteed a team focused on recognizing and solving your technical challenges, allowing you to maximize your software investment and save valuable time.

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