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Network Licensing: How to obtain a license file

When you purchase a seat of Autodesk software you have two licensing options: standalone license(s) or network license(s). A standalone license is for an individual user working on an individual computer. If you have a multi-seat standalone license this enables you to install more than one of the same Autodesk product on multiple computers using one serial number. A network license is placed on a server network for use by multiple users and computers. The Autodesk product can be installed on many different computers, however, only the maximum number of seats purchased can be in use at one time. There are three different server models that can be used. Here are the models as listed by Autodesk:

  • Single License Server Model – The most basic of the three options, the Network License Manager is installed on only one server, so all license management and activity is restricted to one single location. A single license file represents the total number of licenses available on the server.
  • Distributed License Server Model – Licenses are divided across more than one server, each containing a unique license file representing a portion of your total number of license. The Network License Manager is installed on each server so all license activity and management is distributed among the number of servers that best suits your needs. Servers do not need to exist on the same subnet and if one fails, the licenses on the remaining servers are still available.
  • Redundant License Server Model – All licenses are configured on three different servers. Each server contains the same license file so all of your software licenses are available on each server. The Network License Manager is installed on each server and can monitor and issue licenses as long as at least two of your three servers are functional. All three servers must be located on the same subnet and have consistent network communications (slow, erratic, or dial-up connections are not supported).


Once you have made your purchase, the first thing you will want to do is obtain your network license file. You may do this by going to or calling 1-800-551-1490. You will need to have your serial number, server name and the MAC address of the server ready before executing either of those options. If you do not know what your server name and/or MAC address is, you can find both by starting a Command Prompt screen. Then you can type “ipconfig /all” and hit enter. The Host Name is your server name and the Physical Address is your MAC address.

Command prompt

If you choose to call in, simply give all of your information to the Autodesk representative and he or she will provide the license file to you via email. If you choose to go the website, you can either sign in using your existing Autodesk ID or you can create an account for yourself.


Once logged in, follow the prompts to enter your information.


Select the appropriate server type as you determined it to be from the list above. Host name is your server name and ID is your MAC address.

server name

Your license file will be issued and made available to save immediately and it will also be emailed to you as a .lic file attachment. You will want to take a look at your license file to verify that your server name and MAC address are correct. You can open your license file in a text only document such as Notepad. It should look something like this.

license file

Reading through a license file as text can be a little difficult to translate. There is a tool call the License File Parser that can help you simplify what your license file contains.

licens parser

Simply browse to where you saved your license file and click Submit License File. This tool will give you an easy-to-read layout so that you can quickly find the information you need.

license file report

Next time I will walk through the process of setting up your license file on the Network License Manager.

Amanda Abbott-Wiemann
Software Support Coordinator

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