How to install Autodesk Desktop Subscription rental licenses step by step guide
Posted on 1st December 2015
Categorised as autodesk, tutorial

Permissions to download, activate, and use Desktop Subscription software are managed through Autodesk Account. All users of Desktop Subscription software must have an Autodesk Account. Your user type determines the process you follow to set up your Desktop Subscription:

Purchaser is the User
Purchaser is not the User
User is not the Purchaser
Installing from Media
Activation and Installation Troubleshooting

Purchaser is the User
When you buy Desktop Subscription software for personal use, you enter your personal Autodesk Account information during purchase. You are assigned as the Contract Manager and a Named User with permissions to download, install, and activate your software. Your software is available for download from your Autodesk Account when you receive the fulfillment email message from the Autodesk Store.

  1. Sign in to your Autodesk Account using the email address and password you provided when you bought your subscription.
  2. Locate your software in the list of Products & Services and click Downloads to activate the pop-up download window.

autodesk account help

3. Select your Platform, Version, and Language and click the default Download option. See Download Methods for Autodesk Account for more information about your options for downloading and installing software.
4. Launch the installer and follow the on-screen instructions for installing your software. See Installing Software on a Single Computer for information.
5. Enter the serial number that appears in your Autodesk Account if prompted during installation.
6. Make sure that you have an active Internet connection (required for activation).
7. Launch your software for the first time after installation and sign in with your Autodesk Account information.

Adding more users?
If you purchased more than one license for a Desktop Subscription and need to give other users permissions to download and install software, see:

Adding or Removing Users in User Management
Setting User Permissions for Products, Services & Support

Purchaser is not the User

Account administrators, such as Contract Managers and Software Coordinators, may buy Desktop Subscription software intended for other users. One available software license is assigned to the purchaser automatically at checkout. If you don’t intend to use the software you buy, remove yourself as a Named User for the software. You can then assign permissions to use the software to another user. Software users can visit and create personal accounts.

  1. Sign in to your Autodesk Account at using the email address and password you provided when you bought the subscription.
  2. Click the Users icon to access User Management.
  3. Click Edit Access next to your user name to access your software permissions.

edit access autodesk

4. Remove the check in the Assign box next to the product you wish to assign to a different user and click Save.


5. Click Edit Access again to verify that you have a seat available for the software and click Cancel to exit your user profile.


6. Click +Add and complete the user information using the email address associated with your user’s personal Autodesk Account.


7. Click the Assign box next to the software on the user’s profile in Manage Users and click Save.


8. Verify that the software is now assigned to the new Named User for the Desktop Subscription.


Set-up notification for new users: The new Named User automatically receives an email message with instructions for accessing software. The status indicator shows a green check mark when the user has signed in and accessed the software.

User is not the Purchaser
If your company has a Contract Manager or Software Coordinator who purchases software and manages access, work with that administrator to set up your software. You can download, install, and activate your Desktop Subscription software from your Autodesk Account after the administrator adds you as a Named User.

  1. Visit and fill in your name, email address, User ID, and password. You can use either your User ID or email address to sign in to your Autodesk Account.

Note: If you have an existing Autodesk Account, this step is not required. See Autodesk Account Sign In FAQ for help accessing an existing Autodesk Account.


2. Notify your software administrator that you created an Autodesk Account and provide the name and email address you entered during sign-up. This information is used to grant you access to the Desktop Subscription software.
3. Watch for an email message that says your permissions have changed. This message is your notification that new software is available in your Autodesk Account.
4. Follow the instructions in Purchaser is the User to sign in to your account and download, install, and activate your software.

Installing from Physical Media

The installation workflows assume that you are downloading and installing your software online. If you are using a USB device, DVD, or other physical media to install your Desktop Subscription software, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to your Autodesk Account and verify that the software you wish to install is listed in your Products and Services. If the software does not appear, see Activation and Installation Troubleshooting.
  2. Copy the serial number and product key for the version you are installing for use during installation. Note: Some software requires user sign-in only for activation and may not display a serial number.
  3. Follow the instructions for single computer installation.
  4. Enter a serial number during installation if requested.
  5. Verify that the computer you are using is connected to the Internet.
  6. Launch your software and sign in with your Autodesk Account information.

Activation and Installation Troubleshooting
Desktop Subscription software requires you to sign in to your Autodesk Account the first time you launch your software. Our licensing service verifies that the user accessing the software is authorized. Here are some notes and troubleshooting solutions to help you install and activate your Desktop Subscription software:

Software Availability:
You purchased the Desktop Subscription: Autodesk send a fulfillment email message when your software is available in your Autodesk Account. If you don’t receive the email or see your software or serial number in your Autodesk Account within 24 hours of purchase, please contact Autodesk.

You are an assigned Named User: If you did not purchase the subscription, work with your administrator to troubleshoot software and serial number availability in your account. Verify that the correct email address was used to assign software permissions.

Internet Connection Required: For the initial installation and sign in, an Internet connection is required. After activation, the software works offline for up to 30 days. After 30 days, connect to the Internet to continue using the software. The software reminds you seven days before you need to connect to the Internet to renew your license. An Internet connection is required to access cloud services.

Activation Varies by Install Method: If you can use Install Now (Windows only), the process enters your serial number during installation. Download Now and Browser Download download a complete installation file that may require the serial number from your Autodesk Account.

© 2015 Autodesk Inc

This information has been supplied for our customers who have had issues with installing their software. You can find the full FAQ here. Please note if you require telephone support, there is an additional charge compared to Autodesk basic support. Please call our sales  team on 01403 784139 if you would like to purchase additional telephone support where our technical team can provide you with one-to-one additional support over the phone.

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