Autodesk application manager and Autodesk desktop application
Posted by David Wills, Last modified by David Wills on 26 May 2016 09:46 PM

Tip Title: what is the Autodesk Application Manager and should I be using it?

Product: Revit 2015+

Author:  David Wills – Application Specialist



Since release 2015 Autodesk products have included an application called the Autodesk Application Manager and you want to know whether this is a worthwhile program to have running on the system. To further complicate this the Autodesk Application Manager was replaced in early 2016 with the Autodesk Desktop Application (formerly known as Project Wingman.) What are the differences between these two applications?


Both the Autodesk Application Manager (AAM) and the Autodesk Desktop Application (ADA) are very useful additions to the Autodesk suite of utilities. These applications provide a centralised way of maintaining the service pack level of your installed applications. They will seamlessly talk to the Autodesk update servers and alert you when new updates are available and then provide a seamless and painless interface to download and install these updates. The only significant difference between AAM and ADA is that the ADA provides access to online learning resources such as how-to videos and short tutorials on how to operate the software as well is providing the update service that the AAM provides. The ADA is a significant improvement over the AAM as it breaks down the available updates by product allowing the user to visually scan available updates on a per product basis.

The AAM alerts you to new updates. The ADA alerts you via a pop out notification in the notification area.

You can open the Windows Tray icons and check the AAM or ADA icon for a visual check if new updates are available. This is indicated by the star in the corner of the AAM/ADA Tray icon.

You can save download updates to a specific folder for use at a future time if required saving the download again this is useful if you have to reinstall the product from scratch to correct serious issues with the product you can then install previously downloaded updates to update your newly installed product

the ADA has a similar ability found in the settings which are in the drop down menu next to your login name. Notifications of new updates appear the notification area

The ADA breaks down updates by product and provides access to product specific learning resources.

Both AAM and ADA are installed by default in a standard installation. It is highly recommended you leave them installed and operational as with all complex software certain issues will arise after it is released and these issues will require the occasional update and service amendment it is a fairly large task for the end user to go searching through the support websites looking for available updates.
It is much better to have a useful utility program do this for you and alert you when they are available. You do not have to install any available update but it is nice to know what is available this also makes supporting the product easier if you happen to phone technical support with an issue you can’t resolve sometimes issues have immediate fixes in recent service pack’s if the technician advises you to download and install a service pack this is made that much easier via the available AAM or ADA utility. Also if you are looking to learn the product and perhaps some tips and tricks to improve your productivity the ADA provides access the links to these resources these links are updated frequently and will take you directly to the online resource. Note in order to access services via the AAM or ADA you will need your Autodesk account login and will sign in to your Autodesk account via the utility.

Additionally the ADA provides access to not only product service packs and hot fixes but also to product enhancements like extensions or plug-ins. This will include subscription only content if your Autodesk Account is associated with a current subscription.

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