Knowledgebase : Autodesk > Autodesk Licensing

Autodesk Management Portal 

By David Gerber - Support - A2K Technologies

In 2019, Autodesk has been slowly rolling out the Sign-In activation method for all companies. The plan was to have everyone switched to this method by the end of 2019.  

What we have noticed is that a lot of users started to get licensing errors and their software working one day, but not the next. This is usually due to the switch over in activation type and an easy fix.  


Before, users were given serial numbers by their Contract Managers/Software Coordinators, input that during activation, and off they went. Now, however, Autodesk switched to the new Single User “Sign-In” method as a way of protecting companies so that users do not leave with their licenses. Companies can simply re-assign the license as staff requirements change.


Here is an in-depth article about how to assign users:  

  • The methods vary from company-to-company due to different licensing types, so easiest to cross-check to see what you have under your "User Management" tab in your Management Portal ( 
  • When you see which access you have, then you can click the required article title and it'll have all of the instructions and screenshots. 


Users will then get an email from Autodesk saying that their “permissions have changed”, they will be able to access the Management Portal to download/install software and updates, sign into the Autodesk Desktop App to download/install updates, as well as sign-in during activation of the software (or when prompted on an already installed software) in order to sync the license and be able to use the software as normal. 

If users didn’t have an Autodesk account before, they will be able to create one after you assign them a license, it’ll be in that same email mentioned above. Please be mindful of spelling, also if users use multiple email addresses within the company. If the spelling doesn’t match, the user won’t be able to activate/use the software. 

Users can easily see if they have been switched over or not from within their Management Portal by clicking on any product (listed under “Products and Features”) and seeing the “Activation Method” in the drop-down area. 


From what we have been told by Autodesk, everyone should be switched over by January 2020, so there may still be some change-overs necessary in January, however, everyone should be switched over and organized by mid-January. 

It should also be mentioned that this may take some time depending on the number of seats you have, so it would be worth being prepared and assigning users a license (if you haven’t already done so) and you can see that you are still on the serial number activation method, otherwise you may have a case where users lose access to their software and it takes you a few hours to get everyone back up and running.  

Assigning BIM360 Licenses

For BIM360, licenses are a two-tiered process. First do the above, then follow the steps outlined here: 

New Feature - Teams; Manage Teams within the Autodesk Manage Portal

Autodesk have since added a new "Teams" feature to help align end users into Teams which may be geared based on Autodesk contracts. The idea is simple enough, but unfortunately the rollout hasn't been as smooth as we'd have hoped, especially for large, multi-contracted, multi-account accounts. If needing assistance with creating and sorting multiple users and contracts into designated Teams, Autodesk have advised to reach out to their Manage Portal helpdesk for further assistance.

More information on Teams below;

Errors Upon Launching Software 

By David Gerber - Support - A2K Technologies

If you launch your Autodesk software and get errors such as “License Manager Not Functioning or Not Properly Installed ” / “Licensing Error: Please Contact Autodesk Support ” / “Establish an Internet Connection ” / “ License Checkout Timed Out ”, it is more than likely due to updates. 

Autodesk released a Transport License Security (TLS) update back in August 2019. Users who did not update to the latest releases specified by Autodesk can experience licensing issues, as well as experience launching issues with their software. When/if it’ll happen is hard to know, however, it’s best to update to the latest as specified here:  

Have a look through that article and match your software and software version with their necessary updates. Cross-check to make sure you have all of the necessary updates necessary. 

We have seen this happen a lot on AutoCAD and Revit 2020 software in particular, but it does affect most software as well. 


Updates you will need for Revit 2020 (as an example): 

  1. Revit 2020.2 
  2. Autodesk Licensing Service - - Update  
  3. Autodesk Licensing Service (x64) - 5.1.5 Hotfix 1 


The first place we would recommend cross-checking is updating them all to the latest version either through: 

  • Autodesk Desktop App 
    • Download latest and it'll install automatically. 
  • Management Portal 
    • Go to - - under "Product Updates". 
    • Download and manually launch the installer to install. 


Windows Updates should also be double checked as some of them are necessary for the security updates of Autodesk software. 

  • Type "Windows Updates" in the Windows Search Bar to check for those.  
  • Could also have pending installs or restarts. If you have to restart, do so, then check again to make sure there aren't anymore. 

Usually it’s as easy as the above, however, in some rare cases, we have also seen some clients having to take extra measures for alleviating these errors. Autodesk has released the following article to solve the licensing issues:  

Rapid Start: Autodesk Multi-User Licensing

By Karl Hosking - Support - A2K Technologies


This guide is aimed at assisting System Administrators with either a new LMTools installation or updating an old version of LMTools to support new Autodesk releases. There are four parts to this guide; 

LMTools is an application that hosts an Autodesk multi-user license file via a Windows service. As CAD workstations come online, they’ll request and acquire a license at the beginning of the CAD session, and return the license once the CAD session has ended. 

  • Downloading LMTools
  • Installing / Updating LMTools Install
  • Generating a new Autodesk Multi-User license file
  • Configuring LMTools
  • Configuring Windows Firewall
  • Testing the CAD Workstation
  • Common Errors & Solutions
  • Advanced Troubleshooting

Downloading LMTools 

LMTools is typically installed on an office server but may also be installed on a desktop (such as the CAD workstation or receptionist computer) as an interim measure. Check that the operating system is listed as supported via the Autodesk LMtools download website below; 

Latest Version of LMTools and System Requirements 
Continue to follow the above link through to find and download the LMTools installation media.  

Next, test that the CAD workstations can either see the nominated server via the network, or can ping the server via Windows Command Line; 

If the CAD workstations are unable to communicate with the server, you’ll need to troubleshoot such an issue with either a Systems Administrator / Network Technician prior to continuing with this guide.  

Installing / Updating LMTools Install 

For a new installation, double click the LMTools download to begin the installation, and simply leave all install settings at default – which should result in your LMTools installation installing to; 
C:\Autodesk\Network License Manager 
For those who need to upgrade an existing install of LMTools, the install and setup usually takes less than 15 minutes and can be done without interrupting users (so long as the install and setup is done within 15 minutes).  

Open the old version of LMTools, click on the “Start/Stop/Reread” tab, and stop the existing license service, then on the “Configure Services” tab, remove the active Autodesk license service. Close LMTools, then finally via Windows Programs & Features, uninstall LMTools.  
Note: For particular installs of LMTools, it may have been installed as a portable app that’s not listed within Windows Programs & Features, and for these cases simply rename/delete the legacy LMTools root directory.  
Once LMTools has been removed, install the latest LMTools by double clicking the downloaded media, again, keep to default settings. 

Note: There are situations where a licensing server will have multiple versions of LMTools installed supporting multiple vendors. For such a scenario, please reach out and contact A2K Support directly to discuss further. 

Generating a new Autodesk Multi-User license file 

Using the Autodesk Manage Portal is by far the quickest and easiest way of generating a Multi-User license file. Within a few clicks you’ll have your license file ready in next to no time. There’re a few details needed for this stage;

  1. Contract Manager or Software Coordinator access to the Autodesk Manage Portal
  2. Server details – The Server Name & MAC Address
  3. Server Model (most customers I work with use the “Single Server” arrangement. But reach out to speak with support staff if you’re interested in knowing more on Distributed or Redundant Licensing models.)
  4. Finally, an idea of which Autodesk products (plus seat count) are required for the Autodesk network license.

One way to confirm the details of your Server Name and the servers MAC address is to open LMTools, click the “System Settings” tab, and there you’ll see the Computer Name textbox and Ethernet textbox, which will contain a list of detected MAC addresses on that server. If you see more than one, simply use the first in the list.

With the server name and MAC address in mind, next, head to the Autodesk Manage Portal; 

Autodesk Manage Portal 

Once you’re logged onto the portal, click on “All Products & Services” and then note the “Quick Links” on the lower left of the screen, where you’ll find the shortcut to “Generating a Network License” 

Autodesk have provided a guide below that is ideal to follow for this license generation step; 

Generating A Network License File 

Once the license file has been generated, you can use the Autodesk License Parser website to cross check its contents; 

Autodesk License Parser 

The License Parser is especially useful for checking product expiry dates, and also product feature codes that are needed when crafting an Options File to help govern user access to select products and restrict licensing borrowing.  

Configuring LMTools 

With LMTools installed and the license file downloaded and ready, the steps to configure LMTools are found within the below Autodesk KB article; 

Configuring the network license manager on Windows 

If you have any problems at any stage during this step, please do reach out to speak with an A2K Technologies support technician, as we can personally assist via Remote Desktop.  

Configuring Windows Firewall 

A common error to experience when testing a newly configured LMTools is the CAD workstation reporting error; 


This is a sign that the Windows Server firewall is active and needs to either be disabled (not recommended! ) or preferably configured, with the below settings; 

  • TCP port 2080 
  • TCP ports 27000-27009 

The below Autodesk KB article can be refenced if needed; 

Ports used by Autodesk Network License Manager 

Testing the CAD Workstation 

Upon starting the CAD application for the first time, you’ll be asked options such as “Sign In”, or “Multi-User” – select Multi-user and type in the name of the license server.  

On pre-existing Autodesk 2020 installs, you may need to re-configure the application using the Autodesk Licensing Installer Helper Tool to change the license setting from “User Sign In” to “Multi-user Network”, in which case have a read of the below tutorial; 

Licensing Installer Helper 

Do reach out to speak with A2K Technologies Support staff if further assistance is needed with configuring the CAD workstation to connect with the server. 

Common Errors & Solutions 

Often a quick look into the LMTools log file will identify possible issues with the current setup. It’s important to understand that the log file will flush upon restarting the license service however, so it’s worth copying and saving before commencing troubleshooting. I personally use the application NotePad++ for reviewing the log file contents. 
The errors below are fairly common, but are also usually easily resolved; 

  • [-4.132] 

This error indicates that although LMTools is online and communicating, there’s a problem with acquiring a license, such as; 

Incorrect license file Server Name or MAC address, Corrupt License File, All product licenses in use, Expired License. 

More recently, we are seeing this error more and more due to product licenses that have expired. Expired licenses show within the LMTools log, and you can also check expiration dates via the Autodesk License Parser website. 

  • [-15.570] 

Further to the Server Firewall hasn’t been configured as discussed previously, this error may also flag due to network congestion or high network latency. If either can’t be address, a workaround Windows Environment Variable may be used on the CAD workstation; 

Variable Name: FLEXLM_TIMEOUT 
Variable Value: 250000 

  • “Previous version of CAD can obtain a license, however the latest version doesn’t work” 

This is often due to an outdated version of LMTools being used. At time of writing, the current version is 11.16, which supports all Autodesk products including the 2020 release. Previous versions of LMTools won’t support the 2020 version.  

The license file should also be checked as well, as perhaps the old license file was used instead of the new license after LMtools was installed. 

Advanced Troubleshooting  

Sometimes installations and configurations simply don’t go to plan. If you need a hand with further troubleshooting or configuring your Autodesk Multi-User license setup then please reach out to A2K Technologies, either the Customer Care team or the day support staff can assist, and we treat all such licensing issues as an absolute priority.  

What we’ll need you to send us (if able); 

  • Error Codes or description of the issue 
  • LMTools Log File 
  • LMTools Status Enquiry (copy/paste the enquiry into a Notepad file) 
  • Current License File 

Email these details straight through to support, from which you can expect an automatic ticket number to be generated and reply emailed back, followed by a phone call from a staff member. 

You can also call through on the toll free phone number to either log or follow up on a ticket too; 

Australia: 1800 223 562 

New Zealand: 0508 232 797