Download and install FAQ for educational institutions (Academic Resource Center)

Aug 7, 2014


Answers to frequently asked questions about how educational institutions can download, install, and activate software obtained through the Autodesk Academic Resource Center (ARC).



What versions of software do you provide on ARC portal?

Autodesk Academic Resource Center (ARC) provides products for the current version and three versions back. Newer versions are made available when they are commercially available.

All downloads offered through the Autodesk Academic Resource Center website can be found on the Software tab in your account.

What Mac versions are available for download on ARC?

Currently, the Autodesk Academic Resource Center (ARC) offers only Windows and some Mac versions of the product, such as AutoCAD for Mac, Sketchbook Pro for Enterprise, Maya and Smoke.

What is the difference between a multi-seat stand-alone and a network license?

A multi-seat stand-alone license supports a specific number of users, allowing you to install, register, and activate one or more Autodesk products on several computers using a single serial number. Network connectivity is not required to run the software.

Network licenses are ideal for large organizations that require many individuals to access and use Autodesk software from multiple locations. They require a server and network connectivity to distribute licenses. See  Choosing a Network License Server Model for your Autodesk Product.

What training and support does Autodesk offer?

Autodesk answers many questions in our Autodesk support portal. Authorized Academic Partners offer industry-relevant learning content, training, support, developmental services, and programs, tailored to your academic program.


How do I download software from ARC?

Autodesk Academic Resource Center (ARC) offers a choice of download methods:

How do I prepare my system for download and installation?

You can use this Download Checklist:

  1. Check System Requirements (such as graphics card and RAM) and select the version that will fulfill minimum system requirement to install and run the product successfully.
  2. Check the space available on the drive.
  3. Check Internet connectivity, as slow internet speed takes more time to download.
  4. Turn off Firewall and antivirus programs to prevent file corruption.
  5. Check browser settings.

If you have problems with the download, see

Mozilla: What to do if you can't download or save files

Chrome:Download a file
Internet Explorer: Internet Explorer Download Problems

Do I need to download the each software product separately or is a single installer available to download the Suite?

Autodesk Academic Resource Center (ARC) does not provide single installer for downloading the Suite. ARC provides licenses for the Suite but you will need to download each product included in the Suite individually.

My download speed is too slow in school. Can I obtain the installation DVDs from Autodesk?

No. The Autodesk Academic Resource Center offers free software by download only. However, our download manager can resume a file transfer from the position it stopped last time, sp you don’t need to worry about restarting the download from the beginning if you need to disconnect your network before the download completes.

Note: It may take some time to download over a slow connection.

I encountered an error during download.

  • Location Error - Download is not available in some Countries

If you see this error message, you need to download the product using the Virtual Agent.

See: Location error - Download request (forum posting)
See: Can't download AutoCAD 2014

  • Product download consists of multiple files. At least one file is missing or has not been downloaded yet.

See: Inventor 2014  missing file
Note: You can also download the product from the Virtual Agent.

  • Download Aborted (Error: 0x250000ff)

See: Download error (forum posting)



How do I install the software?

The Autodesk support portal provides installation guides and videos to help install the software.


How do I install Autodesk software on multiple computers?

A deployment provides an efficient way to install one or more Autodesk products with a standard configuration on multiple computers. The files required for the installation process are stored on the network in an administrative image, in a folder to which all users have shared access. To install the products, users navigate to the deployment folder and double-click an installer shortcut (.LNK file).

See: Network Deployment (Network Administrator's Guide)

In addition to standard deployments, alternative methods of distributing Autodesk programs on Windows are available.

How do I prepare to Install?

For information about getting ready to install, see How to prepare your system before installing Autodesk software

What if I need technical help installing the software?

If you do not have administrative access to the computers where the software will be installed, you can add a technical contact to your ARC account to manage download and installation. For example, a faculty member may add a technical support contact to download and install software requested by the faculty member. Support services are available for hire through our Authorized Academic Partners.

Why do I need to activate a product after installation?

Activation verifies for Autodesk and for you as a license holder that your Autodesk product is installed on an eligible computer. The activation process improves license security and management. For example, it helps ensure that an educational multi-seat stand-alone license is not in use by more than the authorized number of users.

Why do I have more than one serial number?

You may request as many seats as your educational institution requires, but they are delivered in increments of 125 seats.

To merge multiple serial numbers into one, complete this online form: Get Help Activating Your License

Can I add licenses with different serial numbers to the same license server?

Yes. Multiple licenses for the same product and version, e.g., 125 licenses of AutoCAD 2015 and an additional 20 licenses of AutoCAD 2015, should not be combined in the same license file. Unless they were issued with the same date stamp, a newer license will supersede an older license for the same product and version, leaving you with only the newest licenses being available.

You must generate (issue) all the licenses on the same date. 

  1. Get all your serial numbers from the ARC.
  2. Generate the licenses on the same day.
  3. Combine the licenses using Notepad into one master file.
  4. Check it using

How do I remove all Autodesk products from a Windows system?

See: How to remove all Autodesk products from a Windows system