Sketchup Blog - News and Notes from the Sketchup folks

Licensing in SketchUp Pro 2015

We’re very proud of the things we’ve added and changed in SketchUp 2015. One of the changes that I’m particularly happy about is a completely revised licensing system. Since when did licensing become exciting? Well, it isn’t. But the licensing system used for SketchUp Pro 2014 and older was very dusty, to say the least. It needed a facelift so that we could take advantage of modern technology and solve a number of long-standing issues. Now, let’s take a peek at what the new licensing can do...

  • Cross-platform support. Microsoft Windows? Mac OS X? It doesn’t matter! Use the same license information on both platforms.

  • 30-day Trial. The 8-hour trial that SketchUp used in the past was quite sophisticated but not very clear. We applied SketchUp-simplicity to this one: 30 days. Simple.

  • Centralized Network License manager. For those of you who happen to manage a network license, the SketchUp Pro licensing server is hosted in the cloud. No more creating a shared folder on a server, setting specific permissions, generating a network license, and so on. We’ve taken care of that for you.

  • “Checkout” support (network licenses). Need to work on a plane or show a model to client in a remote location? Now you can check out a network license seat for offline use. Just be sure to do it before you go offline, though. 

  • WAN support (network licenses). Network licenses of old were more like LAN Licenses, because they only worked across a LAN. Now, with the network license manager in the cloud, your users only need access to the Internet.

  • Changing seat count without generating a new license (network licenses). So you found out that a 20-seat network license isn’t enough and you need to add another five seats. Before, we would generate a new serial number and you would have to go out and update the license within SketchUp Pro. Now, we make the change for you on the server and you don’t have to change a thing!

There’s one very important difference to note with regard to this new licensing technology: you’ll need to have an active Internet connection to add a license and remove a license from your computer. Drop a line to your IT folks that SketchUp needs access to the Internet via ports 5053 and 50530 just in case your network whitelists those kinds of things.

You can add your single-user SketchUp Pro license to any two computers that you use. But you need to be the one using SketchUp Pro -- hence, single-user license. And only one computer can run SketchUp Pro at a time. If you need to install SketchUp on your third computer, you’ll need to remove a license on one of the other computers first. To remove a license, open SketchUp then select Help > Welcome to SketchUp... > License > Remove License...

Lastly, if you see an error message while using the new license, check out this Knowledge Center article for some help resolving the problem. Or get in touch with us.

That’s it! The goal of licensing is to give you access to your favorite SketchUp Pro features then get the heck out of the way. If that’s your experience, then we’ve done our job and earned a slice of Trimble SketchUp cake:

Posted by Tommy Acierno, on behalf of the SketchUp team

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Hermanator said...

A few concerns with the new Cloud licensing: (1) How would an Admin monitor the current license usage? Is there a web portal to see who has a license checked out? (2) Did you fix the issue where if one user opens multiple SU sessions it pulls one license per session instead of one license per computer? and (3) How does an Admin control how long an Offline License can be checked out by a user?

SketchUp Team said...

Heya Hermanator,

I'd be happy to answer your questions.

1. At the moment, no. But we understand how important network license monitoring is for admins, so we'll keep looking into options.

2. We technically fixed this "multiple instances" issue in SketchUp Pro 2013, but we still heard about it every once in a while. But, yes - I expect this issue to be completely resolved since the license has a HostID which is tied to the computer.

3. The default length to check out a network license seat is seven days, but if that seems too short or too long, I'd love to hear more about your thoughts.


Hermanator said...

Thanks Tommy! To follow:

(1) It would be nice to have an customer portal with Admin sign-in at Trimble to monitor license use and off-line sign out -- with upgrade license purchasing links. Even better if it showed usage history for purchase planning.

(2) Currently running 2014 and the "multiple instance" issue is killing us! Glad to see it fixed in 2015.

(3) User more often "Want" rather than "Need". When there is peak usage and net licenses are scarce, I can already see users "Off-lining" licenses to "reserve" a license whether they use it or not, which would defeat the floating license model. That's why Admins need the ability to monitor and force an off-line license check-in.

Thanks for the Updates!

Unknown said...

So we can no longer do a silent install and have sketchup licensed. We have to install it then touch every machine in order to "activate" it....

This is terrible for anyone managing lots of machines with sketchup.

Seems like a compelling reason to not purchase an upgrade.

fuzzy said...

Michael, If I read the installation process correctly, you could very easily use GPO or a script to create and populate that folder on all computers before they even install SketchUp. I will be testing that out soon to see if it works.

I'm assuming you are in a windows enviroment

Gragost said...

Has the ability for administrators to monitor license usage been addressed yet?