Altium Designer's Standalone licensing allows you to effectively manage your own license through use of a Standalone licensing file (
*.alf). This file can be saved, copied and backed-up as required. The
.alf file is reusable on a home computer (in accordance with the EULA) simply by copying the file to a specific folder on that computer and then adding the file as part of Standalone License Configuration. You also have the ability to convert a Standalone license to a single-seat On-Demand license.
With a Standalone license, the only time you need to sign in to your Altium account (through the Altium portal), is when you initially activate your Standalone license, or if you want to convert it to an On-Demand license. Other than that, with this type of license, you really are working in a self-contained, offline fashion – the very definition of standalone.
The following sections take a look at the various options and commands available to you as a user of a Standalone license.
Whether you are accessing your Standalone license for the very first time, or you have inadvertently deleted the license from your computer (and have no backup of the associated license file), you will need to sign in to your Altium account in order to activate/reactivate the license. This, however, is a one-off event, after which you need not sign-in again from a licensing perspective.
Sign-in to your account through the secure Altium portal from Altium Designer's My Account page (DXP»My Account).
When you sign in to your account, you do so through an Altium portal. On the Altium side, a portal is simply a secure connection through to a specific Altium Account Management Server. Three such portals (servers) are available:
You can specify which portal to use for your Primary connection when accessing your account, and also two Backup portals – used, in order, should the Primary portal be unavailable for whatever reason. This is performed on the System – Account Management page of the Preferences dialog. Quick access to this page is provided by clicking on the Account Preferences link, in the top region of the My Account page. Simply use the available drop-down field to assign which portal to use for Primary, Backup 1 and Backup 2 respectively.
Once signed in, your Standalone license will be presented in a grid, within the Available Licenses region of the page. If any other licenses (or license types) are available to you, these will also be presented.
For a Standalone license, the following information is presented:
- Product Name – what is being licensed. The name typically reflects a feature set and release.
- Activation Code – the activation code for the license.
- Activated – reflects the activation state of the license. While not activated, the entry will display
-. After activation, the entry will change to
Activated. When in use by your installation of Altium Designer, the entry will display
Used by me.
- Expiry Date – the date at which the license will no longer be considered valid.
- Status – the current state of the license. This entry can be one of the following states:
- OK – license is in-date.
- Expired – license expiry date has been reached.
To activate a Standalone license that has not been previously activated, simply click on it in the grid, then click on the Activate option, in the area below the grid.
The Activated field for the license will change to
Used by me. In addition, the 'banner' for the Available Licenses region will change from
Available Licenses - Unlicensed to
Available Licenses - Licensed to AccountName – reflecting the account to which the license is associated. The text in the lower-left of the region will also update to reflect your license usage.
If you delete your Standalone license, then sign-in to your account, the Standalone license is still available to you, although you will no longer be using it. The Activated field will reflect the license's prior activation with the entry
Activated. To use the license again, either add the Standalone license file back in or, if you haven't made a backup of the file, simply reactivate the license, using either the Reactivate option on the My Account page, or by activating through the AltiumLive Dashboard.
When reactivating a Standalone license that has already been activated, a dialog will appear alerting you to this fact and warning that using the license again may conflict with another user on the network if they are using the same license. If you are sure that you are the only person using the license, click Yes to proceed with activation.
The Activated field will change to
Used by me. In addition, a history of activation can be viewed by clicking on the plus (+) symbol to the left of the license entry. This will show who activated the license, and on what date.
Having activated/reactivated your Standalone license, you are free to sign-out of your account and work offline with the license. This, after all, is the very nature of a Standalone license, and an aspect put to use by many.
When you sign out, the grid in the Available Licenses region of the My Account page will change from showing available
Standalone license(s), to showing the
Standalone – Offline license that you are currently using.
Backing up Your License File
With the Standalone license type, the onus is very much on you, the user, when it comes to management of the associated license file (
*.alf). To be able to use the license between two computers – for example to work between the office and home (though not running the two instances of Altium Designer simultaneously!) – you will need to have a copy of the license file to transfer it to the other computer. This requires first saving, or backing-up the file.
Backing-up the license file also means you will not have to sign-in to your account, and reactivate, should you accidentally delete the license file.
To create a back-up, simply select the Standalone license in the Available Licenses region and then click on the Save standalone license file option. Use the subsequent dialog to determine where to save the file.
Adding a Standalone License File
In accordance with the EULA, the Standalone license can also be installed on a home computer, so long as this second installation is never used simultaneously with the original installation. To do so, take a copy of your saved license file (
*.alf) to the target computer, then add the license file to the system using the Add standalone license file option.
The license will appear listed in the Available Licenses region as a
Standalone – Offline license.
Removing a Standalone License
To remove a Standalone license from a computer – essentially deleting the license file – simply select the Standalone license in the Available License region, then click on the Delete option. A confirmation dialog will appear – click Yes to proceed.
Converting to an On-Demand License
Main article: Using an On-Demand License
Altium Designer provides the ability to convert a Standalone license to an On-Demand license, giving you total flexibility over the type of license you wish to use. This process yields a single-seat On-Demand license, which you can then use in On-Demand or Roaming modes.
To convert a Standalone license to a single-seat On-Demand license, simply select the Standalone license in the Available Licenses region of the My Account page, then click on the Convert to on-demand option, in the area below the grid. The Altium Honor Code dialog will appear. The dialog essentially asks for your promise, under the Altium honor code, that you will not use, or allow others to use, the Standalone license file (
*.alf) after conversion. Read the text in the dialog carefully and, if you promise to honor the terms as stated – both in the dialog and the EULA – type "I Agree" in the available field. Then click the Convert button to proceed with the conversion.
The Available Licenses region will refresh to show the newly-converted On-Demand license. You can then choose how to use the license. For On-Demand mode, simply click the Use option. To roam with the license (Roaming mode), click the Roam option.
The expiration date of the On-Demand license is the same as that for the original Standalone license. The Expiry Date field for the On-Demand license will reflect this.