Monday, April 5, 2010

Find and download your Autodesk upgrade.

Since Autodesk instituted their new, greener downloadable upgrades for Subscription customers, we've received many inquiries about the Subscription download site. So I thought I'd help everyone out here with a quick blog. Here's what I find works best on my systems, if it tells me it's going to take over 2 hours I abort it and try again later. Sometimes even using a different machine is better.

First, you'll need to do a bit of preparation:
  • Use Internet Explorer (IE) 7 - this has been what works *best* (just say no to IE6!), however an older version may work and my IE 8 seems to work fine too.
  • If you have any scanning software (anti-virus or anti-spyware) you want to disable it at this time.
  • Exit all programs (except IE)
  • Turn off your pop-up blockers (better yet, add the domain to the accepted list).

And here's the short version:
  1. Login to the subscription website at:
  2. Click the "Get your Upgrade" link
  3. Find and click the hyperlink for the product you want to download and install (Ex: AutoCAD 2011 English)
  4. Chose the correct architecture (32-bit or 64-bit)
  5. Another window should "pop-up" click the "Download Now" link to download using the download manager (this is quicker than using the "unassisted download" method-if you are forced to use the unassisted download do not use the Run option).
  6. Put it somewhere easy to find
  7. When the download manager comes up click Details to see how far along it is

Now the picture version, it can be helpful!
Once you're prepared and logged in, you should see something like this.

Now your list or programs will be different but you still click the hyperlink for the product you want.

Chose your architecture. If you don't know what it is, right click your My Computer icon and go to Properties, if it does not say 64-bit somewhere on the page then it's most likely 32-bit.

The best option is to use the "download now" as this uses the download manager and is optimized for speed. Again, if you are forced to use the unassisted download method do not click Run. Now click to Save and put it somewhere easy to find.

I like using the Details button to view a status bar and a little more information about how its coming along. If it tells me it will take more than 2 hours I typically cancel it and either try it on another machine or wait until a later time that has less network/internet traffic.

Autodesk has posted a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page at:

Here are some of them:
How many times can I download the software?
You can download the software as many times as you need. This allows you to download multiple versions or from multiple locations. The Download Log for each product records each download, for your reference.

What can I do to speed up my download?
Larger files such as Autodesk products can take several minutes or potentially hours to download, depending on your internet connection speed. Some customers find it easier to download their products during times of low network traffic such as late in the day or early in the morning. Using the Download Manager also ensures that downloads occur as quickly as possible. If your download will take minutes or hours, you can always continue with other work while your download completes in the background.

If needed, there is also a link where you can request a DVD or CD (see the left sidebar menu). Now, what if you order a DVD, can you still download too? Yes. Your serial number controls how many seats you get to register and activate or receive in a network license file. If you activate a standalone too many times the system will tell you. Check your license agreement, it seems there is something new with each new version!

Once downloaded, run the executable (*.exe) and it should extract all the files to c:\autodesk\ into a folder that basically has the same name as the downloaded file (that is the default, however you can change the location). Once all the files are extracted it will automatically kick off the installer for you.

If you need assistance with the above process, please contact your IT department or the Avatech National Support Center at 800-808-7645 (please have your support contract number handy).

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