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) by copying the file to a specific folder on that computer and then adding the file as part of Standalone License Configuration.
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 that license through Altium Designer. During this process information about your PC is gathered, this is only done to ensure that the license is being used in accordance with the EULA. Other than that, once this type of license has been activated you can work 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, and from the perspective of license activation through Altium Designer.
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 through the secure Altium portal, 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.
For convenience, controls for account access are presented at the top of the License Management page (accessed by clicking the control at the top-right of the workspace then choosing the Licenses command from the menu). Click the Sign in link to access the Sign in dialog. Use this dialog to enter your AltiumLive Account Credentials then click OK.
The Connection, Sign in and portal Server details are all available on the System - Account Management page of the Preferences dialog. This page can be quickly accessed by clicking the Account Preferences link in the License Management view. Alternatively, access the Preferences dialog (click on the control at the top-right of the workspace) and browse to the page within the System folder.
Once signed in, the Available Licenses region of the page will automatically present the specific licenses - On-Demand and Standalone - available to you for use.
In the example image below, Standalone licenses are listed and are available for the currently signed-in user.
For each Standalone license, the following information is presented:
-". After activation, the entry will display
Activated. When in use by your installation of Altium Designer, the entry will display
Used by me.
From within Altium Designer, the easiest way to activate a Standalone license that has not been previously activated, is to:
With a license in use, the following changes will occur:
Used by me.
Available Licenses - Unlicensedto
Available Licenses - Licensed to <AccountName>. License subscription valid to <SubscriptionExpiryDate>.- reflecting the account to which the license is associated, and the expiry of the current subscription associated to, and purchased for, that license.
Having activated 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 License Management page will change from showing available
Standalone license(s), to showing the
Standalone – Offline license that you are currently using.
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, select the Standalone license in the Available Licenses region then click on the Save standalone license file link. Use the subsequent dialog to determine where to save the 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 link, located below the Available Licenses grid.
You do not need to sign-in to use the Standalone license on the other computer - just add the license file and continue working offline with the license. The license will appear listed in the Available Licenses region as a
Standalone – Offline license.
To remove a Standalone license from a computer - essentially deleting the license file - simply select the Standalone license in the Available Licenses grid, then click on the Delete link in the area below the grid, or right-click and choose the Delete command from the context menu. A confirmation dialog will appear - click Yes to proceed.
If you delete your Standalone license, then sign-in to your Altium 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 back-up of the file, simply reactivate the license, using one of the following methods:
When reactivating a Standalone license within Altium Designer, and that license 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 arrow () symbol to the left of the license entry. This will show who activated the license, and on what date.
If you are actively using a Standalone license, disconnecting from Altium will not affect the license, in the sense that it is already activated and in use. Remember that being totally disconnected from Altium means having enabled the connection option No, I wish to remain disconnected from Altium, on the System - Account Management page of the Preferences dialog.
Irrespective of whether you are signed in or working offline with the license, simply disconnect and carry on working in true standalone fashion. However, if 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 activate (reactivate) the license. This can be done, while disconnected from Altium, in the following two ways:
To activate/reactivate your Standalone license from within Altium Designer: