Frequently Asked Questions

Software piracy

What is software piracy?

Software piracy occurs when one or more of the following happen: 

  • Software is modified or hacked
  • Keys or accounts are copied or sold
  • Usage does not comply with the licensing terms of use – for example, software is copied or used on more computers than authorized by its license 

Software piracy exposes businesses and consumers to security threats like malware and can lead to decreased efficiencies in organizations. Only genuine, legally licensed Autodesk software is warranted and supported by Autodesk with access to the latest features, security updates, previous versions and more. 

What are the risks of using nonvalid software?

Using nonvalid software poses risks for individuals and organizations. Nonvalid software may have been modified and/or may include malicious code, leading to issues such as: 

  • Increased risk of exposure to malware that can destroy or compromise data, including your work 
  • Increased chance of the software not functioning correctly, or failing completely, which may cause safety, quality or integrity issues for your designs, processes, products or structures 
  • Limited access to customer support, upgrades, technical documentation, and more

Using nonvalid software also puts you and your company at risk of copyright infringement or other potential legal claims which may lead to civil penalties or criminal prosecution. 

What is genuine Autodesk software?

Genuine Autodesk software is legally licensed software purchased directly from Autodesk or an Autodesk Authorized Partner. Genuine Autodesk software will work per the product documentation and Autodesk’s Terms of Use and is free from the vulnerabilities that may be found in nonvalid software.

If I have nonvalid software, what should I do?

Autodesk recommends uninstalling the nonvalid software and purchasing genuine software directly from Autodesk or an Autodesk Authorized Partner. If you have information regarding a seller of nonvalid software, you can submit a report to Autodesk to take action.

How could I have ended up with nonvalid software?

Unfortunately, it is easy to unknowingly purchase nonvalid software. Unauthorized sellers often pose as authorized resellers and sell nonvalid software at deep discounts. Other sellers bundle nonvalid software with computer hardware. Always buy Autodesk software either directly from or from an Autodesk Authorized Partner.

Are there legal risks to using nonvalid Autodesk software?

Using nonvalid software is an act of copyright infringement which may result in both civil and criminal penalties. Autodesk’s Terms of Use requires all customers to use Autodesk software in compliance with all applicable laws and further prohibits any act of unauthorized use, access or reproduction.

How can I tell if I am using genuine software? How can Autodesk help?

There are several different options for individuals and organizations to check the status of their software. Implementing software management practices will provide insight into which licenses are in use. Additionally, Autodesk may send notifications to users of nonvalid software and, in accordance with Autodesk’s Terms of Use, may conduct audits.

Can education or student versions of Autodesk software be used for commercial purposes?

No. Autodesk’s education and student licenses cannot be used for commercial, professional, commercial training, or other for-profit purposes. If you are using education or student versions for commercial purposes, visit for options on how to purchase the appropriate product.

How can I report the suspected use of nonvalid Autodesk software?

Suspected use of nonvalid software can be reported anonymously here.

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Audits or Software License Reviews

How does Autodesk decide when to conduct an audit or Software License Review?

A certain number of Autodesk subscribers are contacted each year to ensure compliance with Autodesk’s Terms of Use. Audits or Software License Reviews can also help customers evaluate and maximize their utilization of their Autodesk subscriptions. Customers are selected for audits or Software License Reviews based on a range of criteria including subscription registration and activation information.

How do I know if my organization has been selected for an audit or Software License Review?

Autodesk will contact customers who have been selected for an audit or Software License Review and involve the customer throughout the process from initial investigation to resolution.

What is the Autodesk Inventory Tool?

The Autodesk Inventory Tool (AIT) is an authorized Autodesk tool that scans your devices to inventory all Autodesk product installation and use.

What are the general system requirements to run AIT?

AIT runs on a Windows machine that has Microsoft .NET Framework v4.5.2 or later installed and uses Microsoft WMI (Windows Management Instrumentation) to communicate with Windows devices to collect inventory data.  

AIT needs network access to each Windows device that will be scanned, in addition to the relevant credential to authenticate with the device, and sufficient permissions to query WMI. Windows firewalls should be configured to permit WMI/SMB communication.  AIT can also be configured to run on individual devices and automated through inventory tools like Microsoft System Center. 

What information does AIT collect?

AIT collects the following information from Windows devices:  

  • Device hardware and configuration information 
  • Windows Operating System information
  • Installed Autodesk software (MSI Installs)
  • Software install/uninstall log for Autodesk software
  • License data for Autodesk software
  • Last used data for Autodesk software 

What makes AIT an effective tool?

  • Instant scanning option for assets not captured by current systems 
  • Agentless solution 
  • Enrich current systems unable to discern Autodesk product license information
  • Fully configurable to ensure speed of results with minimal network impact
  • Can be fully automated for persistent or single scan option
  • No additional database requirements
  • On-premise solution
  • All results are viewable in plain text format before sending to Autodesk 
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Managing your software

What are the benefits of managing my Autodesk software assets?

Smart software management practices can help your business manage complex licenses and prevent noncompliance. It can also help save you money by identifying over or under-deployment of licenses. Software management isn't just about avoiding noncompliance. It helps protect your work, ensure productivity, and is smart business.

What are some common software management mistakes?

  • Thinking all software license agreements / terms of use are the same
  • Employees downloading nonvalid software
  • Reusing machines without cleaning them first
  • Sharing logins
  • Letting people / departments buy their own software

Can Autodesk help me manage my software assets?

Yes, visit Manage Your Software to learn more. You may also speak with one of our customer support specialists for guidance on effective software management strategies.