Classic vs Subscription: What is the best option for extension developers?


I want to make sure my Extensions are compatible with Sketchup Pro 2018 but if I upgrade to the SketchUp Pro 2019 Subscription model then I will no longer have access to SketchUp Pro 2018 right?

How can I upgrade to SketchUp Pro 2019 and still be able to test my extensions in SketchUp Pro 2018?

Will Classic be a better option for us developers?

I don’t have problem testing with SketchUp 2017 because of MAKE but it will be nice for us developers to have SketchUp Make 2016, 2015, 2014, etc for testing Plugins.

Sometimes I am asked if my extensions are compatible with SketchUp versions below 2017 and the best thing I do is ask them to try SketchUp Make 2017.

Thanks in Advance!

WRONG. Your Pro 2018 license is perpetual. It can operate side-by-side with other SketchUp versions on the same computer.

However, if you install a newer version on a computer with an older versions installed, you afterward cannot move older versions to another computer. (Basically the license model is a one seat license, and M&S upgrades should not be misused to run on more than one seat.)

I would think so, especially if under the subscription model that older versions cease to operate after the latest version is installed and activated.

Clarification @Bryceosaurus ?

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Thank you DanRathbun!

I received an email with the following message…

Because you are up-to-date with our Maintenance & Support Program, you are entitled to a FREE license upgrade.

Then I am giving License Information to enter on SketchUp Classic 2019.

My question is did I just got SketchUp Classic 2019 for FREE?

If I enter the new license given in the email to SketchUp Classic 2019 then I don’t lose SketchUp Pro 2018 right? (Asking this again just in case)

Do I need to still pay my maintenance fee next month to keep SketchUp Classic 2019?

I ask this because I might have seen that if you choose Classic version then you don’t get price cut for next Sketchup version (2020) is this right?

Again Thanks in Advance!

Not quite, you paid for it in the M&S fee.

Yes. Each version of SketchUp is installed independently of others. I currently have versions back to SketchUp 8 installed so that I can check compatibility with old versions. The only risk is that it is not assured that an old version of SketchUp will work correctly on an OS version that was released later.

If your M&S agreement is going to expire, you will need to renew it to continue to get support and upgrades. You might contact customer support directly if you are unsure whether yours will expire.


Hey Dan and Rafael

Dan that is almost correct. Legally, the license is for the latest version received under the M&S program. As you stated when someone upgrades under the M&S program, they do lose the ability to install new instances of the older versions. However realize that there are lots of circumstances where folks have legitimate reasons to use an older versions so we are flexible here and we do not explicitly deactivate older versions after M&S upgrades. End users who need to install an older version should call us if they cannot license due to upgrading.

Developers should sign up for our developer program and can get access to older licenses for testing. Let me know if you need help signing up.



Everyone thanks for helping me out!

I will choose SketchUp Classic 2019 and pay for my M&S so I can get updates.

I am also excited to find out more about the developer program.

Again Thanks!

this is about classic license, I presume?
Or will I be able to run 2019 (granted that I have paid my subscription) when 2020 has arrived?

Actually meaning running two versions (for extension compatibility or whatever) on one machine?


Jack, that’s an excellent question. I had assumed the subscription would mean that you are always running the current version, that there would be no such thing as a second or older version under a subscription license. But maybe that’s wrong?


it certainly would be wrong, if the upgrade hinders the use of third party extensions…



Hey Mike

Correct, M&S is an element of the Classic license system. At this time there’s no automatic upgrades for the desktop apps for either subscriptions or classic. Upgrades & updates are effectively “opt in”.

The plan is to get to a point where subscribers are always on the latest and greatest version while classic customers will be prompted to install updates only. Upgrades = major version iterations while Updates = minor version iterations. We realize that lots of people rely on extensions so we’re not going to do anything that breaks anyone’s workflows. We’ll also be coming at this from both ends. Meaning technology on the application side and changes to our developer program to help keep extensions working as we release upgrades. That said, I’m a bit out of the loop as to what the plan is for extensions and how we’ll navigate this shift in upgrades. @ChrisFullmer is there anything you can add at this time?