Frequent prompts for 'Manage Devices/Subscriptions'

I have read on the Technical issues category about a user with too many pcs installed error. As I’m the company’s IT admin, some of my users frequently received the ‘Manage Devices’ prompt when launching sketchup pro on their pcs. Usually is 1 or 2 users using at one time. My company has 3 licenses, so not all are utilized. Is kind of weird that we received this notification. So, as suggested on the Forums, I’ve ‘Deauthorized All Devices’ button to solve the issues. After a while, is ok but after some time like maybe a few weeks, it appears agin but on my other user pc, and sometime on 2 of my users pc. Automatically they did the ‘Deauthorized All Devices’ steps to resolve. Recently, my company received a Lawyer’s letter about my company breaches of agreement on SketchUp usage. It stated we have ‘93 unlicensed’ events, and my management is demanding an explanation for this. What is the main cause exactly? Why after I’ve ‘re-set’ the license/log-in issues, it happens again not once but a few times?

SketchUp can be activated 3 times by a single user. It might be multiple versions of SketchUp (2020/2021/2022) that consume the 3 activations or it might be that you’ve got a version of SketchUp installed on multiple devices ( for example ,2022 on a Laptop, 2021 on an office PC and 2022 on a 3rd machine)

  • usually systems like this use details about the machine such as the Mac address and HDD serial number in order to identify a machine. If you have a system that constantly changes this, then users will see that message each time they consume the 3 activations - requiring them to deauthorise again.

The subscriptions themselves are only licensed to a single user for the term of the subscription, if you have 3 subscriptions then you can only have 3 users with access to SketchUp. I presume that is what the letter is about - that it appears you are using 3 subscriptions across more than 3 people - this would also explain why you are burning through those activations constantly.

Hi Adam

Thanks for your explanation. As far as I know, I’ve only allowed my users to install one official version, in this case the latest version, on their office desktops. But, 2 of my users also have the version 2019 installed, but that was perpetual. They cited the need to retain older version due to some SketchUp extension is available to that versions etc. I’m not sure if that affect the activation? As perpetual are stand-alone and the license is permanently burned to the system.
As for their personal desktops/laptops, is not related to the company’s account, so as best practice, is it advisable to install on their 2nd devices as we occasionally work from home as well? Understand a user is entitled to 2 devices. My only concern is if they were to access on their home devices, they need to re-activate again or was logged out automatically.

It is possible for users to sign into the 2019 version and you would have both the perpetual license and the subscription active on the same machine - I’m not 100% sure, but I suspect this still still consume one of those 3 subscription activations even if the perpetual license was present on the machine.

You can remove old perpetual the license from their machine and return the activation back to inventory - it seems as if it might unnecessary for the same user to have both a subscription and the perpetual license running right now as their subscription will let them use 2019 anyway if they so choose.

The correct procedure to remove the perpetual license is here
Authorizing or Removing a License |SketchUp Help
As long as you do this - it is not “burned in”

The subscription is designed to let the single user use their SketchUp subscription on multiple devices and manage the authorisations themselves, so there is nothing there to stop them installing it on a home machine: however this is not going the solve the issue you are having with users apparently activating the subscription more often than expected.

If the subscriptions are not being used by more than a single person I would focus on why the system sees them activating it constantly :
Are you using a VPN or networking software that is using a virtual network device or using the software inside a VDE/VDI which is spinning up a different machine instance? This may be generating new MAC addresses periodically and using an activation even though you are on the same local machine.

Also :
Have the users compromised their subscription account? Perhaps they could change their password and activate multi factor authentication to ensure that only they can access it.

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I see, I think best is to remove the perpetual license to avoid the complications. Nope we do not use VPN, all our IP adds on our systems are set to static and connected to network via LAN. There had been no changes or movement to our hardware for the last 3-4 yrs so the MAC adds still remain. Yes, so far only the dedicated users are using the program, but occasionally I would log in as my admin credentials on their pc’s to do routine maintenance and run checks on programs. So as another user whom log in, I don’t think this will affect users profile settings? But, I do agree maybe is better to change their passwords and see how it goes.

You may want to check the users’ installations have the correct permission : the activation data is stored in one of the windows roaming folders : I’ve seen it where these folders get deleted after each session in certain IT environments.

right, will check on those as well. Thanks anyway for your advice, hope these steps will resolve the issues.

And, my local reseller called me to explain likely reasons for the ‘unlicensed’ events is due to my users editing files to and fro from the official office version to the unofficial version, aka pirated version. So once a file is edited in the unofficial version, then open or edited in the official version is counted as ‘unlicensed event’. I suspect because from version 2020 onwards, Sketchup claims it had a built-in licensing metering system to detect fraud.