Breadcrumb TourArchived: Adobe Software Licensing Changes

Last Updated: 02/11/2019

Adobe recently announced changes to Device Based Licensing for Adobe Creative Cloud (CC) products. This does not affect Named User licenses for Adobe CC products, nor does it affect other Adobe products such as Acrobat Pro.

Beginning early 2019, Adobe will eliminate Device Based Licensing and move to Shared Device Licensing. Device Based licenses are used in situations where multiple users may use the same computer and the software on the computer, for example in computer labs and shared student worker computer stations. Shared Device Licensing will perform the same function.


Changes with Immediate Impact

Do not upgrade Device Based licenses to Adobe CC 2019! Per Adobe, Creative Cloud 2019 is not available on current device licenses. Depending on how the computer is configured, users may be allowed to update the current version of Adobe CC (2019) on a Device Based-licensed computer to the newest version. This results in the computer’s license reverting to trial mode, because Adobe CC 2019 does not yet have the capability to support Device Based or Shared Device Licensing. The only solution is to reinstall Adobe CC 2018 using the Device Based licensing installer provided by OIT.

Named User licenses are not affected, so computers that operate on a Named User license can successfully update to Adobe CC 2019. This may result in file version issues if a user shared content created in a CC 2019 product with someone who uses a CC 2018 product. We do not yet know the extent of these issues. Due to this, we encourage users not to update to CC 2019 if possible. Alternately, when sharing content, save it in the CC 2018 version if that option is available.


Upcoming Changes

Adobe does not yet have Shared Device Licensing available, but expects that it will be available in early 2019. OIT will provide more information as we receive it.

All current Device Based licenses will cease functioning by December 31, 2019.

Migration to the new Shared Device Licensing, once it becomes available, must occur for ALL campus devices in the same 30-day window. (We define the 30-day window.) This must be a coordinated effort between all Device Based License administrators across campus. OIT Site Licensing will coordinate this effort and will communicate directly with every Device Based License administrator.


How is Shared Device Licensing different?

Adobe says the new Shared Device Licensing method will address some limitations of current Device Based Licenses, such as:

  • Users will have access to Adobe cloud storage linked to their Adobe account
  • Users will have access to Portfolio
  • Users will have access to new cloud apps when using entitled devices
  • “Simplified License Management” for administrators
  • Solves license conflict when Named Users attempt to use computers with a Device Based License

One significant change is that Adobe will eliminate single app Device Based Licenses. Only the full Adobe CC suite will be available as a Shared Device License.


What if I have problems or questions?

If you have problems with your Adobe CC software, please contact your normal IT support.

If you are a device administrator, and have licensing issues, please contact the IT Service Center at or call 303-735-4357 (5-HELP from a campus phone).