Fixed License Troubleshooting

Liz Sanderson
Liz Sanderson
  • Updated

FME Version

  • FME 2021.2

Initial Steps

The steps below are for troubleshooting fixed licenses for FME. Before proceeding confirm that you are licensing FME with a fixed license and not a floating license. If you are having trouble with a floating FME license please see this article.

Content Overview

License Installation Help

I need to request a license

  • To obtain your license file run the FME Licensing Assistant* where you can enter your serial number. FixedLicense.png
  • If you do not have a serial number, please contact your account manager or
  • If you have already requested your license file and have not received it there may have been an issue with our automatic license delivery. Please send an email to with your name, company name, serial number, and registration key**


I have a license file and I need to install my fixed license

To install the license file run the FME Licensing Assistant*.

2021.2 or newer:
If you are running FME 2021.2 or newer, expand Manual Licensing,  click Select License File, then browse to where the license file is located or paste in the content of the file.

FME 2012 - FME 2021.1
If you are running FME 2012 to FME 2021.1, select Install a license file provided by Safe Software.



The Licensing Assistant fails with the "Unable to create local license files" error message

This error indicated the Licensing Assistant was not run as Administrator. Run the Licensing Assistant as an administrator by going to Programs > FME Desktop > Utilities, right-click on FME Licensing Assistant where you can select Run as Administrator. It may also help to delete and pre-existing licenses from the directory <FME>\licenses\

I have installed my license but I still cannot run FME Workbench

  • Do you get the message "License not valid on this computer" or similar?

    • Ensure that your machine key matches the key in your license file. Open your license file found here <FME>\licenses\fme_license.fmelic in a text editor such as Notepad. You will see a line labeled MACHINE CODE. The code shown here must match exactly your registration key shown on the bottom left of the Licensing Assistant*. If they do not match you will need to request another license – please see the steps for requesting a license above. You cannot edit a license file directly. Note that on virtual machines and cloud-based machines the machine key may change with underlying hardware changes. Please see the article FME Desktop on Amazon AWS EC2 or Other Cloud Virtual Machines.

  • Does it appear that your license has expired?
    • Ensure you have installed your permanent license. If you have not received your permanent license you may need to request it – see the steps above for requesting a license. A temporary license may also stop working if you have changed the time and date settings on your computer and you will need to contact your account manager to request a new license.
  • Do you get the message "Duplicate license file.”?
    • At times an unlicensed FME will try to contact our licensing server to see if there is a license available for that serial number. If so it will automatically license itself. The above error message is caused when you try to manually license FME using the same license it has already automatically obtained for itself. It is not an error and FME should still run correctly.
  • Do you see the message "FME Licensing Notice Your current license is AutoDesk Map. This application cannot be used with current license..."? 
    • You may be using a Training or Generic license. Using your file explorer navigate to the licenses directory inside your FME install directory:<FMEInstall>\licenses. Delete every file in this directory except the file fme_license.fmelic. Restart FME Workbench or the FME application you were attempting to use.
  • Do you see the message "Administrator permissions are required to license FME..." .
    • The licensing assistant may need to be run with elevated privileges. Run the Licensing Wizard as Adminstrator by going to Programs > FME Desktop > Utilities and right-click on FME Licensing Assistant where you can select Run as Administrator
  • If you have confirmed the machine key matches your license file and still cannot license FME or you see the error code -500 or -501 in rare cases this may because of registry entry blocking your license.
    • Run regedit from the window Run box and look for the key here: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Safe Software Inc.\LICENSE. Delete the key called LICENSE.
  • Error message "License quota exceeded...".
  • Do you see an error not shown?


FME is licensed but I am still having licensing trouble

  • Are you having trouble with a specific format that you cannot see in the format list or FME cannot read or write to it?
    • Some formats in FME require a higher level of licensing and some formats are provided by 3rd party vendors. Also, some formats require another application to be installed. In particular reading/writing Esri Geodatabase requires a licensed ArcGIS installation and GeoMedia Access Warehouse writing requires a licensed GeoMedia installation. Please see this page for a complete list of formats and required helper applications. If you would like to upgrade your FME to a higher level in order to use a specific format please contact your account manager or
  • Are you experiencing a problem not listed?


  • *To Run the FME Licensing Assistant or Wizard To Run the FME Licensing Assistant go to Start > Programs > FME Desktop > FME Licensing Assistant. In previous versions of FME, this is also known as the FME Licensing Wizard and may be found in a slightly different location.
  • **To Obtain the Registration Key To obtain your registration key start the FME Licensing Assistant (see above). The registration key will appear on the lower-left corner of the dialog. It can also be obtained by clicking Help – About – More Info in an FME Application.

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