ANSYS Student

ANSYS Student Products

ANSYS Student products are introductory software packages for engineering students who are interested in learning the fundamentals of simulation while gaining exposure to our state-of-the-art simulation workflows.

The renewable six-month product license is free and can be downloaded and used by students anywhere in the world. There are two student products:

  • AIM Student - Provides access to a version of ANSYS AIM Pro.
  • ANSYS Student - Provides access to versions of ANSYS Mechanical, ANSYS CFD, ANSYS Autodyn, ANSYS Workbench, and ANSYS DesignXplorer.

Both student products are limited only in the size of the problems that can be solved, and can be installed on any supported MS Windows 64-bit machine.

The ANSYS Student product licenses are for personal educational purposes. The analysis work performed with ANSYS Student must be non-proprietary, and the product may not be used for competitive analysis (such as benchmarking) or for any commercial work.

Self-guided technical support for the ANSYS Student products is provided through the Support Resources. The support includes installation videos, FAQs for troubleshooting help and several introductory tutorials that show you how to perform basic simulations. Please note that we do not provide online or face-to-face technical support for this free product. We advise you to follow our download and installation instructions very carefully.

Download now and learn the fundamentals of simulation while gaining experience on your way to becoming an engineering leaders of tomorrow.

The ANSYS Student products are problem-size limited versions of ANSYS AIM Pro, ANSYS Mechanical, ANSYS CFD, ANSYS Autodyn, ANSYS Workbench, and ANSYS DesignXplorer. The products are on MS Windows 64-bit machines.

Problem size limits:

AIM Student ANSYS Student
Structural Physics 100K nodes/elements 32K nodes/elements
Fluid physics 1 Million cells 512K cells/nodes
Electromagnetics Coming soon! N/A

Product data sheets

Terms of Use and Clickwrap Agreement

By selecting “Agree” below, you agree that: (1) The software license you are downloading is an Educational License and will be used solely by you for personal educational purposes; (2) The analysis work performed with the program(s) must be non-proprietary work; (3) The program(s) may not be used for competitive analysis (such as benchmarking) or for any commercial activity, including consulting; (4) The license does not include any Technical Enhancements or Technical Support beyond the self-guided support material provided on the Support Resources webpage; (5) U.S. export laws apply to this software and you are responsible for complying with those laws; (6) The Click Wrap Software License Agreement that will appear during installation of the software will govern this and any subsequent licenses downloaded through this student web page.

ANSYS Student Product Technical Support Policy

By selecting "Agree" below you are also acknowledging that we do not provide any online or face-to-face technical support for ANSYS Student products. We do provide the ANSYS Student product Installation Help and Support Resources sections, which includes a FAQ sheet for troubleshooting help and several how to, tech tips and introductory tutorials that show you how to perform basic simulations. We advise you to follow our download and installation instructions very carefully.

Select one of the options to continue below:



Before installing:

  • Ensure that your computer meets the technical requirements necessary to run the software. Please see the product data sheet for details.
  • Ensure that you have Administrator privileges for the computer you are installing this product on.
  • Uninstall any existing ANSYS, Inc. products present on your computer. The ANSYS Student installation will overwrite any existing installations.
  • Make sure that you have your license key available. This is a separate download covered in the "Free Download" section.
  • Please review our Installation Guide and FAQs.

For installing student products, see the installation videos or follow the installation steps given below in part 1, part 2, and part 3.

Installation Steps - Part 1 - ANSYS Student Product Installation:

  • Extract (Unzip) the downloaded installation files.
  • Run setup.exe from the extracted files. Right-click on setup.exe and select Run as Administrator.
  • Click the Install ANSYS, Inc. Products text.
  • Read and accept the click wrap to continue.
  • Click the Next button to accept the default values throughout the installation.
  • Important: Skip over the "Enter License Server Specification" step. DO NOT enter any port information or otherwise install the ANSYS LIcense Manager.
  • After the installation is completed, click Next and a message marked ***Important*** displays indicating that the installation is complete.
  • Check the survey box at the bottom if you wish to submit the survey.
  • Click the Exit button.
  • Your are now back to the Release Installation home page. Be sure to NOT select any other options as these aren't supported by the ANSYS Student license. Do not select License Manager Installation.
  • Click the Exit Button to close the installer.
  • The ANSYS Student software is now installed.
  • Next, follow the steps in Part 2 below.

Installation Steps - Part 2 - ANSYS License File Installation:

  1. Download the license file - ansys_student_<yyyymmdd>.lic - to your computer. The <yyyymmdd> portion of the filename indicates the expiration date of the license file.
  2. Extract the downloaded license file and note the location where you save it to:
    • We recommend moving the license file to C:\Program Files\ANSYS Inc\Shared Files\Licensing, but you can also put the license file on your desktop.
    • Do not put the license file in a Temp directory
    • Do not save this license file using the MS Word format.

  3. Set the ANSYSLMD_LICENSE_FILE environment variable to the location of the ansys_student_ .lic file, including the filename. For example:
    C:\Program Files\ANSYS Inc\Shared Files\Licensing\ansys_student_20160131.lic

    • Follow these steps to set an environment variable in MS Windows:
      • Open the Control Panel
      • Select System and Security
      • Select System
      • Select Advanced system settings
      • Click the Environment Variables button
      • Select the New button under System variables

        Student License File Dialogue

    • Note that there will be several environment variables with very similar names already present. Be careful to use this EXACT environment variable name.

  4. Next, follow the steps in Part 3 below.

Installation Steps - Part 3 - Running the ANSYS Student product:

After completing Parts 1 and 2 of the installation, we recommend rebooting your machine. Then the best way to run ANSYS Student is from the start menu.

  1. Go to the Start Menu and either select Workbench [version #] OR select All Programs, then select the ANSYS [version #] folder, and select Workbench [version #].
  2. The ANSYS Student Workbench project page will launch.
  3. Congratulations you are now ready to start using ANSYS Student!


If you run into any problems following the above instructions then be sure to review our Frequently Asked Questions.

This FAQ provides answers to general questions about ANSYS Student, as well as resolutions to common error messages that you may encounter. Use your browser's "Find" feature to search for keywords in this FAQ page.

Q1. Can I submit technical support requests, or otherwise obtain technical support for ANSYS Student?

We do not provide technical support for this product beyond this FAQ page, the product documentation included with the software, and the  Support Resources webpage.

Q2. Are there any training resources available for ANSYS Student?

The self-guided support material available on the  Student Resources includes some getting started and "how to" videos.

Q3. Why do I have to run the installer using Run as Administrator on Microsoft Windows 7 & 8?

Microsoft Windows 7 and 8 have higher internal security controls than previous versions of Windows. These controls are known to interfere with the installation and license setup of ANSYS products. Using Run as Administrator when you install the software avoids these problems.

Q4. Workbench starts, but why don't I see any (or just four default) tools available under Analysis or Component Systems?

This usually means that Workbench is unable to locate the license file. Try the following actions to find the file:

  • Confirm that the license file has been installed according to the Installation Instructions. If you installed ANSYS Student on Windows 7 or 8, ensure that you installed it using Run as Administrator.

  • Ensure ANSYSLMD_LICENSE_FILE variable points to the actual license file, not just the directory where they've saved it.

  • Rename the %APPDATA%\Ansys\v160 folder to %APPDATA%\Ansys\v160.old and restart Workbench.

  • Run C:\Program Files\Ansys Inc\v160\commonfiles\tools\win64\ProductConfig.exe, choose Install Required Prerequisites and Configure Products.

    Student FAQs - IPV6

  • Disable IPV6 as described in Question 6.

Q5. Why did my ANSYS Student license stop working?

The main reason for this is that your license has expired. The ANSYS Student license is valid for 6 months (if you are within 30 days of expiration, ANSYS Student warns you upon startup that you need to renew your license). You can easily renew your license by downloading the most current license file from the ANSYS Student download page and modifying your ANSYSLMD_LICENSE_FILE variable to point to the new license file.

Q6. What do I do if I receive one of the following error messages: "AnsysWBModule has stopped working"; "ANSYSWBU.exe Encountered a problem and needs to close.";or

"ANSYSWBU.exe Encountered a problem. A diagnostic file has been written…"?

Try the following to resolve the errors:

  1. Rename the %APPDATA%\Ansys\v160 folder to %APPDATA%\Ansys\v160.old and restart Workbench.

  2. Update your video card driver, as described in Question #9.

  3. Run C:\Program Files\Ansys Inc\v160\commonfiles\tools\win64\ProductConfig. exe, choose Install Required Prerequisites and Configure Products.

Q7. Why did I get the following error message: "Local server exited or could not read local server port ANSYSLI_LOCAL_PORT"?

The TEMP variable that defines the directory location for Window temporary files is set to a network drive or a location that is not writable. In the Windows Control Panel, choose System > Advanced System Settings > Environment Variables and reset the System variable TEMP to C:\Temp.

Q8. Why am I having one of the the following problems when I use ANSYS DesignModeler?

  • DesignModeler takes several minutes to open.
  • When DesignModeler opens, the dialog: ANSYS Workbench - Select desired length units does not display.
  • In Tools > Options panel > DesignModeler > Units, the panel shows two identical preference settings labeled Length Unit.

These symptoms are most likely to occur if Windows Defender is installed and running. There have been reports that Microsoft Windows Defender removes the localhost setting from the C:\Windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts file. See the instructions in FAQ Question 5.

Q9. When trying to open a simulation, I received an error message: "Mechanical editor is unable to load". However, the project page and DesignModeler opened without any problems.

This issue is usually resolved by updating your graphics driver. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. First locate your video card and driver information:
    1. Open the Windows Control Panel
    2. Navigate to Display > Settings > Advanced.
    3. Select Adapter (this will tell you what video card you are using).
    4. Select Properties > Driver (this will tell you what driver version you are using).

  2. After you have your video card and driver information, go to the vendor's web site and download a newer driver.

  3. Remove the existing driver:
    1. Open up the Windows Control Panel.
    2. Select Add/Remove Programs or Programs and Features (Microsoft Windows 7 and 8).
    3. Uninstall the NVIDIA or ATI Drivers.
    4. Reboot.
    5. Install the new driver you downloaded.
    6. Reboot again.

NOTE: It is very important that you follow these steps exactly, especially when removing the existing driver!

Q10. ANSYS Inc. has recently announced the availability of Release 17.2. When is the next release available?

The Student Product download is typically made available within 1 month of each commercial release.

Q11. Why did I get the following Mechanical Wizard error, similar to this Release 14.5 screenshot?

Student FAQs Security Settings

This could be related to your security settings. Please take a look at Control Panel >
Internet Options > Security. Adjust your security settings to allow ActiveX components to run in Internet Explorer.

Q12. Regarding high performance computing (HPC), what does support for up to 16 cores (SMP) mean?

Sixteen core Shared Memory Parallel (SMP) allows you to make use of up to 16 cores (any multi-core processor combinations up to 16 cores) when solving simulations on your laptop or local machine where you have the product installed. All of the SMP processor cores share the memory of a single machine, as opposed to distributed memory parallel (DMP) that uses multiple cores located in multiple machines. The number of SMP cores used is specified in the solver settings. Note that the ANSYS Student product license does not support distributed solutions (DANSYS) or MPI.

Q13. I have already installed an earlier release of ANSYS Student. Since a more recent release is now available, can I upgrade to this recent release?

Yes! Your existing license file will work, but you will need to download and install the latest ANSYS Student media. Please follow these steps:

  1. Uninstall the earlier release ANSYS Academic Student product. Make sure that you do not remove the ANSYS License Manager.

  2. Go to to the ANSYS Student download page and download the latest installation media.

  3. Extract the media and run the setup.exe file to install the latest release product.
    If you are installing on a Windows 7 or 8 system, be sure to right-click Run as Administrator. (See FAQ Question 3 for more information.)

  4. Follow the rest of the installation instructions on the  Product Download page.

Q14. When I have multiple ANSYS Workbench windows open, why do I receive an error message similar to the following (note the capability name could be different): "Capability CAD Interface - Parasolid does not exist in the ANSYS licensing pool."?

This problem occurs when you have changed the License Preferences setting from shared to not shared. The solution is to open License Preferences and select the shared setting. Alternatively you can rename %appdata%\ansys\v162 to v162.old and restart ANSYS Workbench (you may need to change the "v162" in the folder & filename if you are using a different version).

Q15. Why did I receive the following error when trying to open Mechanical via a Model or Setup cell in ANSYS Workbench: "The shared license is not available to perform the Geometry Attach operation."?

There are two possible solutions to resolve this:

  1. ANSYS DesignModeler is open with the geometry at the same time you are trying to open the geometry in Mechanical via the Model or Setup cell in ANSYS Work bench. You should make sure to close ANSYS DesignModeler before opening the Model or Setup cell.

  2. You have changed the License Preferences setting from "Shared" to "Not shared". The solution is to open License Preferences and select the shared setting. Alterna tively you can rename %appdata%\ansys\v162 to v162.old and restart ANSYS Workbench.

Q16. I accidentally installed the ANSYS License Manager, how do I uninstall?

Follow these steps to uninstall every trace of the ANSYS License Manager:

  1. All commands must be run in an administrator command prompt window. Go to the Windows start menu, type cmd and then right-click on the cmd.exe and select "Run as administrator."

  2. Stop the ANSYS, Inc. License Manager from the ANSYS License Management Center….Click on "View Status/Start/Stop License Manager" and click "STOP"

  3. Uninstall the ANSYS, Inc. License Manager service. You must use the following command:
    "C:\Program Files\ANSYS Inc\Shared Files\Licensing\winx64\ansysli_server" –k uninstall

  4. Uninstall the ANSYS Licensing Tomcat service. Use the following commands:
    sc stop "ANSYSLicensingTomcat"
    sc delete "ANSYSLicensingTomcat"

  5. Remove the ANSYS, Inc. License Manager folder from the Start menu.

  6. Remove the ANSYSLIC_DIR and the ANSYSLIC_SYSDIR environment variables, if set.

  7. Install the free product again following our installation instructions carefully.

Q17. After successfully installing ANSYS Student, selecting the "Help" menu results in nothing happening. How do I access the Help System?

For some systems the Help Viewer doesn't launch when selected from within ANSYS Student. The workaround is to go to Start Menu > All Programs > ANSYS 16.2 > Help > ANSYS Help 16.2.