Resources: Volume Licensing Software in Stanford Express

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Volume Licensing Software and Purchases

Stanford University participates in volume licensing program for education called the Contractual Licensing Program (CLP). Volume licensed licensed software can only be purchased by Stanford departments via a Stanford University purchase order. The licenses cannot be sold or transferred to individuals or purchased with a Purchasing Card.

Under the CLP, you purchase licenses and media (CD or DVD) separately. Both can be purchased through Stanford Express.

Each license gives you the right to install and use the product on one machine so you need to purchase one license for each machine you are installing on, but just one CD/DVD to do all the licensed installations. For example, if your department owns multiple licenses, you just need one CD/DVD to do all the licensed installations.

After placing the order using Stanford Express, your product key will be emailed to you automatically the morning after your PO is approved. The Financial Support Center can assist you with immediate volume license retrieval only if needed.

Any CDs/DVDs that you order will be shipped directly from the manufacturer, and should arrive about a week after your order is placed. Under CLP, you must use volume licensing media to install. Downloads are not permitted.

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License Types and Definitions

License Types

  • License (Full New license):  Purchase this if you have never owned the software product before, or if you need to upgrade to the newest version.
  • Upgrade License
    • Adobe
      Under the CLP, Adobe doesn't offer upgrade licenses. You need to purchase a full new license to upgrade to the newest version.
    • Microsoft
      Microsoft only offers upgrade licenses for Windows. This license grants the right to upgrade any licensed operating system to the current or older version of the Windows operating system (Linux and other freeware/shareware operating systems are not licensed and do not qualify for the upgrade.) For other products, you will need to purchase a full new license to upgrade to the newest version.
  • Concurrent License

    • Adobe
      Adobe does not does not sell concurrent licenses. However, Stanford Express's Software vendor may offer it.
    • Microsoft
      Microsoft does not does not sell concurrent licenses.


  • Academic Package:  Contains everything in the retail package, but sold at a discount with proof of academic affiliation. May include special materials geared to students.
  • CD Set (or DVD):  The CD or DVD are purchased separately from the licenses. You only need one CD to do all your licensed installations.
  • Doc Set:  The Documentation Set is purchased separately from the licenses. All the applications have help files, but the Documentation Set may either be a book or an additional CD with more information. The documentation set is optional.
  • Retail Package / Boxed Package:  A retail package is a full-priced boxed version of the application. It includes a license to install on one machine, a CD, and sometimes additional documentation.
  • UE:  Universal English
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Learn About Your Rights

Downgrade Rights

Your license may include downgrade rights (the right to install an older version of the same product, instead of the version that you purchased) but you will need to request a product key for the older version. Email the Financial Support Center to obtain an older product key, and mention your PO number.

Product Use Rights (Software for Faculty / Staff Home use)

Product Use Rights allow use on a secondary device under the same license for the same person. The two devices cannot be used simultaneously. When you leave Stanford, you must remove the software from the secondary device. (Stanford owns the non-transferable license.)


If your department has purchased Microsoft Windows or non-application licenses such as developer or server products, each computer must be individually licensed for its own operating system. So, if you buy a license to upgrade your Windows operating system, that upgrade can only be installed on one machine, and it must be a Stanford-owned machine.

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Keeping Track of Your Software Licenses

It is the department's responsibility to make sure that they are appropriately licensed for the software that they install or use. Your purchase order from Stanford Express is your proof of license for volume licensing purchases.

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Registration / Technical Support

With the CLP, you will not be able to register the product or access technical support. You may find help:


  • Check the Product Support Centers on the Adobe web site. It is a very robust database of information posted for commonly reported problems on all products.
  • For a normal query (not technical support), call Adobe Volume Licensing number: 1-800-443-8158. You need to have your license serial number available.

Or contact Stanford ITS for technical support.

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