Create packages using Admin Console | InDesign Server

Learn how to create and deploy InDesign Server packages using Admin Console.

InDesign Server supports creating packages using the Online and Offline activation methods. The online activation method is the simplest licensing method to deploy for versions 15.1.1 and above. The offline activation method is available from version 17.0 onwards for select customers only.

Your license is valid till the contract end date. Information transmitted from Adobe servers: Signed license specific to machine ID. 

Install/uninstall scenarios

InDesign Server must be activated before it can be used. If the computer is online, activation is done automatically when you install. 

Create Online and Offline activation for InDesign Server package

Learn the steps to create Online and Offline activation InDesign Server packages and deploy them. After deploying, you can learn how to remove the licenses, for example, machines that are no longer in use or if you must redeploy the license. 

You must have access to the Adobe Admin Console and the new FRL SKUs. If you do not have the FRL SKUs, contact your account manager for assistance.

Note: For Online activation, check-out steps 1 to 10. For Offline activation, leaving out step 8, check-out steps 1 to 7, 9 and 10. 

  1. Log in to the Admin Console. From the upper-right corner, search and apply the organization that has InDesign Server.
  2. Navigate to Packages > Packages. The history of all packages created by all admins in your organization is displayed.

   3. Click Create a Package.

   4. In the screen that appears, select your activation method as Online or Offline, and click Next. For more information, see Feature Restricted Licensing - Online and Feature Restricted Licensing - Offline.



   5. In the Entitlements step, choose the required entitlement, and click Next
       Note: The entitlement options will change depending on the Online or Offline activation chosen in step 4.


6.  In the System step, select the required options and click Next.

  • Choose a Platform: Choose Mac OS or Windows 64-bit operating system.
  • Language: Select the language in which you want to create the package.
  • Use OS Locale: Enables you to create a package that deploys in the OS language of client machine. In which case, the OS language is the default fallback language in which the package is deployed.

7.  In the Choose Apps step, you can choose whether to build a License-only package or a package that also includes the InDesign Server application. 

Type of package


How to...

License-only package

Create this package if the client machines already have InDesign Server installed. Later, you can simply license the installed application. 

From Available Applications, add only the License File to Selected Applications.

Apps-only package

Create this package if the client machine is already licensed with a Feature Restricted Licensing - Online or Offline license. Then, install InDesign Server on the machine.

From Available Applications, add InDesign Server to Selected Applications. Don't add the License File.

Package containing apps and license

Create this package to install and license InDesign Server.

From Available Applications, add InDesign Server and the License File to Selected Applications.

choose license-only

Select Show older versions to display a list of previous versions of the apps. Enterprise admins can view more versions that don't receive security or feature updates by selecting Available application versions in package preferences (Admin Console > Packages > Preferences). For more information, see Packaging apps using Admin Console.

To know what versions are supported for your Creative Cloud plan, review the Creative Cloud Support policy

  • Adobe Bridge and Adobe Media Encoder are optional apps, you need not choose these apps to use InDesign Server.  
  • It doesn’t matter if your version of InDesign Server in the Available Applications box is different from the version (16.0) in the above screenshot.

After you're done with your selections, click Next.

8.  In the Options step, select the required option and click Next

     Note: This step is required only for Online activation method.

License activation options

Choose how clients will send information to Adobe’s licensing servers

Authorize Adobe License server by DNS name(default): Allow traffic to pass through your firewall to

Authorize Adobe License server by fixed IP address: Allow traffic to pass through your firewall to and the fixed IPs listed in the License activation options screen.

The default domain has a non-static IP behind it, while the new domain will point to one among the list of static IPs in the License activation options screen. The second option provides more control to the customer in managing outgoing network traffic. 

License activation options

Management options

  • Contact Adobe through a reverse proxy: This option enables license activation via a reverse proxy. The client machines will look to the entered endpoint to activate their licenses. You must ensure that you have pointed your reverse proxy to the correct endpoint for license activation to complete successfully.
    • If you've chosen to Authorize Adobe License server by DNS name, point your reverse proxy to
    • However, if you've chosen to Authorize Adobe License server by fixed IP address, point your reverse proxy to
  • Enable Remote Update Manager: Run the updater remotely on the client machine as an administrator. For more information, see Remote Update Manager.
  • Redirect to internal Adobe update server: Redirect all updates for this package to an internal update server. The details of the internal server are specified in an override XML under Packages > Preferences in the Admin Console. For more information, see Preferences.
  • Install package to custom install directory: Install the apps in this package to a custom installation directory. The directory is defined under Packages > Preferences in the Admin Console. For more information, see Preferences.

Management options

9.  In the Finalize step, in the Package Name box, enter the name for the package.

Review the included applications and configuration for this package before building the package.

Build package

10.  Click Build Package.

Watch the build status of the package in the Status column on the Packages pane.

If the package is built successfully, it displays the Download link in the Availability column.

A package is available in the Admin Console for up to three days. To check the time remaining to download the package, click the row item for the package to display the package details.

Build package details

To download and distribute the package, click Download.

After you create the Feature Restricted Licensing - Online or Offline package, you must set up the end-user machines with the license. To learn more about deploying packages, update or remove licenses and a list of FAQs, see the FRL Deployment Guide.

 NoteIf you are creating macOS packages, the Adobe Package Downloader is downloaded to your computer. Open and run to complete download of package. For further details, see here.

Install licenses for license-only packages

After you create a license-only package in the Admin Console, follow these steps to install this license to end-user computers (for Online, Offline, or Isolated activation packages):

1.  Download the package from the Admin Console.

2.  Extract the contents of the package.

     The license-only package contains a .json file (that contains the licensing information) and the Licensing Toolkit utility:

  • For Windows: adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe
  • For macOS: adobe-licensing-toolkit

3.  To install the license, run the following commands with admin privileges:

     For Windows:

     adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe --precondition --install --filePath <absolute path of the .json file>

     Short form:

     adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe -p -i -f <absolute path of the .json file>

     For macOS: 

     sudo adobe-licensing-toolkit --precondition --install --filePath <absolute path of the .json file>

     Short form:

     sudo adobe-licensing-toolkit -p -i -f <absolute path of the .json file>

The license is deployed on the computer. The user is now licensed to use the installed Adobe apps.

Deploy packages

After you create the feature restricted license package, you can install it on your server. 

  • Install by double-clicking the package file. See this document for details.
  • Use third-party tools such as Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM), Apple Remote Desktop, or JAMF Casper Suite. See this document for details.
  • Deploy using command line on Windows computers. See this document for details.
  • Deploy using Info.plist file on macOS computers. See this document for details.

Want to quickly find solutions to install or uninstallation errors? Read the Fix errors installing Adobe apps article.

Post deployment

If you have installed multiple feature restricted licenses to an end-user computer, follow these steps to uninstall all these licenses from that computer.

Remove all licenses from a computer

Follow these steps to remove a license from a computer in the following scenarios:

  • If the package is a license-only package.
  • If the package includes the license and InDesign Server, use the OS specific uninstall procedures such as Add-Remove Programs on Windows.

Remove single license from a computer

Follow these steps to update the license usage on the Admin Console.

 Note To enable connection to the Adobe server, you are required to whitelist the following URL via https:

Update license usage on Admin Console

If you remove a feature restricted license for a Online Activation package, the license usage displayed on the Overview tab of the Admin Console is decremented. However, the update on the Admin Console requires an Internet connection to the Adobe licensing server. If you removed the license while unconnected or if an error occurred connecting to the Adobe servers, the updated license usage may not be reflected on the Admin Console.

 If you still need assistance with installation, log a support ticket via the Admin Console.

Frequently asked questions

Online activation is designed to meet the high security requirements of our customers. No PII (User identifiable information) is provided to Adobe. After package installation and upon product launch the client will establish a secure https channel with The client will send the following information to Adobe as part of the https call:

"npdId": "ID of NGL Preconditioning Data",

"npdPrecedence": "Precedence of NGL preconditioning data",

"asnpTemplateId" : "ASNP Template ID",

"deviceDetails": {

"deviceId": "Device ID",

"osName": "OS Name",

"osVersion": "OS Version",

"currentDate": 1510649774873


"appDetails": {

"nglAppId": "NGL App ID",

"nglAppVersion": "NGL App version",

"nglLibVersion": "NGL Lib version",

"currentAsnpId": "Current ASNP Id",

"locale": "en_US"


It is important to note that the NPDID is the unique entitlement identifier and also that the Device ID is not the same as machine name. The Device ID is a SHA 256 hash that is created and cannot be reversed.

For Online activation to occur successfully you must whitelist the following endpoints via https:


Yes. There are various services included in the Adobe products. These services will attempt to reach out to the Adobe servers, however, if a connection is not possible then the calls will fail silently. For the purpose of licensing only the above endpoints are required. For a list of all network endpoints please consult this document.

The client will attempt to reach the designated endpoint at random intervals to validate the license however if the endpoint cannot be reached then it will rely on the cached license on the client machine. This means that after the initial activation, if the client is moved to a remote or secure location, then the license will persist on the machine without additional contact to Adobe.

No. When a product is activated via Feature Restricted Licensing/Online activation, sign-in on the client is disabled.

You can also use the licensing toolkit to remove a license from the client. The licensing toolkit can be downloaded on the Adobe Admin Console.

To remove a license with the licensing toolkit you can use the command:

adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe –deactivate

If you want to remove the license of InDesign Server, you can specify the NPID. 

Use the licenseInformation command to get the NPID.

For Windows:

adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe --licenseInformation. 

Short form: adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe -l

For macOS:

sudo adobe-licensing-toolkit --licenseInformation

Short form: sudo adobe-licensing-toolkit -l

Sample output:

Adobe Licensing Toolkit (

License Details

NpdId          : NDgyYTYzZGMtNjAwOC00MjNjLTg2NWMtZjUzMGUzZDYwYjQ0

AppId          : InDesignServer1

DeploymentMode : FRL_CONNECTED

Operation Successfully Completed.

Use the NPID to remove the license:

adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe --deactivate --npdId <Unique ID of Preconditioning Data described above>

For example:

adobe-licensing-toolkit.exe --deactivate --npdId NDgyYTYzZGMtNjAwOC00MjNjLTg2NWMtZjUzMGUzZDYwYjQ0

If the machine fails and you are unable to remove the license from the client, then at the time of contract renewal this will be declared to Adobe.

License activation for InDesign Server installations on virtual platforms will work assuming the platform is Connected. There may be issues if the virtual machine is rebooted causing a change in the underlying machine ID. For more information, see Known issues in licensing


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