Mac Admin

Deploying Adobe Shared Device License (SDL) Over Older Versions of Creative Cloud

It’s another Adobe Blog! One thing I covered in my recent talk at PSU’s MacAdmins Campfire Sessions (Link: What’s new with Adobe 2020 in Education – Content) was what happens when you deploy Adobe SDL 2020 over the top of older Creative Cloud deployments. I’ve decided to use this post to expand upon this further.

Why would you need to?

Licensing aside, Adobe normally has allowed (and worked ok) with mixes of versions of the same software installed at the same time. I’ve often seen Macs running multiple copies of Photoshop, InDesign or Illustrator from various suite versions together.

The main reasons for this tend to revolve around compatibility:

  • Compatibility with plugins for certain projects
  • Compatibility with files (perhaps other internal colleagues or customers/venders have files saved in older formats)

Whatever the reason, it is indeed possible to deploy SDL packages over the top of older packages and still be able to use them.

Scenario 1: Deploying Adobe Shared Device Licensed 2020 Applications over Shared Device Licensed CC 2019 Applications

This scenario should work fine with no changes to the behaviour on devices. The newer 2020 applications will be deployed as SDL, and with the CC 2019 applications already being SDL, you shouldn’t see any changes.

Scenario 2: Deploying Adobe Shared Device Licensed 2020 Applications over Named User Licensed CC 2018 and/or older Applications

This scenario should also work fine, with no changes to the behaviour on devices. The newer 2020 applications will be deployed as SDL, and as the CC 2018 or older applications don’t understand SDL, they’ll continue to use NULs whilst they are valid.

Note: macOS Catalina requires Adobe CC 2019 or newer to be fully supported so this may rule out your use of this scenario!

Scenario 3: Deploying Adobe Shared Device Licensed 2020 Applications over Serial Number Licensed CC 2018 and/or older Applications

This scenario should also work fine, with no changes to the behaviour on devices. The newer 2020 applications will be deployed as SDL, and as the CC 2018 or older applications don’t understand SDL, they’ll continue to use SNLs, whilst they are valid.

Note: There have been some reports where the SDL deployment somehow removes the SNL. If you hit this, feel free to raise a ticket with Adobe.

Source: https://helpx.adobe.com/uk/enterprise/using/sdl-deployment-guide.html

Scenario 4: Deploying Adobe Shared Device Licensed 2020 Applications over Device Licensed (legacy) CC 2018 and/or older Applications

So this scenario should work fine, however in most cases you’ll be migrating from DL to SDL. 30-days after you click the “Migrate” button, those DLs will deactivate and stop working. To be honest, I don’t see the value in this and I wouldn’t recommend it.

Source: https://helpx.adobe.com/uk/enterprise/using/sdl-faq.html

Outro

Another Adobe post and another Adobe Licensing post! Hopefully this will prove useful to someone 😊

As always, if you have any questions, queries or comments, let me know below (or @daz_wallace on Mac Admins Slack) and I’ll try to respond to and delve into as many as I can.

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