PyMOL 2.x License and updates

PyMOL license needs update

Attention PyMOL users. The UW license is set to expire on January 15th, 2020.

The license is required for running PyMOL starting with version 2.o and works for now on all updated 2.x versions (currently 2.3.4.)

Edit: for Departmental computer

Biochem IT is “pushing” the license to departmental computers, hence this is most useful for personal computers or perhaps other departments. If you are seeing the license renewal notice on a departmental computer please open a ticket on the Job Board ( so IT can work to resolve the issue for you.

Steps to update license

If you are running PyMOL 2.o or later you will receive a warning that the license is about to expire. Here are the steps to update the license for another year, until January 15, 2021.

Download license file (Required: NetID)

  1. With a browser go to
  2. Login with NetID and choose Madison Campus if necessary
  3. Under the Research list of software click on PyMOL
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the page
  5. The last line is a link to the license file
  6. Click onPyMOL License File – 2.0 Version or Later”
  7. Click OK on the info window
  8. A file named pymol_license.lic will be downloaded

Install license:

  1. Open PyMOL
  2. In the Help menu scroll down to the menu “Install new License File
  3. An “Activation” windows opens. Click on “Browse for License File”
  4. Navigate to the downloaded file pymol_license.lic
  5. Click “Open”
  6. The Top Text window should print: License Expiry date: 15-jan-2021

PyMOL is now set until that date.

Steps to update PyMOL

To update PyMOL to the latest version (currently 2.3.4) you can download it from the PyMOL page from However, this page does not get updated often during the year and another option is to update directly from the downloads page from the PyMOL web site and click “DOWNLOAD”.

DO NOT try to get the license file from this site, but from info at the top of this message!

PyMOL materials & tutorials

Reminder: I made the PyMOL materials previously used in Biochem 660 available for all. See this post: PyMOL tutorial books released

PyMOL tutorials will be offered again at the Biochem department.