What is Sibelius, and how can I use it at IU Bloomington?

Sibelius is music notation and education software for creating, editing, printing, and playing musical scores. Sibelius is distributed by Avid Technology, Inc. For more, see Avid's Sibelius product page.

On this page:

Availability at IU

At Indiana University, the Jacobs School of Music makes Sibelius available for use by IU Bloomington students, faculty, and staff:

Although Sibelius is available for use by all IU Bloomington students, faculty, and staff, support for the application by Music IT Services is limited to those currently enrolled or employed at the Jacobs School of Music.

Connecting to IU's Sibelius license server

To use Sibelius at IU, you must connect to the Sibelius Network License Server:

When you launch Sibelius, choose the Specify License Server option, and then enter:


Only a limited number of licenses are available, so the server will assign a license to your computer each time you launch Sibelius. When you close the program, the license will return to the pool of available licenses and become available for someone else to use. When the number of concurrent users reaches the total number of available licenses, you will be unable to use Sibelius until someone else closes the program. If you leave Sibelius open and idle for more than one hour, the system may automatically disconnect you from the server.

If you receive the error message "Unable to connect to license server", make sure you are connected to the appropriate network, as listed above. If you are properly connected and still receive the error, contact Music IT Services for help (include your computer's IP address, and the date and time you received the message).

Resolving permission issues in Mac OS X 10.11 and 10.10

A permission issue on some Mac OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) and 10.10 (Yosemite) computers prevents Sibelius 8.6 from creating its initial application support folder structure at runtime. If you try to open Sibelius and continue to see the box that prompts for a license server, either download and run the fix from IUware or follow the commands to manually fix it:

  • Download and run the Sibelius license fix application: Download and run the Sibelius 8.6 Sibelius License Script from IUware.
  • Manual fix:
    1. On a client computer, open a Terminal window: From the Macintosh HD, select Applications, then Utilities, and then Terminal.
    2. Enter the following commands:
      cd /Library/Application\ Support/Avid
      sudo mkdir Sibelius\
      sudo chmod -R 775 Sibelius\
      cd Sibelius\
      sudo mkdir _manuscript
      cd _manuscript
      sudo touch LicenceServerInfo
      sudo chmod -R 775 LicenceServerInfo
      vi LicenceServerInfo
    3. The Terminal window will change. To insert text, press i.
    4. Enter your license server's IP address (e.g.,
    5. Press Esc.
    6. Enter :wq.
    7. Close the Terminal and then start Sibelius.

Sibelius should now see the license server on the IP you provided and launch as a network client.

This is document bcdl in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2018-05-14 16:34:39.

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