AMPL has been used by thousands of students to learn about optimization and to apply optimization in class projects. If your are a student looking to use AMPL, you can consider a range of options:
We describe below the main characteristics and advantages of each of these alternatives, with links to further information. For the 30-day trial, a special student-use form appears at the end of the page.
Whatever option you choose, be sure to consult the AMPL book for a full tutorial introduction to all of AMPL’s features.
You can download a free version of AMPL and all of our popular solvers. This version is limited to 500 variables and constraints for linear problems (300 for nonlinear problems, and fewer for certain solvers), but it offers a way to get started fast. It’s particularly convenient for trying out some of the examples in the AMPL book.
See our Download a Free Demo page for further instructions.
You can send AMPL model and data files to be run free using the facilities of the NEOS Server project. NEOS provides a variety of solvers offering AMPL interfaces. Submissions through the NEOS website are particularly attractive to students, as they do not require any software installation (for either AMPL or solvers) on your own computer.
The AMPL for Courses program makes full-featured AMPL + solver packages available to all students in a listed course at a university or other academic institution. If you’re taking a course that is registered for this program, you may install the software on any computer that you use for the course, following short and simple instructions. There is no limitation on problem size, but the software will stop working when the course ends.
AMPL for Courses cannot be requested by individual students. The professor, lecturer, or instructor responsible for the course must make the request. Master copies of the AMPL + solver bundles are provided for download by the instructor or by another responsible person whom the instructor designates; then that person arranges to distribute the bundles to the course’s students.
We encourage you to suggest AMPL for Courses to the person who is teaching your course. Details and an online request form are provided on our AMPL for Courses page.
Academic licenses for AMPL and many high-quality solvers can be purchased directly from us. Prices for non-commercial use at degree-awarding academic institutions are only 10% of the regular commercial prices. AMPL and solver licensing use can be tied to a particular computer, or can “float” to any computer on a network.
Purchased licenses are the best option for long-term academic research projects and for departmental computing facilities. There is no limitation on problem size, and the license does not expire on the computer where it is installed. After the first year, an additional maintenance & support fee covers access to new software versions and regeneration of license files for repaired or replaced computers. Also free 1-year licenses for several popular solvers are renewed as long as maintenance is current.
See our Buy AMPL Products page for a complete academic price list, ordering instructions, and optional online order form.
Students can request a free trial licence for AMPL and the solvers that we sell. This alternative requires a licensing procedure similar to that for purchased licenses. The trial license works on one specified computer, and is good for 30 days beginning with the date of issue.
Trial licenses are intended to provide for evaluation of AMPL and solvers prior to recommending them for purchase or for use through the AMPL for Courses program. They can also be used for very short-term class projects, but only one trial license per year is available to any one student or for use on any one computer.
To request a trial license for student use, first set up an AMPL size-limited demo version package by following the directions on our Download a Free Demo page. Then return here, and follow the directions in the form below to get a license file that will upgrade your demo to a 30-day trial with no problem-size limitations.