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Q100241: Installing Katana on Windows


This article summarises the basic steps you need to take in order to install and launch Katana on Windows:

  1. Download the Katana installer
  2. Run the Katana installer
  3. Download and install the renderer of your choice
  4. Create a launcher script to make sure Katana knows where to find all required resources
  5. Start & License Katana
  6. All done!

NOTE: For additional instructions on how to install Katana 3.x with 3Delight, please see this article: Q100400: Installing Katana 3.x


  1. Download the Katana installer

    Go to and
    download the latest Windows build from the set of links on the left hand side:


    NOTE: Please be aware that Katana, similar to all our products, is only supported on 64bit operating systems. 

  2. Run the Katana installer

    Run the Katana installer from the location in which it was downloaded on your system, during step 1. 

    Just follow the instructions of the installer, with the exception of creating a desktop icon. You'll see why in step 4.

    We recommend disabling the above 'Create a desktop icon' option and manually creating this yourself, per the step 4 instructions.

  3. Download and install the renderer of your choice

    After installing Katana you can run and work with 3D scenes, but not render anything yet. This is because Katana doesn’t ship with any built-in renderer and needs an external renderer to be installed on your system, and a renderer plug-in to allow it to communicate with Katana and render the scene. 

    The following renderers are available for Katana:
    - RenderManProServer by Pixar
    - Arnold by Solidangle
    - V-Ray by Chaosgroup
    - 3Delight by 3Delight

    Please contact the renderer vendors directly to obtain a copy of the renderer and the Katana renderer plug-ins, and purchase a renderer license. More information for each of them can be found in the following articles:

    Q100243: RenderMan for Katana
    Q100244: Arnold for Katana
    Q100245: V-Ray for Katana
    Q100246: 3Delight for Katana

  4. Create a launcher script to make sure Katana knows where to find all required resources

    Alter or set up a batch script like the ones outlined in this article: Q100242: Creating a Katana launcher script for Windows

  5. Start & License Katana

    If you are working in a studio environment and your license is using a floating license server setup then please talk to your IT team to make sure your client machine is licensed correctly and you are able to launch and use Katana. 

    More information on installing a floating license can be found in this article: Q100027: How to install a floating license

    If you are using a license dedicated to your machine (node-locked license) then you can use the licensing dialog that will pop up when you first launch Katana, to license the application. The dialog looks like:

    To install your license click 'Install License' and then choose one of the three options:

    - For floating licenses click "License Server" and use the information provided by your IT team and instructions in this article: Q100027: How to install a floating license

    - For a node-locked license click on "Activation Key/License Text" or "Install from Disk" and follow the instructions in the 'Using the Product License Dialog' section of this article: Q100026: How to install a node-locked license

    Depending on whether you have received a node-locked activation key or license text, enter that info into the correct one of the two text fields below, or browse directly to the location of your .lic license file.  

  6. All done!

    Once the license is installed you are ready to launch and start using Katana!


    Guidance on using Katana can be found in the following resources:

    Katana Online Help

    Katana Developer Guide

    If you are new to Katana, you can find a tutorial that will guide you through your first steps to use and understand Katana, here: The Way of the Katana
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