Outlook 2013 Logo - www.oostdam.infoThis is an article about the activation of the new office 2013 suite, that has been available since October 24, 2012. Are you getting lazy Ben? Only publishing this article a whole day later? No, I'm not lazy at all, but I was onsite with a customer yesterday and the bulk of administrative work that was waiting for me at the office just overwelmed me, and yes, that why installed Office 2013 24 hours laters than that my download has finished. And Microsoft has to earn their money as well. While I'm typing this, the Windows 8 presentation, live from NewYork is running on the other screen. And when Microsoft wants to earn money, they have to sell licenses, just like other companies. Thats why this first article on the Office 2013 Suite, not the Preview Version, is about the way to activate the new Office 2013 suite. Learn and enjoy.

Activating the office 2013 suite:
After you downloaded or inserted the DVD, you can start the installation just like you normally would, by running the setup.exe file as an Administrator. You can choose the install location, options and anything that you would like to adjust. Now, in all previous versions, the product key had to be entered prior to to actual installation of the product. This has changed now. The download is a full product and activation, and validation, is down afterwards. Lets take as an example my new Outlook 2013 version.
It opens just right, no problem at all.
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However, there is an irritating activation bar, saying that Outlook hasn't been activated, and that, if you want to continue without interruption and irritating pop-ups,..  (own-experience) you have to activate the product(suite) through the button. So,.. lets click that button.

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A new pop-screen will come up, explaining that you have to activate Office, ofcourse, but new in this that there are several ways of activating the Office version. As a Microsoft Certified Trainer, I have the benefit of using my own Microsoft account for this, which I previously setup, to be my preferred account for logons to Microsoft-site and activations onHow to activate the office 2013 Suite - www.oostdam.info - picture03 my Windows 8 system.

This way you can active all your licenses through your Microsoft account as shown in the little picture here. If you are working with windows 8 already this will look familiar to you.

Enough site information for now, most people will use the organization/school or the manual option. Organizations and schools are seperatly mentioned now, as Microsoft changed their licencing model for some kind of organizations and schools to complete this story. This are cheaper product keys but they are bought in a special way, well thats another story.

Completely in line with the new Microsoft interactive GUI's is, that it is possible to view all the possibilities and their privacy statement online, as you can just click on the links below. That is,.. assuming you have a working internet connection ofcourse.

But for this article we are going to use the "Enter a product key instead" option that has been a little bit hidden just below the area's of your Microsoft account or organization. Immidiately clear where this is going to for the future. More and more personally connected Microsoft accounts, providing (online)services over multiple devices that you use. Including transfers of Office files and settings through your online account. This has benefits, but also controls the devices that your using Office on. Later more in another article on that subject.  So,.. we click the "Enter a product key instead" link and we will get the following screen.
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You can click the examples, for a fake product key, or return to account activation through the links,..  Or you can start typing in the product key, which we will do in this article as it is my guess that will be used most of the times.

Please note the half/white "Greyed-Out" "Continue" button on the right.

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Once you typed in the key, dashes will be added automatically, the text and the button text will change. Please take a look at this picture at the left and notice that you cannot go back to your microsoft account, that the privacy url is present, that the green check mark is there, and that the "Continue" button suddenly has changed to a "Install" button. Thats nice, directly after entering the last character, your Office Suite product has been activated!

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My Windows 8 system is just bugging me with some UAC confirmations, and thats basically it!  Your done and you have activated your Office 2013 suite.


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As I own multiple accounts, I will end this article by showing you how easy it is to switch between multiple (Microsoft)accounts from within Office 2013 applications with Windows 8 as an operating system.

In every right-upper corner, you can see the account your logged on with, change the photograph, or settings, but the one I most use is right at the bottom, namely switching through accounts. This has great benefits on websites, accessing different (company)cloud stored files.... etc. etc.
Do you get the picture and all the possibilities already?

You can switch working on private, corporate and business accounts any time you like and work more effectively. Time is everything, for almost everyone. Just think about the possibilities!

The activation procedure for Microsoft Project Professional 2013 and Microsoft Visio Professional 2013 is exactly the same. Please note that I recommend to add the feature "Engilish Proofing Tools" to run from your computer locally for both products.
You can find them under "Office Shared Features" and it is not installed by default.

I hope this has been informative for you, and have fun, and productive working, with Office 2013 !

Ben OostdamBen Oostdam has been working with Windows systems since 1993. Worked for several companies as a system administrator, and is currently a Senior Support Engineer and a (Freelance) Trainer, for a large company in the Netherlands, specialized in Mail and and System Center Solutions.

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