Transferring Microsoft Office to a new computer is simplified greatly by the ability to download the software from the Office website directly to the new desktop or laptop. New variations of the popular programs, such as an Office 365 subscription, make the software available across multiple devices while maintaining desktop accessibility. To get started, all you need is an internet connection and a Microsoft account or product key.
Office 365 subscriptions have allowed many workplaces and higher education providers to offer access to needed Office programs on a variety of devices and through a web browser to their employees and students. Getting the programs set up on your new computer, whether for business or personal use, requires a minimal amount of fuss because the subscription is licensed on a recurring basis via monthly or annual payments.
To download the programs to your computer, log in to your account at www.setup.office.com and choose an installer for your new PC or Mac. When the download is complete, click on the downloads folder on your computer and launch the installer. Log in to your Office 365 account when prompted to do so. If you use OneDrive with your Office 365 subscription, launch the OneDrive application and click the "Sync" button on the tool bar to ensure all your files are available on your new device as well as in the cloud.
Many new computers ship to retailers with preinstalled software, including limited-access versions of the Microsoft Office suite. These factory installs feature either a free trial of the software or a license for a one-time installation. If Microsoft Office came preinstalled and licensed on your new computer, you only need to install your version if you prefer it to the newer release of the software set or if your software set contains additional Office programs, such as Access and Publisher.
To connect the existing software, click on the Windows start menu, followed by an Office program, such as Word. Click "Activate" and log in using your Microsoft account username and password. If you do not have an account, visit www.login.live.com to create a new one. After submitting your username and password, you are asked to opt in for mailing lists and to accept license terms before full access to your programs is granted.
If you purchased Microsoft Office at a store or through an online retailer, you received a product key either on a card or an email download. This key is used to activate the programs through the use of the Office website at www.setup.office.com. When you are transferring an existing program suite from one computer to the next, you log in using the Microsoft account created when the programs were first activated. They remain attached to the Microsoft account if you are installing Office 2016 or above.
From your account, you can download the Office programs and run the install guide, which requires entering your username and password again followed by a short validation check, to maintain access on your computer whether online or off. A best practice is to uninstall your Office programs from an older computer before starting a new install, as some variations of the program allow installation on only a limited number of devices.
Some older versions of Office, such as Microsoft Office 2007, 2010 and 2013 were sold as downloads with product key activations. If you have one of these sets, the programs remain available for new downloads at www.products.office.com/en-us/previous-versions-of-office and can be activated using your original product key. After downloading the software, double-click on the file to start the installation guide and enter the key when prompted.
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