Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

Summary: Microsoft's latest Office release is now available for download by TechNet and MSDN subscribers. Normally, that's not news. What makes this release different is that it's for Office for Mac Home and Business 2011, and it marks a significant first.

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Microsoft's latest Office release is now available for download by TechNet and MSDN subscribers. (As my colleague Mary Jo Foley noted earlier today, it's also been released for retail sale.)

Normally, that's not news. What makes this release different is that it's for Office for Mac Home and Business 2011. This is the first time in my memory that any Mac-related business software has been available through the standard versions of either subscription. (The only exceptions I can find are two old, pre-Boot Camp versions of Virtual PC for the Mac.)

I have both a Mac and a PC on my desktop and plan to set them up side by side using Synergy to share the mouse and keyboard seamlessly (if the software works as described).

If you have a TechNet subscription, you'll find the Office for Mac 2011 download under the Applications heading. For now, at least, it's also under New Downloads. (To learn more about TechNet and MSDN, see this article from last year: Seven perfectly legal ways to get Windows 7 cheap (or even free).)

Update: I've just completed the installation of the Office software on my Mac. Everything went fine until I tried to claim a product key for the product. The Downloads page says I'm entitled to 5 products for the Retail version of the product. But clicking the Get button to acquire the first product key doesn't work in Safari on a Mac. When I tried Firefox, I got this error message:

I'm not sure whether this is a temporary glitch or whether some TechNet accounts are blocked from activatiing the software. Meanwhile, I have 30 days of trial usage (complete with nag screens at startup).

Update 27-Oct: This glitch seems to be fixed, and the TechNet system is now generating product keys properly.

My account is TechNet Professional (Retail). According to this list, Office for Mac 2011 should be available:

Available to Levels: TechNet Professional (SA); TechNet Professional with Media (Retail); TechNet Professional (Retail); TechNet Professional with Media (VL); TechNet Professional (VL); TechNet Professional (Certified Partner); TechNet Professional (Gold Partner); TechNet Plus Consumer Service Professional Pilot; TechNet Standard (VL); TechNet Standard (Retail); TechNet for Action Pack; TechNet Professional (NFR); TechNet Professional (NFR MCT); TechNet Professional (NFR MVP); TechNet Professional (NFR FTE); TechNet Professional (NFR Bundle);  

Update 5-Nov: The downloadable list of products included with each edition has not been updated to include Office for Mac 2011. Microsoft says they are "working to update on a monthly basis" but may be late this month because of the Thanksgiving holiday.

For MSDN subscribers, the picture might be more complicated. MSDN comes in a very wide range of editions at a very wide range of prices. My account type is listed as Visual Studio Professional with MSDN account. When I go to the MSDN Downloads page, the Office for Mac 2011 download is listed, but its status is Unavailable, with this note in the Details section:

Available to Levels: VS Pro with MSDN Premium (Empower); VS Premium with MSDN (MPN); VS Pro with MSDN Premium (MPN); BizSpark Admin; BizSpark; VS Ultimate with MSDN (VL); VS Premium with MSDN (VL); VS Premium with MSDN (Retail); VS Ultimate with MSDN (Retail); VS Ultimate with MSDN (MPN);

Those are all pricey products. There's a pretty good case for non-developers to prefer TechNet [Standard or Professional] over the lower levels of MSDN.

I've just downloaded the Office 2011 package and I'm looking forward to using it in more detail. That won't be soon, though, as I'm headed off to PDC10 tomorrow and I don't have a MacBook handy.

Any questions you want me to ask at PDC? Any first impressions of the new Office for Mac that you want to share? Use the Talkback section.

Topics: Apple, Collaboration, Hardware, Microsoft, Software, Software Development

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Talkback

15 comments
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  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    Thank you for doing the exploration for me, Ed.

    Clearly a benefit of the organizational change above MacBU.
    John Baxter
  • Can't download this!

    I tried downloading this from TechNet and the Microsoft Download Manager gives me a "too many redirects" error and won't start the download. Have you heard of this happening elsewhere?

    Niles (niles@nabcomputers.com)
    nbolli0427
    • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

      @nbolli0427 ... it typically happens when their servers are busy, but it may also be the browser you're using. I find their download manager works best with IE and Firefox... and if possible, maybe try without the download manager.
      GoodThings2Life
      • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

        @GoodThings2Life Thanks!
        nbolli0427
      • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

        @GoodThings2Life How do you bypass the download manager?
        nbolli0427
  • Acquiring License Key also a problem for TechNet PRO

    I've got a TechNet Professional subscription. I'm also not able to acquire a key.
    JeffreyD26
  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    I have an MSDN subscription and also not able to access a product key, so it looks like this is a MSDN and TechNet issue!
    g_thomas
  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    Your install of this MS Office version for the Mac would have gone w/o a hitch if the the Mac App Store was available. Grin! (sorry, I couldn't resist.)

    Enjoy your PDC10 time.

    PS .. I know it's old news to you, Ed, but I just found out about the proposed Win 8 app store speculation. Gad, I'm starting to get the willies already. BTW, my retail copy of this Office version downloaded today from the MS web site smoothly except for one "small" detail. MS forgot to email me my activation code. I'll use the trial version option until MS sorts things out. However, I was able to download the program from their web site instead of waiting for the backup DVD to arrive in the mail. I thought I would give you that one.

    edited to reflect download "success". MS Office has been activated successfully. I had a senior moment where I followed MS instructions that said the activation code would be sent via an email. It wasn't but the code was supplied via the download link message.

    Office 2011 is a big improvement over it's predecessor.
    kenosha77a
  • Hmmm.

    Download it right now, and I've claimed my five keys. Now when I'll actually use them, that's a good question. But I'm doing it more for the experience of seeing it happen after everybody else is telling of issues.

    YMMV.
    Bryan Price
  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    But wouldn't an MSDN version only mean that you can use it for evaluation and not production use? If so and I believe thats the case, you should inform your readers before they start installing office for macs all over the place and violating their license.
    rengek
    • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

      That is not Ed's responsibility. That should be known info to the subscriber.
      dpatjhh
  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    Office for Mac, only money making department.
    james347
  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    Thanks for this bit of news. It sounds like MS is getting a little smarter in marketing its products.
    OTOH, my basic TechNet subscription now allows for only 2 licenses for Office, a change in the few months since I subscribed when I believe it was 10 licenses. Any idea what's behind that? Too much pirating?
    XMissileGuy
  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    I bought Office for Mac 2011 for mac at a site named "License Key Shop". Seems great!
    thirtysenses
  • RE: Microsoft offers Office for Mac 2011 to TechNet, MSDN subscribers

    Wow! I wasn't expecting a 5-star review. I would of picked this up regardless of the review because I loved the original, but it is a nice surpris

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