Installing Microsoft Office

Arts ISIT will install Microsoft products on UBC-owned computers (Mac and Windows) free of charge. UBC has a Campus Agreement for commonly used Microsoft products, which means you may be eligible for free software if the computer was purchased with UBC funding. Products include:

  • Microsoft Office
    • Word
    • Excel
    • Powerpoint
    • OneNote
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Microsoft Project
  • Windows Operating System

For non-UBC owned computers, you may be eligible for the Home Use Program, allowing you to install Microsoft Office at the greatly reduced price of $11.00.


  • Free Microsoft Office products and Windows OS for computers owned by UBC
  • Discounted Microsoft Office for home use computers

Getting Started

First confirm your eligibility by reviewing the “Eligibility Requirements.” If you would like to install Microsoft Office on your UBC-owned computer, message us through the contact form. If you would like to apply for the Home Use Program, visit the corresponding tab for further instructions.


Computers Owned by UBC

The UBC Microsoft Campus Agreement is open to any current employee of UBC. The computer is considered to be “UBC owned” if it:

  • Has been purchased with UBC, UBC Department Funds, or UBC Research Grants.
  • Does not belong to the user personally and is therefore not for the user to keep.

Please Note

You may have the option to purchase the computer from your department, depending on departmental policy. If so, the computer is no longer considered to be owned by UBC for the purposes of this agreement.

Windows Operating System

The computer must already have a legitimate Windows or Mac OS licence installed. If your computer was purchased from a commercial retailer, it will already have a licence. Computers running on Linux will not be eligible for this service.

Once installed, your computer will attempt to connect to the UBC Microsoft Activation Server through the following process:

  • The Internet must connect through a valid UBC network, which includes: using an ethernet cable on campus, myVPN, dial up, and the WiFi networks “UBCSecure” or “UBCPrivate.” Other Internet connections will not allow the Windows OS to activate. 
  • If activation is successful, the Windows OS will be valid for 180 days (6 months). 
  • While successful, it will attempt to connect once every 7 days during the 6 month period, and if successful, will renew for another 6 months (therefore, a “rolling” 6 months). 
  • If, during one of the 7 day periods, it cannot contact the UBC Microsoft Activation Server, it will try again every 2 hours. However, the activation is still valid for 180 days from the last time it contacted the UBC Microsoft Activation Server successfully.
  • If it has been over 180 days from the last successful activation, Windows will enter into a Reduced Functionality Mode (RFM). Windows will still continue to function correctly, but the desktop wallpaper will be changed to a black background and warning pop-ups will ask you to activate frequently. 

Therefore, if the computer is taken off campus (either on sabbatical or an extended leave), please ensure you connect to the campus network through myVPN to ensure your operating system stays activated.

Please see Arts ISIT staff prior to the commencement of your extended leave for assistance.

When Eligibility Requirements Are No Longer Met

If you cease to be a UBC employee or the computer is no longer considered to be UBC owned, all Microsoft products that were installed under the UBC Microsoft Campus Wide Agreement must be uninstalled.

Home Use Program

All UBC Arts faculty and staff with FASmail accounts are eligible for Microsoft’s Software Assurance Home Use Program (HUP). This program enables you to obtain a licensed copy of most Microsoft Office applications to install and use on your non-UBC owned computer. If you apply for the HUP, you can continue to use the software even when you are no longer a UBC employee. Unlike the Windows OS, software purchased through HUP does not need to constantly connect to the UBC Microsoft Activation Server for licence validation. Once you have purchased these programs, they are permanently available for your personal use.


  • Available to all UBC employees with a FASmail account
  • Microsoft Office for a vastly reduced price of $11.00
  • Licence remains active even when your employment at UBC ends
  • Does not need to constantly connect to a server for licence validation

Registering for HUP

  1. Request a Program Code from Arts ISIT.
  2. Go to
  3. Enter your UBC email address (emails ending in or only).
  4. Click Submit.