Mailbag – Installing Office 2010 On Multiple PCs

From the mailbag:

We have several new computers and need to put Office 2010 on them. I read that I can install Office 2010 on multiple computers, is that true?

ANSWER

This question comes up *a lot* and the answer is, “It depends”. First, some background information about the availability of the software.

Office 2010 comes two different versions

  • 32-bit Office 2010
  • 64-bit Office 2010

…and it comes in various editions (or suites)…

…which are available through different channels

  • OEM
  • Retail
  • Volume Licensing
  • Academic

…and it comes in three license designations

  • Packaged product
  • Downloaded software
  • Preloaded PC

That’s a lot of different ways to get Office 2010. So let’s focus on the three main ones consumers will pick up in retail locations:

  • Microsoft Office Home and Student 2010 (FPP / Retail)
    Pro – You can install this edition on up to 3 home computers
    Con – Non permitted for commercial, non-profit or revenue-generating
  • Microsoft Office Home and Business 2010 (FPP / Retail)
    Pro – You can install this edition on up to 2 computers
    Con – You have to be the user of both PCs
  • Microsoft Office Professional 2010 (FPP / Retail)
    Pro – You can install this edition on up to 2 computers
    Con – You have to be the user of both PCs

IMPORTANT – Don’t confuse the Full Packaged Product (FPP = boxes) with the Product Key Card (PKC = cardboard tag) versions. Both types of products are available in retail stores. Even though PKC is less expensive than boxed products, the PKC only lets you install on one PC. See the pictures below for the physical packaging difference.

 

Full Packaged Product (FPP) Product Key Card (PKC)
Microsoft Office 2010 Retail Packages (FPP) Microsoft Office 2010 Product Key Card (PKC)
Can install on up to 2 or 3 PCs (depending on edition and users). Can only install on one PC.

 

If you’re in a business and are purchasing Office 2010 through Volume Licensing (minimum purchase of 5 copies) you can get ‘Home Use Rights’ if you buy Software Assurance along with your purchase.

For more Office 2010 details, check out:

Props:

Thanks to Lee Johnson of Sentry Computer Systems for his assistance finding the Microsoft info.

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