Microsoft is committed to protecting the integrity of the MSDN Subscriptions program and the value of the software and benefits that the program’s legitimate subscribers receive for their investment. In support of this commitment, Microsoft implemented the following changes on July 16, 2012:
Please note that each product key has multiple activations and many products allow you to install and use the product without activation for 30 days or more. Our research on historical key claiming patterns shows that the majority of subscribers are not impacted by these changes. However, if activating a product key multiple times does not meet your needs or you’ve exhausted the activations, you can submit a request for additional keys through MSDN Customer Service.
There are no changes to MSDN licensing at this time (including perpetual usage of software). Learn more about MSDN licensing.
Your MSDN subscription gives you access to a wide range of Microsoft products for designing, developing, testing, and demonstrating your applications. Some of these products require product keys during installation, and some of those require activation. Product keys and product activation can be a tricky topic, so we’ve assembled some useful links to better understand and be better prepared to plan out your development and testing environments as a result.
Resources for Product Keys and Activation:
MSDN Subscriber Downloads offers both retail and Volume Licensing versions of certain products, only retail versions of some products, and only Volume Licensing versions of others. Part of this is driven by how the products are sold, because it takes time for Microsoft engineers, testers, and release managers to create, test, and release a version of a product for each channel. There are some products which are only sold in the retail channel while others are only sold via Volume Licensing agreements, though most products are available in both of these sales channels. As a general rule though, products requiring activation such as Windows, Windows Server, and Office client products are only offered in their retail version through MSDN.
Volume Licensing customers can also download software from the Volume Licensing Service Center (VSLC) in order to get Volume Licensing versions of products (and the corresponding product keys). Access to the VLSC is managed by designated administrators within the customer’s organization.
You can find individual product keys on the Keys tab for a particular download within Subscriber Downloads, or in aggregate on the My Product Keys page. You must be logged in to view product keys. When multiple keys exist for a single product, Key Notes will be displayed on the Details column for the download to assist you in identifying which key should be used. In some cases, the same download file will be used for installing different editions of a product but each edition requires a separate product key.
Only subscribers with active subscriptions can download products and claim product keys, so you will not be able to download products after your subscription has expired. In some cases, you will be able to view product keys you had claimed while your subscription was active, but you will not be able to claim new keys. In order to access your prior claimed keys, you will have to sign in using the Microsoft account used with your subscription.
On the Keys column for a particular download, a product key can be claimed by clicking "Get". Some are provided automatically, such as “static” keys where you can use the same key as many times as needed because activation is not required. For products requiring activation, you may be able to claim multiple keys by clicking “Get another key”.
Understanding Product Key Types Listed in Subscriber Downloads
What are the new daily key claim limits?
The 24-hour key claim limit is 10 for all MSDN, BizSpark, and WebsiteSpark subscriptions, with the exception of MSDN Essentials and MSDN For Action Pack (daily key claim limit of 7).
Note: key claim limits are subject to change. Please check here for the most up to date limits.
What does it mean if I reach my daily key claim limit?
Reaching your limit means that you have claimed the maximum number of keys available with for your subscription within a 24 hour period. Every 24 hours, starting at 12:01 AM PST, you may claim another set of keys, up to your subscription maximum.
How do I get more product keys?
Simply wait until 12:01 AM PST of the day following the day when you hit the key claim limit. (For example: If you hit the limit of keys that may be claimed for your subscription at 6pm on a Friday evening, wait until 12:01AM Saturday morning to claim more keys.)
Why has Microsoft limited my access to product keys?
Microsoft is committed to protecting the integrity of the MSDN Subscriptions program and the exceptional value of the software and benefits that the program’s legitimate subscribers receive for their investment. Our research shows that the majority of subscribers are covered by the number of product keys included in their subscription. Additionally, each product key has multiple activations and many products allow the customer to install and use the product without activation for 30 days or more. If you need additional keys, you can submit a request through MSDN Customer Service and it will be considered for approval on a case-by-case basis.
Activation is required for certain products; generally in MSDN this is limited to Windows, Windows Server, Microsoft Office client applications, and Expression Studio. When activation is required, many products - including Windows and Office - allow you to install and use the product without activation for 30 days or more. If you re-image your computers frequently (i.e. once every 30 days), consider NOT activating the product. Product keys supplied as part of your MSDN subscription do not allow unlimited activations of a product.
If you’ve claimed all the available product keys under your subscription and have used up all the available activations, you can request additional keys by contacting your local MSDN Customer Service Center. Requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis. If approved, product keys will be accessible in Subscriber Downloads.
You can export and save all your product keys from the My Product Keys page so that you don’t need to be online to access them. You can open the XML key list using XML Notepad, Microsoft Excel, or other XML compatible programs. XML Notepad 2007 provides a simple intuitive user interface for browsing and editing XML documents, and can be downloaded from the XML Notepad 2007 page.
To open the Product Key Export using Microsoft Excel:
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