Downloads FAQ

What are the requirements for downloading Microsoft software from the VLSC

You must purchase a license for the products you plan to download and have access to a valid product key for each license to complete the installation. Verify your license entitlement before downloading products.

You can find the system requirements for each product in the Product Description on the Downloads & Keys page of the VLSC. For detailed information about the products to which you are entitled, see your License Summary.

Note

Not all products require a product key.

What products can I download from the VLSC

If your download rights are associated with the Open License, Open Value or Open Value Subscription program, you may download only those products that you have already purchased. The VLSC will display downloads only for licenses you have already purchased.

Other licensing programs (Select +, Enterprise, Campus or School) allow you to download any product from the catalog before you purchase licenses.

If your VSLC profile is linked to both Open and other licensing programs, you will see the entire catalog.

How can I tell which products are available for download from the VLSC

To determine if a product is eligible for download:

  1. Click Downloads and Keys on the top navigation bar to view a list of products based upon your license entitlements. Use the filters on the left to narrow your product search by category.
  2. Click the Download link associated with that product.
  3. In the Download Settings drop-down box, you will see this message if the product is not available: This product is not available for download.

Client Access License (CAL)

A CAL is not a software product; rather, it is a license that gives a user the right to access the services of the server.

You don’t need a software download file or 5*5 product key to activate a CAL. Instead, the product is activated and installed through the activation wizard directly from your machine.
Example of Client Access Licenses include

  • Windows server
  • SQL Server
  • Exchange Server
  • Skype for Business Server
  • SharePoint Server
  • System Center
  • Project Server

Learn more about the Microsoft CAL Suites.

How do I download products and keys in the VLSC

Click Downloads and Keys on the top navigation bar to view a list of products based upon your license entitlements. Use the filters on the left to narrow your product search by category.

To download a product, click the Download link associated with that product. Click the Keys link to find product keys associated with the selected product.

To access VLSC Downloads, a VLSC administrator in your organization must assign you one of the following roles:

  • Administrator
  • Download
  • Software Assurance Manager

How do I change my Download Settings

To access Download Settings in the VLSC:

  1. Click Downloads and Keys on the top navigation bar to view a list of products based upon your license entitlements. Use the filters on the left to narrow your product search by category.
  2. Click the Download link for the product you want to download. The Download Settings drop-down box opens.
  3. Select the Download Method, Language, and Operating System Type.
  4. Click Continue to confirm settings and download products.

Note

Pop-up blockers may block downloads. Ensure that your pop-up blockers are disabled while trying to download software from the VLSC.

What are EXE and ISO files

Executable (EXE) and image (ISO) files are the two file types you can select when downloading products from the VLSC:

  • Executable (EXE) files can be downloaded and installed on the same system; however they cannot be made into separate boot disks for installation on to other computers.
  • ISO (International Standards Organization) image files are exact representations of the content and the logical format. You can install these on the computer used to download the package, or write the files to disks for distribution and installation on other computers.

Note

Not all products are available in all languages and in all formats.

How do I use ISO image file software to download and save ISO image file to a CD-R or a DVD-R disk

If you are using a PC with Windows, you don't need any additional software to burn a CD-R or DVD-R. Simply double click on the ISO file you downloaded and then follow the steps in the Image Burner Wizard.

If you are using any other operating system than Windows, you may need additional software. If your computer is equipped with a CD/DVD burner, this software is probably already loaded on your PC. Most CD-R/DVD-R writing software enables disk creation from an image file. Select a menu item such a "Copy Image to CD" or "Burn Image to access" to access this feature.

For Operating System Windows 7 or higher:

  1. Insert a blank DVD disk.
  2. Locate the ISO file and right-click on it.
  3. Select the Burn Disc Image option.
  4. Select the appropriate drive for burning the disc and click the burn button.

For detailed instructions, see the software's help documentation.

How do I mount and access ISO files as a virtual device

If you don't have a CD/DVD burner installed on your machine, or you don't have media available, you can "mount" the ISO file as a virtual drive. With this method, your computer will believe that the file is a real disk drive, and you will be able to read files from this "virtual disk."

You will need to download software for this. There are several software options for the virtual drive approach, though they have not been tested and are not supported by the VLSC team.

Note

This approach is advisable only for installing applications (such as Office) or minor system upgrades. You will not be able to install an operating system using this approach because the virtual drive would disappear at some point during the installation.

For Operating System Windows 8 or higher, follow Option 1 or Option 2:

Option 1

  1. Right-click the ISO file and select the Mount button.
  2. Navigate to the My Computer (or Computer) folder to access the new virtual drive under the Devices with Removable Storage section. Double-click on the new virtual drive to access ISO file contents.
  3. Then locate and run the setup.exe (or setup) file.

Option 2

  1. Right-click the ISO file.
  2. Click on Open with.
  3. Select Windows Explorer. A new Windows Folder will show up that contains the ISO file contents.
  4. Locate and run the setup.exe (or setup) file.

How do I extract ISO files to my hard drive

Contents for ISO image files can be accessed directly using third-party tools that allow file extraction from the file to a temporary folder on your hard drive (similar to .zip files). As with the virtual drive, this approach is advisable to install application software or system upgrades.

The following tools offer ISO file support:

Note

While other products may work to manipulate ISO files, they have not been tested and are not recommended by Microsoft.

How to download software products from the VLSC using your web browser

To download software products from the VLSC using only your web browser (that is, without Download Manager):

  1. Click Downloads and Keys on the top navigation bar to view a list of products based upon your license entitlements. Use the filters on the left to narrow your product search by category.
  2. Click the Download link for the product you want to download. The Download Settings drop-down box opens.
  3. In Download Settings, select Web Browser as the Download Method.
  4. Select the Language and Operating System Type.
  5. Click Continue.
  6. Confirm the settings you selected and then click the Download icon to begin downloading the product.
  7. The File Download – Security Warning window opens and displays the message: Do you want to run or save this file?
  8. Do one of the following:
    • Click Run if you want to install the file immediately after the download has completed.
    • Click Save if you do not want to install the file immediately. Double-click the file to launch the installation wizard when you are prepared to install the software.

What if I encounter trouble when downloading software from the VLSC

A frequent resolution to download issues is to clear temporary Internet files and history from your system. To clear the cache (in Internet Explorer):

  1. Click Tools and then click Internet Options to access the Internet Options window.
  2. Click the General tab.
  3. Under Temporary Internet Files, click Delete Files and then click OK to delete the cache of temporary Internet files from your system.
  4. Under Temporary Internet Files, click Settings and then select the Every visit to the page box to remove temporary Internet files each time you access the VLSC Downloads page. Then, set the size of the Temporary Internet Files folder to a size larger than the intended download.
  5. Under Temporary Internet Files, click View Files.
  6. Click Edit to open the menu and then click Select All.
  7. Press DELETE. When asked if you would like to delete all the cookies you have selected, click Yes.
  8. Click OK (multiple times) until the General tab is displayed.
  9. Under History, click Clear History and then click Yes. When asked if you would like to delete the history of the Web sites you have visited, click OK.

If these steps did not resolve the issue and your company allow it, you can also try to download the software on a PC that is not behind Proxy restrictions (such as at home), otherwise please Contact Us.

Why should I use Download Manager

Most people are able to download software from VLSC with their own web browser. However, the VLSC also offers the option to install Download Manager to help efficiently download large files. With Download Manager, you can easily pause, resume, and stop the download process. Download Manager also allows automatic restarting if the download process is interrupted.

Important

if you do choose to install software using VLSC Download Manager, the Download Manager must be installed prior to trying to download software files.

How do I install Download Manager

The use of Download Manager is an option when downloading a software product from the VLSC. Once installed, Download Manager is automatically used to manage subsequent product downloads. To install Download Manager:

  1. Click Downloads and Keys on the top navigation bar to view a list of products based upon your license entitlements. Use the filters on the left to narrow your product search by category.

  2. Click the Download link for the product you want to download. The Download Settings drop-down box opens.

  3. In Download Settings, select Download Manager as the Download Method.

  4. Click Continue.

  5. Confirm the settings you selected and then click Download icon.

    Note

    An information message may appear in the Microsoft Internet Explorer browser, prompting you to install an ActiveX control. This message occurs if you have not already installed the ActiveX control or the JavaTM applet. To continue, click the message and then select Install ActiveX Control.

    An information message

  6. In the Internet Explorer – Security Warning window, click Install to confirm that you want to install Download Manager from Akamai Technologies, Inc.

    Security Warning window

  7. In the Save As window, select a location to save the Download Manager and then click Save to begin the download. The Download Manager window appears and your product download begins.

    Save As window

Download a software product from the VLSC using Download Manager

  1. Click Downloads and Keys on the top navigation bar to view a list of products based upon your license entitlements. Use the filters on the left to narrow your product search by category.
  2. Click the Download link for the product you want to download. The Download Settings drop-down box opens.
  3. In Download Settings, select Download Manager as the Download Method.
  4. Select the Language and Operating System Type.
  5. Click Continue.
  6. Confirm the settings you selected and then click the Download icon to begin downloading the product using the Download Manager.

How do I get support for downloaded products

Please visit Microsoft Support to access a list of support options. Volume Licensing customers may use Problem Resolution Support, a Software Assurance Benefit. Review your Software Assurance Benefits to verify eligibility.

Where can I find support for the topics covered in these FAQs

You can find more VLSC training resources on this site, including videos.

Contact Assisted Support

VLSC customers may also Contact Us by phone or by Web Form. Microsoft will respond to Web Form submissions within 24 hours.