Set up Office 2013 KMS clients


Applies to: Office 2013

Summary: Describes the activation process for KMS volume license editions of Office 2013 on client computers.

Audience: IT Professionals


This information applies to volume license editions of Office 2013. It does not apply to Office 365 ProPlus. Office 365 ProPlus is licensed through a subscription. For more information see Office 365 ProPlus Deployment Guide.

To find out more about how to buy volume license editions of Office 2013, see Microsoft Office Volume Licensing Buyer's Guide.

Prepare and set up the Office 2013 client

On the client computer, the appropriate product key for your specific activation method is installed automatically with the volume license edition of Office 2013.


If you deploy an image or create a virtual computer, you must rearm the installation of Office 2013 before you capture the image or create the virtual computer. For information about how to capture an image, see Configure Office 2013 for capturing an image. For information about how to rearm an Office 2013 installation, see Rearm the Office 2013 installation.

Activate KMS clients

All volume license editions of Office 2013 have a Generic Volume License Key (GVLK) preinstalled. GVLKs support both KMS and Active Directory-based activation. For a complete list, see GVLKs for KMS and Active Directory activation of Office 2013.

On the Office 2013 KMS host, you install and enable only one KMS host key to activate all volume license editions of Office 2013 KMS clients. If the Office 2013 KMS host is installed and configured, KMS activation occurs transparently to the user when an Office 2013 client is first installed.

The client activates at the first launch of Office 2013, provided that there have been at least four previous activation requests to the KMS host. This is because the KMS host requires at least five requests before it begins activating clients.

You do not have to do anything else to set up the clients. KMS clients can locate a KMS host automatically by querying DNS for service (SRV) resource records (RRs) that publish the KMS service. If the network environment does not use SRV RRs, you can manually assign a KMS client to use a specific KMS host by configuring the following registry key on the KMS client:


The KMS host name is specified by KeyManagementServiceName (REG_SZ), and the port is specified by KeyManagementServicePort (REG_SZ). These registry keys can also be set through the ospp.vbs script. For more information about ospp.vbs, see The ospp.vbs script.

For additional configuration options, such as how to specify the KMS host name on the KMS client, or to change the KMS key to a MAK key, see Tools to manage Office 2013 volume activation.

See also

Plan volume activation of Office 2013

Volume Activation Management Tool Technical Reference