How to install Office 2013 Home and Business without a Microsoft Account

When Microsoft released Office 2013 the thought at Microsoft was that cloud storage is something that everyone would want. It was discovered very early on that this idea did not work well in the corporate environment. Many businesses, even small businesses, did not want their data out there for the world to discover. And as we all know, given enough time and money, any secure environment can be compromised.

If you purchased your license for Office 2013 with a computer, the OEM Office installation did allow one to install the product without creating a Microsoft Account. This solved the problem for many people.

However, the Microsoft Account requirement became a problem when the operating system was re-installed. Some managed providers routinely remove the factory installed image to install an OS image of their own for consistency reasons. At other times, the time effective way of removing a malware infection is just to wipe the disk and re-install the OS.

With the help of Wayne Cooley of Dell Technical Support, a link to download an image of Office 2013 has been found! Wayne found a link in Spiceworks ( by Peter Court that pointed to a Microsoft download site. That site can be found at I burnt this image to a DVD (for future use) and installed it with the Product Key supplied by Dell with the machine.  I should note that the installation worked extremely fast from the CD for the machine I was working on.

I should also point out that there is another option for any Registered or better Microsoft Partner. You can download the OEM installation environment from Microsoft at . Although I have not tried it, this should give you the ability to install the same “Out of Box” experience that one would get when first receiving a machine from a manufacturer.

I hope these links help those of us out there that really don’t want our Office environment out in the cloud.

More on Quickbooks Multi-User mode and Windows 2012 R2

In my last post, I explained how the Base Filtering Engine service was blocking the ability for Quickbooks 2014 to go into multi-user mode. As it turned out, that was part of the answer, but not the whole answer. Two days after I did that post, the server rebooted because of Microsoft updates. Suddenly, the client could no longer get Quickbooks to go into multi-user mode.

So it was back to Microsoft PSS to get some answers. The tech that found the Base Filtering Engine solution was totally puzzled. So she passed the case to the networking group. Many more hours of testing, network traces and at one point locking out all remote access to the server, they declared the problem was because of a Group Policy Object was re-establishing the block on port 8019. But since the networking group doesn’t know much about Group Policy, they pass the case back to the OS support group.

The question became was it the Default Domain Controller policy or one of the Direct Access policies. More testing resulted in singling out the Direct Access Server GPO as being the problem policy. This policy gets setup automatically if you setup Anywhere Access from the 2012 R2 Essentials dashboard. Removing this policy from the Domain Controllers group fixed the Quickbooks problem.

I should also note that disabling that policy had no effect on any of the remote access features of the Server Essentials role, VPN or Terminal Server Access. Hopefully this will help more people in the same situation.