updated 11:00 pm EDT, Fri October 22, 2010
License limited to one Mac, can be "reassigned"
Among the many changes in Microsoft Office 2011 is the arrival of product "activation" done via internet or by phone -- a first for Office on the Mac, a recent blog post from Office for Mac Help has revealed. The site, which is an unofficial resource for Mac Office users, cites the Office 2011 End User License Agreement (EULA) as its source. The activation ties the use of the software to a specific device and reveals other information (such as the IP address and hardware configuration), but can be reassigned to another device any number of times, limited to once every 90 days.
The Home & Student Edition of Microsoft Office 2011 (Family Pack version) still has three licenses, but in the 2008 edition each license was good for one desktop and one laptop install, meaning up to six Macs in a household could run the software. The 2011 license limits each activation to one device, cutting the number of allowable machines in half. Home & Business editions offer a 1-license and 2-license version.
Information sent to Microsoft during the activation process includes the version, license version, language and product key of the software as well as the IP address and hardware profile of the device. The post did not specify the details of what's included in the "hardware configuration" report.
Licenses can be reassigned to different devices, but are restricted from doing so more often than once every 90 days. If a device is "retired" (ie will not be used again due to sale or failure), users can contact Microsoft to reassign licenses sooner. [via officeformachelp.com]