Microsoft Office Home & Business 2016 - Account Requirements

I purchase dell pc’s with Microsoft Office Home & Business 2016.
MS is requiring me to create individual accounts for each pc to register the software.
From this point I am experiencing MS (Locking/Suspending) the account and requiring a cell phone number to unlock.
I’m also experiencing MS limiting the number of times a cell number can be used. (7 times)
My issues going forward with accounts locked are re-imaging machines, accessing the product key, activating new software, etc…
We are a manufacturing company with 70 office pc’s and Avaya Desk phones, not cell phones.
Has anyone bumped there head on this same issue and found a solution besides going to Volume Licencing or Office360?


Yep, I have exactly this same issue. It’s temping to purchase the PKC version of Office because it’s cheaper (by a long way), but the trade off is ease of management. If you’re looking to do imaging, then I guess your image needs to have Office installed but not activated. You’d then have to activate each PC once activated (now having said that, I think once it has been activated similar to Windows 10 is communicates the hardware IDs to Microsoft and it won’t require activation again in the future).

I realised after using my work account for the first 5 PCs or so that it was important to record which instance is used on which actual PC – when registering Office 2016, it did let me use my same account 30 times before bombing out when I then created a 2nd account. First install will be called “Microsoft Home and Business 2016”, then the next will be “Microsoft Home and Business 2016 (2)”, then “Microsoft Home and Business 2016 (3)” etc. Remember which PC is which!! Also worth noting, “Microsoft Home and Business 2016 (20)” won’t be at the bottom of the list when added, it’s sorted up with the “Microsoft Home and Business 2016 (2)”.

The other thing I don’t like, the 25digit key in the PKC is just used to register – once registered, if you login to your MS account the product key that it shows is completely different. There is no link that I’ve found (or that MS has been able to advise) between the 2!

But, going back to my original point which is that as long as it has activated once, it should be fine moving forwards. So, my concerns over not knowing which PKC prod key relates to the ones on my MS account should be unfounded…


I’m going thru Dell, Dell Pro Support, Microsoft Trouble Ticket route trying to find out how to do a reset on my domain or phone numbers I’m using. Hopefully I can find out why there inactivating me. So far all they could tell me is I may have been triggered for security/spam reasons. :grinning:

I was able to redeem 30 copies against 1 address, before I created a 2nd account. Here is a basic MS link that says a bit about it: