Overview of Microsoft Office 365 Resources at Mines

Office 365 is a web-based platform that offers access to a variety of Microsoft applications and services. All current Mines students and employees are provided access to these services as part of the school’s volume license contract.

To access these services, simply browse to https://portal.office.com and log in using your Mines credentials (note that your username must be in the form of username@mines.edu). Available services at this time include Office Online, Office 365 ProPlus, and OneDrive for Business.

Important: If you already have a separate personal Office 365 online account, be sure to read the important information below before logging in.


Office Online is a web-based version of the core Microsoft Office applications, and includes Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and OneNote. All documents created in the Office Online applications are automatically saved to your OneDrive for Business cloud storage.


Office 365 ProPlus is a full version of Office Professional that is available for Windows and Mac that can be download through the Office 365 Portal. Included applications are Word, Excel, Powerpoint, OneNote, Access, Publisher, Outlook, Skype For Business, and OneDrive for business (Skype for Business is not supported by ITS at this time). Each Mines student and employee will be allowed up to five installations for their personal devices only.

Please note that a separate license for Office 2016 applies to all university-owned computers. Request this license via the Mines Help Center “Helpdesk” at http://helpcenter.mines.edu.

Now, organize your group with Microsoft Teams

Collaborate in a chat-centered online environment. It’s part of your Office365 for Mines membership!


How to get Office 365 ProPlus

Mines students and employees can obtain their free Office 365 Pro Plus download for up to five personally owned computers by logging into https://portal.office.com with their Mines credentials and clicking on the “Install Office apps” menu in the upper right-hand corner. (If necessary, first click on the Office365 link at upper left to reach the proper page.)

To install Office, run the downloaded file and follow the on-screen instructions. You must have administrator rights to perform the install.

Advanced users only: If you would like to specifically request the 64-bit version of Office (not recommended) or a language other than English, instead click the “Other Installs” link under the “Install Office apps” link and choose your preferred language and version.

You must have a working internet connection to activate Office 365 ProPlus. It will attempt activation at install time, and also periodically perform activation checks in the background once it has been installed. If an installation of 365 ProPlus goes more than 30 days without a successful validation check, it will enter “reduced functionality mode”, which will only allow the viewing and printing of documents, and will regularly prompt for activation.


OneDrive for Business is a cloud storage service that is part of Office 365 and therefore available to all active Mines students and employees. Each user will automatically be allotted 1 TB of storage space on the service when their user account is created. OneDrive for Business integrates with current versions of Office, Windows, and macOS, as well as most mobile operating systems. OneDrive for Business also allows each user to grant view or edit rights to other Mines users, or even grant temporary rights to users outside the university. OneDrive for Business is a separate service from OneDrive, and it is possible to use both simultaneously.

Data Ownership

Important: All files stored in OneDrive for Business will automatically be treated as property of Colorado School of Mines. This means that they may be viewed or managed by Mines staff, and are subject to permanent deletion upon termination of your Mines account. Although Office 365 ProPlus is intended for use on personal devices, including employees’ home computers, personal data should not be stored on OneDrive for Business. Special care should be taken to ensure that files are being saved to the appropriate location. Also note that any files created with the web-based Office apps (Office Online) are automatically saved to OneDrive for Business.

Personal OneDrive Accounts

If you have also signed up for a personal Microsoft account (Xbox Live, Outlook.com, Skype, OneDrive, etc.), online storage will be slightly more complicated. When signing into the Office portal or Office 365 ProPlus, please ensure that all data is saved to the appropriate location, and that you are also signing into the appropriate account. Because of the potential confusion this situation could cause, ITS highly recommends associating your personal account with a different email address — not your Mines email address.