In this post we will learn how to use the MSDNAA subscription that our faculty provides us, it’s necesity and the benefits that come with it. This blog post applies only to students that study at University Politehnica of Bucharest.
What is MSDNAA?
MSDNAA stands for Microsoft Developer Network Academic Alliance. It is a program run by Microsoft through which they partner with universities and colleges to provide software to support education.
DreamSpark is the website used to distribute MSDNAA software and license keys to students, faculty, and staff. As part of our subscription, students in the College of Engineering have access to select Microsoft software to aid them in their studies. This software is provided at no cost to the student since the College pays for the subscription. We will see in the following sections the download procedure of the software.
What software can you get for free?
There are a lot of applications that you can download for free: Visual Studio (multiple versions), SQL Server, Lync, Microsoft Mathematics, Project, XNA Game Studio, Visio, just to name a few. You can also download operating systems, like Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012, Windows Embedded, and many others.
Also, you cannot download productivity software like Splinter Cell and Autoroute. All the software available is development-related, so you cannot download games or something similar.
How can you get the MSDNAA subscription?
First of all, you need to access the official student website provided by our faculty, which is studenti.pub.ro, log in with your P.I.D. (Personal Identification Number – C.N.P.). Remember that default password is composed of the string “student” concatenated with last 6 digits of your PID.
You should see something like that:
Next, you need to select the second option from the left toolbar, named “Access Site Cursuri” and you will be directed to a page similar to the following one:
Now you have to extract your username for the course website, which is located on the first line of above page, where it says: “Your user name for the site is: “.
Using that username, we access the MSDNAA official website. And we log in with the same credentials as the ones we use to log in on the cs.curs.pub.ro. Remember that if you change your password on cs.curs.pub.ro, this will propagate over all the accounts associated with it (including the MSDNAA and e-mail accounts).
After you log in, you should see something like that:
Now you navigate on the website and choose the specific software that you that to download (click on it), and you will see the following page (I’ve chosen Windows 10, but it’s the same for any software that you want to download):
In order to download it, click on “Add to Cart” button (red-marked). After you click, the button will transform in “In Cart”, informing you that you’ve just ordered that software. Now if you press on “Express Checkout” button, you will be directed on the page where you can actually download the software. It looks like that:
That page shows you the list of products that you’ve ordered. As you see, the price doesn’t exist (is Free).
All the software that you download on MSDNAA is totally legit, so almost every piece of software has a Product Key. It’s better to write it down on a paper if the software is an Operating System that you want to install because you will obviously need it in the instalation step. However, it’s not something critical because you can get the Product Key of every software that you’ve downloaded by logging in on MSDNAA and going to the Your Account / Orders (near the Log Out button, on the upper right area of the page). Here you can find details (including Product Key) regarding all the software that you’ve downloaded using MSDNAA.
By pressing on “Download” button in the above picture, you will be directed on a page where you can select the architecture version of your system:
You can see the size of the download package as well as the Order Number and Order Date. If you click on “Download” button, the download process will begin. The package is an .ISO file that you can burn on an USB or DVD using this tutorial.
For any questions, fell free to contact us!