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About DreamSpark Accounts

As a student taking a CSS course, you have been enrolled in the “DreamSpark Premium” program, which will allow you to download full versions of Microsoft's development tools (as well as many other Microsoft applications). If this is your first time taking a CSS course, you should recently have received information on how to activate your account, sent to your email address. If you have taken a CSS course before, you most likely will not have gotten any new email about the DreamSpark program.

If you have lost or never received the email with instructions for activating your DreamSpark account, forgotten your password, or if you aren't sure whether you have an account yet, go to and click on “Sign In” at the upper right. Below the “Sign In” form is a “Register” form. Click on the “Register” button. That will take you to a “Verify Account” form. Enter your username, which is your UW NetID followed by “”, and click “Continue”. If an account has been created but you haven't activated it yet, it will prompt you to activate your account by entering your name and other information. If you have an activated account, it will warn you that the account exists, and tell you how to reset your password. If your account hasn't been created yet, it will give you an error which says “No active matching account was found with the identifier entered”. If this last one happens, please let me know. But please first make sure that you're entering your full username, not just your NetID. For example, my own username at the DreamSpark Premium site is, not jdlarios or

It can take up to 10 minutes for the mail with password reset instructions to arrive once you've initiated a password reset, and sometimes the process fails in such a way that you still can't log in even though everything else appears to have worked. If you believe this has happened to you, please let me know at

PLEASE NOTE: Microsoft Office is not available through the CSS DreamSpark Premium subscription, but as a UW student you have paid for access to a separate DreamSpark program with your STF funds. You can find information on this program at

The versions of Windows 7 and Windows 8 available through the STF DreamSpark program are upgrade versions – if you do not already have an eligible operating system, you may not be able to install Win7 or Win8 using those downloads. The versions available through the CSS DreamSpark Premium program are full installations, and do not have this restriction.

The number of times or length of time during which you can download any given piece of software through DreamSpark may be limited. Please save copies of anything you download to an external hard drive or DVD, in case you need to re-install later. In the case of Microsoft Office downloaded from the STF-funded DreamSpark program, there is a charge of around $5 to enable downloads beyond 31 days from when you first download Office. If you don't pay the $5 and you need to download Office again after 31 days have passed, you will need to pay $12 to re-enable your download. So, please, save a copy of anything you download from DreamSpark to an external drive of some sort, in case you have to re-install your entire computer, and lose your downloads directory.

The best way to find something here is to use the search box in the upper right or the site index link below.

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