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Customize Setup before installing Office 2013


Applies to: Office 2013

Topic Last Modified: 2014-02-19

Summary: Explains how to use the Office Customization Tool to customize a Windows Installer-based installation of Office 2013.

Audience: IT Professionals

To customize Setup for Windows Installer-based Office 2013, follow the procedures in this article before you begin the installation.

In Office 2013 (as in Office 2010 and Office 2007), Setup controls the complete installation. This includes processes that Windows Installer handled in Office versions earlier than Office 2007. Customizing the default behavior of Setup lets you specify how the installation runs. For example, you can run the installation without user interaction, handle the product key and the Microsoft Software License Terms on behalf of users, and specify an organization name or a different installation location.

We recommend that you read the Plan volume activation of Office 2013 and Volume activation of Office 2013 articles before you customize Setup.

In this article:

To customize how Setup manages the installation process, use the Office Customization Tool (OCT) to create a Setup customization (.msp) file. Setup applies this file when users install Office on their computers.

In Office 2013, two architecture-specific versions of the Office Customization Tool (OCT) are available: one for 32-bit and one for 64-bit Office. The 64-bit version of the OCT supports 64-bit client editions of Office 2013, and provides the same user interface, capabilities, and configurable settings as the 32-bit version. You use the same command to run the 32-bit or 64-bit version of the OCT.

  • To run the 32-bit OCT, run the setup.exe /admin command line from the x86 (32-bit) folder as shown in the following example: \\server\share\Office15\x86\setup.exe /admin.

  • To run the 64-bit OCT, run the setup.exe /admin command line from the x64 (64-bit) folder. For more information about 64-bit Office 2013, see 64-bit editions of Office 2013.

The first step in a typical corporate deployment is to create, replicate, and secure a network installation point. To do this, copy all source files from the Office 2013 installation DVD to a shared location on the network. Also copy any language packs that you want to deploy from the source media to the network installation point. Users can run Setup from the network installation point, or you can use the network installation point as a starting place to distribute Office 2013 by using a software deployment tool, such as Microsoft System Center 2012 Configuration Manager, or to create a hard-disk image or a custom DVD.

Make sure that access to Office 2013 source files is read-only. The Setup.xml and Package.xml files, such as ProPlusWW.xml for Office Professional 2013, are digitally signed and cannot be changed.

We recommend that you replicate the network installation point to multiple locations for the following reasons:

  • Ensure that users always have access to a network source.

  • Support remote locations if you are deploying to multiple geographical locations.

  • Provide consistent configurations to users in your organization.

  • Provide flexibility. If you define a standard corporate configuration of Office 2013, regional administrators can apply additional customizations to the replicated network installation points to address their specific requirements.

To learn about shared folders, see the following resources:

Use the following instructions to customize Office Setup.

You can complete tasks in all Office 2013 suites by using a mouse, keyboard shortcuts, or touch. For information about how to use keyboard shortcuts and touch with Office products and services, see Keyboard shortcuts and Office Touch Guide.
To customize Office Setup
  1. Create a network installation point. To do this, create a shared folder for the Office 2013 source files at a location that can be easily accessed on the server, and copy all the files and folders from the Office 2013 DVD to that share. For example:


    Do not create the network installation point at the root of the server.
    If you deploy multiple language versions of Office 2013, copy each language pack that you want to deploy from the source media to the installation point. When you are prompted to overwrite duplicate Setup files, choose No. Core Setup files are shared among all Office 2013 products and language packs. Because the core Setup files are identical, there is no reason to overwrite the files when you add language packs.
    If you deploy multiple Office 2013 products, copy those files from the DVD to the installation point. When you are prompted to overwrite duplicate Setup files, choose No.
  2. From the root of the network installation point, run the following command line to start the Office Customization Tool:

    \\server\share\Office2013\setup.exe /admin


    • \\server\share\Office2013\ is the network installation point that contains the Office 2013 sources

    • setup.exe /admin starts the OCT

  3. Choose the Office 2013 product that you want to configure, and then choose OK.

  4. In the OCT navigation pane, choose Installation location and organization name.

  5. In the Default installation path box, enter the path of a default installation location on users' computers. You can enter a relative path that includes the folder keyword [ProgramFilesFolder].

  6. In the Organization name box, enter a default organization name for all users who install Office with this customization file.

  7. In the navigation pane, choose Additional network sources, and then choose Add.

  8. In the Network server box, enter the path of any backup sources that you have created on the network. If neither the user's local installation source nor the original network installation point is available, Setup uses one of these replicated installation points for operations that require the source. You can add as many sources as you need.

  9. In the navigation pane, choose Licensing and user interface. The following options are available:

    • Use KMS client key.   A product key entry is not required for enterprise deployments that are using Key Management Service (KMS) activation because all Volume License editions of Office 2013 have a KMS client key pre-installed. KMS is one of the methods that are provided by Office Activation Technologies for activating products that are licensed under Microsoft Volume Licensing programs. Only a KMS host computer needs a KMS host key to be activated and to establish a local activation service in your environment. Office 2013 connects to the local KMS host for activation. By default, the Use KMS client key option is selected.

      For more information about the licensing options for Office 2013, see Plan volume activation of Office 2013.

    • Enter another product key.   You can enter a valid Multiple Activation Key (MAK) key in the OCT by using the Enter another product key entry. A MAK key is another method that Office Activation Technologies provides for activating products licensed under Microsoft Volume Licensing programs. By using a MAK, clients activate Office 2013 online by using the Microsoft hosted activation servers or by telephone.

      To use a MAK key, select the Enter another product key option, and in the Product key text box, enter the MAK key (twenty-five numbers or characters) without spaces..

  10. Select the I accept the terms in the License Agreement check box. When you provide this information in a Setup customization file, users are not prompted for a product key or Microsoft Software License Terms during the installation or the first time that they start an Office application.

  11. In the details pane, set the Display Level to Basic or None to install Office quietly (without user interaction). For more information about display settings see Licensing and user interface in Office Customization Tool (OCT) reference for Office 2013.

    In enterprise deployments, we recommend that you set Display level to None to make sure that that Setup runs silently. It also prevents prompts to users to enter information, and prevents the installation from waiting for user interactions, ieven when files are being used. When you set Display Level to none, the Suppress modal and Completion notice options are silenced and the Microsoft Software License Terms are accepted. Administrators must also make sure that no Office applications are running during an installation of Office 2013.
    If you set Display level to Basic and select the Suppress modal option, users may be prompted if any Office files are being used. Setting Display level to None prevents prompts to users in these cases. The Suppress modal option does not prevent files-in-use messages from being displayed. Only Display level set to None prevents the messages from being displayed.
  12. Make any additional customizations. Choose Save on the File menu, and save the Setup customization file in the Updates folder at the root of the network installation point.

    If you plan to deploy multiple Setup customization files (.msp files), you can place only one customization .msp file for each Office 2013 product that you are installing in the Updates folder for an initial installation. You must deploy the rest of the customization .msp files for a product after the Office installation is finished Only one Setup customization file per product in the Updates folder is supported. For example, if you are deploying multiple Office 2013 products, such as Office Professional Plus 2013 and Visio Professional 2013, you can include one customization .msp file for Office Professional Plus 2013 and one customization .msp file for Visio Professional 2013 in the Updates folder. The customization .msp files that you place in the Updates folder are deployed first. Therefore, they must include any Setup customizations that cannot be changed after the installation, such as the installation location.

Your customizations apply to any language version of the specified product that is available on the network installation point. Most customizations apply to the language-neutral core product. However, the feature tree in the tool also includes a subset of language-specific features. Customizations to language-specific features are applied when a user installs that language; otherwise, the customizations are ignored.

Typically, you do not have to customize logging options. By default, Setup creates a standard log file and saves it as a text file in the %Temp% folder on the user's computer. If an installation fails, Setup creates a verbose log file in the same location, starting with the package that caused the failure. To change logging options, open the Config.xml file in Notepad and modify the <Logging> element. For more information, see Config.xml file reference for Office 2013.

When you deploy Office throughout an organization, you determine how much of the Setup user interface is displayed to users. By default, Setup runs interactively and gives users choices during the installation. If you are distributing a customized configuration, we recommend that you limit how much users interact with Setup. The installation continues with fewer interruptions, and your customizations are set by default for all users. For more information about display options, see Licensing and user interface in Office Customization Tool (OCT) reference for Office 2013.

If you are using a deployment tool such as Microsoft System Center 2012 Configuration Manager or Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) to deploy Office 2013 while users are not logged on to the network, set the display level to None, which installs Office 2013 without displaying any Setup user interface.

When you install Office 2013 silently, you must provide a valid product key. If the product key is missing, Setup logs an error and exits. As mentioned previously, if you are using KMS activation, a product key entry is not required because all Volume License editions of Office 2013 have a KMS client key pre-installed. However, if you are using MAK, you must enter the MAK key. If you do not accept the license terms on behalf of users, Setup does complete the installation. Note that, by installing Office 2013 silently, you have implicitly accepted the license terms.

The Windows Installer properties DISPLAY and PIDKEY do not work in Office 2013 (or in Office 2010 or Office 2007). Instead, in Office 2013, you customize Setup directly by specifying a display setting and a product key in the OCT. You can either accept the default option, Use KMS client key if you are using KMS validation, or enter a MAK key in the Enter another product key text box if you are using KMS, as described in Customize Setup.

Because Setup plays a more significant role in controlling the installation, many Windows Installer properties are no longer required. In fact, some Windows Installer properties are blocked and generate an error if you try to set them using the Office Customization Tool.

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