Working with your Microsoft account and OneDrive
Many of the new features in Office 2013 are geared toward saving and sharing files online. To use these features, you'll need to get a free Microsoft account (previously called a Windows Live ID) if you don't already have one. You can then log in to your Microsoft account to access your OneDrive, which is an online storage space for your documents and other files.
OneDrive was previously called SkyDrive. There's nothing fundamentally different about the way OneDrive works—it's just a new name for an existing service. Over the next few months, you may still see SkyDrive in some Microsoft products.
Benefits of using a Microsoft account
Here are a few of the things you'll be able to do with your Microsoft account:
- Access your files anywhere: You can save files to your OneDrive, so you'll be able to access them from any computer that has an Internet connection. This also helps to keep your files safe if anything happens to your computer.
- Edit documents in your web browser: If you're using a computer that doesn't have Microsoft Office, you can use Office Online (previously known as Office Web Apps) to edit documents in your browser for free. Office Online includes simplified versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote.
- Share files: It's easy to share your OneDrive files with friends and coworkers. You can choose whether they can edit or simply read the files. This option is great for collaboration because multiple people can edit a document at the same time (also known as co-authoring).
If you don't already have a Microsoft account, you can go to the Creating a Microsoft Account lesson in our Microsoft account tutorial.
To sign in to Office 2013:
When you use Office for the first time, it will ask you to sign in to your Microsoft account. However, if you don't sign in at that time, you can always sign in later.
- In the upper-right corner, click Sign in.
Clicking Sign in
- Type your email address, then click Sign in.
Typing an email address and clicking Sign in
- Click the Password field.
Clicking on the Password field
- Type your password, then click Sign in.
- Your account name will now appear in the upper-right corner.
The account name
Signing out of Office 2013
If you're using Office at home or at work, it's usually more convenient to stay signed in. However, if you're using a shared computer (for example, at a library or business center), it's important to sign out when you're done. This will prevent others from accessing your OneDrive files.
- Click the File tab.
Clicking the File tab
- Click Account, then select Sign out.
Clicking Sign out
- A warning message will appear. Click Yes to sign out.
Clicking Yes to sign out
If you sign in to Windows 8 with your Microsoft account, you'll automatically be signed in to Office 2013, and it will not let you sign out of Office. Instead, you can sign out of Windows 8 to prevent other people from accessing your files.