DreamSpark (https://www.dreamspark.com/) is a program that provides students with free Microsoft software, the ability to try Azure cloud services without entering a credit card, and a store account. Chances are your school is already signed up for DreamSpark and all you need to do is create your own account to start reaping the benefits. But even if your school isn’t signed up, if you are a student you can still get it. Here’s how!
To create your DreamSpark account go here and select Create Account
You will be prompted to sign in with a Microsoft account (hotmail.com, live.com, outlook.com) if you don’t have a Microsoft account you can create one here. You can use an existing email address (even gmail) for your Microsoft account.
You will now see a screen where you specify your name, date of birth, preferred email, most of this is pre-populated based on the settings in your Microsoft account. Consider selecting the checkbox so Microsoft can let you know about programs and offers in your area. After you have completed all the required fields select continue to verify.
Now, DreamSpark wants to verify that you are in fact a student. There are three ways to do this
1. Get verified through my school email – If your school has a DreamSpark subscription, you can just provide your school email address to get verified
2. Get verified through my school account– If your school has a DreamSpark subscription, but validates DreamSpark through school accounts rather than email addresses you can select this option. Most schools in Canada do not use this authentication method, so if you don’t see your school listed it doesn’t necessarily mean your school does not offer DreamSpark to its students! It just means they have chosen another method for authentication, you may want to try the email address option instead. If you choose the school account you have to search for your school in the list.
3. I have an International Student Identity Card – This is not your university or college student ID card. this is the international student card (you can apply for one here) if you pick this option you can type in your ISIC serial number or the ISIC/CIP number or your ISIC/NUS card number to prove you are a student.
4. I have a verification code – this option requires you to enter a verification code. But where do you get a verification code? You need to reach out to a Microsoft representative or possibly a school administrator. Attending a Microsoft hackathon or workshop is a great place to meet someone and find out how you can get a verification code. Entering a code will give you access to DreamSpark resources for one year.
5. I can supply documentation – if none of the above options works, choose this option. You can provide a scanned copy of your school ID card, a current report card, or acceptance letter to a university or college as proof that you are a student to get validated.
Once you have created and verified your account, you can now download software, get a code that allows you to publish apps to the Windows store for free and get free cloud services on Azure including website hosting!
What are you waiting for get your DreamSpark account today!