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Logging in to MSDNAA

Q: What is my ELMS login username and password?
A: For students, your ELMS userid is your Unity email address ( However, since ELMS is independent of NC State University, the password they provide will be different. Your initial password will be sent to your Unity email address by ELMS when your account is created.

Q: I forgot my password, how do I get a new one?
A: If you have forgotten your password you can have it emailed to you through the ELMS system using the link on the Login page.

Q: I am a new/returning student, when will I receive access to MSDNAA?
A: All MSDNAA-eligible accounts are enabled at the beginning of each new semester, and disabled at the end of final exams. You can review the dates for future semesters at eligibility requirements. Please also be aware that when the system is disabled, administrators cannot issue additional downloads or product keys.

Q: I'm having trouble logging in. What should I do?
A: First, review the eligibility requirements to confirm you are eligible and that the system is enabled. Next, be certain you are using the correct login id, being your Unity email address ( Finally, try requesting your password from the Login page. If you are still having problems, go to the ELMS site and on the Support page, please click on "Request Customer Support" to the left and supply more information about the types of login problems you are encountering. Someone will contact you for more information if necessary.


Q: Who is eligible for this program?
A: The MSDNAA license stipulates that only students taking courses in the ECE Department (with an ECE prefix) may download MSDNAA software. Students who are electrical or computer engineering majors but are not currently enrolled in at least one ECE class are not eligible to download MSDNAA software. This includes students who are currently participating in Co-op and students who do not take summer courses. The students may, however, continue to use previously downloaded software.

Q: How long will my ELMS account be active?
A: Your ELMS account will be active as long as you are an eligible participant of the MSDNAA license, meaning as long as you are a current student enrolled in an ECE class. For more details, see eligibility requirements.

Software Availability

Q: What software is available under this program?
A: A full list of software available under our MSDNAA subscription cannot be provided here. To view the list of softwares, you should log into the site.

Q: When will new softwares be available?
A: Unfortunately, we cannot predict when new products will become available on the MSDNAA. If you wish to inquire about the availability of a software, please contact us at

Q: Do MSDNAA products provide the same functionality as those available through the retail market?
A: Yes, a product purchased through the MSDNAA program offers the same functionality as a product purchased through the retail market.

Q: The software says that its "Out of Stock". What does this mean?
A: If a product is out of stock it means that we are currently waiting for keys from Microsoft in order to be able to distribute them to the students or staff who orders the product. Once E-Academy has received these keys (please don't ask us as we have no idea how long this takes), you'll be able to download the software.

Licenses and Software Usage

Q: What happens if the my department decides to cancel their MSDNAA membership?
A: MSDN subscription licenses are perpetual. As such, if a department decides not to renew, the user can continue to utilize the software that was received as a benefit of their earlier membership, but only as long as your usage conforms to the academic usage agreement.

Q: Upon graduation, are your rights to any downloaded programs from this ELMS web site revoked? Or are they yours to keep?
A: Yes, access to the site is revoked during any semester in which the student is not enrolled in an ECE class. Any software downloaded is yours to keep, but only as long as your usage conforms to the academic usage agreement.

Q: Is the software permanently unlocked by the license (or "key")?
A: No - the key allows you to install the software once. After that, if you need to re-install the software, you will need to use the "Request Re-Install" option from the Support section of the site. This is how their system helps to reduce software piracy.

Q: Can I install my software on two computers at once?
A: No, ECE's policy is to limit you to one installation only; we will not provision you with additional licenses. If you have more than one computer i.e. home computer and laptop, you will need to choose on which one you'd like the use the software. If you have been assigned an ECE computer, different licenses cover the software -- email us at to request software installations on ECE computers.

Q: I have a new computer now, how can I re-install my software?
A: You must request an additional activation key from the Support section of the MSDNAA site.

Downloading and Installing

Q: What is the Windows Component update disk required to install Visual Studio .Net?
A: On the E-Academy site the windows component update disk is the Visual Studio .Net Disk 5

Q: Where is the cd-key / product serial number?
A: The cd-key / product serial number should be available on the packing slip web page that displays after you begin the download.

Alternatively, you can find the serial key for all of your purchases by following the directions below:

  • Log-in to the site.
  • Click on the MY SOFTWARE button found on the left side of the page.
  • Find the software in your list of purchases and click the DOWNLOAD link found under Delivery Type.
  • You should be able to see all of the software details information including the serial key number (If one is required)..

Q: If my download times out or I get disconnected, how do I continue my software download and installation?
A: If you were in the middle of downloading the software itself, there will be a shortcut icon saved on your desktop that will allow you to resume your download. Double-click on the icon to begin again. If you don't see the shortcut icon on your computer desktop, you can use the "Request Re-Install" function in the Support section.

Q: I downloaded the software and all I got was a large .img or .iso file. Help?
A: These files are disc images that include the information necessary to make a disc bootable, in addition to the files for the software. If you have a .img file, you should rename it to .iso. You can use CD burning software to burn the image to a disc (Look for the option to "Burn Image").

An alternative would be to mount the ISO as a virtual drive using software like Virtual Clone Drive. However, please be aware that you must burn a CD/DVD in order to install OS products like Windows 7.

If you need CD burning software, you might try CDBurnerXP or DeepBurner.
NOTE: WolfTech does not support or warrant these products in any way - use at your own risk.

Q: I am having trouble burning my CD/DVD image, what can I do?
A: Due to the countless hardware and software variables involved, we can only provide general guidance about burning image files. Some helpful information and tips on CD/DVD burning are:

  • Try burning at a slower speed.
  • Make sure you are using the proper type of media for your cd/dvd image.
  • Images from the MSDNAA may contain folder trees nested greater than eight levels or filenames greater than 100 characters (not ISO 9660 compatible).
  • An .img file can be safely renamed to a .iso file.
  • Make sure you have read/write permissions to the file you are trying to burn
  • One good site on CD's and CD-ROM's is at


Q: I can't get in to the MSDNAA site or the download does not start, What's wrong?
A: If you experience issues with access or downloading, first, please be patient and try again later. The site may be experiencing very high usage levels. Also, please be sure to use Internet Explorer when attempting to download anything from the ELMS system -- other browsers often have problems.

Q: Why can't I access the site or start a download from my Macintosh system?
A: The MSDNAA site is not compatible with Apple OS X. You must use a Windows system to download the software.

Q: Can you please check the configuration of <insert Product>?
A: We are aware that often the troubleshooting for a download or install error suggests to have the Program Administrator check the configuration of the product. However, please be aware that this does not apply to ECE's MSNDAA setup. We use the Hosted ELMS model, which means that file downloads are hosted by e-Academy, not the department. Therefore, there is nothing for us to check.

We will repeat this to make it clear. The ECE Department does not host the files you download from MSDNAA. Problems downloading are commonly caused by issues with your network connection, filewall, or permissions in the location you are downloading the file.

Q: My download is inaccessible or corrupt, my CD/DVD does not work, I lost my download or media, what should I do?
A: In most of these cases, you should attempt to re-download the image. If you do not have any available downloads remaining, request additional downloads from the MSDNAA administrators. If you are running Windows Vista or Windows 7, we suggest running the downloader as an Administrator (right-click on the downloader executable and choose "Run as Administrator").

Additionally, make sure you are downloading the image to a file location where you have read/write/modify access, and consider running a chkdsk on your system to fix any file system errors. For issues with burning CD/DVDs, see the section above.