Last updated 2020-03-15
If you have been licensed for Microsoft 365/SharePoint Online at Boston University, carefully follow the steps below to log in.
- If this is your first time logging in to Microsoft 365/SharePoint Online at BU and you have trouble with one browser, try using different browsers and/or using a Private or Incognito window. Also, we recommend that you use a regular computer for your first login rather than a portable device or phone (e.g., don't use an iOS device for your first login). In subsequent logins, after you've successfully initialized your account profile and BU OneDrive, you can use any device and browser, and you can start directly at the URL for any SharePoint site to which you have been given access. Go first to https://portal.office.com/.
- You should see a login prompt similar to the one pictured below.
- At the prompt shown above, enter firstname.lastname@example.org as your organizational account (sometimes called your Work or School account), replacing login with your BU login name. Use the full form of your login name each time you enter it -- don't omit the "@bu.edu" part. Then press Return or Tab or click on Sign in. You will not have an opportunity to enter a password here, but instead will be redirected immediately to a local, BU ADFS login box.
- In this second login box, you should again provide your full BU login name in the form email@example.com (don't omit the "@bu.edu"), and this time also enter your BU Kerberos password - the password you normally use to read your e-mail.
- You should now be logged in. To ensure that your account profile and BU OneDrive are successfully initialized, click on the App Launcher -- the square formed by nine dots to look like a waffle, in the upper left corner, just to the left of the words "Boston University" -- and, from the dropdown menu that appears, click on the OneDrive tile.
- If you were given a URL for a specific SharePoint site, you can now enter that to go directly to that site. In subsequent logins, you can use any browser and start just by entering that URL; you will be prompted to authenticate as above, then taken directly to the site you specified.
- For your first login, use a regular computer for your first login rather than a portable device or phone (e.g., don't use an iOS device for your first login). While you should be able to use any browser for most common functions in Microsoft 365, there are some exceptions. If this is your first time logging in to Microsoft 365, you may want to use Internet Explorer (IE), Firefox, or Safari rather than Chrome or Edge, as occasionally we have seen problems with account initialization when using Chrome or Edge for the very first login. As a general rule, it's always a good idea to try a different browser and even a different computer if you're having trouble. If you are a SharePoint site administrator, you may also find that IE works best on some administrative menus.
- You should not need to use Boston University's Virtual Private Network (VPN) in conjunction with Microsoft 365 when connecting from outside the campus network. However, we have seen a few cases where a individual's router firmware was not up to date and connecting through the VPN resolved the issue. If you're off campus and having trouble (e.g., if the bar at the top of the page doesn't display correctly), it's worth trying the VPN to see if that resolves your issue.
Do you use an account in another Microsoft 365 tenant, e.g., at another school or workplace?
- If you are using Microsoft 365 in more than one tenant, you must take special care to keep the logins completely separate. E.g., if you log in to your (non-BU) school or workplace tenant using IE, you cannot use that same browser session to log in to BU’s tenant. You could use an “in-private” session of the same browser (e.g., IE), or a different browser entirely to log into BU’s tenant.
- Some companies may configure employee computers to automate your login to their tenant or to keep you logged in. If that’s the case, you might not even get the chance NOT to log in to that tenant from a computer configured by the company. In that case, try using a computer that the company hasn’t configured.