Downloading Office 365 Pro Plus in portal....what determines the version that downloads?

Iron Contributor

Is the version determined by the current channel of Office you're in or by first release settings?


My account is enabled for first release in my Office 365 tenant and it tells me that when I go to download Office 365 Pro Plus software.  It then downloads the latest Monthly Channel version of Office which is currently 1805.  My Office is also currently setup in the Monthly channel.


Thanks for any help!



5 Replies

Globally, it's controlled by your Office software download settings in admin center, under Service Settings and Services & add-ins:


Office software download settings.png


However, like you have noticed for those enabled with Targeted release (First Release):


"You can also provide users with Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted) by selecting them for the Targeted release program for Office 365. If you do this, those users can install Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted) directly from the Software page in the Office 365 portal."


Overview of update channels for Office 365 ProPlus

Thanks for the reply.  It kinda answers my question but also creates more confusion.


Under "How often do you want users to get feature updates for Office 2016 apps?", our tenant has "Every 6 months (Semi Annual Channel).  But when I downloaded from the portal, I was able to get the Monthly Channel 1805 version of Office.  Again - I'm already setup for Monthly Channel but we have been having issues with SCCM distribution of the Monthly updates so I was testing some other ways to get the latest version.

That's interesting, Semi-Annual Channel is the default for Office 365 ProPlus, for Office 365 Business subscribers the default is the Monthly Channel.  There can be other factors like when Visio Pro for Office 365 is installed (or Project Online Desktop Client) they have to be on the same channel.  


With downloading the Office365 ProPlus monthly channel version from the portal, when it's not set at the tenant level, I'd wonder if it's not being configured somewhere post-installation (Config Manager or Group Policy). The latest version available when Targeted release for Office 365 is enabled for users would be Version 1803 on Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted) release with those defaults as I understand it.

You are correct, we do control the update channel using a Group policy and I'm setup for the Monthly channel.  We have an Office 365 E3 subscription. 


So I assume is somehow determines your channel and downloads/installs the same version from the portal.

No, if I understand what you are saying, the admin portal settings are only for when downloading from and what update channel you start with, it has no control outside of this for other Office clients that are deployed via ODT, Config Manager or other means that are configured as part of the deployment.  The channel can always be overridden or controlled irrespective of what channel you started with, like with what you mentioned, with Group Policy, any client that picks that policy up will be reconfigured accordingly as I understand it, in your case on the Monthly channel.