Project Online: How do I add Project Pro?

Another early common question coming in to Microsoft Project Support is around the addition of the client application Project Professional 2013 (the subscription offering is actually called Project Pro for Office 365) to a Project Online subscription.  To clarify it is worth stepping back and understanding our offerings in Office 365.  You can take a look at for the full story, or here for a comparison – but briefly you have the choice of:

  • Project Online
    • I think of this as the browser access version – Project Web App access for however many people you need to access your system.  Can be added to some other Office 365 enterprise offerings
  • Project Online with Project Pro for Office 365
    • As above – but also adds Project Professional 2013 full desktop project management capabilities - via a subscription
  • Project Pro for Office 365
    • Project Professional 2013 available as a subscription – can be used against an on-premise or Project Online Project Web App, or just with SharePoint or even just as the desktop application.


So the middle one is really just the sum of the other two.  You can of course still buy Project Professional 2013 or Project Standard 2013 the old fashioned way – rather than as a subscription.

Back to the main topic of the question – if I have bought a subscription to Project Online (and really should have bought Project Online with Project Pro for Office 365) how do I add Project Pro for Office 365? 

*** Update 5/5/2013 - A correction here - the best way to add any extra subscription to your tenant is to go to the Purchase Services page


which will allow you to add other services.  This particular screenshot is from my P1 account - so will not list Project Online or Project Pro for Office 365.  Only options that are available are offered - so if you have just purchased Project Online you will see Project Pro for Office 365 listed.  If however you have an existing tenant and don't see Project Online or Project Pro for Office 365 their could be a couple of reasons.  Currently, as I write this (5/5/2013) only the Enterprise and Academic service offerings at the latest release level have the option to add Project.  So if either you are still on the pre-upgrade version (see for details on how you would know) or you are not on an Enterprise or Acedmic service offering you will not be able to add Project Online or Project Pro for Office 365 to your existing tenant.

End of update - I'll leave the rest of this thread in place - but have crossed through some details where the better option is to follow the steps above. *** 



The key thing here is when you get to the ‘just a few details’ page part of the sign up process – you can sign in with the account you created for your Project Online account – and then you are able to add the Project Pro for Office 365 subscription to your existing tenant created for Project Online.  I am reliably informed that the cost works out the same both ways too.  The same is true in reverse – if you went for Project Pro for Office 365 first.

This is also true for adding Project Online to your Office 365 Enterprise plan with SharePoint Online and/or Exchange Online – just sign in to your existing account at the sign up page to ensure you add the features to your existing tenant rather than creating a new and separate one. *** Update 5/5/2013 - please see the details above and use the link from within your existing tenant ***

Please note my earlier blog posting on adding to a pre Feb 2013 Office 365 tenant – you will need to wait for the service upgrade of your site to the latest level before you will be able to add Project Online.

Comments (18)

  1. anonymouscommenter says:

    The purchasing complexity is disappointing. It make it very hard to explain to other people and when other people are making the decisions you can end not getting what you need. Not to mention waiting for a service upgrade just to get Project Online. Too much complexity!  

  2. Thanks for the feedback Mark – we are reviewing this complexity and seeing how we can reduce it and make the purchasing experience less complicated, as well as giving more information as buyers go through the steps so that they can better understand what they are signing up for.

    Best regards,


  3. anonymouscommenter says:

    1. My company has a Medium business license and I cannot even TRY Project Online!!
    2. After Opening a NEW account by myself as a trila. and then opening a trial of project. I STILL CANNOT figure out how to get to project online.

    Does Apple make a project software? Because maybe that would be user friendly….

  4. Hi Jessie, I know there has been talk of extending to Medium Business skus – I’ll see what the latest is. If you have the new trial then hopefully the introductory e-mail should give you a Url – your first Project Web App will be at your Url with /sites/PWA at the end. And to be clear Project Online is the web based collaboration experience and it does allow you to create and manage projects it is not Microsoft Project in a browser. Apple doesn’t make project software.
    Let me know if I can be of further assistance and give you guidance on Project Online.
    Best regards,

    1. Stefanie says:

      Hi Brian,
      We have Project 2013 installed for 30ish project managers and in-use today. I’m looking for additional the PPM and reporting that it appears I can get with Project Online. We purchased licenses for Project Online, but it won’t sync with files created in Project 2013. Is that correct? Do I have to install Project Pro for O365 for all of their project schedules to feed Project Online? We’ve worked multiple days on what should be fairly straightforward and the lack of documentation is both disappointing and scary. We’ve already spent thousands and still have no operational gains. Please help.

  5. anonymouscommenter says:


    I wanted to verify that you have to have a subscription to Office 365 in order to get a subscription for Project Pro. Also, if you do need Office 365 to get it, is there a certain Office 365 Plan you need to subscribe to Project Pro.

    We already have Office 2010, so I’m really only looking to get Project Pro all on its own.


  6. anonymouscommenter says:

    I an surely not alone in being a consultant with Office 365 business who works with organisations that use Project. A subscription for a desktop version of Project to go along with the included desktop Office 2013 woyld make a lot of sense.

  7. anonymouscommenter says:

    We are also struggling with the use model. The very expensive subscription model to allow Project Professional 2013 desktop client to connect to PWA doesn’t make sense to me. Not sure if this is the gap that Project Lite is trying to fill but it’s very
    unclear why one could not pay the Project Lite subscription fee and use the Project Professional 2013 client to access schedules. Are you forced to use the on demand version with Project Lite to connect to PWA? Does the Lite version only allow you to work
    with PWA and you would still require Professional to create mpp’s outside of PWA? The whole thing is very confusing. This has been looked at by our IT department and our PMO. In contrast you can relatively easily sync and maintain a sharepoint task list from
    Project Professional without the additional licenses, complexity etc.

  8. anonymouscommenter says:

    Brian, another, but closely linked problem (that I consider to be a bug):
    We are not able to add Project Pro for Office 365 subscription to our Office 365 online Midsize. Seems like the online cabibility "contaminates" the service in some way (?)
    It is impossible to understand why this doesn’t work since you provide no information what so ever about this limitation on your sites selling the software.
    Or have got it all wrong? I truly hope so!

    Kind Regards
    Patrik Tronde

  9. Rpalhares says:

    Brian, I have bought project online licence only, because I have a project pro for office 365 bought from a different MS accounts. I am trying to connect project online to project pro but I can’t find how. I have setup URL server in project account and
    I can publish a project from project pro to project on line but I can’t edit a schedule from project on line. Can you help me?

  10. anonymouscommenter says:

    Just signup an trial for Project Pro 360
    i gives me error during the signup process. I end up with options to enable the license but sees nothing changed afterward. No access to the project online at all, luckily didn’t pay for it yet it’s only a trial.

  11. anonymouscommenter says:

    Project Pro for Office 365 – Trial Version – Have 5 trial versions licensed but cannot load any of them. They one is assigned to me to see if it is a fit, but there is not instructions, guides, links, on how to actually install / use the online version
    – very confusing and dissapointing

  12. anonymouscommenter says:

    Started trying Project Portfolio Manager but it was lacking features. Changed to Project Pro Online but it only downloaded a client version on my Surface Pro and there is nothing there when I log in online. The videos showing how seamless the Project Online
    works is a joke. I am finding that nothing works as advertised.

  13. anonymouscommenter says:

    We are not able to add Project Pro for Office 365 subscription to our Office 365 online Midsize. Seems like the online cabibility "contaminates" the service in some way (?)
    It is impossible to understand why this doesn’t work since you provide no information what so ever about this limitation on your sites selling the software.
    Or have got it all wrong? I truly hope so!

  14. anonymouscommenter says:

    I’m also a bit frustrated at the tool selection and purchase process. I have happily used MS Office online subscriptions and was looking forward to adding Project to the mix. Although a single person, I have multiple platforms include Mac and Windows machines.
    I was really looking forward to a seamless relationship between machines for when I visit different clients of mine. I interpreted that Project would be web based and I could have equal access regardless of device/platform. Sadly this doesn’t seem to be the
    case. Am I missing something here?

  15. anonymouscommenter says:

    I have a client with office 365 small business subscriptions.
    They rang me the other day asking for Project. I assumed, this could just be added via an additional ssubscription.
    Is this not true? What needs to be done? I find it incredible to believe I need to upgrade them to another plan!!
    Can anyone confirm this?

  16. Anne says:

    Hi, can I add Project Online subscription to an O365 trial account? Thanks 🙂

    1. Hi Stefanie, You should have no problem using either Project Professional 2013 or Project for Office 365 to load up your plans to Project Online. You cannot connect to a server (Online or Project Server 2013/2016 on premises) with Project Standard 2013. Do you have standard Stefanie? Which documentation have you been referencing too – happy to review and see if we can improve things to avoid scary situations like this.
      Best regards,

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