Set up your Microsoft 365 Exchange Online mailbox in Outlook for Windows

This article describes how to install the desktop Microsoft® Office 365 suite and set up
Exchange Online mailboxes within the Outlook for Windows® client for the first time.


  • Applies to User
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time needed: 20 Minutes for initial installation and configuration —sync time varies based on mailbox size and network speed.
  • Tools required: Licensed Microsoft Office 365 user, Windows desktop device, and an active network connection.

For more information about prerequisite terminology, see Cloud Office support terminology.

Install Office applications, including Outlook, on a Windows device

  1. Navigate to in the web browser of your choice. Click Sign In and enter your
    email address and password when prompted.

  2. In the upper right-hand corner, click Install Office and then select Install Premium Office 365 Apps.

  3. When the download completes, run the installer.

  4. If prompted, allow the Office installer to make changes to your device.

  5. After the installation completes, click Close.

  6. Open the Start menu and navigate to Outlook.

  7. Open Outlook and click Accept when prompted to Accept the license agreement.

  8. View the Microsoft respects your privacy message and then click Next.

  9. When prompted to Allow my organization to manage my device, select one of the following options:

    • This app only – Your organization doesn't have access to your Outlook desktop app and might impose security policies for Outlook.

    • Yes – This registers your devices within your organization and allows your organization to impose security policies for Outlook.

Configure your Microsoft 365 Exchange Online mailbox within a new Outlook profile for the first time

Note: If Outlook recognizes the mailbox associated with your licensed Office 365 user during initial setup, skip the following steps.

Use the following steps to set up your Microsoft 365 Exchange Online mailbox in Outlook:

  1. Open the Start menu and then navigate to the Control Panel.

  2. Click View by, then click Small Icons.

  3. Click Mail—Microsoft Outlook 2016 and then select Show Profiles.

  4. Click add..., then click ok after entering your desired profile name.

  5. Enter your Microsoft 365 email address and password in the provided fields, then click Next.

  6. In the popup dialog window, click Sign In and enter your Microsoft 365 email address. Then click Next.

  7. Enter your Microsoft 365 password and click Sign In—if your organization requires multi-factor authentication, provide additional verification at this point.

  8. Select No, sign in to this app only after successfully signing in and then click finish.

  9. After the new profile is created, click Always use this profile, and then select the newly created profile.

  10. Click Apply and then OK to complete the Outlook mail profile setup.

If you don't have an Outlook mail profile, set up your Microsoft 365 Exchange Online mailbox for the first time, by following these steps:

  1. Open Outlook.

  2. Click Get Started.

  3. When prompted, enter your Microsoft 365 email address and select Continue.

  4. Enter your password and click Done after you add the account.

Common tasks you can perform in the Outlook for Windows desktop application

Compose a new message:

  1. Navigate to the Home tab and select New Email in Outlook.

  2. Click Send after you compose the message.

Reply and forward:

  1. Select the message to which you want to reply and choose one of the following options:

    • Reply - Compose a message in response to only the original sender.
    • Reply All - Compose a message in response to all senders and recipients of a message —including carbon-copied recipients.
    • Forward – Compose a forwarded copy of a message to send to another recipient or group.
  2. Compose the message and click Send.

Add an email signature:

  1. In Outlook, compose a New Email.

  2. In the Messages tab, click Signature and then select Signatures from the drop-down menu.

  3. Assign a name to your new signature by selecting New, then click OK within the Email Signature tab.

  4. Compose your signature in the Edit Signature section.

  5. You can set the new signature as the default for your email account in the Choose default signature section.

For additional information about Microsoft 365 licensing, see our Product Comparison Chart.

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