IT Center Blog

Cleaning up the Microsoft Accounts

July 6th, 2022 | by
Cleaning utensils in bag

Source: Freepik

“Tidiness is half the battle” – for this reason, we have now started a clean-up campaign of the Microsoft accounts in the RWTH-Tenant!

“But what actually is the RWTH-Tenant? What is this cleanup campaign all about? Does it affect my Microsoft account?”

We have summarized the answers to these and other questions for you in today’s article, so that you don’t miss any important information on the topic of Microsoft 365 at RWTH Aachen University and stay up-to-date on innovations in good time.

The RWTH-Tenant

When the Microsoft Office 365 for Education offering came into effect in 2017, Microsoft set up a separate directory for members of RWTH Aachen University (employees and students), known as the RWTH-Tenant. All interested users could register with their private RWTH e-mail address ( and access it free of charge. The available Microsoft programs could be used as web applications or downloaded and installed locally.

What is a tenant?

A tenant is a closed area over which Microsoft products are made available and in which the authorized groups of people can work among themselves. External people can be invited as guests to a tenant and work together with the members.

What has happened so far

With the announcement of the upcoming license changeover in 2021, in view of the new framework agreement, new tenants were set up in advance for specific groups of people with different license entitlements.
For this reason, employees were given access to the M365-Tenant in March 2020 due to the pandemic, in order to be able to use Microsoft Teams for collaboration in the home office. This was followed in September 2020 by the Students-Tenant, which, thanks to the availability of Microsoft products, enabled students to easily organize themselves and communicate with fellow students and lecturers even while studying remotely.

Since the Microsoft Federal Contract 3.0 came into effect on 01.05.2021, the product scope for the respective tenants has been continuously reviewed and expanded. In terms of communication, collaboration and self-organization, the released products from the Microsoft 365 offering are now an established and important tool in teaching, research, study and everyday work at RWTH Aachen University.

The cleanup action

For licensing reasons, the creation of new Microsoft accounts on the RWTH-Tenant was already deactivated in August 2021 as part of the license changeover.

In the next step, all Microsoft accounts of the students on the RWTH-Tenant will be deleted on August 07, 2022 at 23:59. This means that from this point on, students will no longer have access to the RWTH-Tenant as well as to the Microsoft products obtained through it. But don’t worry, RWTH students will still be able to obtain and use Microsoft 365 products for free through RWTH. How? We’ll tell you further in our article 😊

The account for the Azure Dev Tools For Teaching Portal is also affected by the deletion, as it is the same user account. The licenses obtained via the portal will lose their validity as a result.

In this context, we recommend backing up all data from the RWTH tenant locally in a timely manner. You can find instructions on how to back up your data on the official Microsoft support site and in our documentation portal IT Center Help.

What happens to the RWTH email address?

Don’t worry, your persönliche RWTH e-mail address is not affected by this action and will not be deleted.
Deleting the accounts in RWTH-Tenant also has no effect on the Microsoft products purchased privately with your RWTH e-mail address.

The Students-Tenant as solution

Since September 2020, all RWTH students have the opportunity to create a free Microsoft account on the Tenant for Students (login with and thus use the Microsoft 365 products offered both in the web version and locally as a desktop application on the computer. This means that you will not suffer any disadvantages due to the deletion of the accounts in the RWTH-Tenant. Via the Students-Tenant you also have the possibility to use the Azure Dev Tools For Teaching Portal.

If you already have a Microsoft account on the Students-Tenant, the cleanup action will not affect it and you can continue to use this account.

If you are working as a guest or have been invited to another tenant with your Microsoft account from the RWTH-Tenant (for example, in Microsoft Teams), you will have to be re-invited with your Microsoft account from the Students-Tenant.

#goodnews: Add-Ins/ Plug-Ins in the Students-Tenant

They already existed in the RWTH-Tenant, now they are also available in the Students-Tenant: From now on you have the possibility to install various add-ins/plug-ins like Citavi via the Office-Store on the Tenant for Students.

Documentation and support

We have already created an information page for you in IT Center Help, where you can find all the information and related instructions about this cleanup.

Detailed information and instructions about Microsoft 365 at RWTH Aachen University can also be found in IT Center Help. In the FAQ section, you can already find some questions and answers about M365 at RWTH.


Responsible for the content of this article are Désirée LemoineAnastasios Krikas and Nicole Kaminski.

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