If you are lucky enough to be a Microsoft Alumni, then you can join the Alumni Association which I really encourage. But what can you do with this, well, there are a few things:
- You get an annual subscription to Microsoft 365 (which I personally don't find that useful, but it is nice to have sometimes when Google Workspace has an incompatibility. You can also give it to your family which is great.
- You can spend up to $600 a year at the Microsoft Company Store, but what to do with all that money? Well, one useful thing is Xbox games, where you can get Xbox Ultimate for quite a bit cheaper. But of course, figuring out how to install it is another challenge. The easiest way I found is to go to https://redeem.microsoft.com on your Windows machine, find the code and enter it. Then go to the Microsoft Store and find Xbox. For some reason this is not in Winget, so you have to do it manually. Then magically, you will see Ultimate appear in your name and you can download a bunch of games. The Ultimate costs $120 a year, but you can get a semi-reasonable discount. I thought I would try it because they now (thanks to Davec) can run Xbox games on the PC or the Xbox which is great! The most confusing thing is that actually getting the code, you have to go to the Microsoft Company Store and look in your Digital Locker for the date that you bought it to get the code.
- It's also a good place to get a decent discount on Xbox consoles.
- Also, most of the Tier 1 games are not in the Xbox Ultimate, so you can get good prices on Xbox games like Halo for instance.
- Sadly there are not too many Windows applications left, so that is not a great value, but you can get Visual Studio Enterprise if you need that (I don't write many Windows applications so that isn't super useful to me.)
- You can sign up for their Passport which has sort of useful discounts as well.
You can check that this all works at the Account Portal