Effective Methods to Fix “Microsoft Office Won’t Activate” Issues

February 21, 2024 285 views

You've followed every instruction meticulously from the guidebook on how to install Microsoft Office, yet despite your efforts, the activation remains elusive. The frustration is palpable, and understandably so—encountering activation issues can be incredibly exasperating. However, in this article, we aim to shed light on the reasons behind this activation impasse and provide you with actionable solutions to overcome reasons why Microsoft Office won’t activate.

Effective Methods to Fix Microsoft Office Activation Issues

Common Activation Issues for Microsoft Office

Some of the common issues that Office users might face while using Microsoft Office products are:

Unlicensed Product: You will see a red pop-up right below the ribbon of your Office app. This indicates that your Office is not activated, or that your subscription might have ended.

Microsoft Office Unlicensed Product

Product Deactivated: An error message asking you to reactivate your Office product.

Microsoft Office Product Deactivated

0x80070005 Error: A pop-up every time you open Microsoft Office products, usually occurring when your Office products are corrupted or damaged for some reason.

Microsoft Office 0x80070005 Error

The question now arises: why won't Microsoft Office activate, and how to fix Microsoft Office activation issues? Several factors can contribute to Office 365 activation errors, but the most common ones include:

  • Incomplete installation on a machine with a pre-existing older version of Microsoft Office.

  • Connectivity issues to the Internet, the Microsoft Office 365 portal, or the ADFS server in your LAN or DMZ can lead to activation problems.

  • Activation errors may occur if the user attempting to sign in lacks a valid Office 365 subscription assignment.

Solutions for Microsoft Office Activation Issues

Here are some non-technical solutions to help you address common Microsoft Office errors:

Method 1: Check Your Microsoft Office License

The first step is to check your Microsoft Office subscription or license for any issues. Microsoft Office provides clear indications of the problem.

Step 1: Open any Microsoft Office app (Word, Excel, or PowerPoint) and click on "Account" located at the bottom half of the left sidebar panel.

Step 2: On the account page, review your Microsoft Office status to see if your subscription has expired or needs reactivation.

Microsoft Office check account information in App

Method 2: Login to Your Office Suite

If you recently reinstalled your Office suite, you might be logged out. Ensure you are logged in to resolve any related issues.

Step 1: Open any Microsoft app, and in the top right corner, click on the "Sign In" button.

Microsoft 365 Sign in

Step 2: Log in with your Microsoft Office credentials to access your subscription.

Microsoft 365 complete Sign in

Note: Make sure you log in with the Microsoft subscribed account used during the initial product activation.

Method 3: Activate Using Your Product Key

Merely installing Microsoft Office is not sufficient; you need to activate it with the provided product key. Be cautious during activation, as the associated email account will be used for future use.

Step 1: Open any Microsoft Office app and go to the account page by clicking on "Accounts" on the left side panel.

Step 2: Click on the "Activate Product" button.

Microsoft Office 2016 Activate Product

Microsoft Office 2016 Activate Product

Step 3: Choose "I don't want to sign in or create an account" at the bottom of the activation wizard.

 Microsoft set up Office dialog

Microsoft set up Office dialog

Step 4: Enter your product key in the next window and click "Activate" to complete the activation process for your Office suite.

Microsoft use Product Key

Microsoft use Product Key

Method 4: Repair Office

Sometimes, when the Office suite undergoes updates, missing drivers or files may lead to errors. In such cases, utilizing the repair feature is the best solution.

Step 1: Open the control panel on your system and navigate to the "Uninstall a Program" section.

Note: The appearance of the "Uninstall a Program" window may vary depending on your Windows version.

Step 2: Find your Microsoft Office product and right-click to open the context menu.

Step 3: In the context menu, click on "Change" to access the repair features.

Window change Program settings

Window change Program settings

Step 4: A warning pop-up message from Windows will appear, asking for confirmation.

Step 5: Select "Quick Repair" and then click on "Repair" to proceed. The quick repair feature will detect issues or any missing files and automatically download them.

 Microsoft Office Quick Repair

Microsoft Office Quick Repair

Note: Ensure a stable internet connection, as this step depends on internet availability.

Step 6: If the quick repair feature does not resolve the problem, consider performing a full “Online Repair”.

Method 5: Reinstall Office Suite

If all other troubleshooting steps prove ineffective, a final resort is to reinstall Microsoft Office independently to resolve activation issues. Although it requires some time, this method can effectively eliminate activation messages and restore your Office application's functionality:

Step 1: Initiate the process by searching for the Control Panel in the search bar.

Step 2: Open the Control Panel and locate the "Uninstall" option under the Programs heading.

Note: This step may vary based on your Windows version.

Step 3: Identify your Office program, right-click, and select "Uninstall" to remove it from your system.

Windows 11 Uninstall Microsoft Office

Windows 11 Uninstall Microsoft Office

Step 4: After uninstallation, visit the official Microsoft website using your browser.

Step 5: Sign in and download the Office application tailored to your Windows version.

Step 6: Once downloaded and installed, open any Office app, sign in, and resume using the application.

How to Use Microsoft Office Features Without Activation

WPS Office offers a streamlined experience without compromising on functionality. It has an intuitive design and layout that makes it easy for users to access all the advanced features without any steep learning curve. From document creation to editing, collaboration, and PDF management, WPS Office provides a seamless experience that caters to the diverse needs of users. Whether you're a seasoned professional or a novice user, WPS Office offers the perfect balance of power and simplicity, empowering you to achieve your goals with ease.

WPS Office

WPS Office

How to Open and Save Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint in WPS Office

Open, edit, and share Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files seamlessly with WPS Office. Forget compatibility headaches.

Step 1: Open WPS Office and simply click "Files" on the left side.

Step 2: Click to open any Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or PDF from this central hub. Your files are organized and ready to go.

WPS Office open file

WPS Office open file

Step 3: The file you requested is now available for editing.

Step 4: Click “Menu” then select “Save” to keep your changes in the current format.

WPS Office save file

WPS Office save file

How to Edit PDF in WPS Office

Editing files in WPS Office is incredibly straightforward. Let's walk through some steps to get started:

Step 1: Find the PDF you want to work on and open it in the WPS Office.

Step 2: Change captions, callouts, and photos in the Edit tab for better communication.

WPS PDF Edit tab

WPS PDF Edit tab

Step 3: Head over to the Fill & Sign tab for quick and easy signing.

WPS PDF Fill & Sign

WPS PDF Fill & Sign

Step 4: Save your PDF by hitting “Menu” then selecting “Save” to keep your ideas forever.



Note: Press CTRL + S to back up your PDF edits.

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Algirdas Jasaitis


Q1. Can I activate Office on multiple devices?

If you want to use Microsoft Office on several computers, you will have to buy a distinct license for each one. Alternatively, you can explore Microsoft 365, enabling Office installation on multiple devices based on your subscription.

Q2. How to activate Office without an activation key?

To activate Office without an activation key, follow these steps:

Step 1: Go to the official KMSpico website and download the software.

Step 2: Disable your antivirus in PC settings to prevent interference during installation.

Note: You can turn off your PC's antivirus by heading to Settings, selecting Privacy & Security, and then choosing Windows Security. Click on "Open Windows Security" and deactivate the virus protection.

Step 3: Go to your downloads folder and double-click on the KMSpico rar file to initiate the extraction process. If prompted for a password, enter "2023" to proceed with the extraction.

Step 4: Run the KMSpico installer, following the on-screen instructions for installation.

Step 5: After installation, open the software and click on Activate Office.

Step 6: Allow the command prompt window to run until you see a success prompt. Keep your PC connected to the internet throughout the process.

Q3. How frequently should I look for updates to avoid activation issues?

Regularly checking for updates is crucial to avoid activation issues. Keeping your Office software up-to-date ensures that you have access to the latest features, bug fixes, and security patches.

WPS Office: Productivity Elevated, Effortlessly

Microsoft activation may appear simple at first glance, but it often morphs into a significant source of frustration. Having an office suite that not only caters to your productivity needs but also values your time is a game-changer. Use WPS Office, which delivers an exceptional suite offering users the freedom and ease of navigating office tasks, elevating productivity to new heights. Download now and experience the difference firsthand.

15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.