Why Is Office 365 Shown as Unlicensed Product and How to Fix it? (6 Easy Ways)

February 19, 2024 2.1K views

Office 365 is the pinnacle of office suite versions, encompassing all the essential tools you need for productivity. Yet, even with a valid license, dealing with persistent pop-ups urging license validation can be vexing. In this guide, we delve into the root causes behind these recurring prompts and offer comprehensive solutions to resolve the issue once and for all. From understanding why the pop-ups for Office 365 unlicensed product occur in the first place to providing step-by-step instructions on how to rectify the situation, we've got you covered

Why Is Office 365 Shown as Unlicensed Product and How to Fix it?

How to Fix Office 365 “Unlicensed Product” Problems?

Office 365 activation failure can be frustrating, but fear not! While various solutions exist depending on the cause, navigating them can be overwhelming. To simplify your decision-making, this guide presents multiple troubleshooting methods specific to different scenarios. By understanding why your Office 365 appears to be an unlicensed product, you can choose the most effective approach and seamlessly resume using your software.

Method 1: Check your product key

Instead of jumping to any conclusion, users should begin with checking their product key. It's important to make sure users are signed in with the email address linked to their account. Here is how users can check it:

Step 1: Users can view their Microsoft account status directly within any Microsoft app like Word.

Step 2: Once you've opened the app, head to "Account" on the left-side panel to confirm your email matches your registered Microsoft account.

Microsoft Office check account information in App

Step 3: Users can also manage their services and subscriptions directly on the official Microsoft website after signing in.

Step 4: Head to your Microsoft Account and click "Subscriptions" to see your current plan.

Microsoft Subscriptions

Step 5: Check if you're signed in with the email address registered to your subscription. If not, sign out and log back in with the email registered to your Microsoft 365.

Method 2: Check for updates

If you're using the right email and still find yourself facing the error, updating Microsoft Office might help resolve the unlicensed product error. Try checking for updates:

Step 1: To check for and install potential updates, fire up any Microsoft Office program, such as Microsoft Excel.

Step 2: To view your account information, access the “Account” section on the left-hand panel.

Step 3: Within the Accounts window, find and click the "Update Options" button. Then, select "Update" to initiate an automatic search and installation of any needed updates for Microsoft Office.

Microsoft Office Updates

Note: For a smooth update process, please make sure you have an active internet connection.

Method 3: Check for multiple copies of Office

Having multiple Microsoft Office installations on your system can lead to the "unlicensed product" message. To fix this, simply uninstall any copies you don't need. Here's a step-by-step guide:

Step 1: To open the Control Panel, follow the simple steps tailored to your computer's operating system.

  • For Windows 11 or Windows 10: In the taskbar search box, type "Control Panel" and open it. Then, click "Programs and Features".

  • For Windows 8.1 or Windows 8: Right-click the Start button (bottom left corner)  and choose "Programs and Features" in the Control Panel.

  • For Windows 7: Go to "Control Panel" and click "Uninstall a program".

Step 2: In the search bar (top right), type "office" or "Microsoft" to find all Office or Microsoft programs installed.

Step 3: If you see multiple entries for Office or Microsoft programs, right-click the version you no longer use and choose "Uninstall".

Windows 11 Uninstall a Program

Step 4: Give your computer a fresh start by restarting after the uninstallation finishes.

Step 5: To access all the features of your Office applications, open any program (like Word, Excel, or PowerPoint) and sign in with your Microsoft account.

Step 6: If activation problems persist, performing an online repair can help address any issues with your existing Office installations.

Method 4: Check your subscription status

Your Microsoft subscription might have expired, leading to an interruption in billing and potential login errors or "unlicensed product" messages. To ensure you have uninterrupted access to all the features and updates included in your plan, take a moment to check your subscription status by following these simple steps.

Step 1: Hop on your web browser and visit the Microsoft Office Services & Subscriptions page to manage your subscription.

Step 2: To access your subscription details, please sign in using the email address associated with your Microsoft subscription.

Step 3: To view your current Office subscription plan and details, navigate to the "Subscription" section. It might also be listed under "Cancel Subscription".

Microsoft Office Subscription

Step 4: To continue enjoying all the benefits of Microsoft 365 Family, head to the Renew Microsoft 365 Family page and reactivate your subscription.

Step 5: To finalize the activation process and ensure the message disappears, please restart your Office application.

Method 5: Sign Back into Office

Sometimes, you might get logged out of your Microsoft account due to a recent update or maybe you have reinstalled Office. In such a case, simply sign in to your Microsoft registered account to resolve the unlicensed error.

Step 1: Open a Microsoft 365 app on your system and click on "Sign In" at the top right corner.

Microsoft 365 Sign in

Step 2: Follow the steps to sign in with your account.

Microsoft 365 complete Sign in

Method 6: Reinstall Office 365

While it might require some time, reinstalling Office 365 can be a powerful troubleshooting step if other methods haven't worked. While it might take some time, reinstalling Office 365 can resolve activation issues that might be preventing your Office applications from functioning properly:

Step 1: Search for "Control Panel" in the search bar.

Step 2: To remove software, head to "Programs" in the Control Panel and click "Uninstall".

Note: The specific steps might differ slightly based on your Windows version.

Step 3: To remove Office 365, search for it, right-click it, and then choose "Uninstall". This action will delete the program and all its associated files.

Windows 11 Uninstall Microsoft Office 365

Step 4: After uninstalling the program, head over to your web browser and visit the Microsoft website.

Step 5: Once signed in, head to the download page where you can select Office 365.

Step 6: After downloading and installing the Office application, open any program. Sign in with your Microsoft account to unlock all the features.

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Q1. What should I do if I have forgotten the product key?

If you've misplaced your product key, follow the straightforward step-by-step guide below:

Step 1: Visit the Microsoft website and log in to your account.

Step 2: Click on the "Products & Services" section and select the particular product you need the key for.

Step 3: The product key will be displayed, and you can easily copy it from your account. If you can not find the product key, consider contacting the manufacturer or acquiring a new one.

Q2. How can I check if my Office 365 is licensed?

Follow these steps to check the licensing status of your Microsoft Word:

Step 1: Open Microsoft Word.

Step 2: Click on the "File" tab. It is located in the top-left corner of the screen.

Step 3: Select "Account" from the options displayed.

Step 4: Look for the section labeled "Product information" on the right side of the page.

Step 5: Check the license status of your Microsoft Word in this section. If the status reads "Unlicensed Product", it indicates that action is needed to resolve the licensing issue.

Q3. Why does Office 365 display "Unlicensed Product"?

If the status of your Office 365 displays "Unlicensed Product", it indicates usage without a valid license. This situation may arise due to subscription expiration or activation issues.

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