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Office 2003 Activation Problem

Posted on 2004-09-06
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Last Modified: 2011-08-18
I have a customer who has had his Office 2003 Pro for around 4 months.
The product has been activated and was working fine.
He opened an Excel spreadsheet last week (which he recieved by email) and now his Office 2003 appears as though it has NOT been activated. He can't save docs, send emails, etc. I've checked Technet and it recommends that I activate the product by going to the "help" menu and clicking on "activate". When I click activate, nothing happens.

I've repaired the installation, re-installed it, removed then re-installed it, removed then deleted Program Files\Office then re-installed, still the same problem.

Anyone have any ideas?

Thanks in advance.
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Question by:advantagecomputers
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SheharyaarSaahil earned 600 total points
ID: 11992646
Hello advantagecomputers =)

>> He opened an Excel spreadsheet last week (which he recieved by email)
Are u sure it was a SAFE file,,,, i mean most of viruses\trojans spread thru email attachments =\
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by:advantagecomputers
ID: 11992671
The customer has 2 sets of anti-virus installed which are both up-to-date. I have also run a full virus scan, which found nothing.
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by:bobo_tech
bobo_tech earned 200 total points
ID: 11994371
Did he by any chance change *any* key part of the hardware.  When you change the hardware, (escpially the motherboard or the video cards), it will change some key info in the registery which then forces the software to re-activate itself.

Also could it be software that was installed under an educational insitution where they have one of those speical license plans that allow students and staff to install office products?  If so, its possible that the activation period ran out (it happened where i work) and then the product needs to be reactivated again.  We let our subscription lapse by accident and then the office 2003 apps started wanting to be reactivated.

We ended up getting our subscription renewed and then got things taken care of.
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LVL 10

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by:jayca
jayca earned 200 total points
ID: 12002228
FYI-they can just call Microsoft and they can help you reactivate it in like 5-10 mins.
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Author Comment

by:advantagecomputers
ID: 12004936
Guys

Many thanks for your submissions.

It appears as though there may have been some corruption within the registry.

We uninstalled MS Office, removed the registry key LOCAL MACHINE/SOFTWARE/MICROSOFT/OFFICE and reinstalled Office.

We were then able to re-activate Office.
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Expert Comment

by:abrahampgeorge
ID: 12011326
Hey guys!! You are THE lifesavers. I been suffering from the exact same problem for the last one month, and I have been installing and reinstalling again and again but to no avail. Then as per your suggestion, I deleted the registry key and started Office again and it worked FINALLY. Such a simple solution would have eluded anybody.
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Expert Comment

by:sma7769
ID: 12092720
I ran into a similar situation with an Excel VBA project. Found later on the originating computer (one that VBA was programmed or another in between) was not a valid lisenced copy of the Office program. (cracked/hacked). Theory, though not yet proven. A customer had several office machines and had TXFR the VBA project from one to another was getting this activation on 4 out of the machines they had put it on (they have 6 total # 1 was OK (the originator) # 6 never got the file installed. She was not at all happy when I broke the news to her of the cracked Office programs and my suspitions as she had thought they were all legal copies purchased from the same company at the same time. She is in progress of setting Microsoft on to them and her attorney's. I havn't totally proven this theory yet, but seems the only logial answer as all the machines were identical purchased all at the same time same place (found 3 of her XP Pro were also hacked somebody was trying to make some extra cash). Whether the originators hacked copy was responsible or the other hacks it is un clear. We set her up with legal lisencing wiped out all the machines, re done the project, TXFR the file all over with no issues. So that sort of proves the thoery but until I run into a similar situation I will not be sure ( don't really want to reinstall that many systems with a panicy owner again). Any one else seen similar?
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