Avatar of Steve Mutchler
Steve MutchlerFlag for United States of America

asked on 

Did Microsoft change Office license codes...???

Needing to rebuild clients Win 10 laptop....I ran Belarc which gave me the license code for Office Plus Pro 2010.....
When I reinstalled office it would not accept that code.....and that code had an "N" in it and I get a message
saying that "N" is not "legitimate" part of the code...
If Microsoft is changing the license codes...they are in effect  forcing me to update....
I realize Office 2010 is at the end of it's life cycle....but this should be the customers decision and not
What's the deal...???
MicrosoftMicrosoft Office* license

Avatar of undefined
Last Comment
Steve Mutchler
Avatar of Seth Simmons
Seth Simmons
Flag of United States of America image

If Microsoft is changing the license codes...they are in effect  forcing me to update....

Microsoft doesn't change product keys.  Eventually after a certain amount of time once the product is totally out of support, they will no longer allow activations.

I realize Office 2010 is at the end of it's life cycle....but this should be the customers decision and not

Microsoft made the product and can decide how long to support it.  10 years is reasonable considering the more recent office versions that have been released since.  It is consistent with their typical lifecycle of products and would be more overhead to keep fixing every security update discovered.  The fact that Office 2010 has been end-of-life for about 10 months means you are running an insecure version of office and should not be using it for that reason.
Avatar of Jackie Man
Jackie Man
Flag of Hong Kong image

Blurred text
View this solution by signing up for a free trial.
Members can start a 7-Day free trial and enjoy unlimited access to the platform.
See Pricing Options
Start Free Trial
Avatar of Robert
Flag of United States of America image

I agree with jackie it sounds like your 3rd party tool failed to properly get the correct product key. If I remember correctly retail copies of 2010 came with a credit card sized card that had the license key on it. OEM ones that came from a vendor such as HP usually came with a digital license. Enterprise ones were typically done via license server or MAK.
If you do not have the original license key your pretty much stuck buying another copy. 
Avatar of CompProbSolv
Flag of United States of America image

Unless I'm mistaken (wouldn't be the first time!), Office Pro Plus (different from Office Pro) was only sold with Volume License Keys.  You'd have to buy at least 5 units (or mix with other MS purchases to make 5 units) to purchase it properly.  It is VERY common to see these keys sold as if they are legitimate when they are not.  I suspect that someone finds a key (at their employer, for example) and resells it many times.  They'll activate for a while until MS notices that there are far more activations of the particular key than how many were licensed.  At that point they'll shut off activations.

Was the software purchased through normal distribution channels for Volume Licensing?
Avatar of Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP
Flag of United States of America image

I realize Office 2010 is at the end of it's life cycle....but this should be the customers decision and not

It stinks, but have to disagree.  Microsoft LICENSES the software to your customer.  Your customer does not own the software.  They license it.  After a period of time, when Microsoft says the software is no longer supported, they may well be within their rights to alter it's ability to install and/or be used.

Strictly speaking, I doubt they did anything to disable and suspect the tool failed or there's another issue.  It's also up to your client to maintain their license information (unless they pay you to do it for them).  So if they misplaced the key/original packaging, that's on them.  While your tool MAY work to recover the key, it is not necessarily guaranteed to do it correctly or reliably (As your tool's software license agreement will probably state).
Avatar of Steve Mutchler


Office Pro Plus 2010 was installed on the laptop....I assume they purchased office and installed it....
They do NOT have the original CD...so I took an Office Plus Pro 2010 CD that I had sitting around and loaded it and tried to license it with the number I got out of Belarc....I  have used Belarc before with good results....
I had put in new HD and reinstalled W10....need to swap out kb yet....but I have an image of the old install....I could put it back and try Jackie Mann's script.....I don;t want to put her on 365....student with very limited resources....I'll look for a copy of Office 2016.....
Thanks guys....
Avatar of Steve Mutchler


Thanks everyone....
Microsoft Office
Microsoft Office

Microsoft Office is an integrated suite of applications that includes Outlook, Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Visio and InfoPath, along with a number of tools to assist in making the individual components work together. Coding within and between the projects is done in Visual Basic for Applications, known as VBA.

Top Experts
Get a personalized solution from industry experts
Ask the experts
Read over 600 more reviews


IBM logoIntel logoMicrosoft logoUbisoft logoSAP logo
Qualcomm logoCitrix Systems logoWorkday logoErnst & Young logo
High performer badgeUsers love us badge
LinkedIn logoFacebook logoX logoInstagram logoTikTok logoYouTube logo