Are you getting a Microsoft Office activation message after recently changing or upgrading computer hardware? From time to time you may wish to upgrade your computer components or add memory to ensure your PC remains up to date and capable of handling your needs. Microsoft Windows is excellent at recognizing system changes and updating drivers if needed. However, Microsoft’s Office software is not always so happy when you change your hardware. If you make some changes to your components then you may discover that the next time you open your favorite document, you could be interrupted by the Microsoft Activation Wizard. This can happen even if you have already activated Office in the past. Today we will explore why this happens, what hardware changes can prompt this error and what you need to do next?
Why has the Microsoft Office Activation Wizard re-appeared?
When you first install Microsoft Office, the software creates a formula of all of your system components including motherboard details, MAC address and other components. The reason the software does this it to create a footprint of your system so that your software license cannot be used on multiple computers however none of your personal details are recorded. Each license will clearly state how many computers you can install Microsoft Office on. This is an anti-piracy measure and ensures that you can’t create multiple copies of your expensive software for friends and family. When you first activate your software, this record is locked in and each time you open Microsoft Office a quick check is performed to ensure the license is still valid. The reactivation problem occurs when you change significant hardware components. If Microsoft Office suddenly doesn’t recognize your computer hardware’s unique references then it may believe the license is being used on a different computer, which would break the terms of its usage agreement. But what hardware changes can prompt this popup? Below is a selection of the most common causes of the Office Activation Wizard popup:
- Replacing your Processor
- Swapping your Hard Drive
- Changing your Display Adapter
- Changes to your IDE adapter
- SCSI adapter changes
How to fix the Microsoft Activation Wizard?
Once the Microsoft Office Wizard has appeared, the only way to resolve this issue is to re-activate your software again. To do this you will need your Microsoft Product Key (located with your Software Packaging) and then decide how you will reactive. The quickest and easiest way is over the Internet. You can select this option on the wizard and within a few moments your software should be activated again. However if there is any problems during this process or you have no internet connection then you will need to activate via the telephone’s automated system. A local number should be presented on the screen, once you call it, the wizard will provide you with a series of numbers and letters on the screen. You will need to enter these groups using your phone’s keypad. Once complete, the operator will provide you with a new set of codes that you will need to carefully enter in your wizard. Click next and your copy of Microsoft Office should be activated again. Hopefully this guide has helped explain why this error occurs and you will need to remember this the next time you make hardware changes to your computer.