I have been running Office 2013 in a virtual machine on my Mac for over a year, but all of a sudden the other day when I tried to open Word, I got the following error message:
Can’t check the license for this product
Hmmm, of course I have a license! The product key was valid and it activated fine over the internet when I first installed it, so I couldn’t tell exactly why I was getting this error. Anyway, after playing around with a couple of possible solutions, it now works without showing an error message. In this article, I will list the various steps that I tried to solve and I hope it works for you.
Note. This message may appear if you are using Office 2010, 2013, or 2016. The following fixes should work with any version of Office you have installed.
First method – change the time and reactivate
One suggestion was to set the system time back to the date that Office was originally installed, then re-enter the product key, activate the product, and then change the time to the current date. Therefore, after you change the time on your computer, you can enter your product key by going to Control Panel – Programs and Features.
Now click on Microsoft Office and click the Change button.
Now check the radio button next to “Enter your product key” and click “Next”.
Now find your Office product key, which is usually found on the box, and enter it in the box.
Once you’re done, you can launch any program in Office and complete the activation. At this point, if activated successfully, you can change the time to the current date and time. It should remain active even after a restart. If not, keep reading!
Method 2 – System Restore
If Office was working fine and suddenly had this problem, you can always try a system restore. You can proceed to System Restore by clicking Start and entering System Restore. You can also read more on how to use it here:
Try resetting your computer to a time when you knew Office was running smoothly.
Method 3 – Office Software Protection Platform
If you are using Office 2010, a new service called Office Software Protection Platform was added in Office 2010 Service Pack 1 (SP1), which will sometimes require you to reactivate Office. You can fix this by following these steps (no need to uninstall or reinstall office):
1. Type services.msc in the search box and stop the service called Office Software Protection Platform.
2. Now go to C: ProgramData Microsoft OfficeSoftwareProtectionPlatform and rename tokens.dat to tokens.old.
Note that to view the ProgramData folder, you must open Explorer, click the Organize button, and then Folder and Search Options.
Click the View tab and then don’t forget to check the Show hidden files and folders radio button.
3. Now go to C: ProgramData Microsoft OfficeSoftwareProtectionPlatform Cache and rename cache.dat to cache.old.
4. Now restart your computer and open any Office program. You will be prompted to re-enter your product key and then restart again. Open any Office program again and you may have to enter the key again. Then he will ask you to activate online and you are done.
Fourth method – uninstall and reinstall
At this point, if you still have problems, you may need to perform a complete uninstall and reinstall, and then reactivate Office. However, you want to do this by uninstalling properly using the Microsoft FixIT tool. Make sure you download the version you have installed.
You can uninstall using Control Panel, but I would recommend using the FixIT tool as it really cleans up all files, etc. It’s also a good idea to use something like CCleaner to clean up any leftover registry entries after deletion. At this point, try to install Office again from the original CD / DVD, and then activate the product.
Hopefully one of the above methods fixed your problem! If not, leave a comment here with the details of your setup and we’ll try to help! Enjoy!