How to Fix Product Activation Failed in Microsoft Office

Many users have reported that whenever they open any MS Office application they have seen the title bar in red with a message saying Product Activation Failed error. Generally, such errors are seen when MS Office is unlicensed and there are some activation errors. Users see this error on the top of every MS Office product when MS Office fails to scan the activation for its Office products.

In this article, we have listed one such fix that will help you solve this error. Before trying the fix look at the workarounds mentioned below.


Fix – Reset Microsoft Settings

1. Close all Microsoft Office apps like Word, Excel, Powerpoint, etc.

2. Press Windows key + S and search for This PC.

3. Select the option This PC in the search result.


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4. Go to Local Disk C on your PC.


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5. Here you can see two Program Files folders.


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6. Depending on your Office installation, go to the following location for Program Files

C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office16 

If you have a 32-bit installation of Office on a 64-bit OS, go to the location below:

C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office16 

Note: – If you still cannot find the file , go to the location given below and find it there

C:\Program Files\Common Files\microsoft shared\OfficeSoftwareProtectionPlatform

7. Once you have located the file, just Right-click on the OSPPREARM.exe file and select Run as administrator. Click on Yes if you are prompted by UAC.


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8. You can also search for OSPPREARM.exe in your C drive.

8. Repeat Step 5 two or three times.

9. Now open the Microsoft Office app and check whether the error is fixed.

Additional Workarounds


1. Check if you have signed in using the Microsoft account associated with Office which you had used to buy the subscription.

2. It has been noticed that activation fails if there are multiple copies of Office installed on your system.

a. Go to Programs and Features in Control Panel.

b. Look for multiple versions in the system. If there is more than one version, right-click on the one not being used and select Uninstall.

c. Restart and check if the error is cleared.

3. Check your subscription status if you are using Microsoft 365. If you have an expired subscription, renew it and restart Office to check if activation works.

For that Go to Settings  > Accounts and check your subscription status.

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4. Check whether your computer’s date, time, and time zone are correct.

5. Search Word or Excel etc. in Windows search. Right click and run as administrator .

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6. Update Microsoft office and check if it resolves the issue at hand.

Open Word or Excel.

Click on File and then click on Accounts.

Now, Click on Update Options and check for updates.

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Thanks for reading.

We hope this article has helped you resolve this Microsoft Office Product Activation Error. Comment and let us know the fix that worked for you.

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