Norton Internet Security & Microsoft Office Activation

A friend was having trouble activating their Microsoft Office software on their new Windows 7 PC and asked for some help. The problem was that it continually failed to contact the authorisation servers and so would not activate their software.

Well, after spending some time on the problem I thought I would blog how I resolved the problem since most of the links from Google suggest it’s an overloaded MS authorisation server issue (It’s not).

The problem seems to be the new Norton Internet Security software on the PC blocking contact with the server. I tried to disable it but that did not help. The fix was to follow the steps below:

  1. Reboot the PC and bring it up in SAFE mode (hold F8 as the machine boots and before it gets to the Windows logo)
  2. Choose the option to boot with Networking (you need that to contact the MS authorisation server)
  3. Once booted and you are logged in start Internet Explorer to make sure you have working internet connectivity.
  4. Now run one of the Office products and follow your authorisation process. It should now work.

After you have done the above you should have a working and authorised Microsoft Office install. Reboot your machine and away you go!


About Warren Cross

A contract IT professional that has been in the technology industry a number of years at various blue chip companies. During his career he has been a successful application developer, analyst, project manager, IT manager and system administrator, and performed in both global and local roles. For contract opportunities feel free to contact Warren through this site.
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