I am trying to clone a VM. I've done sysprep successfully and all is well with my new box, except Office 2010 Professional Plus product key did not get wiped by sysprep (not too surprising), and I am unable to change the product key.

  1. When first starting outlook on the new box, activation is required. It tries to activate using the old product key.
  2. After attempts to change the product key using one of several different methods, the product will no longer run, complaining that it cannot verify the product key.

Methods of changing product key that I tried:

  1. Control panel | programs and features | select office 2010 | change | change product key.
  2. Running "ospp.vbs" as explained in Microsoft Technet article Tools to configure client computers in Office 2010.
  3. Deletion of registry keys "ProductId" and "DigitalProductId" as explained in Microsoft KB article 2581695: Office 2010 product key change error Step by Step.
  4. Various combinations of the above.:)

Results of trying the above:

  1. With simple approach (sysprep then running outlook on new VM), outlook wants the product to be re-activated. This results in an error message indicating that the old product key has reached its maximum number of activations. (And I want to use a new product key anyway.)
  2. After entering a new product key using one of the above methods, office products will not start. They give the error message "Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010 cannot verify the license for this product. You should repair the Office program by using Control Panel." Unfortunately that suggestion does not change anything.

What I want to happen:

  • I want the ability to enter a new product key and then go through activation, and have Office products working under the new product key in the new VM.

The system I am trying to clone is running Windows 7 Professional 64-bit.

NOTE: I am unable to use MAK or KMS. I must use individual keys.


I contacted Microsoft (MSDN) Technical Support and received step-by-step instructions that almost worked. I tweaked them a little and got them working. Since I cannot find the following working solution anywhere on the interwebs, I thought I should post this information for others. (Prior to contacting Microsoft, I did find and try many solutions, but none of them worked.)

Here is what worked for me:

  1. Go to services.msc and stop the "office software protection platform" service.
  2. Rename three files:
    • In %ProgramData%\Microsoft\OfficeSoftwareProtectionPlatform\ - rename tokens.dat to tokens.dat.old
    • In %ProgramData%\Microsoft\OfficeSoftwareProtectionPlatform\Cache\ - rename cache.dat to cache.dat.old
    • In C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\microsoft shared\OFFICE14\Office Setup Controller\ - rename pkeyconfig-office.xrm-ms to pkeyconfig-office.xrm-ms.old
    • Note: The path above for "C:\Program Files (x86)\" might be just "C:\Program Files" depending on the OS.
  3. Launch any office application. (I used Outlook.) A repair occurs and you are asked if you want to restart the OS.
  5. A second operation begins. You are prompted for a product key.
    • I'm guessing you can just cancel out of this, and install the product key using only the steps below for ospp.vbs.
    • However, in my case, I entered the product key and clicked "continue".
  6. Close the office application.
  7. Launch command prompt with administrator rights.
  8. Browse to path C:\Program Files (x86)\microsoft office\Office14.
  9. Type in the command cscript ospp.vbs /inpkey:xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx
  10. Type in command cscript ospp.vbs /act

I hope the above information helps someone in a similar situation.

  • I think I got it working this waystart cmd prompt as admin go to c:\program files\microsoft office\office14 run this: cscript ospp.vbs /inpkey:<key> – samsmith Jan 7 '14 at 18:27

If I remember correctly Office 2010 Professional is activated either via KMS or MAK now. If you have a kms sever in your environment, use slmgr.vbs, more info here.


Yes, either MAK or KMS http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee705504(v=office.14).aspx


Have you went to file->Help inside of an Office Program?

enter image description here

  • Sorry, I am unable to use MAK or KMS. I must use individual keys. I should've mentioned that. I'll edit my question to include this information. – Barumpus Mar 17 '13 at 21:11
  • Office 2010 is activated via kms now. This is not correct. KMS and MAK keys are provided through volume licensing and in such case one can choose which key type to use. Further, the particular edition of Office has bearing on the key type to be used. For example, Office 2010 Home & Student edition is not available via volume licensing and will not work with KMS keys. – Twisty Impersonator Nov 17 '14 at 14:52
  • @Twisty that's true, but the OP's question though is in reference to Office 2010 Professional Plus, that's in the title so that is what I referenced in my answer. Since this particular site is for Professional admins, I left out the gibberish about Home & Student edition, although it's true professional admins could have to support and activate that. In any case, this OP was doing it wrong, he wanted to clone machines with office and have to type in a key every time, I suppose just installing office on the base image w/out a key could work, although I personally wouldn't want to do that. – MDMoore313 Nov 17 '14 at 15:38
  • 1
    @BigHomie Your point about this site being for professional admins is well stated. Nonetheless, Office 2010 Pro Plus and all other volume licensed editions of Office can be activated with either MAK or KMS keys, making the implication that Office 2010 requires KMS misleading. It only requires activation via KMS if you're using KMS keys not because you're using Office 2010. – Twisty Impersonator Nov 17 '14 at 15:45
  • 1
    @Twisty good point, I fixed the wording, how's that? – MDMoore313 Nov 17 '14 at 15:48

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