You receive an "Office has detected a significant change in your machine configuration" message when you start an Office program

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Article ID: 296924 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q296924
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SYMPTOMS

When you start one of the Microsoft Office programs that are listed in the "Applies to" section, you may receive the following message
Microsoft Office edition has detected a significant change in your machine configuration. For Microsoft Office edition to continue functioning properly, and to avoid entry into reduced functionality mode, you must reactivate your product. With the product in reduced functionality mode, you will not be able to save or create new documents, and other product functionality will be reduced. For more information about reduced functionality mode, click the Help button.

To start the reactivation process, please insert your Microsoft Office edition, and then click the Next button.
where edition is the Office product that you installed, for example, Microsoft Office XP Professional with FrontPage.

When you click Next, you may receive the following message
The feature you are trying to use is on a network resource that is unavailable.

Click OK to try again, or enter an alternate path to a folder containing the installation package 'edition package.msi' in the box below.
where edition package is the name of the Windows Installer package file that is used to install Office (for example, Proplus.msi).

If you click Exit in the dialog box that displays the first message, the Office program starts in reduced-functionality mode.

CAUSE

The first message in the "Symptoms" section can appear if the hardware on your computer changed significantly since you originally installed Office. When you click Next in this dialog box, the second message appears if you do not have access to a valid Office source location. For example, if you originally installed Office from an administrative installation on your network, and you are not connected to the network, the second message appears.

NOTE: You do not receive the second message if you have access to a valid Office source location. In this case, clicking Next automatically repairs your installation, and neither message appears the next time you start an Office program.

NOTE: Volume licensing installations of Office XP SP1 and later versions and of Office 2003 never require activation, nor do they require reactivation.

RESOLUTION

To resolve this problem, use one of the following methods.

Method 1: If You Are Using Office XP Enterprise Edition

If you are using Office XP Enterprise Edition, you can resolve this problem by applying Microsoft Office XP Service Pack 1 (SP-1).

For additional information about how to determine whether you are using an Enterprise or Retail edition of Office XP, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
290134 How To Determine Whether You Have a Retail or Enterprise Edition of Office XP

For additional information about how to obtain Office XP SP-1, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
307843 OFFXP: Overview of the Office XP Service Pack 1

Method 2: Specify a Valid Network Location

Follow these steps if you originally installed Office from an administrative installation.
  1. Click Next in the dialog box that displays the first message.
  2. If the dialog box that displays the second message appears, type a valid path to an Office network administrative installation source location in the Use feature from box.

    You can also click Browse to locate the administrative installation.

    NOTE: Do not specify a path to an Office CD-ROM. Please follow the steps provided in the "Change Sources from an Administrative Installation to CD-ROM" section of this article.
  3. Click OK.
  4. Click OK to the prompt that asks you to quit and restart all open programs.
  5. Quit all open Office programs.
  6. Restart any Office program.

Method 3: Specify a CD-ROM Location

Follow these steps if you originally installed Office from CD-ROM.
  1. Click Next in the dialog box that displays the first message.
  2. If the dialog box displaying the second message appears, type a path to an Office XP CD-ROM.

    NOTE: If you do not have an Office CD-ROM, do not type a path to a network administrative installation. Follow the steps provided in the "Change Sources from CD-ROM to an Administrative Installation" section of this article.
  3. Click OK.
  4. Click OK to the prompt that asks you to quit and restart all open programs.
  5. Quit all open Office programs.
  6. Restart any Office program.

Change Sources from an Administrative Installation to CD-ROM

If you originally installed Office from an administrative installation, you cannot use a CD-ROM to repair your Office installation. In order to change from an administrative installation to an installation that uses a CD-ROM for any Windows Installer operations, you must uninstall Office and then reinstall from the CD-ROM.

To change sources from an administrative installation to a CD-ROM, follow these steps:
  1. Quit all Office programs.
  2. Double-click the Add/Remove Programs Control Panel.
  3. Double-click the entry for the Office product that you have installed.
  4. In the Maintenance Mode Options dialog box, select Uninstall Office, and then click Next.
  5. Click Yes to confirm the removal of Office.
  6. Click OK when the removal is finished.
  7. Insert your Office CD-ROM.
  8. Follow the Setup dialog boxes to install Office from CD-ROM.

    NOTE: If you use a CD key that is not a Volume License Key, you will be required to activate your Office product after the installation from CD-ROM is finished.
For more information about changing to a CD-ROM for your Office source file location, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
297834 You receive an "Error 1706. Setup cannot find the required files” error message when you repair or install a feature in Office

Change Sources from CD-ROM to an Administrative Installation

If you originally installed Office from CD-ROM but you do not have your Office CD-ROM, you can use a network administrative installation to repair your Office installation.
  1. Quit all Office programs.
  2. On the Start menu, click Run.
  3. In the Open box, type a command line similar to the following, and then click OK
    path\Setup.exe Reinstall=ProductFiles Reinstallmode=vm /qb
    where path is the full path to your network administrative installation.

    NOTE: The ProductFiles parameter must be typed exactly as it appears in the preceding command line.

  4. Start any Office program.
  5. Click Next when the dialog box with the first message appears.

    The Windows Installer automatically repairs your installation, using the network administrative location that you specified in step 3.
  6. Click OK to the prompt asking you to quit and restart all open programs.
  7. Quit all open Office programs.
  8. Restart any Office program.
NOTE: After you follow these steps, the Windows Installer uses this server location whenever it needs to reinstall, repair, or add a feature to your Office installation.

MORE INFORMATION

For more information about a permanent fix for Office XP Enterprise editions to prevent this error from occurring, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
304226 A reactivation message appears when you start an Office XP program that was installed from an Enterprise edition
For more information about reduced-functionality mode and product activation, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
293151 Description of the Office Activation Wizard

Properties

Article ID: 296924 - Last Review: September 12, 2011 - Revision: 3.0
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Office Professional Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Small Business Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office XP Developer Edition
  • Microsoft Office XP Professional Edition
  • Microsoft Office XP Small Business Edition
  • Microsoft Office XP Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kbtshoot kbprb KB296924

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