How to Reinstall Microsoft Office When You Don't Have a Disc or Download

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By David Ringstrom, CPA
From time to time, you may need to reinstall Microsoft Office because you purchased a new computer or you're trying to resolve a program error. Or, in Excel 2010 and later, you may need to move between the 32-bit and 64-bit versions. In this article, I'll describe how to download the installation files on demand as well as recover a lost product key for Office.
The instructions that follow are specific to Excel 2007 and later. (I was unable to determine how to download Excel 2003 and earlier from the Microsoft website.) Links are all current as of the date of this article (October 31, 2013), but they are subject to change without notice.
Office 365 Subscribers: Click the Install link on this sign-in page. Your subscription entitles you to install the Windows or Mac versions of Office on up to five computers.
Office 2013: Provide your product key when prompted on this page. Do note that product keys for earlier versions of Office will be rejected, so be sure to use the page that corresponds with your version of Office. You can also access direct download links by way of this third-party site,, which is the service provider that manages Microsoft's software download platforms.
Office 2010: Similar to Office 2013, you'll provide your product key, but on this Office 2010 page. However, if you're looking to migrate from 32-bit Office to 64-bit, use this page instead. Your product key entitles you to use either the 32-bit or 64-bit versions. However, do be aware that you can only install 64-bit Office on a computer that has a 64-bit version of Windows. Conversely, on a 64-bit computer, you can use either 32-bit or 64-bit Office. The 64-bit version provides better performance, but it can pose conflicts with third-party products as well as certain macro programming aspects within the Office suite. To determine whether you have 32-bit or 64-bit Windows installed, double-click on the System icon within the Windows Control Panel on your computer. This third-party site contains direct download links. 
Office 2007: The Office 2007 page requires you to first select a version of Office (i.e., Professional, Home and Student, or Small Business) and then provide your product key. Unlike Office 2010 and later, the Office 2007 suite is only available in 32-bit form. This third-party site provides direct download links.
Office 2011 for Mac: As with the Windows versions, you'll need your 25-character product key to download a replacement copy of Office 2011 from this page.
Be careful when downloading any software from the Internet. For Microsoft Office in particular, make sure that the site you're downloading from is either owned by Microsoft Corporation or Cast a highly questioning eye on any other sites that purport to offer Office downloads.
As you've noted above, you'll need the 25-digit product key to download an Office suite from a Microsoft website. You may be able to bypass that step by accessing a direct download from, but you still won't be able to install the actual software without a product key. Typically the product key is on the box or CD case for your Office suite. However, if you can't find it, there are a number of free programs you can use to extract the product key from a computer that already has your version of Office installed. 
My personal favorite is ProduKey from Nirsoft, as no installation is required. Once you download ProduKey, you can double-click on ProduKey.exe within the .zip file that you download to instantly view product keys on your computer. Other programs include Belarc Advisor and Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder, among others. If you've lost or cannot access your product key, your only recourse is to purchase a new license to Microsoft Office. Presently, only Office 2013 is available for retail sale.
Read more articles by David Ringstrom. 
About the author:

David H. Ringstrom, CPA, heads up Accounting Advisors, Inc., an Atlanta-based software and database consulting firm providing training and consulting services nationwide. Contact David at or follow him on Twitter. David speaks at conferences about Microsoft Excel and presents webcasts for several CPE providers, including AccountingWEB partner CPE Link.


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I've tried this. It only gives a 30-day trial. Now that the 30 days is over, now what? I am using my laptop that has no CD drive, plus I don't know my product key.

As noted in the final paragraph of the article: " If you've lost or cannot access your product key, your only recourse is to purchase a new license to Microsoft Office."

Hi! I had to reboot my computer and I wanted to know how can I re install Office without the product key. The first time I rebooted I didn't need the code.

Based upon your description purchasing a subscription for Office 365 is probably your path of least resistance.

I read on Microsoft's website that if you downloaded online office 2013 that there is no longer a product key associated with that version of office. Are you still able to reinstall?

What you may have read about is a version of Excel that is made available by way of the Office 365 subscription. This runs $99/year, and entitles you to use both the web-based version of Excel (less functional than the desktop version), as well as install the desktop version on up to 5 computers. It's in this instance that you won't get a product key, but instead will have to log in to Excel by way of your Microsoft account. You can still purchase "shrink-wrapped" versions of Office that have a product key, but Microsoft is doing its best to move us all to subscribing to its software. It's just proceeding at a glacial pace.

I recently purchased and downloaded 2 licenses for Microsoft Office 2013. I purchased these using my Microsoft Account. When I did this, I received via email the license keys to both products. So Yes, you DO get a license key for Office 2013. If you purchase Office 365 Home Premium, that product does NOT have a license key associated with it. Instead, you activate it by logging into your Microsoft account after the software is downloaded and installed. This is the product where you are allowed to install it on up to 5 devices and renews annually for $99. The Microsoft Office 2013 is a one-time purchase and costs more, but does not have to be renewed. Hope that helps to clarify.

I have product key with me I wanted to install MS office in my new computer and uninstall from my old computer.Will this work??

Yes, that should work. You possibly could run into a snag when you activate the software on your new computer, but assuming you've only installed it on a single computer thus far, it should go without issue. My understanding is it's possible to reach a Microsoft representative on the phone to resolve any activation issues.

It depends what version of Office you're trying to install. It's my understanding that starting with 2013, you can install it on ONE computer only. Even if you reformat that ONE computer and try to reinstall it, you won't be able to. A call to Microsoft may help, probably depending on the tech you talk to.

Lynn, Microsoft did try the Draconian one-computer period licensing with Office 2013, but rather quickly capitulated. The licensing is still for one computer, but you can uninstall from one and reinstall on another now. Thank you for your great contributions to this thread! David

Thank you, you saved my hide. I had lost the package of the disk with the product key but the disk was in my CD-ROM drive. I do not need the key now but feared to need it in a future occasion. Produkey helped me in about 2 minutes.

Thank you for sharing your experience! I'm glad that you found my article helpful.

Definitely helpful. I had lost my product key and spent an hour on the phone with Microsoft. They kept telling me that I need to either buy a new version of Office or buy a support option for $99.99 to obtain a new product key... neither am I willing to do. Their argument was that it was my responsibility. that MS's own website states that it is no problem and a new key can be issued at any time ( is obviously just a customer lure and has no factual truth to it.

Thanks, Manuel! I can appreciate your frustration with the phone support option, and I'm glad you were able to prevail and recover your product key.

I have my disc, but not the product key. What can I do?

Assuming you still have Office installed on an existing computer, you can use one of the tools I noted in the final paragraph to extract the product key. If all you have is a disk but no installed version of Office anywhere then your only recourse is to purchase a new software license.

I have it installed, but it won't let me open it

Google the error that you're receiving to see what others have experienced in this situation. Also try uninstalling and reinstalling the software. Good luck!

Won't I need the product key when I reinstall?

There's a disconnect here. If you have the software installed, but can't open it, you should able to use a tool described in the article to extract the product key. My final word here is either extract your product key as described in the article, or purchase a new license for Microsoft Office. I'm simply unable to offer you any other alternatives.

I have it installed, but I keep getting a message that it is unable to open it

Thank is the URL that it takes me to when i click on your link 'page' for MS Office 2013. Knowing that the URL does not end in "" makes this whole thing look fishy. Great way to grab working product keys looks like, and then sell em off.

I agree that you can't be too careful on the Internet, but if you do a domain look-up, such as you'll find that the site is indeed owned by Microsoft. I'm sure that Microsoft considers the odds of someone guessing at product keys to gain entry to the download area to be remote at best.

I looked at Produkey, Belarc, and Magical; none supported Office for Mac 2011. Do you know of any other way to find out one's product key? My box is back home in the States and I won't be able to access it for some time. Any help would be greatly appreciated!


I"m afraid that I don't have any information on product keys for Mac. The path of least resistance for you may be to sign up for a $100/year subscription to, which will give you a license to run Office on your Mac.


I have 2 computers. One is a Lenovo which has the Microsoft Office on it. I checked like you said to get my product key because someone bought me the computer, but was not able to see it. Unless it comes in the Windows 8 packaging because I saw the product key for my Windows 8. Now my other computer is an hp and it's saying I need to purchase Microsoft Office. Isn't there a way to share my Office from the Lenovo to the hp?

If you have Excel 2013, you must either purchase an additional license or subscribe to The licensing for Excel 2010 does permit installing the software on two computers. I can't recall what Excel 2007 and earlier permit. Office 365 allows you to install Excel 2013 on up to 5 computers for $99/year.


I'm so glad you found my article helpful!

Is there a download for Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac? I have my product keys, but the disc keeps ejecting and I can't afford to fix nor purchase a newer version. 'Softonic' has versions to download, it says, but I'm adverse to downloading for free from sites I'm not familiar with for something I paid for. Any help would be appreciated!


I'm sorry that I just noticed your comment today. During my research I didn't find any sites to download the 2008 version. There probably isn't any legitimate source for that version, so I would say your best option would be to purchase the 2011 version, or perhaps subscribe to Office 365 for a period of time. My expectation is that a 2015 version of Excel for Mac is likely on the horizon, but that's purely supposition on my part.


Thank you so much. All I had were discs for an upgrade and that wasn't allowing me to install. You completely removed what could have been very frustrating!

Tom, thanks for sharing your experience. Yes, it's definitely painful when you can't find the proper disc.

Thank you, this is extremely helpful, I must say! Spent hours on Microsoft website, found some high tech response with no luck onto getting the 2007 installer (as my laptop does not have a dvd driver). almost gave up and thinking of just buying another license! Bless you and keep up the sharing!

Thanks, Shaney! I know full well how frustrating it can be to try to unearth solutions on the Microsoft web site. I'm glad I could be of assistance!

It is really a great help for me to have searched this site that I was informed of the things I need to learn. Thank you for providing us this information...

You're quite welcome. I'm glad to hear you found my work helpful!

Does this only work with Excel??? if so how can I get the full package installed if I do have my product key for 2007 home premium??

Home Premium sounds like a Windows version. The technique I describe works for Microsoft Office, which includes Excel. I may be misunderstanding your post, but it sounds like the product key you found is for Windows, and not Office.

I already installed everything for Microsoft Office Home and Business 2010 except MS Access. After I went to Control Panel and selected change to be able to use MS Access, it wants the product key. I cannot find the key, but why do I need one, since I am just trying to use a feature on a product that I have already purchased and activated? Any suggestion?

Microsoft Access isn't part of Office Home and Business 2010, so you'll need a separate product key/license in order to be able to use Microsoft Access. Microsoft's packaging of their products is often bewildering at best. You can purchase a license for just Access alone, so you don't have to purchase the whole suite again.

My microsoft 2013 hangs even before i was able to enter my product key, so what am i supposed to do now? i dont have the disc as well.

Uninstall the present version from your computer and since you have a product key, use the instructions in the article to download the installation files again.

I'll soon give this a try. I moved and can't find my product key, and Windows has not run for at least three months now. I'm running Linux alongside Windows 7 on a Lenovo ThinkPad, and that works just fine, so I haven't bothered with the Windows/Office recovery until now.

If your Windows won't run at all -- don't get me started on that mess! -- you can probably obtain the product keys from the C:\\Windows\System32\config folder by copying that folder using a live Linux distro run from USB/CD/DVD, or from another partition if you are dual booted as my ThinkPad is. I had no trouble getting my files off the Windows partition. If you can't boot from a USB or DVD drive using Linux, you'll have to look at your BIOS settings or put your Windows disk drive into another machine.

I'll run ProduKey on my old laptop that has Windows. Let's hope it works...

Thanks for adding the Linux details to my article, TVG! I'm sure this will be helpful to others in the future. I hope you're able to recover your product key.

I tried using Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder for my Mac, but it didn't give me the product key for Office 2011. Is there any program that will work for a MacBook Pro that can retrieve 2011 keys? Most of the programs are for PCs and don't work on a Mac.

I'm afraid I'm not aware of any other such applications that work on the Mac, but hopefully another reader will weigh in with an alternative. As noted in my article, when all else fails the only alternative is to procure another Excel license.

you can buy a cheap but genuine office mac 2011 on getsoftwarekey com ,it is working good on my macbook, they provide me both .DMG file download link and the product key

Thanks for the great contribution to my article. That site definitely offers another option for users that can't locate their product key.