Failing installation of Microsoft Office 365 / Office 2013

There has been a lot of talk about the new Microsoft Office 2013/365 offering from Microsoft. Many arguments have been written and said for and against Microsoft’s different Office options and pricing. Surely each side might be right in some views, but today’s article goes beyond talking straight to reality.

First of all, i admit i really like what Office 365 Home Premium offers. Having multiple computers at home, this sounds like a really good deal. I tried the O365 Preview on my workstation, and it worked fine, no problems. And when the product was made available for purchase, i didn’t hesitate and went for it. And that was where the trouble started!

I admit, would i have read Microsoft’s guide on how to re-install the Preview version with a payed one, wouldn’t have this problem. Anyway, who does it, right? But i think there’s a bit more to it than that.

As i said, i went ahead and purchased Office 365 Home Premium and tried what happens if i just try to install it on my workstation i had the preview on. I suppose there’s no surprise that this didn’t work.

Office 365 Installation: error occured

And just to make it a bit more foggy, you get a very generic and un-descriptive error message:

An error has occurred. We can’t move on to the next step. Please try again later.

So i went and uninstalled the Preview of Office 365, and after a restart, all went well.

At this point you might be thinking what am i on about? Did anybody expect to be able just to re-install the Preview with paid version? I guess most people would say NO!

But here’s the interesting bit. Had another computer to setup, this time with Office 2013 Home and office. Apparently OEMs haven’t caught up yet, and the PC came with Office 2010 preinstalled. And since this was a key only version, i went to to download it (not to mention the pain of having to create an account to do so). I typed in the license key and tried to install Office 2013. To my surprise, i got the very same un-descriptive error message as before. This time a new straight away what to do, uninstalled Office 2010, and after a restart the installation proceeded successfully.

As i said at the start, i like the Office 365 Home Premium offering, and Office 2013 looks nice and has some neat new features. But i really wish Microsoft provided a bit more descriptive information when the Office 365 / Office 2013 installation fails. I guess they do a check for a previous version (otherwise it wouldn’t present the error), and i believe it wouldn’t be that difficult to tell the user that he needs to uninstall the previous version. There might be even a big warning on the installation page telling the user that he/she needs to uninstall any previous version of Office before proceeding.

Nut hey, we are talking about Microsoft, so we’ll just have to learn the lesson and remember it for the future.

In category: Microsoft Office
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