How to extend Microsoft Office 2010 trial period with PlayOnLinux


So this was interesting.

I installed Microsoft Office 2010 on my Ubuntu machine a month ago using PlayOnLinux, a process which is pretty simple. During the process, I was never asked for a product key. I thought it was odd, but chalked it up to the fact that I was simply emulating a Windows computer instead of actually using one. It made sense to me that the verification process for Office was probably tied up in the automatic program updates, which don’t work with Linux.

But, like clockwork, after twenty-five or so days, I started getting pop up warnings everytime I opened the program telling me that my 30 day trial was going to expire. That would be no big deal, but I didn’t have my product key handy. It’s lost somewhere in the mess that is my desk.

I had heard before, though, that there’s a way to extend the trial period. I looked into it and, sure enough, it’s as simple as running a program that comes pre-installed in the Office files. You can do it up to five times.

But how to do it in Linux? Well, turns out, that isn’t too hard, either. I opened up PlayOnLinux and selected Office 2010. From there, I clicked “Configure.”


Once in the configuration settings, I selected the “Wine” tab and clicked to open the command prompt.


From there, I simply typed in the file path to “OSPPREARM.EXE”. In my case, it was:

wineprefix\Office2010\drive_c\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\OfficeSoftwareProtectionPlatform\OSPPREARM.EXE


Success. There is, no doubt, a more direct way to run that file from the standard Ubuntu terminal window. But for Linux newbies who aren’t really sure how Office gets installed in the first place, this process is pretty straightforward.


8 thoughts on “How to extend Microsoft Office 2010 trial period with PlayOnLinux

    1. My guess is the product will expire. We’ll see. Hopefully by then I’ll have found my damned product key.

      I am thinking, though, that because it’s creating it’s own Windows drive with Wine, that once it expires, I can just delete the installed files and reinstall fresh. I’ll try it out just to see if it works, but just the once. Reinstalling programs over and over is a pain in the ass- especially when you have the product key (somewhere).

      1. Meh. Every time I call them it’s just a headache. I probably won’t even need Office anymore after the renewals are up. But we’ll see. Thanks for the tip.

    2. I actually have an answer to this now: nothing happens. You don’t activate and the program still works. There’s a little note that pops up saying the program is not activated, but it’s unobtrusive. I almost never use MS Office, so that works fine for me. Which is wonderful because the damned thing won’t let me enter the product key at all. Some problem with PlayOnLinux.

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