Whether it's for business writing or for carefully crafting that movie script or novel, most people need a reliable word-processing program, and Microsoft Word is one of the most popular. A trial version of Microsoft Office, including Microsoft Word, ships with most new Windows-based PCs and laptops. Usually this gives you 60 days to use the latest, full-featured version of Microsoft Word. After that, you need to buy a license to activate the program. If you bought a hard copy of the program on disk, or downloaded it, you will also need to activate the program. The easiest way to unlock Microsoft Word is with the built-in activation wizard.
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Check that you can convert your trial version to the full retail version. If there is no conversion or activation button on the user interface, uninstall the trial version and buy and install the full version.
Convert to the full version when you first use the program. When asked to activate the trial version, click "I do not want to activate my copy. Instead, I want to convert to the full version now," and follow the steps in the activation wizard.
Upgrade to the full version any time you use the trial program. In the program menu select "Options," click the "Resources" tab, select "Activate," and follow the steps in the activation wizard. On some versions of Microsoft Office programs, click "Help" and then "Activate Product."
Convert after your 60-day trial. Click "Convert" in the expiration reminder message and follow the activation wizard.
Activate your hard disk copy of Microsoft Word by entering the 25-character product key in the Trial Activation Wizard dialogue box. You will find the product key inside the DVD or CD case.
Tips and warnings
- A basic, free word processing program is usually available on all Windows PCs as part of the Microsoft Works productivity suite. Alternatively, you can download a free, open-source alternative to Microsoft Word.
- Never download or use a "cracked" version of any computer program to get around buying a license. Not only is this illegal but hacked software often contains malicious software and viruses that can damage your computer.
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