Fixing Microsoft Office Starter Edition File Associations

During some Microsoft Updates, such as KB2589275 and KB2845537, it is possible that the file associations allowing Office documents to be launched by double-clicking them are broken. When this occurs, attempting to open a Word or Excel document will display the Out-of-Box Experience window (shown below) inviting the user to purchase Office:

 Microsoft Office Out-of-Box Experience

This article describes how to restore the correct file associations, allowing documents to be opened with Office Starter Edition once more.

Tested on Windows 7 and 8 with Microsoft Office 2010 Starter Edition.

Log into an account on your PC with Administrative rights. The procedure need only be carried out once per machine and will fix all users accounts.

The file below applies only to Microsoft Office 2010 and installing it on machines with other versions may produce unpredictable results.

Download the following registry file by clicking its name in the tab at the top:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

Double-click the downloaded .reg file and click Yes to confirm you wish to add the settings to your registry. You should then receive a message indicating the information has been successfully imported. If this is not the case you may have insufficient rights to import the file. In this case, contact your network administrator.

Test opening a Word .doc(x) or Excel .xls(x) document and ensure that Microsoft Office Starter Edition is launched.