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"This feature has been disabled by your administrator" - error in Microsoft Office applications


If you are using Microsoft Office 2013 or Office 2016 client and when you try to perform certain actions in the applications, you may receive the following error message: This feature has been disabled by your administrator.

 

This issue arises when you do not allow your Office client to connect to the internet. Let's discuss how to resolve this error.

 

'This feature has been disabled by your administrator' - error in Microsoft Office applications

 

While using Microsoft Office 2013 or Office 2016 client, if you get the following error message "This feature has been disabled by your administrator" when you try to perform certain actions, it's due to a Windows Registry settings/policy that disallows the Office application to connect to the internet.

 

What is the cause of this error?

Microsoft Office applications needs internet connectivity to access online services or to download the latest online content from Office.com.

 

This is generally controlled by the Registry settings "UseOnlineContent", which you can find at the below Registry path: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\.0\Common\Internet. If it is set to 0 (zero), that means it is disallowed to connect to the internet.

 

How to resolve this error message?

To resolve this issue, follow the below mentioned steps carefully. Serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly.

  1. First of all, close all Microsoft Office applications.
  2. Then take a backup of your Windows Registry.
  3. Open the Registry Editor (regedit) from the Start.
  4. Now, navigate to the following registry path: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\.0\Common\Internet, where <xx> is the major version no. of your Office installation. If you are using Office 2013, it will be 15. In case of Office 2016, it will be 16.
  5. Double-click on UseOnlineContent and set its value to 2. When set to 2, it allows Office to connect to the Internet.
  6. Now close the registry editor and restart your system for the changes to take effect properly.

 

Warning!!!

Serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly by using Registry Editor or by using another method. These problems might require that you reinstall the operating system. The author/site cannot guarantee that these problems can be solved. Modify the registry at your own risk.

 

After system restart, open the Microsoft Office application and perform the same step that you were performing which resulted the error message. If you perform the same step now, you won't get the error anymore.

 

 


Kunal Chowdhury
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