Update: See the end of this post for the fix!
Today I tried to renew an Office 365 Home subscription with a pack purchased from Amazon.
The front of the genuine Microsoft product states “1 Year New or Renewal”.
I followed the instructions ( https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Renew-Office-365-for-home-58f3d0f8-15c4-4ad8-8c5f-16d682e8b545#BKMK_RenewO365HomePersonal_Key ) on renewing with a product key and was swiftly greeted with the error:
Sorry – we can’t set up your account at the moment
Hang on to your product key, and try again later.
If this happens again, contact support.
Error code: ConversionBlockedSubscriptionViolations
There seems to be absolutely no information about this error on the internet.
I clicked the option to contact support online chat and in a roundabout way.. I was told that the product was a “POSA” (Point of Sale Activation) product and I need to contact the Accounts department by phone.
I called them… got put through to three different departments and by the third.. the call quality was so awful I couldn’t understand them and they couldn’t understand me.
We did manage to exchange my phone number and they claimed they would call me back.. and never did. I tried calling again and spent 20 minutes on hold with no answer.
Seriously – it shouldn’t be so difficult to deal with Microsoft.
I blogged back in 2013 that they suffered from call quality issues after being transferred between departments. It seems this issue still exists.
Given the difficulty getting hold of them – I plan to just let the current subscription expire and then see if it will let me assign the code.
Update & Fix!: I called Microsoft again and this time spoke to Accounts and Billing who fixed the error! It seems that, at some point in the past, the account had been renewed online at Office.com using a credit or debit card. This puts it into a “subscription”. The account had the automatic renewal option turned off – which Microsoft says puts the account in a cancellation mode.
The rep I spoke to had to put the account back to active, I then had to sign out and sign back in, then use the key and renewal was finally successful!
I’ve attached a recording of the useful part of the phone call in case someone else is stuck with this problem and Microsoft are not able to figure out how to fix it. Point them at this article and call recording and hopefully they will figure it out for your account.