Steps to Fix Error 1402

What is “error 1402” or “Could not open key” error?

Error 1402 pops up when you are trying to install Microsoft Office XP on computers running Windows 95, 98 or ME operating system. This error usually occurs when the active user profile is damaged or corrupted. The installation of Office XP stops as it is unable to use proper preferences based on the User profile.

Operating Systems affected are:

  • Windows 95
  • Windows 98 and Windows 98 SE
  • Windows Millennium or Win ME

Error that appears on the screen

“Error 1402. Could not open key: key_name. System error 1009.

"Verify that you have sufficient access to that key or contact your support personnel.”

What causes Error 1402 and how to fix this problem?

The User Profile consists of the user specific information and it also stores information in the registry based on the specific user. The profile contains registry details, address book, personalized setting and system policies and it can get corrupted by software or Windows Update.

Error 1402 is generated when the Office XP is installed on the system with a corrupted User profile. To solve this problem you can follow the below mentioned methods:

  1. Check the system registry for errors and repair them
  2. Try to use a different User Profile
  3. Turn off User Profiles before running the setup

Method 1 – Check and repair the registry – Windows 98 and Millennium edition provide a tool called the ‘registry checker’ which can repair the damaged registry. The system makes a backup of the registry on regular intervals and running the registry checker replaces back the good registry from a backup taken earlier. To achieve this you can follow the steps below:

In Windows Millennium

  1. Click Start and then go to Programs.
  2. Go to System Tools and then Select System Information.
  3. On the Tools menu select Registry Checker.
    Note: You might receive an error here that will prompt you to restart, please restart and try again. This step is to check for the error.
  4. If there is no error then click Start.
  5. Select Run, type scanreg /fix and press Enter.
    Registry will now be scanned and fixed. Once done the computer will restart.
  6. Run the Office XP setup after the PC restarts.

In Windows 98

  1. Restart your system and hold down the Ctrl key.
  2. From the Startup menu that is displayed, choose Command Prompt Only.
  3. When the command prompt is displayed, type scanreg /fix and press Enter.
  4. Click Enter again when you are prompted.
  5. Type scanreg /opt and press Enter.
    This will optimize the registry by deleting unused space.
  6. Restart the system.
  7. Run Office XP.

If this doesn’t solve the issue, move on to method 2.

Method 2- Try to use a different User Profile – The damaged User Profile will not allow installation of the Office XP software. So you can log in as a different user and try recreating the corrupt profile again. To recreate the profile you can refer the Microsoft Support website.

If you are unable to repair or recreate the User profiles, move on to the next step.
Method 3 – Turn off User Profiles before running the setup – You can turn OFF the user profile to install Office XP and turn it back ON once the installation is done. Here are the steps:

  1. Click Start, go to Settings and then click Control Panel.
  2. Double-click on Passwords.
  3. Click the User Profiles tab. Click ‘All users of this computer use the same preferences and desktop settings’.
  4. Click OK.
  5. Restart the system
  6. Now install the Office XP application.

Peculiar issue with Adobe

While installing Adobe Acrobat 6 or higher in Windows XP and Windows 2000 the 1402 error similar to the ones listed below may pop up:

"Error 1402: Could not open key [key name]"

"Error 1406: Could not write value Folders to key [key name]"

To resolve this issue, uninstall all existing versions of Adobe Acrobat from your computer and then restart your computer. Finally, reinstall the Acrobat on your computer. For more details, visit Adobe Knowledgebase website.