When trying to enable or disable an add-in in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007, Word 2007 or Excel 2007 (may also affect PowerPoint 2007 and other Office programs), the following error message will appear when user clicks on the check box to turn on or turn off the addin to active or inactive status state.

The connected state of Office Add-ins registered in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE cannot be changed.

Cannot Change Add-In Status in Outlook

The issue is caused by not enough authority or privilege to modify or change the registry setting. The error normally happens in Windows Vista, which runs most programs in low privilege with much lesser rights mode even though user logs on as administrator. However, it can also happen if the user login to Windows operating system such as Windows XP or Windows Server 2003/2008 with another standard user account with limited privileges.

The resolution to the error is simple. Just logon with an administrative user account, or in Windows Vista case, run the Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint or affected program as administrator, and then go back to “Add-ins” tab (inside Trust Center in Outlook 2007) to manage COM Add-ins or individual program addins.

Note that if you can’t find the “Run as Administrator” option when right clicking on the Office program, just create another shortcut of the software program to desktop, or browse directly to the executable located inside \Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\ folder to run the program with administrator privileges.