How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Microsoft Defender Antivirus is available in Windows 10 and Windows 11, and in versions of Windows Server.

Microsoft Defender Antivirus is a major component of your next-generation protection in Microsoft Defender for Endpoint. This protection brings together machine learning, big-data analysis, in-depth threat resistance research, and the Microsoft cloud infrastructure to protect devices (or endpoints) in your organization. Microsoft Defender Antivirus is built into Windows, and it works with Microsoft Defender for Endpoint to provide protection on your device and in the cloud.

Compatibility with other antivirus products

If you’re using a non-Microsoft antivirus/antimalware product on your device, you might be able to run Microsoft Defender Antivirus in passive mode alongside the non-Microsoft antivirus solution. It depends on the operating system used and whether your device is onboarded to Defender for Endpoint. To learn more, see Microsoft Defender Antivirus compatibility.

Comparing active mode, passive mode, and disabled mode

The following table describes what to expect when Microsoft Defender Antivirus is in active mode, passive mode, or disabled.

Check the state of Microsoft Defender Antivirus on your device

If you want to check the state of Microsoft Defender Antivirus on your device, you can use one of several methods, such as the Windows Security app or Windows PowerShell.

Use the Windows Security app to check status of Microsoft Defender Antivirus

On your Windows device, select the Start menu, and begin typing Security . Then open the Windows Security app in the results.

Select Virus & threat protection.

Under Virus & threat protection settings, choose Manage settings.

You’ll see the name of your antivirus/antimalware solution on the settings page.

Use PowerShell to check status of Microsoft Defender Antivirus

Select the Start menu, and begin typing PowerShell . Then open Windows PowerShell in the results.

In the list of results, look at the AMRunningMode row.

Normal means Microsoft Defender Antivirus is running in active mode.

Passive mode means Microsoft Defender Antivirus running, but is not the primary antivirus/antimalware product on your device. Passive mode is only available for devices that are onboarded to Microsoft Defender for Endpoint and that meet certain requirements. To learn more, see Requirements for Microsoft Defender Antivirus to run in passive mode.

EDR Block Mode means Microsoft Defender Antivirus is running and Endpoint detection and response (EDR) in block mode, a capability in Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, is enabled.

SxS Passive Mode means Microsoft Defender Antivirus is running alongside another antivirus/antimalware product, and limited periodic scanning is used.

To learn more about the Get-MpComputerStatus PowerShell cmdlet, see the reference article Get-MpComputerStatus.

Get your antivirus/antimalware platform updates

It’s important to keep Microsoft Defender Antivirus, or any antivirus/antimalware solution, up to date. Microsoft releases regular updates to help ensure that your devices have the latest technology to protect against new malware and attack techniques. To learn more, see Manage Microsoft Defender Antivirus updates and apply baselines.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Source: Windows Central

Windows 10 comes with the Microsoft Defender Antivirus security feature to protect your computer and data from virtually any type of malware and hackers. Although this is one of the best antivirus software, it’s not perfect, and sometimes, specially crafted malicious code can find its way into the system and rapidly take control and cause irreversible damage.

This is not specific to Microsoft Defender. This can occur with any third-party antivirus you install on your computer. However, if your computer gets infected with a nasty hard-to-move malware when Windows 10 is loaded, you can use the Microsoft Defender Offline scan option. The offline option is an automated feature capable of running when the system isn’t running, which allows the anti-malware engine to detect and remove most viruses more easily.

In this Windows 10 guide, we will walk you through the steps to perform an offline malware scan using the Windows Defender Antivirus tool.

How to use Defender Antivirus Offline scan on Windows 10

To scan and remove viruses with the Microsoft Defender Antivirus Offline scan feature, use these steps:

  1. Open Windows Security.
  2. Click on Virus & threat protection.

Under the “Current threats” section, click the Scan options setting.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Source: Windows Central

Select the Microsoft Defender Offline scan option.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Source: Windows Central

Once you complete the steps, Windows 11 will restart into the Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE), where the command-line version of Microsoft Defender Antivirus will run automatically without loading the system. The scan will detect and delete any hard-to-remove viruses it may find without user interaction. The offline scan will take around 10 minutes, then the computer will restart automatically.

Review scan results

To review the scan information, use these steps:

  1. Open Windows Security.
  2. Click on Virus & threat protection.

Under the “Current threats” section, click the Protection history setting.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Source: Windows Central

Confirm the scan actions and recommendations (if available).

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Source: Windows Central

If you don’t see any information in the history, then the antivirus couldn’t find anything on the computer.

It’s also important to pay attention to the items’ dates because the list includes all the recent actions, and sometimes, you may see things from previous scans or real-time detections.

More Windows resources

For more helpful articles, coverage, and answers to common questions about Windows 10 and Windows 11, visit the following resources:

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

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Microsoft's built-in security software has improved enormously, but it still has a few shortcomings. A reader writes in to ask: Can it get the job done as well as a third-party antivirus utility?

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

I mostly write reviews of VPNs, articles and features about VPNs, and responses to emails (of varying degrees of hostility) from or about VPN services. In nearly all of these contexts, I’ve tried to explain that VPNs (although excellent for securing your internet traffic) don’t replace password managers, antivirus suites, or the use of two-factor authentication (2FA). But recently a reader asked me if I was implying that the security software from Microsoft was somehow lacking. That’s a question worth considering.

Here’s what our intrepid reader sent me. (Note that this excerpt has been edited for brevity and to remove personal information.)

You recommend third-party anti-malware, McAfee, Bitdefender, and Kaspersky in one of your articles. Are you suggesting that Microsoft Security Essentials on Windows 10 is not sufficient?

The short answer is that the bundled security solution from Microsoft is pretty good at most things. But the longer answer is that it could do better—and you can still do better with a third-party antivirus app.

Just How Well Does Windows Defender Perform?

For those who are unaware, Microsoft Security Essentials was antivirus software included by Microsoft with Windows starting in 2009, until it was supplanted by Microsoft Windows Defender Security Center. With this software, Microsoft ensured that customers would have some kind of protection from the moment they first booted up their computer. It costs them nothing and doesn’t require them to take any action.

When Microsoft’s security offering first went under the microscope, it didn’t impress. But it improved over time, so much so that it started to snag top scores from independent lab assessments. In his review, my colleague Neil Rubenking found that Microsoft’s offering does an excellent job detecting and preventing malicious software.

Now, Defender hasn’t totally stolen the spotlight away from the McAfees and the Bitdefenders of the world. You could chalk that up to decades of name recognition for competitors, but testing has revealed some notable shortcomings in Windows Defender. We found that the SmartScreen filter in Edge blocked just 68 percent of phishing sites, for example. That’s particularly bad compared with the 89 and 90 percent blocked by Firefox and Chrome. In those tests, Kaspersky and McAfee blocked 100 percent of the phishing sites.

That’s especially disappointing because phishing attacks can do a lot of damage, and they don’t require a lot of technical sophistication on the part of attackers. A phishing site tricks people into voluntarily handing over personal information—like credit card numbers—by impersonating a legitimate website. For more on this particular threat, you can read our story on how to avoid phishing attacks.

Windows Defender also doesn’t cover the same breadth of products that third-party security companies do. The company that sells you antivirus software can also provide backup protection, a password manager, a VPN, parental control, and more besides, often rolled up in a security suite.

Still, the ascension of Windows Defender is a good story. We conclude our review thusly:

When it comes to the security of Windows 10 computers, the Windows Defender antivirus would be the obvious choice. The Windows Defender antivirus protection, along with the Windows Defender Firewall is built into the Windows 10 computers. So, there is no need for installing it on a Windows 10 computer. The antivirus protection can be turned on and off to secure a Windows 10 computer. Follow the steps to guide on How to Install Windows Defender Antivirus in Windows 10.

Some of the security features provided by the Windows Defender antivirus protection are given below.

As mentioned earlier, the Windows Defender antivirus protection does not require any installation on a Windows 10 computer as it is built into it. Also, it’s security services, and antivirus threat definitions are entirely free.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

How to Turn On Windows Defender Antivirus?

The steps to turn on the Windows Defender antivirus protection on a Windows 10 computer are given below.

  • To turn on the Windows Defender antivirus, you have to access the Windows Defender Security Center on your Windows 10 computer.
  • Click the Windows icon on the left end of the taskbar.
  • Click Settings, and when the Settings window opens, click the Update & Security tile.
  • Now, select Windows Security in the left panel.
  • In the right-side panel, click the Open Windows Security button. This will launch the Windows Defender Security Center window.
  • In this window, select the Virus & threat protection tile.
  • Now, go to the Virus & threat protection settings section and click the Manage settings link.
  • In the next window, notice the toggle switch under Real-time protection. If it is turned Off, click it to turn on real-time protection.
  • This will turn on the Windows Defender antivirus protection on your Windows 10 computer. You can also turn on or off other security features by navigating through the menus located in the left panel of the Windows Defender
  • Security Center.

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How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

With so much of our lives spent online, and crucial files stored on our devices, it’s important to have protection against viruses that can wreak havoc.

For Windows 10 users, there’s a built-in antivirus protection program called Microsoft Defender Antivirus. Here’s what you need to know.

What is Microsoft Defender?

Microsoft Defender Antivirus, formerly known as Windows Defender, is an antivirus protection program that’s included with Windows 10. Unlike other antivirus programs like McAfee, Microsoft Defender is free and doesn’t require any additional installation. It’s also routinely updated.

Microsoft Defender’s features include automatically backing up files to OneDrive, expansive parental control settings, and the elimination of any need for passwords, which have been replaced by face recognition and fingerprint technology (known as Windows Hello).

Microsoft Defender offers tracking prevention to help you manage how websites track your data and to give you more control over your privacy settings when browsing the web. It also has a password generator, plus a password monitor that lets you know if any of your passwords have been compromised.

When set to active mode, Microsoft Defender acts as the primary antivirus app on your device. It scans files, remediates threats, and lists detected threats in security reports on the Windows Security app.

How to enable Microsoft Defender

Microsoft Defender is automatically included with Windows 10, but if your computer is linked to a group or organization (such as through your workplace), you may need to double-check that Microsoft Defender is actually enabled on your device.

1. Click the Start button on your Windows computer.

2. Type Group policy into the search bar.

3. Click on Edit group policy.

4. Click Computer Configuration, and then click Administrative Templates.

5. Click Windows Components, and then select Microsoft Defender Antivirus.

6. Scroll down to the bottom of the list and look for Turn off Microsoft Defender Antivirus. Click on Disabled or Not configured (whichever one is visible on your device). Note that while this might seem contradictory, you’re on the right track.

7. Click Apply, then click OK.

How to turn off Microsoft Defender in 3 ways

You may want to temporarily disable Microsoft Defender if you’re trying to install a third-party software or program onto your computer and the antivirus is blocking the installation. Another reason to turn off Microsoft Defender is if you want to use another antivirus program.

Important: When Microsoft Defender is turned off, the security of your computer may be at risk for malware attacks.

Temporarily disable via Windows Security

1. Click the Start button on your Windows computer, then click the Settings icon (it looks like a gear).

2. Select Update & Security.

3. Then click Windows Security, and select Virus & threat protection.

4. In the Virus & threat protection settings section, click Manage settings.

5. Click the toggle under Real-time protection to turn it off. It will turn gray when Microsoft Defender is disabled.

Permanently disable via group policy

1. First, you need to disable tamper protection. Click the Start button on your Windows computer, then search for Windows Security. Click on the app to open it.

2. Click Virus & threat protection. In the Virus & threat protection settings section, click Manage settings.

3. Click the toggle under Tamper Protection to disable this feature.

4. Click the Start button, then search for gpedit.msc. Click the first result to open the Local Group Policy Editor.

5. Click Computer Configuration, Administrative Templates, Windows Components, then Microsoft Defender Antivirus.

6. Double-click Turn off Microsoft Defender Antivirus. Click Enabled in the pop-up window, then Apply, then OK.

7. Restart your computer.

Use a third-party antivirus protection program

If you choose to disable Microsoft Defender, it’s a good idea to install another antivirus program to protect your computer from viruses and malware. Below are some third-party options to consider:

Antivirus software now comes with Windows. But is it good enough?

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

You’ve just unwrapped your Christmas or birthday present, and lo and behold, there’s a brand-new Windows laptop in the box. As you set it up, you recall that you’ve heard a lot about the threats of malware and viruses, and you wonder if you need to buy third-party antivirus software for your shiny new machine.

The answer is: Maybe not. Windows 10 and Windows 11 come with their own antivirus software called Microsoft Defender Antivirus, aka Windows Defender. It used to be terrible. But in the past few years Microsoft has totally turned it around, and Defender is now one of the best antivirus programs, free or paid, at detecting, blocking and neutralizing malware.

Several other features found in paid antivirus products are also available for free in Windows 10 and Windows 11.

Parental controls can be activated in the “Family Options” area of the Windows Security dashboard. There’s a password manager hidden in the Microsoft Edge browser, and it will sync your passwords with the Microsoft Authenticator app for Android and iOS. An Edge feature called “SmartScreen” blocks known malicious websites and downloads.

The downside of Defender

The catch is that in order to get the best protection from Windows’ built-in security tools and features, you have to stick to Microsoft products. So that means using Edge instead of Chrome or Firefox as your default browser, Microsoft Office 365 instead of Google Workspace or LibreOffice, and Microsoft Teams instead of Slack or Zoom.

As a result, if your Chrome or Firefox browser stumbles across a malicious website, you’ll have to rely upon the browser’s own protection, not Microsoft’s. (To be fair, the protections on Chrome and Firefox are pretty good on their own.)

Microsoft does have browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox, but they’re limited to machines running the Pro, Enterprise or Education versions of Windows 10 and Windows 11.

For the parental controls to work properly, your kids have to use Edge, and no other browser, on Windows. You can also put Microsoft Family Safety apps on your kids’ Android and iOS devices, but that requires a paid subscription to Microsoft Office 365.

Making your final decision

If you’re comfortable with all this — and in our experience, Edge is lighter and faster than Chrome — then Microsoft Defender Antivirus and the related protections built into Windows 10 and 11 should absolutely be good enough to protect you from malware infection, and give you a few useful extra security features as well.

But if you’d rather use Chrome or Firefox, Slack or Zoom, Google Workspace or LibreOffice instead of the corresponding Microsoft products, then it would be best to get one of the best Windows 10 (and 11) antivirus programs.

That third-party antivirus program will protect all browsers equally well, and detect threats in all kinds of applications, not just Microsoft’s. You don’t need to spend a lot, or even anything at all — one of the most impressive antivirus programs we’ve seen is Kaspersky Security Cloud Free.

If you have a multi-platform household and are willing to spend a bit more, you can shell out for one of the best internet security suites, which bundle in antivirus software for Mac and Android devices and generally come with parental controls and password managers as well. Some also toss in identity theft protection services, VPNs, backup software and cloud storage.

Ultimately, deciding on whether Microsoft Defender Antivirus is good enough depends on you. That seems like an evasive answer, but it’s not. Choosing any antivirus software first involves figuring out what you need. The upside is that, unlike a few years ago, Defender is now a serious option that’s well worth considering.

Virus and endpoint protection is critical in order to keep your computer safe.

Students

Windows Defender

Keep your PC safe with trusted antivirus protection built-in to Windows 10. Windows Defender Antivirus delivers comprehensive, ongoing and real-time protection against software threats like viruses, malware and spyware across email, apps, the cloud and the web. Features of Windows Defender include:

  • Microsoft Edge: Windows Defender SmartScreen is built into Microsoft Edge which helps keep you protected from malicious websites and downloads.
  • Windows Firewall: Windows Firewall is designed to keep hackers and malicious software from gaining access to your device through a network or the Internet.
  • Find my Device: If your Windows 10 device is lost or stolen, the Find My Device service can ring, lock, and erase your Windows phone or map the location of your device.

For more information on Window Defender, click here.

Faculty and Staff

CrowdStrike

Virus and endpoint protection is provided to faculty and staff by CrowdStrike. CrowdStrke is automatically pushed to all computers that are centrally managed by NJIT. CrowdStrike provides real time threat protection without slowing down background processing. Unlike legacy antivirus products, CrowdStrike runs in the background and does not appear as an installed application.

Here are three ways to perform a full virus scan on Windows 10 with Microsoft Defender Antivirus using Windows Security, Command Prompt, and PowerShell.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Although, on Windows 10, Microsoft Defender Antivirus is proactively checking and regularly scanning your device for threats, such as viruses, spyware, ransomware, rootkits, and other types of malware and hackers, sometimes, you may still need to perform a scan manually to make sure the installation and data has not been compromised.

If you suspect that a virus or another malware has entered your computer (or you want to perform a maintenance run), Microsoft Defender Antivirus allows you to perform three types of manual scan on Windows 10, including quick, custom, and full scan using the using the Windows Security app, Command Prompt, and PowerShell

In this guide, you will learn the steps to perform a complete virus scan using the built-in anti-malware program on Windows 10.

How to perform full virus scan with Windows Security

To perform a full virus scan, use these steps:

Open Start on Windows 10.

Search for Windows Security and click the top result to open the app.

Click on Virus & threat protection.

Under the “Current threats” section, click on Scan options.

Select the Full scan option to check the entire system for viruses and any other type of malware.

Click the Scan now button.

Once you complete the steps, Microsoft Defender Antivirus will scan your device for viruses and many other types of malware, and if anything is detected, the antivirus will remove (or quarantine) the threats automatically.

Also, depending on the amount of data, this process can take a long time. If you have a lot of files, it is recommended to start the scan when you done using the device for the day and let the scan run overnight.

How to perform full virus scan with Command Prompt

To run a Microsoft Defender Antivirus full scan from Command Prompt, use these steps:

Open Start.

Search for Command Prompt, right-click the top result, and select the Run as administrator option.

Type the following command to locate the latest version of Microsoft Defender Antivirus installation and press Enter:

Type the following command to run a full virus scan and press Enter:

After you complete the steps, the anti-malware solution will scan the device for any kind of malware. You will notice the “Start scanning” messages as you run the command. Once the scan is complete, you will the see the “Scan finished” message.

How to perform full virus scan with PowerShell

To start a full scan with Microsoft Defender Antivirus using PowerShell, use these steps:

Open Start.

Search for PowerShell, right-click the top result, and select the Run as administrator option.

Type the following command to start a full malware scan and press Enter:

Once you complete the steps, Microsoft Defender Antivirus will perform a full scan to check, detect, and remove viruses and any other type of malware it might be able to find.

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Find out how to switch on Windows Defender in Windows 10 and older versions of the OS

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

First released with Windows Vista, Microsoft's free, built-in antivirus software has provided base-level protection for Windows machines for a number of years now, with its capabilities and efficiency improving with every iteration.

Windows Defender has appeared on every iteration of Windows since Vista and can still be found on the presently supported versions, Windows 10 and Windows 11.

Despite Windows Defender's effectiveness increasing in recent years to a point where it now rivals some of the more popular alternatives that are out there, users often instead opt for third-party products supplied by cyber security vendors of which there are plenty on the market, both free and paid-for.

There are benefits and drawbacks to paying for a third-party solution but the main consideration should be for how long you expect strong coverage, and how much you're willing to pay for it. Paid-for alternatives on the market often operate a subscription model whereby users pay a sum for a specified time period of coverage. With Windows Defender, the product is free which means you won't have to worry about managing subscription costs across the business.

However, if Windows Defender is enabled while a third-party anti-virus or anti-malware tool is also running, interoperability issues can arise which, somewhat ironically, can weaken the systems' security when users think they have double the protection from two anti-virus programs running.

Business users also now have the option of choosing an affordable paid-for version of Windows Defender since it was announced at Microsoft Ignite 2021. The paid business version operates on a subscription model, unlike the free consumer-grade Windows Defender, and costs £2.20 per user to protect against the most common threats faced by small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) specifically.

Why you should use Windows Defender

At first glance, Windows Defender might not seem like anything exceptional, especially compared to more popular antivirus alternatives offered by Norton or McAfee. However, Windows Defender is an obvious winner in at least one field: cost. After all, Microsoft’s security staple is completely free to use, and comes with a pretty impressive set of appliances. From malware detection and removal tools to real-time analytics and cloud-enabled protection, Windows Defender is the perfect antivirus for those who are happy to stick to the basics. In fact, it might be difficult to find another free alternative that is as well-equipped as the Defender and won’t bombard you with ads and pop-ups.

What's more, when it comes to the Windows Defender, you don’t have to worry about the installation process. The tool is with you from day one, having been embedded in your device’s operating system. The only thing which you should keep an eye out for is the occasional update, and that can be easily downloaded and carried out through Windows Update.

Global security insights report 2021

Extended enterprise under threat

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Free download

Although free and convenient, Windows Defender isn’t completely faultless. This was the case in March 2020, when Windows 10 users reported receiving messages that the antivirus was skipping files when conducting scans, despite not having any exclusions configured in the preferences. This was due to a bug stemming from a configured exclusion or network scanning setting which was confirmed to have affected both Quick and Full scan options, leaving users potentially vulnerable to malware.

Windows Security is built-in to Windows 10 and includes an antirvirus program called Microsoft Defender Antivirus. If you have another antivirus app installed and turned on, Microsoft Defender Antivirus will turn off automatically.

Does original Windows 10 need antivirus?

Do I need Antivirus for Windows 10? Whether you’ve recently upgraded to Windows 10 or you’re thinking about it, a good question to ask is, “Do I need antivirus software?”. Well, technically, no. Microsoft has Windows Defender, a legitimate antivirus protection plan already built into Windows 10.

Is the built-in Windows 10 antivirus good?

Windows 10 has built-in real-time antivirus named Windows Defender, and it’s actually pretty good. It automatically runs in the background, ensuring all Windows users are protected against viruses and other nasties.

Is the any antivirus free for Windows 10?

Avast provides the best free antivirus for Windows 10 and protects you against all types of malware. For complete online privacy, use our VPN for Windows 10.

Which antivirus is best for Windows 10?

The best Windows 10 antivirus you can buy Kaspersky Anti-Virus. The best protection, with few frills. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus. Very good protection with lots of useful extras. Norton AntiVirus Plus. For those who deserve the very best. ESET NOD32 Antivirus. McAfee AntiVirus Plus. Trend Micro Antivirus+ Security.

Is Windows Defender as good as Norton?

Norton is better than Windows Defender in terms of both malware protection and the impact on system performance. Norton is also our recommended antivirus software for 2021.

Is Windows Security Enough 2020?

The short answer is, yes to an extent. Microsoft Defender is good enough to defend your PC from malware on a general level, and has been improving a lot in terms of its antivirus engine in recent times.

Does Windows 10 Defender scan automatically?

Like other anti-malware applications, Windows Defender automatically runs in the background, scanning files when they are accessed and before user open them. When a malware is detected, Windows Defender inform you.

Will Windows 11 be a free upgrade?

Windows 11 is coming on October 5, and everyone with a compatible device will be eligible for a free upgrade, according to a blog post by Microsoft.1 day ago.

What is the built in antivirus for Windows 10?

Windows Security is built-in to Windows 10 and includes an antirvirus program called Microsoft Defender Antivirus. (In previous versions of Windows 10, Windows Security is called Windows Defender Security Center).

What is a good free antivirus for Windows 10?

Which Free Antivirus Is Best? Our current Editors’ Choice picks for free antivirus utility are Avast Free Antivirus and Kaspersky Security Cloud Free. Both appear in lab reports from all four labs we follow. Kaspersky earned near-perfect scores, and Avast came close.

Does free antivirus really work?

Free anti-virus solutions will protect you against common, known computer viruses. However, they may leave you vulnerable to yet-unknown threats. If you choose Kaspersky Free Anti-virus for Windows, you will benefit from the same antivirus as our paid products.

Is McAfee or Norton better?

Norton is better for overall security, performance, and extra features. If you don’t mind spending a little extra to get the best protection in 2021, go with Norton. McAfee is a bit cheaper than Norton. If you want a secure, feature-rich, and more affordable internet security suite, go with McAfee.

Do I still need Norton with Windows 10?

Although Windows 10 has built-in antivirus protection in the form of Windows Defender, it still needs additional software, either Defender for Endpoint or a third-party antivirus. That is because Windows Defender lacks endpoint protection as well as full-service investigation and remediation of threats.

Do I need Norton with Windows 10 defender?

Yes. If Windows Defender detects malware, it will remove it from your PC. If you’re looking for the best malware protection and internet security tools, a premium antivirus like Norton or Bitdefender is much more capable.

Can Norton and Windows Defender run together?

Yes you can run them together but it is not necessary. If you have the paid version of Norton then just run that. To disable Defender go to Services and Windows Defender to Disable and stop the service. If you do not then use Defender and uninstall Norton.

Can Windows Defender remove malware?

Performing a malware scan with Microsoft Defender Antivirus Click on Windows Security tab. Under the Protection areas section, click on Virus & threat protection. In the event that the summary information identifies malware click Start actions and follow the on-screen prompts to remove the malware.

How good is Windows Defender 2020?

AV-Comparatives’ July-October 2020 Real-World Protection Test placed Microsoft 12th out of 17, for instance, with a protection rating of 99.5%. SE-Labs’ July-September 2020 Home Anti-Malware Protection report tells a similar story, with Microsoft Defender ranked 8th out of 14 on its Total Accuracy rating.

Is McAfee antivirus better than Windows Defender?

For malware protection. Microsoft Defender settled for the Advanced rating, while McAfee got the Advanced plus rating. Overall, both antivirus suites offer stellar protection against malware and other online threats. However, McAfee gets an edge ahead due to its Identity theft protection services.

How can I tell if Windows Defender is on?

Open Task Manager and click on Details tab. Scroll down and look for MsMpEng.exe and the Status column will show if it’s running. Defender won’t be running if you have another anti-virus installed. Also, you can open Settings [edit: >Update & security] and choose Windows Defender in the left panel.

How do I know if I have virus protection on Windows 10?

To protect against viruses, you can download Microsoft Security Essentials for free. The status of your antivirus software is typically displayed in Windows Security Center. Open Security Center by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking Security, and then clicking Security Center.

How long does Windows Defender full scan?

The length of time for performing a Quick scan will vary but it generally takes about 15-30 minutes so they can be performed daily. Full Scan is much more comprehensive since it scans the entire hard drive (all folders/files) which can number in the thousands.

Whether you’ve recently upgraded to Windows 10 or you’re thinking about it, a good question to ask is, “Do I need antivirus software?”. Well, technically, no. Microsoft has Windows Defender, a legitimate antivirus protection plan already built into Windows 10.

However, not all antivirus software are the same. Windows 10 users should examine recent comparison studies that show where Defender lacks effectiveness before settling for Microsoft’s default antivirus option.

An AV Comparatives 2017 study shows Windows Defender falls behind other antivirus software in protection, usability, and performance. Defender also lacks consumer-friendly features that are growing in popularity — like password managers and a built-in virtual private network (VPN) .

Overall Protection: Defender Falls Behind Other Software

Any antivirus software needs a good protection rating. Detecting and eliminating malware threats is the primary consideration. Be aware of future trends in malware attacks and choose antivirus software based on its ability to defend against growing threats such as zero-day attacks and ransomware.

The AV Comparatives study tested 17 major antivirus software brands and ran from July to November 2017. Defender received an overall protection rating of 99.5%, falling behind seven other cybersecurity software .

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Another 2017 study by the IT-Security Institute showed Defender falling behind other antivirus software in preventing zero-day malware attacks. Zero-day attacks happen the same day developers discover a security vulnerability, and they’re growing in popularity among cybercriminals.

The IT-Security Institute’s test results (for July and August) showed Defender as only 97.0% effective against zero-day malware attacks, 2.5% below the industry average. The difference may seem small, but the stakes are high for zero-day attacks. It only takes one ransomware or botnet attack to hijack your computer or steal your identity.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Defender causes usability problems

All antivirus software impacts how you use your computer because it scans all of the websites, files, and other software your system interacts with. With antivirus software, consumers want the most protection with the least interference. Compared to other antivirus products, Defender struggles to stay out of your way.

False positives

When antivirus software scans files and websites for potential threats, they can mistakenly flag some as dangerous. These “false positives” can get really annoying because they block access to safe websites or stop the installation of legitimate software. These issues can slow you down and are distracting.

The AV Comparatives study (below) found Defender had a higher false positive rate compared to the majority of major antivirus software packages.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Defender struggles particularly with flagging legitimate software as malware. The IT-Security Institute’s tests showed Defender having a higher than average rate of false detections for safe software. Users who want to get around this issue by lowering Defender’s protection settings become more vulnerable to real malware attacks.

Defender’s performance

All antivirus software slows down your computer at least a little. After all, it takes computing power to scan all of the bits of information running through your computer’s processor, but a bulky or inefficient antivirus package can mean slower website loads, crawling status bars, and sluggish software launches.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

The IT-Security Institute’s test results (above) showed Defender scoring below industry average for standard software application launches and frequently used applications. Its performance score was 4.5 out of 6.0.

Defender will make your favorite programs run slower when you use your computer at home. If you own a business, your employees will be slowed down too. Overly burdensome antivirus software coupled with outdated computers means a loss of worker productivity and revenue.

The Problem with Standard Antivirus Protection

Fans of Defender point out that it comes standard with Windows 10, which means no extra software to download and install onto your computer. Pre-installed standard software is convenient from a usability perspective, but it also leaves you more vulnerable to attack.

Cyberthieves make Defender a priority one target because it works the same for every computer. Any standard way to doing anything makes it easier to predict and circumvent. Defender is no exception. Hackers make sure they’re malware designs can avoid Defender’s basic detection and take advantage of its vulnerabilities. Less standard antivirus software take unique approaches to finding and eliminating viruses—approaches difficult to predict.

To protect yourself, your family, and your devices, you need the best free antivirus protection available. While some users may still see Defender as a viable option based upon their specific needs, they’re trading convenience for effectiveness — a luxury with personal and financial costs that increase every year.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Panda Security

Panda Security specializes in the development of endpoint security products and is part of the WatchGuard portfolio of IT security solutions. Initially focused on the development of antivirus software, the company has since expanded its line of business to advanced cyber-security services with technology for preventing cyber-crime.

No need to download—Microsoft Defender comes standard on Windows 10 as part of Windows Security, protecting your data and devices in real time with a full suite of advanced safeguards.

How do I turn on Microsoft Defender Antivirus?

To turn on Microsoft Defender Antivirus in Windows Security, go to Start > Settings > Update & Security > Windows Security > Virus & threat protection. Then, select Manage settings (or Virus & threat protection settings in previous versions of Windows 10> and switch Real-time protection to On.

How do I set Windows Defender as my default antivirus?

To access these settings, open the Start menu and select Settings. Choose the “Update & security” category and select Windows Defender. By default, Windows Defender automatically enables the real-time protection, cloud-based protection, and sample submission.

Do I need to install Windows Defender?

Furthermore, you don’t need to install or download anything apart from routine and necessary updates that can be carried out through Windows Update. Windows Defender is built directly into the Windows operating system and when you turn on Windows 10, it’ll give you full access to the antivirus platform.

Do I need antivirus if I have Windows Defender?

Using Windows Defender as a standalone antivirus, while much better than not using any antivirus at all, still leaves you vulnerable to ransomware, spyware, and advanced forms of malware that can leave you devastated in the event of an attack.

Does Windows 10 have built-in antivirus?

Windows Security is built-in to Windows 10 and includes an antirvirus program called Microsoft Defender Antivirus. … If you have another antivirus app installed and turned on, Microsoft Defender Antivirus will turn off automatically.

Is Microsoft release Windows 11?

Microsoft is set to release Windows 11, the latest version of its best-selling operating system, on Oct. 5. Windows 11 features several upgrades for productivity in a hybrid work environment, a new Microsoft store, and is the “best Windows ever for gaming.”

How can I tell if Windows Defender is on?

Option 1: In your System tray click on the ^ to expand the running programs. If you see the shield your Windows Defender is running and active.

Why Windows Defender not working?

If Windows Defender is not working, that’s usually caused by the fact that it detects another antimalware software. Make sure you uninstall the third-party security solution completely, with a dedicated program. Try checking the system file by using some built-in, command-line tools from your OS.

Why is my Windows Defender antivirus turned off?

If Windows Defender is turned off, this may be because you have another antivirus app installed on your machine (check Control Panel, System and Security, Security and Maintenance to make sure). You should turn off and uninstall this app before running Windows Defender to avoid any software clashes.

How do I scan with Windows 10 defender?

In the Windows Defender dialog box that appears, click Open Windows Defender Security Center. In the window that appears, click the Virus and Threat Protection button on the left side (it’s shaped like a shield). Click the Quick Scan button. Windows Defender scans your computer and reports any findings.

Can Windows Defender remove malware?

The Windows Defender Offline scan will automatically detect and remove or quarantine malware.

If you’re running an updated Microsoft Defender antimalware platform version, run MpCmdRun from the following location: C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows Defender\Platform\ . For more information about the antimalware platform, see Microsoft Defender Antivirus updates and baselines.

How do I open Windows Defender?

  1. Click the Start button.
  2. Click the Settings button on the left side of the start menu.
  3. Click Update and Security.
  4. On the left side click Windows Defender.
  5. Slide the button under Real-time Protection to On or Off.

Does Windows Defender come with Windows 10?

Microsoft has Windows Defender, a legitimate antivirus protection plan already built into Windows 10. However, not all antivirus software are the same. Windows 10 users should examine recent comparison studies that show where Defender lacks effectiveness before settling for Microsoft’s default antivirus option.

What is Windows Defender in Windows 10?

Microsoft Defender Antivirus is an antivirus software that’s included in Windows and can help protect your device from viruses, malware, and other threats.

How can you access Windows 10 Defender Security Center?

  1. Open the Windows Defender Security Center by clicking the shield icon in the task bar or searching the start menu for Defender.
  2. Click the Virus & threat protection tile (or the shield icon on the left menu bar).
  3. Click Protection updates. …
  4. Click Check for updates to download new protection updates (if there are any).

Which file is Windows Defender?

Windows Defender puts thousands of files in the folder C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows Defender\Scans\History\Store if a device is affected by the issue. More than 10,800 items were placed in the folder on a test system running Windows 10 version 20H2.

How do I manually start Windows Defender?

  1. Click on the Search charm on your desktop with your mouse, or tap the charm with your finger.
  2. Click on, or tap, “Apps” from the list of Search categories.
  3. Enter “defender” (without the quotations) in the Apps box, then click on the magnifying glass to start the search for Windows Defender.

How do I turn on Microsoft Defender Antivirus in Windows 10?

To turn on Microsoft Defender Antivirus in Windows Security, go to Start > Settings > Update & Security > Windows Security > Virus & threat protection. Then, select Manage settings (or Virus & threat protection settings in early versions of Windows 10> and switch Real-time protection to On.

Is Windows Defender good enough 2021?

In essence, Windows Defender is good enough for your PC in 2022; however, this was not the case some time ago. Previously the antivirus program was not sophisticated enough to handle modern threats. It also used to crash a lot during updates, which has, unfortunately, giving it a bad reputation even in 2021.

How do I find my antivirus on Windows 10?

The status of your antivirus software is typically displayed in Windows Security Center.

  1. Open Security Center by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking Security, and then clicking Security Center.
  2. Click Malware protection.

Why can’t I find Windows Defender?

You need to open the Control Panel (but not the Settings app), and head to System and Security > Security and Maintenance. Here, underneath the same heading (Spyware and unwanted software protection’), you will be able to choose Windows Defender.

How do I use Windows Defender on Windows 10?

To turn on Microsoft Defender Antivirus in Windows Security, go to Start > Settings > Update & Security > Windows Security > Virus & threat protection. Then, select Manage settings (or Virus & threat protection settings in early versions of Windows 10> and switch Real-time protection to On.

How do I turn on Microsoft Defender antivirus in Windows 10?

To turn on Microsoft Defender Antivirus in Windows Security, go to Start > Settings > Update & Security > Windows Security > Virus & threat protection. Then, select Manage settings (or Virus & threat protection settings in early versions of Windows 10> and switch Real-time protection to On.

How do I access Microsoft Defender Security Center?

By default, MSSP customers access their Microsoft 365 Defender tenant through the following URL: https://securitycenter.windows.com/ .

Does Win 10 need antivirus?

Does Windows 10 need antivirus? Although Windows 10 has built-in antivirus protection in the form of Windows Defender, it still needs additional software, either Defender for Endpoint or a third-party antivirus.

Is Win 10 free?

Microsoft allows anyone to download Windows 10 for free and install it without a product key. It’ll keep working for the foreseeable future, with only a few small cosmetic restrictions.

Is defender an antivirus?

Microsoft Defender Antivirus, formerly known as Windows Defender, is an antivirus protection program that’s included with Windows 10. Unlike other antivirus programs like McAfee, Microsoft Defender is free and doesn’t require any additional installation. It’s also routinely updated.

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E very Windows 10 systems comes with built-in real-time antivirus called Windows Defender. Unlike the basic Windows Defender, or its predecessor Microsoft Security Essentials, provided by Microsoft for previous versions of Windows OS such as Windows 7, Windows Defender Antivirus in Windows 10 is solid and good, and can perform its job in defending and protecting the security of your PC well, especially in view of its ridiculous price – free!

As Windows Defender is built into Windows 10, it runs automatically in the background right after installation or PC set up, ensuring that all Windows 10 users are protected agains viruses, spyware and other malicious software.

Beginning from Windows 10 Creators Update v.1703, Windows Defender’s user inferface has been revamped to be integrated with Windows Defender Security Center, which is the one-stop panel to various security options in Windows 10, for example, virus and threat protection, device performance and health, firewall and network protection, app and browser control, and family options.

Windows Defender essentially runs and performs everything automatically in the background, e.g. scan downloaded files, scan files transferred or imported from external drives, scan files when accessed or opened in real-time. When something malicious detected, it automatically clean up and quarantine and files, with just a notification. It also updates latest virus signature automatically. Everything is done in real-time without your input and no action is required from you.

But what if you want to manually run a antivirus scan, especially if you want to scan suspicious USB flash drive or external hard disk? Manual scan is useful when you suspect your computer may be infected with virus or malware, or you have just downloaded new virus definitions.

This tutorial shows you how to perform a manual scan with Windows Defender:

    Open Settings -> Update & Security -> Windows Defender, and click or tap on Windows Defender Security Center.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Alternatively, click or tap on Advanced scan to perform one of the following 3 types of scans:

  • Full scan: Checks all files and running programs on your hard disk, which could take longer than one hour.
  • Custom scan: Choose which folder you want to check, useful if you want to perform the manual scan on external hard disk, network drives, shared folders, USB flash drives and etc.
  • Windows Defender Offline scan: Windows will restart the device to run the scan with up-to-date threat definitions to help find and remove malicious software that is difficult to remove.

Alternative Method

Right click on any file and folder (including the root drive for everything on that volume), and select Scan with Windows Defender.

Windows Defender will automatically open to scan the content inside the selected location.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Windows Defender, also known as Microsoft Defender Antivirus is a built-in anti-malware solution on Windows 10. It is designed to protect your computer and connected devices from unwanted attacks, ransomware attempts, viruses, and many other forms of malicious rootkits used by hackers.

However, there could be situations where you may want to disable Windows Defender on Windows 10.

Unlike Windows 8, Windows 10 doesn’t allow you to turn off Windows Defender completely in the Windows Security app. It does let you turn off Microsoft’s real-time protection, but that isn’t a permanent solution, and Windows will automatically turn on the real-time protection in future.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

In this guide, we’ll highlight three different methods to disable Windows Defender Antivirus permanently or temporarily on Windows 10.

How to turn off Windows Defender temporarily

If you want to turn off Windows Defender temporarily when you need to install an app, follow these steps:

  1. Open Windows Search (Win+S).
  2. Search for Windows Security.
  3. In the Windows Security app, click on Virus & threat protection.
  4. Click on the Manage settings link under “Virus & threat protection settings”.
  5. Click on the Real-time protection toggle to turn off the protection temporarily.

How to disable Windows Defender permanently

To disable Windows Defender permanently, follow these steps:

  1. Open Windows Security > Virus & threat protection.
  2. Click the Manage settings option.
  3. Disable Tamper Protection.
  4. Open Start menu and search for gpedit.msc (Group Policy Editor).
  5. Open Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components.
  6. Click on ‘Microsoft Defender Antivirus’
  7. Double-click on “Turn off Microsoft Defender Antivirus policy”
  8. Select the “Enabled” option.
  9. Click on ‘Apply’ to disable Windows Defender protection.
  10. Click on ‘OK’ to close the window.
  11. Exit Group Policy Editor.

If you followed the steps correctly, Microsoft Defender protection will stop working on your device, but you can still open and manage the Windows Security app.

If you want to enable the protection again, repeat the above steps and select “Not Configured” in the Group Policy editor. Once done, make sure that you enable the tamper protection in Windows Security app.

Can you disable Windows Defender using Registry Editor?

Short answer: No.

Microsoft previously allowed advanced users to disable Windows Defender Antivirus by editing Windows Registry. To disable the Defender antivirus permanently with the Registry, users were required to create a new key “DisableAntiSpyware” with the value set to ‘1’.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Once you complete the above steps, Windows Defender will disable permanently and you can always re-enable it using the same instructions above, but the value should be ‘0’.

After the August 2020 update (version 4.18.2007.8), Microsoft said it has discontinued the ‘DisableAntiSpyware’ key and values will be ignored on client devices.

“This setting is discontinued and will be ignored on client devices, as of the August 2020 (version 4.18.2007.8) update to Microsoft Defender Antivirus,” Microsoft said.

“DisableAntiSpyware specifies whether to disable Microsoft Defender Antivirus. Microsoft Defender Antivirus is an application that can prevent, remove, and quarantine malicious software, including spyware,” the company noted.

While Microsoft doesn’t want you to edit the Registry to disable Windows Defender permanently, you can still use Group Policy editor, Windows Security app, or third-party software to temporarily disable Defender.

By default, Windows 10 doesn’t include an option to disable the Windows Defender permanently, but Microsoft allows third-party anti-malware software to work alongside Windows Defender.

For example, Windows 10’s built-in antivirus protection is automatically disabled during the installation process of third-party protection software. This allows you to use the antivirus software of your choice without making any modifications to the system settings manually.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Windows 10’s built-in Microsoft Defender antivirus solution has many advanced hidden features that allow you to customize how the security software works. Unfortunately, most people do not know these settings exist or even how to access them.

To view and configure the complete list of Microsoft Defender’s settings, Windows users need to use the Get-MpPreference and Set-MpPreference PowerShell Commands.

To see what I mean, open an elevated PowerShell Admin prompt and type the Get-MpPreference command to get a list of all the different settings in Microsoft Defender.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

The output of the Get-MpPreference command

As you can see, there are many more Microsoft Defender settings available than the Windows 10 user interface displays or that Microsoft turns on by default.

If you wanted to configure most of these options, you would need to use the Set-MpPreference command from an elevated PowerShell prompt.

For example, to turn off the Behavior Monitoring feature in Microsoft Defender, you would enter the PowerShell command:

Using ConfigureDefender to manage Microsoft Defender

Now that you know how many hidden advanced settings there are for Microsoft Defender let me introduce you to a utility called ConfigureDefender that allows you to manage them easily.

ConfigureDefender was created as part of the Hard_Configurator project but was also released as a standalone project.

Using this utility, Windows 10 users will get access to a graphical user interface that allows them to view all of Microsoft Defender’s settings and easily set them.

“ConfigureDefender utility is a small GUI application to view and configure important Defender settings on Windows 10. It uses PowerShell cmdlets, with a few exceptions to change the Windows Defender settings,” ConfigureDefender’s GitHub page explains.

Once started, ConfigureDefender will list your current configuration and allow you to change various settings.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

ConfigureDefender options

ConfigureDefender also includes predefined protection level templates named ‘Default’, ‘High’, and ‘Max’, that when selected, will automatically reduce or increase the protection offered by Microsoft Defender.

According to the ConfigureDefender’s documentation, the three templates have the following descriptions:

DEFAULT: Microsoft Windows Defender default configuration which is applied automatically when installing the Windows system. It provides basic antivirus protection and can be used to quickly revert any configuration to Windows defaults.

HIGH: Enhanced configuration which enables Network Protection and most of Exploit Guard (ASR) features. Three Exploit Guard features and Controlled Folder Access ransomware protection are disabled to avoid false positives. This is the recommended configuration which is appropriate for most users and provides significantly increased security.

MAX: This is the most secure protection level which enables all advanced Windows Defender features and hides Windows Security Center. Configuration changes can be made only with the ConfigureDefender user interface. The “MAX” settings are intended to protect children and casual users but can be also used (with some modifications) to maximize the protection. This protection level usually generates more false positives compared to the “HIGH” settings
and may require more user knowledge or skill.

When using these templates, you will be required to reboot Windows 10 before they all go into effect.

The only option ConfigureDefender does not support is the disabling of real-time monitoring as it would cause Microsoft Defender to classify the program as malware.

As you can see, Microsoft Defender is a powerful antivirus solution hampered by the fact that some of its settings are disabled by default.

To get started learning what each setting does and increase the security of Microsoft Defender, you can read Microsoft’s documentation on the Set-MpPreference command.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10 By David Ludlow Contact via Twitter Contact via linkedin

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

  • In this article…

If you don’t want to use the built-in Windows security tool, we’ll show you how to stop Windows Defender in Windows 10.

You may want to do this for a short-term reason, such as to install a bit of software, or long term because you don’t want the tool running. We stress that you should have some kind of protection installed and, as our guide to the best free antivirus software shows, Windows Defender is actually pretty good, doing as well as other free software.

Warnings out of the way, here are the steps that you can take to disable Windows Defender in Windows 10.

1. Open the security settings

Click the Start Menu and click the Settings icon located on the left-hand side. You’ll now be in the main Settings app. Click the Windows Security option to open up the security settings sub-section, and then click Virus & threat protection. This will launch the separate Virus & threat protection tool.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

2. Turn off real-time scanning

In the Virus & threat detection application, click Manage settings under Virus & threat protection settings.

Use the toggle switch to turn off Real-time protection, which will disable Windows Defender from running automatically and click OK when prompted. Note that this setting only turns off for a short time before it turns back on automatically.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

3. Turn off Windows Defender long term

If you don’t want to use Windows Defender ever, there is a registry hack that will disable it for good; however, we don’t recommend that you do this, as it will leave your computer vulnerable to attack. Instead, the best way to disable Windows Defender is to install a different security suite, which will replace the protection available here.

Our guide to the best antivirus software lists the best commercial security suites, with Kaspersky Internet Security currently topping the pile.

4. Turn Windows Defender back on

You can reverse the steps above to turn Windows Defender back on. As noted, the security software will automatically enable itself again, so if you do forget, Windows will automatically step back in and return your protection.

Security threats are some of the leading concerns our customers have with technology today and that’s why we’ve built Windows 10 to be the most secure version of Windows ever. With comprehensive, built-in security features, Windows 10 provides protection from viruses and malware threats including ransomware, safer authentication with Windows Hello using your smile or fingerprint to login and ongoing security updates delivered monthly through Windows Update, to name a few.

But you don’t need to be a security expert to help secure your device and understand the protections you have in place.

In the Windows 10 Creators Update, we will introduce a new experience called the Windows Defender Security Center to make it is easier for you to view and control the security protections you choose and better understand the security features already protecting you on your Windows 10 device. Windows Insiders can explore this experience now under All Apps in the Start Menu and provide feedback through the Insider Feedback hub.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Windows Defender program manager Shekhar Saxena explains the security features and controls available in the new Windows Defender Security Center app coming with the Windows 10 Creators Update.

The Windows Defender Security Center includes five pillars that give you control and visibility of your device security, health and online safety experiences.

Virus & threat protection provides a new view of your antivirus protection whether it’s Windows Defender Antivirus that comes free with Windows 10 or AV software from one of our ecosystem partners. If you’ve chosen Windows Defender Antivirus, your scan results and threat history will be displayed here, or you will be able to launch your 3 rd party AV protection app directly from this screen.

Device performance & health provides a single view of your latest Windows updates, drivers, battery life and storage capacity. Additionally, you have the option to start fresh with a clean install of Windows using the Refresh Windows feature. This option will keep your personal files and some Windows settings, and remove most of your apps for a fresh start that can help with performance improvements should your device need them.

Firewall & network protection provides information on the network connections and active Windows Firewall settings, as well as links to network troubleshooting information.

App & browser control allows you to adjust settings for SmartScreen for apps and browsers helping you be more informed and stay safer online by warning you of potential malicious sites, downloads and unrecognized apps and files from the Internet.

Family options gives you an easy way to connect to the family options available online. This page can link you to information about parental controls, options for setting up good screen time habits, setting up activity reports of your kids’ online activity and managing controls for purchasing apps and games. You can also view the health and safety of your family’s devices from this centralized location.

Our goal with the new Windows Defender Security Center is to help you become more informed and make safety simple. It is equally important to us that you are protected by default and continuously protected – never giving the bad guys an opportunity to harm you. This new experience naturally supports customer choice in selecting an AV product. In addition, if your subscription or paid antivirus software should expire, Windows Defender Antivirus will kick in to provide protection by default until you take further action. Finally, it is important to ensure that you are in control of your PC. Windows 10 respects your freedom to choose protection software and services that you like best.

We believe the new Windows Defender Security Center lives up to these principles and we are committed to working with you, as well as security experts and organizations throughout the technology industry to create safer experiences for everyone with Windows 10.

*Windows Hello requires specialized hardware, including fingerprint reader, illuminated IR sensor or other biometric sensors and capable devices.

Every owner of a computer operating on a Windows operating system knows they need some sort of Windows antivirus software to protect their machine. In the old days, if you bought the computer new, it often came with free Windows antivirus protection from one of the major antivirus companies. You could either use the software provided or something else of your choosing.

But most people never did either, and that left the majority of computers totally unprotected. That situation often changed right after the first malware attack sent the computer into the shop for a week or two.

In addition to needing to download and install the software, there was another impediment to using these Windows antivirus solutions: they were frequently confusing and difficult to use. No one wanted to spend a lot of time learning how to use software that was supposed to help them. Lack of usability was a major issue for many antivirus programs, and still is for some today.

For Windows 10, Microsoft has built in its own Windows antivirus protection, Windows Defender. It’s free, it’s easy to use and it’s from Microsoft.

Pros and cons

There are two really good things about Windows Defender.

  1. You’re protected, right out of the box. That means that millions of people who might have no protection at all — the ones who never installed the free Windows antivirus software that came with their earlier computers — automatically have basic coverage.
  2. The Windows Defender Security Center is very easy to use.

So, what’s not to love?

Windows Defender is basic virus protection for people who weren’t going to add it on their own. When compared to similar products, it is categorized as free Windows antivirus software. And when PC Magazine reviewed Windows Defender in October 2017, it gave it an overall rating of Fair.

Specifically, the reviewer called out that when independent labs such as AV-Test Institute, SE Labs and AV-Comparatives, Windows Defender consistently scored in the middle of the pack.

One of the drawbacks to Windows Defender is that it doesn’t — and doesn’t promise to — detect lower level threats such as adware or potentially unwanted programs (PUPs). These are threats that most antivirus software finds and asks you if you want to delete them.

Can Windows Defender be the right choice?

Windows Defender will probably be fine for you if this is how you use your computer:

  • Only use the Windows Edge browser that comes with Windows 10
  • Only visit major websites
  • Don’t click on images on social media
  • Don’t download files via USB, Dropbox or other third-party interface
  • Have a virus cleaner installed on your computer in case something gets by Windows Defender

If you need more robust and dependable Windows antivirus protection

If you’re totally into going the free route, go to sites that rate free Windows antivirus software. Try solutions that rate higher than Windows Defender on more than one of those sites. Find one that is easy for you to use and gives you a higher level of confidence than Windows Defender. This will take some time, but it’s not costing you any money. Also, remember that “free” software frequently comes at a price, often adware, so be sure to read the reviews before you download.

If you can afford around $50 a year for protection you can really count on, check out the top commercial Windows antivirus solutions.

Windows Defender Antivirus uses security intelligence definitions to detect threats. Windows 10 automatically downloads the most recent intelligence available through Windows Update. Here’s how to find your current Windows Defender Antivirus and its definitions version.

Windows Defender is the default antivirus app shipped with Windows 10. Earlier versions of Windows like Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7 and Vista also had it but it was less efficient previously as it only scanned spyware and adware. In Windows 8 and Windows 10, Defender is based on the Microsoft Security Essentials app which offers better protection by adding full blown protection against all kinds of malware. Microsoft is renaming the app Microsoft Defender.

Recent Windows 10 version come with is a new app called Windows Security. The application, formerly known as “Windows Defender Dashboard” and “Windows Defender Security Center”, has been created to help the user control his security and privacy settings in a clear and useful way. It includes all the settings related to Windows Defender. The Security Center app is reviewed in the post Windows Defender Security Center in Windows 10 Creators Update.

You can launch Windows Security from the Start menu or with a special shortcut. Alternatively, you can access it using its tray icon.

Note: Windows 10 allows to only temporary disable Windows Defender with a special option in Windows Security. After some period of time, it will be re-enabled automatically. If you need to disable it permanently, see Disable Windows Defender in Windows 10.

Microsoft continually updates security intelligence in antimalware products to cover the latest threats and to constantly tweak detection logic, enhancing the ability of Windows Defender Antivirus and other Microsoft antimalware solutions to accurately identify threats. This security intelligence works directly with cloud-based protection to deliver fast and powerful AI-enhanced, next-generation protection. Also, you can update definitions manually.

To Find Windows Defender Antivirus Version in Windows 10,

    .
  1. Click on the Settings gear icon. How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10
  2. On the Settings page, find the About link. How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10
  3. On the About page you will find the version information for the Windows Defender components. How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Note: The About page contains the following component versions:

  • Antimalware Client Version => Windows Defender Antivirus version
  • Engine Version => Scanning Engine version
  • Antivirus Version => Virus definitions
  • Antispyware Version => Spyware definitions

Tip: If you find no use for Windows Security and want to get rid of it, you may find the following articles useful:

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About Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer from Russia who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

With an increase in the spread of vulnerable programs such as viruses and malwares, Microsoft has increased windows security with it’s all-new Microsoft Defender Antivirus. From Windows 10 version 2004, Windows Defender has been renamed to Microsoft Defender Antivirus, which is enabled by default and actively protects you from all the latest security threats. The updates are automatically downloaded, and Microsoft continually updates the virus definition to keep your device safe.

Microsoft defines the Defender Antivirus as the next-generation protection component Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection(MDATP) provides below features,

  • Real-time antivirus protection
  • Built-in cloud protection while surfing the web, downloading email attachments or accessing OneDrive
  • Block at first sight (BAFS) protection

Without real-time protection, your operating system would be unsafe and hostile to work on as malicious programs spread quickly over email, USB flash drives, or browsing the internet. Malwares can affect your system without your knowledge and can steal potential information or even damage your disk drives.

You can turn off the Windows Defender Antivirus temporarily. Windows automatically turn on the real-time protection if it’s disabled for a while. In this advanced Windows 10 tutorial, we will walk you through the steps to turn on or off the Windows Defender Antivirus permanently for all the users.

  • Systems with multiple users, make sure you are signed in as an administrator to enable or disable the antivirus.
  • If you are installing any third-party Antivirus programs, then they disable the Microsoft Defender Antivirus. In this case, you cannot enable it till you uninstall the third-party antivirus program.
  • With Windows 10 build 18305 or higher version, you need to disable Tamper protection to disable Microsoft Defender Antivirus.

Option #1: Enable/Disable Microsoft Defender Antivirus using group policy

The Local Group Policy Editor is available only in the below versions of Windows 10,

  • Windows 10 Pro
  • Windows 10 Enterprise
  • Windows 10 Education

For the other versions of Windows, you need to follow the option #2 explained after this.

Steps #1 Disable Tamper Protection:

You need to turn off the Windows Defender Antivirus Tamper protection based on your build number by following the below steps,

  • Go to the Windows security page.
  • Click the “Virus & Threat Protection” option present at the left-hand side navigation bar.
  • Scroll down the page and click the “Manage settings” link.
  • Scroll down and toggle the button for “Tamper Protection” as mentioned in the below screenshot.
  • If UAC prompts you, click Yes to approve.

You can turn on or off the Tamper protection from the registry editor as well,

  • Location: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Defender\Features
  • Variable name: TamperProtection DWORD
  • Values : 0 = Off, 5 = On

Step #2 Open the Local Group Policy Editor:

  • Open Run dialog by pressing Win + R on your keyboard.
  • Type “gpedit.msc” and hit enter to open the local group policy editor.

Step #3 :

Navigate to the below mentioned location based on your Winodws 10 version on local group policy editor,

  • Windows 10 version 1909 and lower: Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows Defender Antivirus
  • Windows 10 version 2004 and higher: Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Microsoft Defender Antivirus

Step #4:

  • In the right-hand panel of Windows Defender Antivirus or Microsoft Defender Antivirus in Local group policy editor, double click on “Turn off Windows Defender Antivirus” or “Turn off Microsoft Defender Antivirus” policy to edit it.
  • You can either enable or disabled the Windows Defender Antivirus by clicking the required checkbox(either Enabled or Disabled) as mentioned below,
  • Click on the “Ok” button to save the changes.

Step #5:

Based on your previous selection, you need to revisit the Windows security page, and you will be prompted to either restart or turn on the service.

How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

Option #2: Turn on or off Microsoft Defender Antivirus from Registry editor

The second option involves changing the property values directly from the registry editor for Windows Defender. This option is handy for all Windows versions for which the Local Group Policy Editor is not available. You can follow the steps or download the below mentioned executable reg files.

Step #1:

  • Open Run dialog by pressing Win + R on your keyboard.
  • Type “regedit” and hit enter to open the Registry Editor window.

Step #2:

Navigate to the below mentioned location on your Registry editor as mentioned below,

  • Location: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows Defender
  • Add a new variable DisableAntiSpyware DWORD.
  • Double-click on the variable name “DisableAntiSpyware” and the below dialog will ask you to enter a value,
    • Values: (delete) or 0 = On and 1 = Off
    • You can open the Windows Security from settings to verify the spyware’s status and, if needed, you can restart or turn on the service.

    Conclusion:

    In this advanced Windows 10 tutorial, we have walked you through different ways to enable and disable Microsoft Defender Antivirus. The first option was restricted to fewer selected versions of windows; hence we have explained the second option to do the same for the rest of the windows versions. Again, this is not recommended to disable Microsoft Defender Antivirus, but sometimes we need to perform it for various reasons such as improving the performance or playing around different tweaks.

    About Harsit Mohapatra

    Harsit Mohapatra is a full-time Software Engineer passionate and hungry for tech updates and knowledge. Besides being a crazy software developer, he is an avid traveller and loves capturing the things that give him a perception through his lenses

    A recent update to Windows Defender gave it the ability to download files through a command line tool.

    How to use the built-in windows defender antivirus on windows 10

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    A recent update to the built-in antivirus software in Windows 10 has taught the program a new trick—how to download files through a command line tool, including nefarious ones (trojans, spyware, ransomware, and other malware).

    Downloading malware is not the intended purpose, at least I presume that’s not the case. But the new function could potentially be abused in such a manner. Fortunately, this is not something the typical home user needs to worry about, not unless they’re a PC masochist (more on that in a moment).

    This new ability was discovered by Mohammad Askar (via Bleeping Computer), a security penetration tester and instructor who has posted hundreds of security articles, according to his Udemy profile.

    “Well, you can download a file from the internet using Windows Defender itself. In this example, I was able to download Cobalt Strike beacon using the binary ‘MpCmdRun.exe’ which is the ‘Microsoft Malware Protection Command Line’,” Askar stated on Twitter.

    This effectively allows a local attacker to leverage Defender as what is called a living-off-the-land binary (LOLBin). That’s when legitimate software is used for something malicious—in this case, using an antivirus program to download a virus.

    It appears this new ability was added to Defender with the 4.18.2007.8 update in July, so the functionality has been there for nearly two months. Bleeping Computer tested the new download switch in the command line tool and was able to download the same WastedLocker ransomware that recently caused a ruckus with Garmin’s infrastructure, which prompted the company to reportedly pay a multi-million dollar ransom.

    This is not quite as careless as it may seem at first glance. For one, Defender will still scan files downloaded through this method, so in theory it should still protect against malware. And secondly, this would need to be initiated by a local user.

    Nevertheless, this is something system administrators should be aware of, so they can take the proper precautions. It’s not unheard of for a rogue employee to cause mischief, whether they are disgruntled, are on the verge of being fired, or any other reason.

    Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD”*”,8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).