How to disable Microsoft Defender

If you use Windows’ built-in antivirus, Microsoft Defender, you may need to temporarily disable it to finish installing some software. Here’s our guide on how to disable it in Windows 10.

Never turn off your real-time malware protection unless you really have to. However, some software needs this to complete the installation because it needs to access files, registry entries, or directories that Defender normally protects.

Programs that may not install properly when your real-time antivirus is active will let you know, no need to disable your AV every time you install something!

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The short version

  • Click Start
  • Hover your mouse over the gear icon
  • Click Settings
  • scroll down
  • Click Update & Security
  • Click the Windows Security tab
  • Click Open Windows Security
  • Click Virus & Threat Protection
  • Under Virus & threat protection settings, click Manage settings
  • Disable the real-time protection button
  • Click Yes
  1. step
    1

    Click Start

    blank

    Click on the Windows start button. We’ll be navigating to Microsoft Defender’s settings through the menus, but you can search for “Windows Security” to get there.The Windows start button is highlighted

  2. step
    2

    Hover your mouse over the gear icon

    blank

    Hovering over the gear icon will expand the Settings tag.The gear icon in the start menu is highlighted

  3. step
    3

    Click Settings

    blank

    Click the Settings button.The settings option in the start menu is highlighted

  4. step
    4

    blank

    There are many settings here. Scroll all the way down to find the option you’re looking for.List of Windows settings

  5. step
    5

    Click Update & security

    blank

    Click the “Update & Security” buttonThe Update & Security icon is highlighted

  6. step
    6

    Click the Windows Security tab

    blank

    On the next settings screen you will see a tab bar on the left. Click on Windows Security here.The Windows Security tab is highlighted

  7. step
    7

    Click Open Windows Security

    blank

    You can go directly to each component of Defender’s security settings from here, but we’ll go to the main menu first. Click the Open Windows Security button.Open the Windows security button

  8. step
    8th

    Click Virus & Threat Protection

    blank

    Click the Virus & Threat Protection option.The Virus & Threat Protection icon is highlighted

  9. step
    9

    Under Virus & threat protection settings, click Manage settings

    blank

    Under “Virus & Threat Protection Settings” you will see a small blue link labeled “Manage Settings”. click itThe Manage Settings link is highlighted

  10. step
    10

    Disable the real-time protection button

    blank

    Under “Real-time Protection”, click the button that should be colored blue and set to “On” before clicking it.Real-time protection switch is highlighted

  11. step
    11

    Click Yes

    blank

    User Account Control now steps in to make sure you really requested this. Click Yes.blank

Real-time protection will be automatically re-enabled on the next reboot. While the software informs you that real-time protection will be turned back on after a short period of time, at the time of writing Microsoft is not releasing any details on exactly how long this will take. So remember to manually re-enable real-time protection in case it doesn’t restart.

Kaspersky Antivirus

Kaspersky Antivirus

Essential virus protection

Our 5-star antivirus protection blocks malware and viruses in real-time and stops hackers, now with a 50% discount for just £12.49

  • Kaspersky
  • Was €24.99
  • £12.49 per year

to offer

Troubleshooting

Am I protected even if real-time protection is disabled?

No. While scheduled scans continue to run, newly downloaded and installed files will not be scanned until Defender is reactivated. Do this as soon as possible.

How can I permanently disable Microsoft Defender?

While you can’t uninstall Defender, installing a third-party antivirus suite with real-time protection will disable Defender in favor of your new antivirus solution.

According to Defender, this program is malicious or potentially unwanted. Should I disable real-time protection?

Almost certainly not. Microsoft Defender has a very low false positive rate, so the program is likely to pose a threat. If you are convinced that the program is legitimate, check it out on VirusTotal to get a second opinion.

https://www.trustedreviews.com/how-to/how-to-disable-microsoft-defender-4221002?utm_source=keystone&utm_medium=keystone_core_reviews_rss&utm_campaign=trusted+reviews How to disable Microsoft Defender

Chris Barrese

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