How to permanently / temporarily disable/enable Windows Defender in Windows 10?

Like the human body, our computers need protection, which is why experts recommend having antivirus installed on the system.

But sometimes, the software of this antivirus can be problematic for several reasons, mainly because of the exaggerated amount of memory they occupy. In such a way that our system weakens and presents failures from time to time. Among the best antivirus programs, Windows comes with one already pre-installed called Windows Security, also known as Windows Defender.

Windows Defender, previously known as Microsoft Security Essentials, is the company’s own antivirus, which is built into its system. Unlike other “all-in-one” antivirus software such as Kaspersky or Norton Security, Windows Defender does not have some important functions such as web monitoring, protection against the appearance of new malware, and many more.

I am aware that people have many reasons to disable Windows Defender, the truth is that it is 2019 and Windows Defender is not what it used to be.

Is Windows Defender Good Enough?

Microsoft is aware of the problems that users face and is constantly working to improve its software. For example, the German group AV-Test realized that in 2018 Windows Defender improved radically.

Not only that, Windows recently added the sandbox feature to its software, being the first to do so. Basically, this sandbox feature prohibits malware from spreading to other applications when it has already infected an application, as in this case – Windows Defender.

In short, for me, the antivirus that comes with Windows is a guardian. However, as I mentioned before, there are hundreds of reasons to disable Windows security. Maybe you want to disable Windows Defender for a while, or maybe your antivirus is repeatedly blocking some of your apps.

In that case, here are two ways to disable Windows Defender on your PC. Let’s talk about them –

How to permanently disable Windows Defender in Windows 10 [Using the registry]

You can disable Windows Defender by modifying the Windows registry. The process is very simple but keeps in mind – the Windows registry is a minefield. One wrong step and you can unleash millions of problems. For this reason, I recommend that you have a copy of all your files and folders at all times.

Now, I explain the process –

1) Open the Run command by pressing the Windows logo key + R on your keyboard.

2) Type Regedit in the search bar and click OK to open the Windows registry editor.

3) Copy the following destination (without the quotes) in the registry search bar – “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Policies \ Microsoft \ Windows Defender”. Alternatively, you can also search for it manually. You will see a file called “Default” in the right window pane.

4) Now, right-click on the same windowpane ⇒ NEW ⇒ DWORD value (32-bit).

5) Name it “DisableAntiSpyware” and select accept.

6) After creating the file, double click on it and set the value from 0 to 1. Click OK.

7) Restart your PC.

That is all! You have successfully disabled Windows Defender from your computer. Now the process will not be displayed in the task manager. It’s Windows’ pet software. Although Windows does not let you uninstall Windows Defender from your computer, with the method that we explained above, you can even disable it.

On the other hand, if you change your mind, you can also re-enable it.

Windows Defender Activation in Windows 10 –

1) Go to the same address in the Windows registry editor “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Policies \ Microsoft \ Windows Defender”

2) Right-click on the created DWORD file.

3) Select delete.

4) Close the registry editor and restart Windows.

[System Settings] How to temporarily disable Windows Defender in Windows 10

If you are in a hurry and want to immediately disable this processing heavy program, you can skip the Windows registry step and simply stop it in the Windows security center.

1) Type “Threat and Antivirus Protection” in the Windows search engine.

2) Click on “Antivirus and Threat Protection Settings”.

3) Disable the following functions:

Real-time protection.

Cloud-based protection.

Automatic sample submission

This method will temporarily disable Windows Defender in your Windows 10. The bad thing is that this method brings a small inconvenience – Windows 10 will automatically reactivate Windows Defender at the next login. That is, everything returns to normal when you restart your computer.

Final note

If your main reason for disabling Windows Defender is to install another antivirus, don’t bother. Windows automatically disables Windows Defender when it realizes that there is another security program.

On the other hand, if you are confused about whether or not you should remove Windows Defender, install Malwarebytes – plain and simple. Malwarebytes working together with Windows Defender is one of the best ways to keep your computer free from viruses and malware.

While Windows Defender is good at real-time protection and manual scanning, Malwarebytes is excellent at recognizing and detecting new malware that could infect your PC.

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