How to activate Windows Defender (with pictures)

How to activate Windows Defender (with pictures)
How to activate Windows Defender (with pictures)
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Windows Defender protects your Windows computer from malware. If you have deactivated it since the last restart, you can reactivate it from the dedicated program. If you've recently installed an antivirus program that turns off Windows Defender, you'll need to uninstall that program before you can use Windows Defender.

Steps

Method 1 of 2: Activate Windows Defender

Turn On Windows Defender Step 1

Step 1. Make sure Windows Defender has been recently disabled

If you've turned off Windows Defender since the last time you restarted or turned off your computer, it should still be turned off. You can reactivate it by following the instructions in this method.

If you haven't turned off Windows Defender since the last time you restarted your computer, chances are it is because of another antivirus program you installed. You will need to uninstall this program before you can reactivate Windows Defender

Turn On Windows Defender Step 2

Step 2. Open the Start menu

Windowsstart

Click on the Windows logo at the bottom left of the screen.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 3

Step 3. Go to Settings

Windowssettings

Click on the cogwheel icon at the bottom left of the menu To start up to open the settings window.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 4

Step 4. Click Update & Security

Windows10 Update

This is the circular arrow icon in the settings window.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 5

Step 5. Open the Windows Security tab

This tab is on the left of the window.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 6

Step 6. Select Virus and Threat Protection

This option is in the middle of the window. Click on it to open the window Windows Defender.

You may need to pull down the Windows Defender window by clicking on the square at the top right before continuing

Turn On Windows Defender Step 7

Step 7. Click Virus and Threat Protection Settings

This link is in the middle of the menu.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 8

Step 8. Turn off the switch

Windows10switchoff

under Real-time protection.

The header Real-time protection is at the top of the window.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 9

Step 9. Choose Yes at the command prompt

This will reactivate Windows Defender.

Method 2 of 2: Uninstall a third-party antivirus program

Turn On Windows Defender Step 10

Step 1. Find the other antivirus program on your computer

If you intentionally installed an antivirus program, you should know its name. Otherwise, it may be part of the installation process for another program that you recently installed. This means that you will need to look for a program whose name you don't even know.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 11

Step 2. Open the Start menu

Windowsstart

To open the menu To start up, click on the Windows logo at the bottom left of the screen.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 12

Step 3. Select Settings

Windowssettings

In the start menu, click on the star wheel icon to open the window Settings.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 13

Step 4. Click Applications

This option is in the middle of the settings window.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 14

Step 5. Sort by date if necessary

If you don't know the name of the antivirus program, you can narrow down your searches by showing recently installed programs and backing up from there. Click on the menu sort by then choose Installation date.

If you know the name of the antivirus program, skip this step

Turn On Windows Defender Step 15

Step 6. Look for the antivirus program

Scroll through the list of installed applications until you find the program you need to uninstall.

If you haven't intentionally installed an antivirus program, you'll find the program you need to uninstall at the top of the list if your Windows Defender was only recently disabled

Turn On Windows Defender Step 16

Step 7. Click on the name of the program

A button Uninstall will appear below the program name.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 17

Step 8. Choose Uninstall

You will find this option under the program name.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 18

Step 9. Select Uninstall at the command prompt

This will open the program uninstall window.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 19

Step 10. Follow the on-screen instructions

Scroll through the instructions making sure to select the option Delete all files (or something like that) if asked if you want to keep residual files as well as applications.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 20

Step 11. Remove other associated programs

Some anti-virus programs install additional programs to take care of things like online security. If you see other programs from the same developer or with a name similar to the program you just uninstalled, uninstall them as well before continuing.

Turn On Windows Defender Step 21

Step 12. Restart your computer

Click on To start up

Windowsstart

, select On Off

Windowspower

then choose To restart in the context menu. Your computer will restart as usual, after which the Windows Defender program should be reactivated and resume working.

If Windows Defender does not reactivate when you restart your computer, you can try activating it manually

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