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Microsoft Security Essentials/Defender: Installation and Basic Use

How to enable and/or install Windows security programs


Finding Windows Defender on Windows 8 and 8.1

  1. Click on the search bar found in the right upper hand corner
    Initiate Windows search within Windows 8
  2. Begin typing Windows Defender and double click on the Defender icon
    Search for Windows Defender in the Windows 8 search
  3. Defender will activate
    Shown is the current status of your PC within Windows Defender

Installing Microsoft Security Essentials

  1. Navigate to http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/security-essentials-download 
  2. Click on the ‘Download’ button on the left side of the page
    Website preview, "Download Now" should be in the middle and toward the left edge of the screen 
  3. Wait until the download finishes and then double click on the ‘mseinstall.exe’ file that comes up
    When finished downloading, please open the .exe file 
  4. Click the ‘Next’ button to continue the installation
    After opening the install, press "Next />" 
  5. Click the ‘I accept’ button after reading the agreement
    Here are the terms and conditions, accept if you agree 
  6. Click the ‘Next’ button after selecting ‘I do not want to join the program at this time’
    Improvement Program
  7. Leave settings on default, then click on the ‘Next’ button
    Here are some settings on optimizing your security essentials setup 
  8. At this point if you still have a previous anti-virus software on your computer select ‘How do I uninstall other anti-virus and antispyware’ otherwise select ‘Install’ to continue the install
     Press Install /> to begin to finish the process.
  9. And select ‘Finish’ to complete the installation process
    Process is now finished 

 

Updating Microsoft Security Essentials

  1. Click on the ‘Update’ tab on the top left corner of the window
     Update Tab on MSE
  2. You should now  click on a large button that says ‘Update’
    Update button should be on the left when you open Update on MSE 
  3. Let the client update

 

Running a Scan

  1. Make sure your virus and spyware definitions are ‘Up to date’
  2. Select either Quick or Full scan depending on what you want to scan. Then Click ‘Scan now’
    Default home window 
  3. Quick scans checks the areas that malicious software including virus’s spyware and unwanted software are most likely to infect.
  4. Full scan checks all the files on your hard disks and checks all running programs. Depending on your system a Full scan could take over an hour
  5. If during a scan Microsoft securities essentials finds viruses or malware, an 'At Risk' screen will pop up. Your next step is to select ‘Clean PC’
    PC at risk, Clean PC 
  6. Microsoft Security Essentials will then remove the detected issue
    It will work through and find potential threats 
  7. When all of the detected malware is removed you can select ‘close’ and continue browsing
    After cleaning, you should have a verification screen saying that the actions were applied successfully 

 

Uninstalling Microsoft Security Essentials

  1. Exit out of Microsoft Securities Essentials and make sure the program is not running 
  2. Under Programs select ‘Uninstall a program’
    Control Panel location in Windows 7 
    Uninstall in the Control Panel, under "Programs" 
  3. Scroll through the list of programs until you find and click on Microsoft Securities Essentials, next you click on ‘Uninstall’ 
     Here is a list of programs you must sort through to find MSE
  4. An Uninstaller will pop up and you will select ‘Uninstall’
    When you find MSE, an Uninstall Wizard will show up. Press Uninstall 
  5. Microsoft Security Essentials is now uninstalled
    After the uninstall process is complete, press finish. 

 


 

Windows XP Alternatives

Microsoft has stopped protecting and supporting Windows XP as the system is now well over ten years old. It is recommended that you use a more recent operating system for your machine's own safety.

If you are unable to upgrade your machine's operating system, here is a list of current supported Antivirus software:

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