How to uninstall Windows Defender. Windows Defender is antimalware software and antivirus that Microsoft has integrated into the latest versions of its operating system. Supporting the same company in Redmond, this is a fairly ineffective solution that is capable of detecting only a limited number of threats. Therefore, it is advisable to replace it as soon as possible with other IT security software.

To disable Windows Defender, it is usually enough to download and install another antivirus or another antimalware.

In some cases, however, you may want to disable or even uninstall Windows Defender manually.

Disabling the program is very simple in all editions of Windows, while removing it, as it is a component of the operating system, is often complicated (and risky) -

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How to uninstall Windows Defender step by step

For disable Windows Defender, you can install alternative antivirus software, and in this case the operation is performed automatically, or follow one of the procedures illustrated below depending on the version of Windows in use on your computer.

  • En Windows 7 o view, you have to go to the start menu, search for the term defender and click on the item Windows Defender that appears in the search results. Then you must select instruments from the window that opens, click the icon Options, select the article administrator from the left sidebar and remove the check mark from the item Use the program. Finally click on the buttons Save y other.
  • En Windows 8 / 8.x the procedure to follow is practically the same. Have to go to Starting screen, look for the term defender and click on the item Windows Defender appearing in search results. In the window that opens, select the tab adjustments, click on administrator located in left sidebar, remove check from item Active application and click Save Changes y yes To complete the operation.
  • En Windows 10 you have to deal with a menu structured in a completely different way. To deactivate Defender you must go to the menu start, search the term defender and click on the icon Windows Defender Settings appearing in search results. In the window that opens, then go up OFF the levers for options Real-time protection, Protection in the cloud y Sample file submission and the antivirus will be disabled instantly.

Alternatively, regardless of the version of Windows in use, you can also disable Windows Defender through the Local Group Policy Editor.

In this case, all you have to do is go to comienzo, type gpedit.msc and press Enter / Enter to access the editor.

Then you have to select the path Computer Configuration> Windows Components> Windows Defender from the left sidebar double-click the icon Disable Windows Defender, mark the item enabled and click to accept.

If you still use Windows XP (In this regard, let me suggest that you evaluate as soon as possible before moving on to a edition latest operating system as Microsoft no longer supports it and is therefore subject to many security and compatibility issues), to disable Windows Defender you need to double-click the program icon in the notification area (next to the Windows clock), after which you should go to instruments, click on Options and remove the mark from the item Use Windows Defender.

Remove Windows Defender

Uninstalling Windows Defender is an officially allowed operation only on Windows XP, where Defender is a program unto itself.

In the other versions of Windows, in which Defender is included "as standard", you must manually remove the software following a procedure that, as anticipated at the beginning, is potentially risky for the stability of the system and therefore highly discouraged . In any case, you will find all the details you need below.

If you use Windows XP, as I just said, no problems.

Go to Control panel, Click on the icon Installation of the application, select Windows Defender from the list of programs installed on the PC and press Remove y yes to start the complete removal of Defender.

In Windows 7 and later versions, the situation changes a lot. Before going to work, I recommend that you create a restore point the system runs a Backup from the register and keep all important documents safe.

The risk of combining "disorder" is decidedly high. If you don't know how to do it, to create a system restore point you can follow the instructions on the appropriate page to support Microsoft website, while regarding the system registry backup, you can follow the instructions on this another page.

If you use Windows 7, you can download the removal utility Windows Defender is available from the website and let it do all the "dirty work" for you. To download the utility, connect to the page and click on the item Download Windows Defender Uninstaller.

Then start the executable Defender_Uninstaller.exe just obtained click the button Uninstall Windows Defender and wait for the software uninstall process to complete.

It is recommended to carry out the procedure after disabling Defender (as seen in the previous section of the tutorial).

warning: You cannot use the Windows Defender removal utility on versions of Windows other than 7. There is a risk of compromising system stability!

If you use Windows 8 or higher You must remove Windows Defender "manually" by disabling the program and deleting all the folders and registry keys that concern you.

To do this, you must take advantage of a free program: RunAsSystem That allows him run programs with the highest administrative privileges. In this case, you will need it to run the registry editor and delete the keys that affect Windows Defender.

After downloading the application, remove Defender from your PC by following these steps. The procedure can also be applied to Windows 7 if the utility mentioned above does not work.

  • Start on Symbol of the system with administrator privileges and give commands sc stop windefend y sc delete windefend to close and cancel the Windows Defender service


  • Starts RunAsSystem.exe, type regedit.exe in the window that opens and presses Enter to launch the registry editor with the highest administrative privileges.


  • Find the phrase
  • Right click on the key and select the permits from the menu that appears. In the window that opens, click on the button advanced, then go to the form owner if you use Windows 7 or click on item cultural, if you use Windows 8. then select the icon SYSTEM (if you are using Windows 7) or type SYSTEM in the text field that appears and click Check names y to accept (if you are using Windows 8) put the check mark next to the item Replace owner on subcontainers and objects and click to accept. When the operation is complete, select the icon SYSTEM field Users and groups, mark the article allow and click to accept To save the changes.


  • Delete the key.
  • Repeat the entire process for the key
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows Defender
  • Take control of the following folders and delete them from your PC.
    • C: Windows Defender Program Files
    • C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows Defender
    • C: Program Files (x86) Windows Defender (only on systems of 64 bits)


To get control of a folder, you must right click on it and select the item your property from the menu that appears.

In the window that opens, you must select the tab fullfilment of security requirements and follow the same procedure described above for the registry keys. Alternatively you can use third party apps like TakeOwnershipEx which installs a convenient entry in the Windows context menu to gain control of the folders.

Finally, restart your Pc and you should have been able to completely remove Windows Defender from your PC.

warning: I reiterate the concept that uninstalling Windows Defender (except Windows XP) is highly discouraged. I am not responsible for any damage that may be caused to the system by trying to follow the instructions I have just given you.