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How to effectively remove Malware using Windows Defender – Part 2 Update, Settings, Scan & Cure

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Windows Defender Tutorial – Overview, download and Install
Windows Defender Tutorial – Update, Settings, Scan & Cure

Windows Defender Logo

Part 2 Update, Settings, Scan & Cure

If you have not updated the definitions database during installation, you may do so now. Click on Check for updates now

Windows Defender Definition Update

Successful definition update is confirmed by a popup message from the taskbar. If you are having issues with updating the definitions, please check out this page. – How to troubleshoot definition update issues for Windows Defender

Windows Defender definition update popup

Tools and Settings

From the Defender home page, click Tools and then click Options to set the configuration options.

Windows Defender configuration options

Here you can find multitude of options to choose how you want Windows Defender to run on your system. The first option allows you to change automatic scan settings. You can set the program to run automatically at a set time after a specific interval. Depending on your browsing habits, generally a weekly full system scan is suggested. By default, Windows Defender schedules a nightly scan of your computer at 2 A.M. The default configuration automatically downloads any new definitions before the scan and removes high alert items afterwards.

Select Check for updated definitions before scanning and Apply default actions to items detected during a scan.

The next option allows you to choose the default action that you want Windows Defender to apply to the dectected items under different alert levels. Select Default action (definition-based) for all the three alert levels. Once you get used to the defender alert levels and the type of detected items, you may change them to your desired preference.

Windows Defender automatic scan Settings

Real-time Protection Options

The next section allows you to configure the real-time protection settings.

By default, real-time protection starts as soon as you install Windows Defender. Scanning and removal of known spyware that is already on your computer can help clean your system, but it will not keep new spyware from installing. To help protect you from new threats and even unknown threats, Windows Defender offers real-time protection using monitoring agents. These nine security agents monitor critical areas of your computer that spyware might attempt to modify.

Here checkmark all the nine monitoring agents.

Minimizing Alerts

The next section deals with the way Windows Defender alerts you on detecting a system change. Enabling these options will increase the frequency of alerts, which can be annoying most of the time. If you do not want to be alerted frequently about “software that has not yet been classified for risks” and “Changes made to your computer by software that is permitted to run”, leave them unmarked.

The next option allows you to configure the way Windows Defender icon appears in the taskbar notification area. Once again selecting Always will mean more annoying alerts, Select the option Only if Windows Defender detects an action to take.

Windows Defender real-time Settings

Here you can configure certain advanced and administrator options. The first option allows you to choose whether you want to scan inside zip, rar and other archived files and folders. Enabling this option will increase the scan time but improve the chances of finding malware files before they execute. Checkmark Scan the contents of archived files and folders for potential threats.

The next option allows you to control whether Windows Defender uses heuristics to detect potentially harmful software. Be warned that enabling this option may produce false positives. Checkmark this option and also the option Create a restore point before applying actions to detected items

The other option in this section allows you to Add or Remove any location or specific files or folders that you don’t want Windows Defender to scan. Unless you know what you are doing, leave this option as it is for now.

Make sure that the two options in the Administrator section are selected.

Windows Defender advanced options

With Software Explorer in Windows Defender, you can view detailed information about software that is currently running on your computer that can affect your privacy or the security of your computer. You can see, for example, which programs run automatically when you start Windows and information about how these programs interact with important Windows programs and services.

Windows Defender Settings

Scan and Cure

Expand the Scan button and click on Custom Search.

Windows Defender Settings

Select the radio button Scan selected drives and folders and click on Select button. Then click on OK and Scan now button.

Windows Defender Settings

Windows Defender will alert you with a popup message every time a suspicious file is found while scanning.
You can choose any of the option for processing the threat.

Windows Defender Settings

Once the scan is completed, a summary of the scan is shown. Click on Remove all button

Windows Defender Settings

or click on Review items detected by scanners to individually review and select an appropriate action.

Windows Defender Settings

Windows Defender Settings

This concludes Windows Defender Tutorial Part 2

Windows Defender Tutorial – Overview, download and Install
Windows Defender Tutorial – Update, Settings, Scan & Cure

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