There may be several good reasons why you might want to disable Windows Defender on your computer Maybe the service is preventing you from playing on your PC? Or maybe you are a developer and he defines non-virus files as viruses?
Disabling this feature has both advantages and disadvantages. Disabling it will fix the problem you are currently facing, but leave your computer vulnerable to many threats.
If your final decision is to turn it off, there are several ways to do this. If you are using Windows 10 at home, the first two methods will work for you, as the third method requires a local group policy editor, which you don’t have on your computer.
Use the Settings app to turn off Windows Defender
The easiest way to disable Windows Defender on your Windows 10 PC is to use the Settings app. There is an option to disable real-time protection, which is equivalent to disabling the service.
Also, if you ever decide to re-enable the service, you can do so simply by enabling the setting you disabled. It will then reactivate this feature for you.
- Find settings by searching for Cortana and hitting the app when you see it.
- Click the Update & Security option on the next screen.
- Select Windows Security from the options available in the left sidebar.
- Click the Virus & Threat Protection option in the right pane.
- On the next screen, under Virus & Threat Protection Settings, select the Manage Settings option.
- The next screen has several options that you can enable or disable. Find the Real-Time Protection option that should be at the top and turn it off.
- You will receive a message asking if you want to allow the application to make changes to your device. Click “Yes” and continue.
- Windows Defender should be turned off and you will see it on your screen.
- If you ever need to re-enable it, enable the Real-time protection option and it will be enabled.
Use Registry Editor to disable Windows Defender
The Registry Editor on your Windows PC allows you to perform many tasks. You can use it to turn various services on and off, add new options to menus, and more. One of the offered features is the ability to turn Windows Defender on or off on your computer.
You can add a new registry entry that disables Windows Defender on your computer In the future, if you ever want to bring this feature back, all you have to do is delete the entry from the registry and you’re done.
Be careful when editing the registry, as changing the wrong entries can cause your system to malfunction.
- Press the Windows key + R keys at the same time to open the Run window.
- Type regedit in the box and press Enter to open the Registry Editor.
- Click Yes at the prompt on the screen to allow editing the registry.
- When it opens, expand the directories shown in the left sidebar and follow the next path. Here you can add the required entry.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE SOFTWARE Policies Microsoft Windows Defender
- Once you’re there, right-click on the right-hand sidebar and select New. and then “DWORD Value (32 bits)”. It allows you to add a new entry to the registry.
- Type DisableAntiSpyware for the entry name and press Enter. The recording will be saved.
- Double-click an entry to edit it.
- On the edit screen, you will find a field labeled “Value Data”. The default should be 0. Remove this from the field and enter 1 as the new value. Then click OK to save your changes.
- Close Registry Editor on your computer.
- Open the Start menu, click the power icon and select Restart. Your computer will restart.
When your computer boots up, you will find that Windows Defender is completely disabled.
Use Group Policy Editor to turn off Windows Defender
If your PC has Windows 10 Professional, you can change the setting in the Local Group Policy Editor to disable Windows Defender. It’s easier than tweaking the registry, and done in no time.
You can use the same method to enable Windows Defender whenever you want. This time you need to select the Disabled option.
- Press the Windows and R keys at the same time to open the Run window.
- Type gpedit.msc to open a window on the screen and press Enter. The Local Group Policy Editor will open.
- In the left side pane, expand Computer Configuration.
- Several new items will appear under the main parameter. Click on the one that says “Administrative Templates” because that’s where we want to go.
- Click Windows Components in the left sidebar and select Windows Defender Antivirus in the right sidebar.
- Find the “Turn off Windows Defender Antivirus” option in the right pane and double-click it.
- A window will open where you can enable or disable this option. Click the Enabled radio button to enable this feature. It includes a feature to turn off Windows Defender if you get confused. Then click “OK” at the bottom to save your changes.
- Close the Local Group Policy Editor.
- Restart your computer.
Windows Defender should now remain disabled until you enter the options above and toggle this option.
Windows Defender is a good tool as it blocks viruses and various other threats on your system. Are you using this tool to protect your computers? If not, what alternatives do you use? We’d love to know about this in the comments below.