How to disable Windows Defender in Windows 10
By Renee | 04/Dec/2023
Windows Defender is the free antivirus application installed in Windows 10 (and Windows 8) by default. This security software offers the first layer protection to safeguard your computer against viruses, spyware, and other malware. However, Windows Defender isn’t the best security software and even Microsoft admits its shipping antivirus solution isn’t ideal. Therefore, most Windows users still use third-party antivirus apps to protect their system, in which case turning off Windows Defender could prevent some interference when the third-party security app performs its task.
If you want to get Windows Defender turned off temporarily or permanently, you find out the right post that shows a detailed guide.
Method 1 Using Local Group Policy to turn off Windows Defender permanently
If you're using Windows 10 Pro or any other enterprise version, using the Local Group Policy Editor is a permanent solution to disable Windows Defender Antivirus.
1. Right-click on the Start button and choose Run to launch the Run command.
2. Type gpedit.msc in the box and press enter.
3. Go to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Defender. On the right panel, double-click Turn off Windows Defender.
4. Select Enabled to turn off Windows Defender, and click Apply and OK.
Tips: if you want to turn on Windows Defender, you just need to follow the same 3 steps before, and leave step 4 on the option Not configured and reboot the computer to take effect.
Method 2 Using Registry Editor to turn off Windows Defender
If you are not running Windows 10 Windows 10 Pro or any other enterprise version, you could take advantage of Registry Editor to reach the same results—disable Windows Defender permanently.
However, it is quite dangerous to edit the registry by yourself, which could do irreversible damage to your system if you do not know how to do it accurately. It would be better to open your Neptune SystemCare Ultimate/Premier to back up your registry or create a system point.
-> Open Neptune SystemCare Ultimate/Premier, on the right top of the screen, there is a horizontal list of buttons.
-> The second button is for creating a system restore point and registry backup. Click on it and then save the file to an external storage drive.
-> The third one is for recovering from the restored files. You can click on it and choose the version/time you want to recover.
Here’s how to turn off Windows Defender using the registry editor.
1. Go to the search box on the Start menu and type in regedit, and click on the Regedit option.
2. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows Defender.
3. If you don't see DWORD DisableAntiSpyware on the right panel, right-click on an empty space, select New, and click on DWORD (32-bit) Value. Type in DisableAntiVirus as Value name.
4. Double-click the newly created key, and set the value from 0 to 1.
Tips: if you want to turn on Windows Defender, you just need to follow the same 3 steps before, and change the value on step 4 from 1 to 0 and reboot the computer to take effect.
Method 3 Using Settings to turn off Windows Defender temporarily.
1. Open Windows Defender Security Center, then choose Virus & threat protection > Threat settings.
2. Swipe to turn off Real-time protection.
In fact, Microsoft keeps an open mind and doesn’t really care which antivirus program you use, but you have to use something. Therefore, if you prefer to use a third party anti-malware app, you might want to turn off Windows Defender. This is the right post you land on.