How to turn off Windows Defender? Best Windows Defender alternative (Free & Paid)

How to turn off Windows Defender? It has become a challenging process among the users of Windows PC(s). Nowadays, more effective antivirus software is available in the market. However, in the presence of activated Microsoft Defender, other antivirus software may not work in your system. What to do? Well! We have a perfect solution for you. Let’s take a glimpse further to resolve this issue. But, before we go ahead, it is significant to know the following:

What is Microsoft Windows Defender?

Microsoft has recently updated its in-built antivirus software for Windows-based computer systems. It was formerly called Windows Defender. Now, the updated version is known as Microsoft Defender. One of the significant features of Windows Defender is to protect your system against viruses, malware, and threats. More often than not, these viruses or malware can transfer to one’s device from new internet resources and doubtful connections.

First, you can turn off Windows Defender in your computer system permanently and temporarily. The procedure is not very lengthy. Thus, if you download another premium antivirus software in your Windows PC, we recommend you follow the stepwise guide on how to turn off Windows Defender 2020:

turn off windows defender in windows 10
Source: Safety Detectives


How to turn off Windows Defender temporarily in Windows 10?

By turning off Windows Defender temporarily, you can disable the use of the in-built Microsoft antivirus program. By doing so, your system will allow you to run antivirus scanning and uninstalling procedures. Therefore, follow the given steps to get started:

  • Open the Start Menu or press the Windows key.
  • Search for “Windows Security” in the Start Menu search box.
  • Press the enter key for the first results.
  • Now, on the left side menu, click on the “Virus & threat protection” alternative.
  • Then, click on the “Virus and threat protection settings.”
  • Scroll down and then select the “Manage Settings” option.
  • Turn off the “Real-Time Protection” option by clicking on the toggle at the bottom.
  • Now, save the settings (Select “Yes” to confirm)
  • Go back and review the performance of Windows Defender on desktop or background Apps.

To reverse the action, turn on the “Real-Time Protection” option. Thus, this is how you can turn off Windows Defender in Windows 10 for some time.

Note: While restarting your computer system, Windows Defender turns on automatically. Thus, it is recommendable to repeat the process after you restart or reboot your Windows PC.

How to turn off Windows Defender in Windows 8.1, 7, and Windows XP?

First, the user interface for Windows 8.1, Windows 7, and Windows XP is similar. Therefore, you can follow the steps given below to turn off Windows Defender in any operating system-based PC:

  • Go to the Start Menu.
  • Search for the “Windows Defender” tool in the search box.
  • Select on the appropriate result
  • Once you open Windows Defender, click on the “tools” option in the toolbar.
  • Now, select the “Options.”
  • Click on the “Administrator” option available on the left-side menu.
  • Observe “Use this program” on the right side.
  • Uncheck “Use this program” option
  • Click “OK” to save your settings.
  • Select “Yes” to provide User Control permission to turn off Windows defender.
  • Now, test for Windows Defender status by activating another antivirus program in your PC.

Note: The given process will not uninstall the Defender program from your system. It will only limit its activation to zero. To restart Windows Defender, check “Use this program” again. It will turn on Windows Defender for Windows 8.1, Windows 7, and Windows XP.

Source: Winaero

Meanwhile, we recommend using a third-party antivirus software as any cyber threat can damage your system in several ways.

How to turn off Windows Defender permanently?

You can also turn off Microsoft antivirus program permanently. However, you cannot uninstall Windows Defender antivirus software from your Windows PC. as mentioned before, it comes as an in-built program in Windows computers via Microsoft.

Source: Ghacks

Follow the given steps to turn of Windows Defender permanently in Windows 10:

  • Go to the Start Menu or Press Windows Key
  • Search for “Run” in the search box. Or, Press Windows key+R.
  • Open the “Run” program.
  • Further, Type “regedit”
  • Click on the “OK” button.
  • Select “YES” if Windows User control demand permission
  • In the registry address bar, copy-paste “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows Defender.”
  • Right-click on the screen and then select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value option.
  • Enter “DisableAntiSpyware” in the typer box.
  • Press the enter key
  • Observe the “DisableAntiSpyware” alternative and double click on it.
  • Observe the “Value data” option and enter “1.”
  • Click on the “OK” button.
  • At last, restart your Windows 10 PC.

Note: If Windows Defender turns off, well and good! If it does not turn off, check for “user control settings” on your system. Or repeat the process.

How to turn off Windows Defender permanently without Registry?

For the most part, the registry procedure to turn off Windows Defender can be quite challenging. Therefore, we are presenting another way to turn off Windows Defender permanently in Windows 10.

  • Go to the Start Menu or Press Windows Key
  • Search for “Run” in the search box. Or, Press Windows key+R.
  • Open the “Run” program.
  • Type “gpedit.msc”
  • Further, Click on the “OK” Button
  • The computer Configuration option will appear.
  • Then, select the Administrative templates.
  • Go to the Windows Components
  • Select the Windows Defender Antivirus
  • On the right side menu, turn off the Microsoft Defender.
  • Then, Enable the Setting
  • At last, Click “OK”
  • Reboot/Restart your system

Note: In some cases, when you download and install third-party antivirus software in your computer system, the Microsoft’s antivirus program turns off/disable automatically. Therefore, do not confuse if you find the program already deactivated.

Best Windows Defender alternative (Free & Paid)

Norton 360 Security

The recently updated NortonLifeLock has been trending in the IT industry for its outstanding security features. It alerts you persistently about the threats concerning your system, data, and files. This software is prominent for its unique additional features. Let’s take a glimpse:

windows 10 disable defender
Source: Norton 360
  • Complimentary 100GB Secure Cloud Storage for backup
  • Runs on five devices at a time
  • Now available for macOS, iOS, and Android devices as well
  • Activate safe-browsing feature to run in incognito mode
  • You can also manage VPN or Virtual Private Network
  • Manage passwords
  • You can also activate parental controls
  • At last, you can activate persistent threat alerts and identity lock for 100% security

Site link:

Pricing: Starting from $150 per year


To begin with, BitDefender is a premium antivirus and security software. You can use the free version of this software, which is as effective as the paid version. By using Bitdefender, you do not need to worry about how to turn off Windows Defender? As Bitdefender alerts you each time whenever an application unknowing activates in your system. Moreover, its paid version is also very cheap.

how to turn off windows defender
Source: bitdefender

Key features of Bitdefender are:

  • Different Bitdefender products are available for service at home, workplace, partners, and companies
  • It is a global antivirus program alternative available in all countries
  • Now available for Windows PC, macOS, and Android and iOS smartphones
  • Furthermore, You can start a free trial today
  • It is also an award-winning security software
  • Works on five PC(s) at a time
  • Detects nearby devices and threatful connections
  • Moreover, Get install security-based notifications
  • Browse safe and download applications from unknown resources
  • Protection from brute forces
  • At last, get prevention from phishing and fraud content

Site link:

Pricing: Starting from $45 per year for five devices


Are you finding solutions for how to turn off Windows Defender? In this case, there are chances that your Windows Defender is unable to detect malware threats around you. Therefore, we recommend downloading Malwarebytes. It is one of the most popular Microsoft defender alternatives which prevent your computer system against malware infections by quick scanning, testing, and uninstalling broken files.

Source: Malwarebytes official

Critical features of Malwarebytes are:

  • Clean your PC in less than 60 seconds.
  • Turn on/off-web protection, exploit, ransomware, and malware & PUP protection
  • Identify and block scammers trying to access your device
  • Turn on/off notifications anytime
  • Moreover, Three scan modes are available
  • 14-days free trial is also available
  • At last, Blocks fraudulent websites immediately

Site link:

Pricing: Starting from $3.33 per month

Note: Malwarebytes premium billed annually.

Trend Micro ™ Maximum Security

For the most part, it is a refreshing feeling to start using a brand new Microsoft defender alternative in place of Microsoft’s in-built antivirus program. But, can you afford a premium software for your workplace consisting of 10 devices and more? Well! We have a perfect solution for you. Download and install Trend Micro ™ Maximum Security. This software complemented with the following key features:

how to turn off windows defender antivirus program
Source: Trend Micro Maximum Security
  • Premium security suite available for 5-10 devices
  • Now available for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android
  • Ransomware protection
  • You can also block persistent email scammers
  • Furthermore, Block webmail’s phishing and scamming emailers
  • Protect social media profiles from prying eyes
  • Remove virus-loaded applications and files
  • An in-built virtual private network/VPN is available for accessing blocked programs and sites
  • 100% security during public Wi-fi use.
  • IT helpdesk is also available.


In conclusion, we hope that you have understood how to turn off Microsoft Defender in your PC temporarily or permanently? It is important to note that Windows Defender is significant to shield every activity on your PC. In the absence of the program, your PC can seek a lot of damage from external malware content. For more information on Windows Defender tips and tricks, connect with us online.

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