Jump to content


 


Register a free account to unlock additional features at BleepingComputer.com
Welcome to BleepingComputer, a free community where people like yourself come together to discuss and learn how to use their computers. Using the site is easy and fun. As a guest, you can browse and view the various discussions in the forums, but can not create a new topic or reply to an existing one unless you are logged in. Other benefits of registering an account are subscribing to topics and forums, creating a blog, and having no ads shown anywhere on the site.


Click here to Register a free account now! or read our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Photo

I can't turn on Windows Defender.


  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1 Warthog-Fan

Warthog-Fan

  • Members
  • 289 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Endicott, NY
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 10:53 AM

Hi,

 

I have an Acer laptop computer running Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit. I use Microsoft Security Essentials as my anti-virus and anti-malware programs (I believe that Windows Defender is part of MSE). Last night I opened the Action Center and under the Security section, looked at the status of MSE and Windows Defender. The status window showed me that MSE was "On" but Windows Defender was "Off". I selected it and then clicked the button to turn it on, but the status remained "Off". I closed the Action Center and a short time later an information window popped up telling me that Windows Defender had stopped working. I was informed that I could restart it by rebooting, which I did. After the reboot, I looked in the Action Center again and saw that it was still in the "Off" state.

 

I decided that the program might have gotten corrupted somehow, so I decided to uninstall MSE and then download it again and reinstall. I did this and everything went fine. However, the Action Center still told me that Windows Defender was "Off" and I still couldn't turn it on.

 

The only reason that I could think of for this is that there is some other anti-malware program running. About a year ago, I purchase Malwarebytes and installed it on my main desktop computer, and I thought that I had also installed it on the laptop as well, but if I go into Programs and Features, there is no evidence of it. Is it possible that I did a Malwarebytes installation and it somehow failed to install, but managed to make some changes to the OS such that Defender believes that there is another anti-malware program running? Where should I begin looking to investigate this?

 

Thanks in advance.


Edited by hamluis, 18 November 2015 - 11:28 AM.
Moved from Win 7 to AV/AM Software - Hamluis.


BC AdBot (Login to Remove)

 


#2 dudeage

dudeage

  • Members
  • 175 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:06:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 10:58 AM

If you check this out:  http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/protect/forum/protect_defender-protect_start/windows-defender-is-off-i-cant-turn-it-on/1d7ef840-e355-40f7-8aeb-225f86cbd821

 

Best explanation for this is right here:  

 

It's not really a problem, neither with Norton nor with Microsoft Security Essentials. It's by design.

Microsoft Security Essentials, AVG, Norton, and McAfee all turn off Defender. That's good, not bad. Not only is there potential conflict, but there's no reason to have both; they all essentially have something very similar to Defender built into them, and running both at once will hurt your performance and create the risk of problems as they conflict with each other.

 

Even if this wasn't the case, I wouldn't worry too much about it.  Windows Defender sucks anyway.   :grinner: 



#3 hamluis

hamluis

    Moderator


  • Moderator
  • 55,260 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Killeen, TX
  • Local time:07:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 11:06 AM

Please download MiniToolBox  , save it to your desktop and run it.
 
Checkmark the following checkboxes:
  List last 10 Event Viewer log
  List Installed Programs
  List Users, Partitions and Memory size.
 
Click Go and paste the content into your next post.
 
Also...please Publish a Snapshot using Speccy - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic323892.html/page__p__1797792#entry1797792 , taking care to post the link of the snapshot in your next post.
 
Louis



#4 Warthog-Fan

Warthog-Fan
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 289 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Endicott, NY
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 11:07 AM

Okay, so if I understand this properly, Windows Defender is NOT a part of MSE; that MSE has anti-malware built into it and it would conflict with Defender, so MSE turns it off. If that is correct, then all is cool. I just wanted to be sure that I have an anti-malware program running on the computer.

 

Now, if I wanted to install Malwarebytes on this machine, is there going to be a conflict between it and the anti-malware built into MSE? Or will Malwarebytes and MSE handle this problem without me getting involved? When I installed Malwarebytes on my desktop, I was advised by people on this forum to turn off Defender but there was no mention of doing anything with MSE, which is the anti-virus that I'm using.


Edited by Warthog-Fan, 18 November 2015 - 11:08 AM.


#5 dudeage

dudeage

  • Members
  • 175 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:06:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 11:13 AM

Okay, so if I understand this properly, Windows Defender is NOT a part of MSE; that MSE has anti-malware built into it and it would conflict with Defender, so MSE turns it off. If that is correct, then all is cool. I just wanted to be sure that I have an anti-malware program running on the computer.

 

Now, if I wanted to install Malwarebytes on this machine, is there going to be a conflict between it and the anti-malware built into MSE? Or will Malwarebytes and MSE handle this problem without me getting involved? When I installed Malwarebytes on my desktop, I was advised by people on this forum to turn off Defender but there was no mention of doing anything with MSE, which is the anti-virus that I'm using.

 

Usually when it comes to anti-malware programs you can download as many as you like and it won't produce conflict.  It's only with AV programs that you'll get conflicts when you have more than 1.  

 

That being said, I wouldn't worry too much about it at this point if MSE has an anti-malware component to it.  IMO keep Malwarebytes on a memory stick or handy someplace in case you actually get malware on your PC, but you don't necessarily need to download it right now.  

 

But, there shouldn't be a problem with having both on your machine.  



#6 dudeage

dudeage

  • Members
  • 175 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:06:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 11:15 AM

Okay, so if I understand this properly, Windows Defender is NOT a part of MSE; that MSE has anti-malware built into it and it would conflict with Defender, so MSE turns it off. If that is correct, then all is cool. I just wanted to be sure that I have an anti-malware program running on the computer.

 

Now, if I wanted to install Malwarebytes on this machine, is there going to be a conflict between it and the anti-malware built into MSE? Or will Malwarebytes and MSE handle this problem without me getting involved? When I installed Malwarebytes on my desktop, I was advised by people on this forum to turn off Defender but there was no mention of doing anything with MSE, which is the anti-virus that I'm using.

 

The way I understand it is by design MSE turns off Windows Defender because MSE renders it redundant.  

 

Makes sense to me - WD is really only designed to be that basic program that protects your PC in the interim while you find all the programs you need.  

 

Like I mentioned, WD kind of sucks anyway as it's designed to be really basic so don't worry too much about it being on.  



#7 hamluis

hamluis

    Moderator


  • Moderator
  • 55,260 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Killeen, TX
  • Local time:07:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 11:18 AM

There was no reason to suspect a possible conflict between Malwarebytes...and any other application, regardless of who said what.  Not every comment made in any forum...tends to be anything based on knowledge...but most are  well-intentioned.

 

Many programs are capable of running without complication/conflict with another...the obvious exception to this would be when a user hast two or more antivirus/security suites installed and both are fully active.  One AV program is what is suggested, while you can run as many antimalware programs (SAS, Malwarebytes, and so on) as you like.  Running more than one AM program won't necessarily provide greater protection, IMO, while running two AV programs at the same time has been known to produce system problems.  It's important to differentiate between the two types programs.

 

Louis



#8 dc3

dc3

    Bleeping Treehugger


  • Members
  • 30,279 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sierra Foothills of Northern Ca.
  • Local time:05:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 01:49 PM

Windows Defender is not part of Microsoft Security Essentials, it is a stand alone antimalware program.  It is part of Windows 7.  

 

Windows Defender in Window 8/8.1 is a full blown antivirus.  If you add another antivirus this will cause Windows defender to shut down Windows defender.  The reason that Windows 8/8.1 disables Windows Defender after another antivirus is installed is best explained below.

 

IMPORTANT NOTE: Using more than one anti-virus program is not advisable. Why? The primary concern with doing so is due to Windows resource management and significant conflicts that can arise especially when they are running in real-time protection mode simultaneously. Even if one of them is disabled for use as a stand-alone on demand scanner, it can affect the other and cause conflicts. Anti-virus software components insert themselves deep into the operating systems core where they install kernel mode drivers that load at boot-up regardless of whether real-time protection is enabled or not. Thus, using multiple anti-virus solutions can result in kernel mode conflicts causing system instability, catastrophic crashes, slow performance and waste vital system resources. When actively running in the background while connected to the Internet, each anti-virus may try to update their definition databases at the same time. As the programs compete for resources required to download the necessary files this often can result in sluggish system performance or unresponsive behavior.
 
Credit for this information goes to quietman7.
 
You can run more than one antimalware, but it isn't suggested.  I would suggest just running one.  Malwarebytes Antimalware is one which is very popular because its effectiveness.

Edited by dc3, 18 November 2015 - 01:51 PM.

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#9 quietman7

quietman7

    Bleepin' Janitor


  • Global Moderator
  • 50,964 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Virginia, USA
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 04:10 PM

Since Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is not an anti-virus program, it should not conflict with your existing anti-virus. The following quote is a statement from the Malwarebytes Team.

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is not meant to be a replacement for antivirus software. Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is a complementary but essential program which detects and removes zero-day malware and "Malware in the Wild". This includes malicious programs and files, such as viruses, worms, trojans, rootkits, dialers, spyware, and rogue applications that many antivirus programs do not detect or cannot fully remove. It is important to note that Malwarebytes Anti-Malware works well and should run alongside antivirus software without conflicts. In some rare instances, exclusions may need to be set for your specific antivirus product to achieve the best possible system performance.

Larry Tate
Product Support


A similar statement is in this Malwarebytes HelpDesk Article: Does Malwarebytes Anti-Malware replace antivirus software?


See my comments in Supplementing your Anti-Virus Program with Anti-Malware Tools as to why I recommend Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Premium and Emsisoft Anti-Malware.
.
.
Windows Insider MVP 2017-2018
Microsoft MVP Reconnect 2016
Microsoft MVP Consumer Security 2007-2015 kO7xOZh.gif
Member of UNITE, Unified Network of Instructors and Trusted Eliminators

If I have been helpful & you'd like to consider a donation, click 38WxTfO.gif

#10 Warthog-Fan

Warthog-Fan
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 289 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Endicott, NY
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 04:17 PM

Okay, so let me see if I have this straight.

 

1) Windows Defender is not part of MSE. It's a standalone program that's part of Windows. (It does not show up in the list of installed programs.)

 

2) MSE has its own anti-malware program built into it, so you don't actually NEED another anti-malware program.

 

3) Installing a program like Malwarebytes will not cause any problems, but may be redundant. (I'm guessing that it will also slow the computer down to some extent).

 

MSE seems to be well regarded on this forum. However, I just finished reading an article about it on Wikipedia and noted that in 2013 the AV-TEST Organization gave MSE a score of "zero" for protection of a system, a 5.5 for the ability to repair a system and a 7 for usability. I went to the AV-TEST web site and saw that MSE only got a 3 for protection and a little higher for repair and usability. I might look into the Avast product since it received a high score in all area where it was rated by AV-TEST.



#11 Warthog-Fan

Warthog-Fan
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 289 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Endicott, NY
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 04:23 PM

Quietman,

 

Yes, I  understand that Malwarebytes in not an anti-virus program and it is intended to supplement a true anti-virus program. My main concern is that I have BOTH an anti-virus and an anti-malware program running on my laptop and I wasn't clear about what MSE actually contained and whether it was intended to be run with MSE. As stated above, I might investigate another program that offers a better level of system protection



#12 quietman7

quietman7

    Bleepin' Janitor


  • Global Moderator
  • 50,964 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Virginia, USA
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 04:24 PM

Although MSE (and Windows 8/10 Defender) provides some anti-malware protection...they do not provide comprehensive protection and cannot prevent, detect and remove all threats at any given time. Anti-virus and anti-malware programs each perform different tasks as it relates to computer security and threat detection. Essentially, they look for and remove different types of malicious threats.

In simplistic terms, Anti-virus programs generally scan for infectious malware which includes viruses, worms, Trojans, rootkis and bots.
Anti-malware programs generally tend to focus more on adware, spyware, unwanted toolbars, browser hijackers, potentially unwanted programs and potentially unsafe applications.

Therefore, you need both an anti-virus and an anti-malware solution for maximum protection.There are several reputable labs which test the effectiveness of major anti-virus programs and security suites to include AV-Comparatives.org, Virus Bulletin Comparative Tests, AV-Test.org, NSS Labs Consumer Anti-Malware Products Group Test Report, etc.

These kinds of comparative testing results will vary depending on a variety of factors to include but not limited to who conducted the testing, what they were testing for (type of threats, attack vectors, exploits), what versions of anti-virus software was tested, what type of scanning engine was used, and the ability to clean or repair. There are no universally predefined set of standards or criteria for testing which means each test will yield different results. As such, you need to look for detailed information about how the tests were conducted, the procedures used, and data results.

Some of the testing criteria and standards may even be misleading.

...for some unknown reason...the renowned German test lab AV-TEST has quietly (there was no warning) modified its certification process. The changes mean that the certificates produced by the new rules are, to put it mildly, pretty useless for evaluating the merits of different AV products...With AV-TEST’s new certification standards, the onus is on the user to carefully investigate the actual results of each individual test…they may find that a product that blocked 99.9% of attacks has the same “certification” as a product that only blocked 55%.

Comparative testing: A bit of background for the uninitiated

Further, if you're dealing with zero-day malware it's unlikely the anti-virus testing is going to detect anything. It takes time for new malware to be reported, samples collected, analyzed, and tested by anti-virus/anti-malware researchers before they can add a new threat to database definitions.
.
.
Windows Insider MVP 2017-2018
Microsoft MVP Reconnect 2016
Microsoft MVP Consumer Security 2007-2015 kO7xOZh.gif
Member of UNITE, Unified Network of Instructors and Trusted Eliminators

If I have been helpful & you'd like to consider a donation, click 38WxTfO.gif

#13 Warthog-Fan

Warthog-Fan
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 289 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Endicott, NY
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 04:30 PM

Quietman,

 

Thank you for this additional information.



#14 quietman7

quietman7

    Bleepin' Janitor


  • Global Moderator
  • 50,964 posts
  • ONLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Virginia, USA
  • Local time:08:37 PM

Posted 18 November 2015 - 04:38 PM

Not a problem.
.
.
Windows Insider MVP 2017-2018
Microsoft MVP Reconnect 2016
Microsoft MVP Consumer Security 2007-2015 kO7xOZh.gif
Member of UNITE, Unified Network of Instructors and Trusted Eliminators

If I have been helpful & you'd like to consider a donation, click 38WxTfO.gif




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users