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Windows Defender Offline: How to run to clear stubborn malware infections

windows defender

With the Windows 10 Anniversary update (1607), Microsoft introduced a number of features, of which the most important area was the increased security. Windows defender as all of you know is an anti-malware software built by Microsoft and comes with Windows 10, that can automatically scan and eliminate virus or malware that has infected you computer.

However, some malware is specifically designed to avoid detection making it harder for the anti-malware program to prevent infection or help you recover from it.

To get around these certain un-detectable malwares, Windows 10 includes a tool that can help in these situations: Windows Defender Offline. It is a powerful tool capable of removing some of the most stubborn malware infections.

Windows Defender Offline runs in a trusted environment, where most programs aren’t able to run, isolated from any malware on the device, so it can scan and remove malware. Cool thing, right ?

So, the next question that comes your mind is, how do I know when to run it?

Here are the cases:

  • The device is behaving strangely, but nothing was found with a normal anti-malware scan.
  • Your anti-malware product repeatedly says it has detected malware, but it fails to remove it, or it keeps coming back.
  • Windows Defender indicates that an offline scan is required.

How to run Windows Defender Offline

On a computer running Windows 10 Anniversary Update.

  1. Go to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Defender Offline, and then select Scan Offline.
  2. If the program finds any malware on the system, you will get a notification as shown in the picture. Go ahead, and restart the computer.

windows defender
windows defender

On restart, your PC will begin scanning automatically.  You will not be able to use your computer while this scan is running (mostly takes 15 minutes). You can cancel the scan at any time, but it will discard the results of the scan, and not remove any malware that may have been found.

After the scan is complete, the program will restart your computer, normally.

To see what malware was found in the Windows Defender Offline scan, open Windows Defender, select the History tab, and then select All detected items.

If you want to learn more about defender, head to this link.

What other anti-virus program do you use on your PC?  I would like to hear from you. Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Shafat

Shafat has more than 5 years of Tech journalism experience. He likes to write about latest Tech and Gadgets. He is a proud Lumia 950 owner and Windows fan. He has been covering Tech and Gadget news on other well-known Tech sites GadgetOx and Nokiapoweruser since long. He loves to code and is a proficient developer.
Write to him at Email: [email protected]

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