Anti-Malware Engineering Team

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Windows Defender Beta 2: Update

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Hi all,

We’ve gotten some great feedback from places like this blog and our support newsgroups about the recently released Windows Defender Beta 2. We really appreciate the enthusiastic participation!

Some of this feedback has allowed us to identify a couple of problems with our setup on non-English versions of Windows: 

  • We have a problem installing on systems which don’t have a group named “Users”. On these systems, the group typically exists but it is in another language.
  • Sometimes the link to Windows Defender creates a new group called “Programs” at the top of the start menu.

Our international users are very important to us and so we are currently testing an updated version that fixes these issues.  That update will be available soon through the same links where you installed the original version. Until we make this version available, users may follow the steps in KB915087 to workaround these issues and successfully install Windows Defender Beta 2.

Another problem that was appearing in the newsgroups:

  • Uninstalling and reinstalling can temporarily cause problems updating signatures.

This will automatically get fixed in the next update of our signatures, which is scheduled for Tuesday. Please see KB915105 for more information.

Finally, we have also received a few questions about the tray icon. A consistent point of feedback from Windows users is that there are just too many icons that appear in the system tray.  With this in mind, we decided not to display a system tray icon for Windows Defender if no action is needed.  This way, we can help the industry move towards a model where the items in the system tray are programs that need a user's attention instead of items that are simply running.  As always, your comments on this are welcome.

Thanks again for all the support and please keep the feedback coming !


  • If you are going to cull down the system tray to only those items requiring attention (an idea that is both sound and noble) I have a suggestion.

    A new app with an icon that is always in the tray, pinned to the right side, just to the left of the time.  The app would be to view all icons for apps that developers wish to create icons for.  There would be lots of room in this context for extra buttons that take the user to properties, start up options, etc.  

    Unlike the task manager it would be great if this app could be kept open and behind other windows.

  • Please give an easier way to disable real-time protection & remove Windows Defender from memory, via a tray icon or other method - other than end-tasking all the processes, stopping the service, and/or going into the config and disabling real-time scanning..

  • The idea of integrating it with the already existing Security Center interface is excellent.  Giving the option to have it appear in the system tray seems to be a good idea as most of the comments here support that.

    WD warned me about an exploit when I was viewing a page in IE a few days ago.  Much nicer to have it appear right smack in the middle of the screen where it instantly draws attention.  If I remember though, it gave me the option to block or ignore the warning but didn't give a recommended action.

  • I have to agree with everyone that the tray icon can simply be an option in the program for those who want to use it. they also need to work on the
    automatic scanning, it does not work. beta 1 worked very nicely on the automatic scanning..come on microsoft you can do better.

  • I was experiencing the following errors:
    - Attempted to update signature files, got "no updates required" message
    - Tried to update and now get, "Windows Defender was unable to complete the update: 0x8024402c"

    What I did to resolve the problem:
    1. Removed Windows Defender
    2. Re-downloaded and installed Windows Defender
    3. Followed instructions in KB915087
    4. Since my company is running an internal WSUS server, I updated our WSUS update options to include Windows Defender.
    5. Back at my PC, Clicked on "Check for Updates" in Windows Defender.

    My signature files were updated from our internal WSUS server and Windows Defender seems to be working normally!



  • not a good program. It does not detect suspicious cookies and ask me to delete it...  :(

    The tray icon does not display, makes me wonder if it is running...

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