How to Disable Windows Defender on Windows 10/8/8.1?


Are you troubled somehow by the Windows Defender feature while working on your system? Is it slowing down your system performance? If it does, then don’t worry, the following article would help you to permanently disable the Windows Defender from your operating system.

Windows Defender is the first line of defense as an antivirus provided by Microsoft for Windows 10 and 8/8.1 versions. It offers you to protect your computer against all type of malicious codes, like viruses, spywares, rootkits, etc.

Why do we need to disable Windows Defender when we can uninstall it easily?

Well the question is quite valid, yet not practically possible as you would soon find out that no matter how many times you uninstall the antivirus, it gets installed every time you reinstall your operating system. So there is no permanent solution to make it inactive.

Here in this article, we would tell you the simple ways by which you can permanently disable the feature from your operating system. Keep reading to know the varied methods for disabling Windows Defender from your Windows operating system.

Method 1: Disable Windows Defender Using Registry

If you are using Windows Home, then you can use Registry to modify the system settings to disable the Windows Defender.

Keep reading to know the method description:

Step 1. From the home screen, press “Windows key + R” together to open “Run” option.

Step 2. In the empty run search box, type in “regedit” and hit “Enter”.

Step 3. After pressing “Enter” your Registry of the system would appear instantly.

Step 4. From the following operating window, select “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE” and then “SOFTWARE”.

Step 5. Browse to the following location: “Policies” > “Microsoft”> “Windows Defender”.

Step 6. Now; if you don’t get to see a key named “DWORD DisableAntiSpyware” then click on any empty space, and select “New” from the drop down menu.

Step 7. From the sub-menu, click on “DWORD (32-bit) value”.

Step 8. It would be better if you name the key “DisableAntiSpyware’.

Step 9. After you have done this much, simply double-click the new key you have created, and set the value from 0 to 1.


Step 10.Click “OK” and restart your computer to finish the task.

WARNING: If you are using registry to disable your Windows Defender, perform the task cautiously as even a little wrong step can be fatal to the system as it can cause serious permanent damage.

Don’t miss: How to Remove Malware from Windows 10/8/7

Method 2: Disable Windows Defender Using Local Group Policy Editor

In case you are using Windows 10 Pro or other versions like Windows 10 Enterprise or Windows 10 Education, then using local group policy editor would be the best tool to disable your Windows Defender anti-virus.

Step 1. Turn on your Windows PC and from the home screen, press “Windows key + R” from the keyboard to open “Run” option.

Step 2. The “Run” panel appears in the form of a small dialog box at the bottom left corner of the home screen.

Step 3. In the empty search box, input “gpedit.msc” and hit “Enter”.

Step 4. On pressing “Enter” your local group policy editor windows would appear.

Step 5. Click “Computer Administration” option, and then “Administrative Templates”.

Step 6. After this, click “Windows Components” and then go to “Windows Defender”.

Step 7. On the right hand side panel; double click on the “Turn off Windows Defender” option.

Turn off Windows Defender

Step 8. On the following windows, select “Disable” instead of “Enable” and click “Apply”.

Step 9. Once you click “Apply”, press “Ok”.

Step 10. Restart your computer to eradicate the Windows Defender shield icon, as it would continue to be displayed even after the feature is disabled.

There you go, your Windows Defender mechanism is disabled permanently till you enable it again from the settings mentioned.

Method 3: Disable Windows Defender Using Windows Settings

In case you are not intending to disable the Windows Defender permanently, but to disable it temporarily, then the task can be done using the normal Windows settings app as well.

Read below to know the method in detail:

Step 1.Turn on your Windows 10 PC, and from the home screen go to the “Settings” app.

Step 2.From the “Settings” app click on “Update & Security” option.

Step 3.Now; click on “Windows Defender”.

Step 4.From the “Real time-protection” section, turn-off the toggle switch.

Real time-protection

Step 5.After turning-off the toggle switch, your Windows Defender feature would be disabled temporarily until the next time you reboot the system.


Windows Defender is an intelligent approach of Microsoft as a defense protocol to protect the Windows operating system from harmful viruses and malicious codes. But at times, it may interfere with the usual system operations. Depending upon how do you want to disable it or for how long do you wish to make it inactive, you can choose any of the options from the above article as per your requirement. The last method would be appropriate if you want to disable Windows Defender on a temporary basis.

But before following the guidelines, the user needs to have the basic knowledge of the system settings; otherwise it may cause serious havoc even for the slightest mistakes.

Related Articles:

  1. 2 Ways to Take Ownership of File and a Folder in Windows 10
  2. 2 Ways to Bypass Administrator Password on Windows
Katia Laine is an associate editor who works at iSeePassword. She writes about Microsoft, Windows, iPhone and Android. You can contact here via Facebook.