How To Disable Windows Defender on Windows 10 | 1903 (3 Ways)

There are several reasons why you may want to disable your windows defender from time to time. It could be for the installation of certain applications that would otherwise be blocked by the defender.

It could be to prevent the deleting of certain files or folders that would otherwise be deleted by the defender automatically. Normally with BitDefender or some other antivirus programs, you should be able to this fairly easily, but if you don’t have one, then you can use any of the three methods below to disable your Windows defender.

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METHOD 1: From Windows Settings

This is the easiest of the 3 methods. This method will work on both the Home and Pro and other editions of Windows 10.

  • Go to your Windows search and type, “Windows Security”, click on Windows security settings from the search results. (Here I’m using Windows 10 [1903] build. If you are running older builds of Windows 10 like 1809, then you should search for “Windows Defender Settings” instead).
  • In any case, you will have a page like this pop-up.
  • Here, under Windows security, click on “Virus and threat protection”.
  • Under the Virus and threat protection settings, click on manage settings.
  • Here you can flip all these switches to turn off real-time protection, cloud protections, and any other protections.

With that, if all you want to do is to install an app or run certain processes, then this should suffice. Afterward, you can come back to these settings and turn them back on to avoid leaving your device vulnerable to various attacks.

By default, Windows might turn the real-time protection back on after some time. So if you want a more permanent approach to turning off your Windows Defender, then you can proceed with the second or third method.

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METHOD 2: Through Group Policy Management

The second approach is through group policy management. As you might know, the group policy management feature is available only on Pro, Enterprise, and Education editions of Windows 10.

So, if you are using the Home edition of Windows 10, you won’t be able to use this approach. If you are using Pro or any of the other two editions, go to your Windows search and type, “Group policy”, click on edit group policy from the search results.

In the group policy editor, under computer configuration, double-click on “Administrative templates”.

Then to the right, you will find a folder named “Windows Components”, double-click to expand it too.

Scroll down and search for “Windows defender anti-virus” and double-click on it.

Here you should find a configuration file that says “Turn off Windows defender anti-virus” double-click to open it up.

As you can see, by default this is not configured, so here you need to set it to enable in order to turn off your Windows defender.

Apply and hit ok, and that should immediately disable your Windows defender.  Remember you can come back here and turn it back on whenever you want.

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METHOD 3: Through Registry Editor

The third approach is through the registry editor. This is equally applicable for all editions of Windows 10. For that go to your Windows search and type “Regedit”. Click on the registry editor from the search results and hit yes on the user account control.

In the registry editor, you want to first backup your settings, to do that simply select your computer folder. Then go to File and select export set a preferred name and save.

Next, you want to go to the folder HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE, double-click to expand it.

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Then expand the SOFTWARE folder, go down to Policies, then Microsoft, and under that you will find Windows defender.

With that selected, right-click on the right side of the page, point to new, and then click on DWORD 32-bit (value).

Here, rename this as DisableAntiSpyware and hit enter. Double-click to open the options, and then change the value data to 1, hit ok, and close the window.  Now restart your PC and you should have your windows defender disabled. Remember you can always go back to any of these settings to reenable back your defender.

Hope one of these solutions would work for you, if you have any questions regarding the procedures in this tutorial, you can post in the comment section below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

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The following video demonstrates the solutions in this tutorial.