Windows defender isn’t working on your computer? Come on follow me. I will give you suggestions to fix these problems. Many users faced problems while trying to access windows defender. There can be many scenarios while you are facing this problem. In this article, I’m gonna discuss ‘windows defender not working’ issues and some solutions to fix this type of problem. Go find your desired solution.
Table of Contents
Windows Defender Not Working- Why this Happened?
There can be many reasons your windows defender stopped working. You should get an error message if you are trying to access your windows defender and you cannot. While you are installing Windows OS on your computer, windows defender is running automatically on your system in case you don’t turn it off. It can happen malware make your windows defender stop working.
When you install a third-party antivirus, then windows defender itself stop working as running two antiviruses at the same time may cause bad effect on the system. When you uninstall that antivirus and try to access windows defender, then it may cause you trouble as many hidden files can be running on the system of that third party antivirus.
If you turn off your windows defender once by editing registry editor or local group policy editor, you cannot access normally windows defender anymore. You have to enable it again by registry editor or local group policy editor if you want to access your windows defender. These are some common causes make windows defender not working. Besides, there can occur many errors. Let’s check them one by one.
Before searching solutions with respect to error messages, I will show you some methods you can follow to get your windows defender working again. There are some tasks you must have to do before approaching like checking registry editor, local group policy editor, windows defender update status etc. Let’s go to work.
If you find your windows defender isn’t working and cannot find what’s wrong with your windows defender, then try the below troubleshooting steps one by one. Do them likewise and check whether your windows defender is working or not.
- Date and Time Setting: If your windows defender isn’t working properly, then check your date and time settings. It was seen in past windows defender wasn’t working for incorrect date and time. Set your date and time properly and try to access your windows defender. If it works, then you are done! If not, then your problem is somewhere else. Keep going.
- Windows Update: Check all your windows updates are installed properly or not. Windows defender sometimes can make you trouble if its latest version isn’t installed on your computer. Check you have installed the latest update of windows defender and its definition. If not, then go to Microsoft’s official website and make your windows defender up-to-date.
- Any third party Antivirus: Windows defender always turns itself off if any third party antivirus is installed on the system. So, when a third party antivirus tool is running on your system, you just cannot access your windows defender.
If the scenario is like you just have uninstalled a third-party antivirus from your computer and trying to access your windows defender but you cannot, then the problem is you cannot uninstall the antivirus properly and some of its hidden files make windows defender stop working.
To solve this problem, you have to make sure you have uninstalled the third party antivirus tool properly. Go to your antivirus provider’s official website or search online for antivirus removal tool. You will find many antivirus removal tools like ‘Antivirus Uninstaller Tools Pack’ or ‘AppRemover’. They can uninstall any third party antivirus.
Uninstall third-party antivirus using antivirus removal tool and then restart your computer. Check your windows defender is working or not. If not, keep going.
There may lie problems in WMI repository. Now you have to restart the WMI repository to solve the issue. Let’s see how to restart WMI repository→
- At first, you have to open the command prompt in admin mode. Press (Windows+X) button to open Power users menu and choose ‘Command Prompt(Admin) option’.
- Type winmgmt /verifyrepository and click enter.
- Now you will get some error messages. If you see no error message, then simply restart your computer and try to enable windows defender. Let’s see the error messages→
If you see the error message like ‘WMI repository is not consistent’, then type winmgmt /salvagerepository in the command prompt(Admin) and click enter. Then restart your computer and check windows defender is working or not.
If you see the error message like ‘winmgmt /salvagerepository is failed’, then type winmgmt /verifyrepository in the command prompt(Admin) and click enter. Then restart your computer and check windows defender is working or not. This time it should work if there lied any problem in WMI repository.
It can happen you turned off your windows defender by using the registry editor and trying to access windows defender now. If it happens, then you have to enable windows defender by using registry editor again. Let’s go.
Precaution: You have to follow the below instructions carefully as messing up a lil bit thing can cause a serious problem in your computer. It’s better to back up your whole computer before approaching. But it’s not mandatory, just follow the instructions carefully.
- At first you have to open the registry editor. Press (windows+R) button to open the run prompt and type regedit. Click Ok. Or, You can search regedit in your search bar and then click on the first result.
- Go to this folder→HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows Defender.
- Now you will find an option named ‘DisableAntiSpyware’.
If you don’t see a key named ‘DisableAntiSpyware’, then your registry editor settings are okay. Simply skip it. After finding the key ‘DisableAntiSpyware’, Right click on and delete it. Restart your computer now and try to access windows defender Or, Double click on ‘DisableAntiSpyware’ and you will see an option named value data. Make the value data 0 and click Ok. Restart your computer now and try to access windows defender.
Windows Defender Offline Scan
It sometimes happens you have just recovered your system from a major virus attack and now your windows defender isn’t working. Then you have to run a powerful scan in your system if you want to get your windows defender working again.
Sometimes it can happen windows defender is infected with malware itself and it has stopped working. If it happens, then you can download windows defender offline tool from Microsoft’s official website and then run an offline scan to get rid of this problem. There are many third-party tools you can use to run an offline scan but I prefer windows defender offline tool. Windows defender offline scan is a powerful scan which removes malware outside from the OS. You can check here if you are curious how to run an offline scan with the windows defender offline tool. (internal linking)
If you are using proxy servers, then it may cause trouble to update windows defender. You have to change the proxy server settings to fix this problem. Let’s check how to do it.|
At first, you have to open a command prompt in admin mode. Press (Windows+X) button to open Power users menu and choose ‘Command Prompt(Admin) option. Type the below command and hit enter.
NETSH WINHTTP SET PROXY 188.8.131.52:8080
NETSH WINHTTP SET PROXY MYPROXY.NET:8080
Now restart your computer and check whether your windows defender is working or not.
Now I will discuss some error messages related to windows defender failure. Find your error message from below discussion and then try the solution.
- This app is turned off group policy: This is one of the most seen error messages of windows defender. When this error message appeared, it means you have turned off your windows defender by registry editor or local group policy editor at the earlier time.
- You can fix this problem by using registry editor or local group policy editor. I have seen the process with registry editor in method 1. Here I’m gonna show you how you can fix this problem by using local group policy editor.
Now follow the below steps carefully to fix this problem→
- Press (windows+R) to open the run prompt and write gpedit.mse. Click Ok to open the local group policy editor Or, Youcan search gpedit.mse in your search bar and then click on the first result to open the local group policy editor.
- Go to this folder Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Defender
- Now you will find a key named ‘Turn off Windows Defender’ in the right lower corner. Double click on it.
- Now you will see an option named ‘Disabled’ in the left menu bar. Turn it on.
You can turn on the option named ‘Not Configured’.
- Restart your computer and try to access windows defender now. It should get working now.
If you see this error message, then follow the below steps to fix this problem.
- At first press (windows+R) button to open the run prompt. Type services.msc and click Ok to open the service manager.
- You will find an option named ‘Windows Defender Service’. Now check whether ‘Windows Defender Service’ is running or not. Double click on it to check its status.
- Now you will find an option in the left lower corner named ‘Service status’. If it is ‘running’, it’s okay. You are done. Restart your computer and try to access your windows defender now.
- If ‘Service status’ is not running or stopped, then Click on the option ‘Start’ just below ‘Service status’.
- Make the option ‘Startup type’ automatic.
You are done. Restart your computer and try to access your windows defender now. If it happens you are making the service status running again and again, but it failed after a while means service status is showing stopped or not running, then you can follow these instructions.
At first, you have to open the command prompt in admin mode. Press (Windows+X) button to open Power users menu and choose ‘Command Prompt(Admin) option.
Type these following instruction one by one and hit enter.
Step-4: Restart your computer and try to access your windows defender.
Still, You Are Facing Problems?
Just try to troubleshoot your problem by following method-1. You should follow method-1 first troubleshooting steps and check they are working or not. Before approaching method-2, just make sure all things described in method-1 are all okay on your computer.
In method-2, I have described some error messages. If it happens these error messages aren’t matching with your ones and you are still in trouble, then make sure the issues described in those error messages are all okay on your computer. If they are not like I described before, make them likewise and then try to access your windows defender again.
If you have gone through my whole article, you should get your windows defender working by this time now. If you cannot, just start from method-1 again and follow the instructions carefully. You can check the matters of error messages on your computer are okay or not, but don’t apply something if the error message doesn’t match with your ones. Go get your windows defender working now!