Free Microsoft Anti-Virus Tools

  1. Introduction
  2. Microsoft Security Essentials
  3. Microsoft Safety Scanner
  4. Microsoft Windows Defender Offline
  5. Summary


There are many tools about that promise to keep your pc clean from viruses and malware. Tools such as AVG, Avast!, Sophos and others make great promises, that are (probably) impossible to keep. They all have paid and free versions, the main difference being (in our opinion) that the free ones cause a performance hit on your PC.

It is beyond the scope of this report to make any real, meaningful comments about the effectiveness, or otherwise, of the tools. Suffice to say “you pays your money, you takes your choice”. Caveat emptor.

While it is true to say that the best cure is prevention, it is also true to say that it is no longer the case that YOU must have done something to get infected. These things come at us from all directions and the most innocent of things (websites usually) can be compromised. So what do you do once you are infected?

Below are 3 Free Microsoft Anti-Virus Tools, one a standard virus scanner and two offline tools, that you can use to start to clean up your computer. These tools may not clean your pc 100%, and you may still end up doing a system restore, but they will get you on the way and may clean things up enough for you to recover your data.


Microsoft Security Essentials

This first tool is Microsoft’s attempt at an online virus scanner. While I am sure many people will argue that there may be better tools about it has a few things going for it. It is truly free (for home users and companies with up to 10 users). This is not a hobbled free version of a paid tool. It is not intrusive, it only makes it self known whan it thinks there is a problem. It is from Microsoft, so it does not seem to slow you PC down. We have been running it in UA since it’s initial availablility and have remained virus free.
The Tool can be downloaded here. Microsoft Security Essentials
Install it, update it, run a scan. Simple


Microsoft Safety Scanner

Do you think your PC has a virus?

The Microsoft Safety Scanner is a free downloadable security tool that provides on-demand scanning and helps remove viruses, spyware, and other malicious software. It works with your existing antivirus software.

Note: The Microsoft Safety Scanner expires 10 days after being downloaded. To rerun a scan with the latest anti-malware definitions, download and run the Microsoft Safety Scanner again.

The Microsoft Safety Scanner is not a replacement for using an antivirus software program that provides ongoing protection.

The Tool can be downloaded here. Microsoft Safety Scanner


Microsoft Windows Defender Offline

So you have a scanner, you have been careful what you download and where you download from, but you still get infected! What can you do.

There are many tools out there that will clean a PC, but many of them require that you have an idea what you are infected with, and a working pc to download them!

This is an offline tool that you can prepare beforehand and have ready in your arsenal in case it is ever required. You use this tool to create a “boot” disk that you can start your PC with. It then updates itself (this works best if you are on a wired connection) and scans your PC. The scan can take hours, depending on how much data you have, and though it does not always remove everything bad, it should get you to a position where you can get your data off. Full instructions are included on the download page.

The Tool can be downloaded here. Microsoft Windows Defender Offline



No tool can keep you 100% safe, but these tools can help in the battle against the bad guys.

As stated above, it is best to not get infected in the first place. We have written on this subject in the past and I would suggest that a quick perusal of our Keeping Safe on the Internet page is a good idea to remind yourself of some precautions to take.


I hope this helps.

Contact Us to book an appointment or to discuss your needs further.