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Windows Defender not working [FULL FIX]

In order to fix this, you need to check your time and date and set it to the correct value before trying to turn Windows Defender back on.

We know that this might sound strange, but most of the Windows system functions are dependent on time and date, therefore an incorrect date or time could trigger abnormal behavior in your Windows OS.

3. Use professional software for protection

Windows Defender is a useful feature for your operating system, but if it doesn’t function properly, you can try profesionnal software. This program is constantly improved through updates by its developer so that it will detect and repair the latest malware that will appear.

Try out the ultimate cybersecurity package that will provide you with online safety. This software was created for users that want full protection against online threats.

This means you will also benefit from extra theft protection and a user-friendly password management feature. Feel free to install and use on any Windows, Android, Mac or Linux device, as it is compatible with all four operating systems.

Keep your digital identity under protection from unauthorized third-parties with this software’s advanced antivirus technology. This application will also offer efficient protection of your confidential data from phishing and ransomware.

If you desire more privacy for your files, then you can choose to encrypt them and removable media too. This is professional software that keeps you organized with good password management, by storing and organizing them.



ESET SMART SECURITY PREMIUM keeps your computer safe from viruses, malware, and protects your private data.

4. Update Windows

  1. Go to Start, select Settings, and choose Update & Security.
  2. Navigate to Windows Update, and then select Check for updates.Windows updates

Make sure that you keep your Windows up to date using Windows Update since this can cause some problems with Windows Defender. When it comes to any security software, make sure that you update it frequently.

We suggest that you perform a full Windows Update, then open Windows Defender and run an update from there as well.

If you can’t open the Setting app, we have a special article for how to solve the issue.

5. Change Proxy Server

  1. Press Windows key + X and select Command Prompt (Admin).cmd prompt
  2. Type in one of the following:  NETSH WINHTTP SET PROXY or NETSH WINHTTP SET PROXY MYPROXY.NET:8080
  3. Reboot the system and see if it works.

These three are most common scenarios that can cause problems with Windows Defender, but there are some other not so common scenarios that can cause problems as well.

For example, incorrect Zone settings in Internet Explorer can cause problems, but you can easily fix this by resetting Internet Explorer to factory settings.

Bear in mind that if you are using a Proxy server, Windows Defender will not be able to update. If that’s the case, you’ll need to make some minor tweaks to your Proxy server.

If you’re having trouble accessing Command Prompt as an admin, then you can read one of our guides.

6. Disable third-party antivirus

Windows Defender doesn’t get along with third-party antivirus programs. Just like any two antivirus programs don’t work well with each other.

So, if you want Windows Defender to be your primary security option, make sure to disable any third-party antivirus programs you have installed on your computer.

7. Run the SFC scan

  1. Go to Search, type cmd, and open Command Prompt as Administrator.Command Prompt
  2. Enter the following line and press Enter: sfc/scannow
  3. Wait for the process to finish.
  4. Restart your computer.

This simple solution shows how to run the SFC scan in Windows 10.

8. Run DISM

  1. Go to Search, type cmd, and open Command Prompt as Administrator.Windows Defender not working
  2. Enter the following command on the command line:
    • DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth
  3. In case the DISM can’t obtain files online, try using your installation USB or DVD. Insert media and type following command:
    • DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:C:RepairSourceWindows /LimitAccess
  4. Make sure to replace the following path of your DVD or USB: C:/Repair/Source/Windows

9. Reset the Security Center service

  1. Go to Search, type services.msc, and open Services.
  2. Find the Security Center
  3. Right-click the Security Center service, and go to Reset.
  4. Restart your computer.

And finally, if none of the solutions from above worked, we’ll try resetting the Security Center service. Hopefully, Windows Defender will start working after that.

That’s about it, we hope at least one of these solutions helped you resolve your problems with Windows Defender. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, just let us know in the comments down below.

This post was written by Ivan Jenic and was first posted to WindowsReport

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