Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) – FAQ

I have compiled a list of answers to some frequently asked questions which a Microsoft Security Essentials user may have :

MSE logo

Microsoft Security Essentials

Q: What is Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) exactly?
A: MSE is Microsoft’s free antivirus offering to users of genuine Windows 7, Vista & XP users. It is specifically designed for individual consumer PC use using the smallest resource footprint possible to provide complete anti-malware protection and will include a new protection technology, as part of the Microsoft anti-malware engine, called Dynamic Signature Service (DSS).

Q: Where can I download Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) from ?
A: You can download it from Microsoft. It is now wef around 18th Oct 2010, also being offered via Windows Update.

Q: How is MSE different from Windows Defender?
A: Windows Defender detects and removes spyware only. MSE is designed to protect against the full breadth of malicious software, and specifically also prevents viruses, rootkits, worms, trojans, and other malicious software from infecting your machine. MSE is a super set of Windows Defender.

Q: Is MSE designed to replace Windows Defender and the Windows firewall?
A: No but if you are running Microsoft Security Essentials, you do not need to run Windows Defender.  MSE will disable Windows Defender in order to manage the PC’s real-time protection. You need not disable Windows Defender manually.

MSE does not include a firewall. But it will work in tandem with your Windows firewall to protect your PC.

Q: How do I submit Bug Report to Microsoft for MSE?
A: Bug reports can be submitted via the Microsoft Connect web site for Microsoft Security Essentials.

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Q: Do I need to remove other antivirus applications before installing MSE?
A: Yes you shoul remove your other “memory resident” antivirus applications, before you install Microsoft Security Essentials. A Memory Resident antivirus application is an application that starts when you turn on the computer, and stays started until you turn off the computer.

Q: How can I create a Security Essentials Support log file?
A: MSE includes a small utility that allows you to create a support log.

In Windows 7 / Vista , open cmd as an Administrator.
Type cd %programfiles%\Microsoft Security Essentials.
Type MpCmdRun.exe –getfiles.
The application will run for 5 minutes and create a zipped file called MPSupportFiles.cab.
This will be saved automatically to %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Microsoft Antimalware\Support\ folder.
Attach the zipped file to your bug report.

Q: Where can I get additional help for MSE?
A: You can get support on MSE at the Microsoft MSE Forum. You are also most welcome to visit our Forum.

Q: How can I submit a case online or report a possible virus or spyware problem to Microsoft?
A: You can do so at the following links:

Q: What are the minimum system requirements for installing MSE?
A: A CPU with clock speed of 1.0 GHz, 1 GB RAM, VGA 800×600, Disk space 140 MB.

Q: When will its RTM and be available for me?
A: MSE RTM is scheduled for H2 2009 in 10 languages and in the following 20 markets: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.

For more help, how-to and support related questions, go here.

MSE final version is now available for download to all. Go here for details.

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com and a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows for the period 2006-16. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.