Windows Action Center does not detect installed Firewall / Antivirus

I ran into this situation the other day where I installed ESET Smart Security, but Windows 8 was unable to detect that I have installed any antivirus software or firewall. My first instinct was to reinstall my security software. So I went and remove ESET completely using its removal tool, because most of the security software I used, never really removed everything when I uninstalled it. So I had to run the Eset Removal Tool to clean all the left over files. Then I rebooted the system and reinstall ESET completely and updated it. Everything is working fine except the fact that my Windows is still not recognizing that ESET is installed.

Action Center, previously known as Windows Security Center, monitors the security status of the computer.

Windows Action Center does not detect installed Firewall / Antivirus

Run System File Checker

Since we reinstalled ESET that ruled out program related issues. So it’s definitely Windows. So the next thing I tried was to run the System File Checker i.e. SFC /SCANNOW.


  • Press Win + X
  • Click on “Command Prompt (Admin)
  • Type in SFC /SCANNOW

I rebooted the system and checked again, but still it did not help. After some research I found Windows Management Instrumentation  (WMI) is what is responsible in reporting if and Security software is installed on the machine or not.  So I thought of repairing WMI completely, because I wasn’t sure which particular service or files was responsible. So I ran the following script file in the form of batch file:

cd /d %windir%\System32\Wbem
net stop winmgmt


REM REG IMPORT %windir%\WBEM.reg

winmgmt /clearadap
winmgmt /kill
winmgmt /unregserver
winmgmt /regserver
winmgmt /resyncperf

del %windir%\System32\Wbem\Repository /Q
del %windir%\System32\Wbem\AutoRecover /Q

for %%i in (*.dll) do Regsvr32 -s %%i
for %%i in (*.mof,*.mfl) do Mofcomp %%i
wmiadap.exe /Regsvr32
wmiapsrv.exe /Regsvr32
wmiprvse.exe /Regsvr32

net start winmgmt

But that didn’t help. I was back to square one.

Re-register WMIUTILS.DLL

Then I stumbled upon a specific dll which is responsible for reporting if security software is present or not posted by Niki Han. We need to re-register WMIUTILS.DLL. It seems like the script didn’t uninstall and re-register.

To re-register dll file:

  • Press Win + X
  • Click on “Command Prompt (Admin)
  • regsvr32 /u WMIUTILS.DLL
  • Reboot the System
  • regsvr32 WMIUTILS.DLL

Then I again rebooted the system and went to the Action Center.

It reported my security software correctly.

Mission Accomplished!

Hope this tip helps you.

Windows 7 users can also try this – but they can also see if this hotfix helps out.

Posted by on , in Category Security with Tags
Shyam aka “Captain Jack” is a Microsoft MVP alumnus and a Windows Enthusiast with an interest in Advanced Windows troubleshooting. Suggestions made and opinions expressed by him here are his personal one's and not of his current employers. He blogs at


  1. Sky

    sorry if it does not fit the topic. I would like to inquire about antivirus. what is the best anti virus. I had been using avira 2013 free with malware bytes but both use memory up to 50,000 K and 30,000 k. so I want is there av that uses less RAM but good protection. ESET if that’s how his ability is that good? is there any advice for me, what a good av used?

  2. To be honest for Windows 8 you really don’t need one since it has Windows Defender build-in. As for Windows 7 Microsoft Security Essentials would be a good choice. ESET is good so far I have used.

  3. XssUs

    It works for me 🙂 KAV after update disappear from AC. THX

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