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Microsoft Launches Free AntiVirus Beta

Gordon Kelly by

Microsoft Launches Free AntiVirus Beta

Antivirus companies will be sweating today as Microsoft has now launched a public beta of its free 'Security Essentials' antivirus software...

Already dubbed 'MSE', the package protects against viruses, Trojans, rootkits and also spyware and will replace the rather basic Windows Defender which comes bundled with XP, Vista and 7.

Early feedback on MSE has been reasonably positive with its low impact on overall system performance being a notable plus point. Whether it will have enough penetration to succeed where OneCare failed and make a dent on established players like Symantec, McAfee, AVG, Kaspersky and Trend Micro however remains to be seen. Especially given Microsoft is unlikely to be able to utilise its key advantage: bundling MSE with flavours of Windows, for fear of further anticompetitive penalties.

As for availability, Microsoft has scrapped its initial plans to limit MSE to 75,000 downloads but frustratingly it will only be offered in the US, Israel, China and Brazil for now. European availability is expected during Q3, though downloads over torrents and Usenet will come a lot sooner.

With the likes of the innovative Panda Cloud antivirus also recently released could security software *whisper it* become exciting? Nah, probably not.


Microsoft Security Essentials Beta

via DownloadSquad

Go to comments


June 24, 2009, 10:36 pm

You can download it in the UK from Microsoft Connect - https://connect.microsoft.com/...

I have been testing it out and seems good so far.


June 25, 2009, 7:05 am

Downloading anti virus software.. (or OS updates for that matter) from the torrents has always seemed supremely stupid to me. Aside from the obivous you also need the definition updates.


June 25, 2009, 7:06 am

I think this'll succeed where OneCare failed as it's a straightforward anti-virus program that power users will use and recommend to their family and friends rather than being put off by the irrelevent features (photo backup?) and 'optimisations' that OneCare promised.

Assuming it's actually any good of course.


June 25, 2009, 2:13 pm

I'll be following this one quite closely. Surely Microsoft will know all about the vulnerabilities of their OS's, so you would think that they would be able to provide a AntiVirus application that does the job better than most of the other freebie AV software out there...

Having said that, if the OS's were more secure in the first place....


June 25, 2009, 2:27 pm

On a related subject I installed "panda cloud". And it absolutely KILLED my system. And then when I did a scan it came up with an error.

Will give microsoft a try, as I am actually quite fond of their products - they normally just work.


June 25, 2009, 4:19 pm

@SB - how strange. For me it has been the best and most innovative bit of antivirus software I've tried in years.

PS - was that deliberate irony using the "just work" Apple phrase in a MS context :)


June 25, 2009, 6:55 pm

@Gordon - I see that Steve Ballmer (SB) found his way onto the comments page. "they normally just work" - if only.


June 25, 2009, 7:02 pm

This beta is available only to customers in the United States, Israel (English only), People's Republic of China (Simplified Chinese only) and Brazil (Brazilian Portuguese only)

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