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Published on 03.04.08 by Brent Trahan

Remove Unwanted Items Detected by Windows Defender

Learn how to remove spyware, adware, and viruses found with Windows Defender.

This guide shows you how to remove malware (viruses, spyware, and adware) that are found on your computer during a scan or in real-time protection with Windows Defender.

Remove Unwanted Items Found During Real-time Protection

Let’s say you’re installing software or surfing the net and you get a warning from Windows Defender that says unwanted items have been found.

Windows Defender warning box

  1. Click Remove All and Windows Defender will immediately attempt to remove the unwanted items it’s found.
  2. When Windows Defender has finished removing the unwanted items, click History and make sure you see Succeeded under Status next to each item.


If any items could not be removed you should contact Microsoft for help. It won’t cost you anything.

Remove Unwanted Items Found During a Scan

Here’s what you do when Windows Defender finds malware during a scan.

  1. When the scan is finished you’ll get a warning similar to the screen shot below.


  2. Click Review items detected by scanning.
  3. Select whether you want to remove, quarantine, ignore, or always allow under Actions for every item found. You can also click the Remove All button at the bottom of the Windows Defender window to get rid of every item in the unwanted items list.


    Note: If you ignore or always allow an item, Windows Defender will not remove it. Only do this if you’re absolutely sure the item is safe.

  4. If you selected an action for each item click Apply Actions.
  5. If everything goes as planned you’ll see Succeeded next to each item under Status.


If any items could not be removed you should contact Microsoft for help. It won’t cost you anything.

Still need help? Ask your computer question now.

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