During its scans, Windows Defender checks every single file on your computer – including itself. This can occasionally result in some interesting interactions and is a common source of system lag. To prevent this from happening, you can simply instruct Windows Defender to skip itself when performing a system scan.
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Windows Task Manager.
- In the list of processes, search for Antimalware Service Executable. Right-click on the process and select Open File Location.
- In the address bar, you’ll see the full path of the Antimalware Service Executable. Click on the address bar and copy the full path.
- Open the Start menu, type “windows defender” and click the top result to launch the Windows Defender Security Center.
- Click on Virus & threat protection, then on Virus & threat protection settings.
- Scroll down until “Exclusions” and click Add or remove exclusions. In the next screen, click on Add an exclusion, select Folder and paste the path to Antimalware Service Executable (MsMpEng.exe) in the address bar. Finally, click Open and the folder will now be excluded from the scan.