Windows Security (former Windows Defender and Microsoft Defender) is a decent antivirus tool provided by Microsoft. Thanks to regular definition updates, it has become one of the best AV tools out there. Also Windows Security has all the essential features of an antivirus tool. For example, you can also exclude files and folders from Defender in your Windows 11 or Windows 10 PC.
Besides just Files and Folders, you can also exclude file types and specific processes. So, next time Windows Security (or Microsoft Defender) scans your system, it won’t touch excluded files and folders. This will also improve performance of your Windows 11 or 10 by reducing the load on CPU by MsMpEng.exe process.
Exclude Files and Folders from Defender in Windows 11 and Windows 10
The process to exclude files and folder from Defender is not very tricky. But you need to make some changes to Windows Security settings which is explained below. So, just follow these steps.
Step 1: Open Windows Security (Microsoft Defender)
First of all, search for
windows security on Start in your Windows 11 or Windows 10 and select Windows Security from search results.
Step 2: Open ‘Virus & Threat Protection Settings’
Now, select ‘Virus & threat protection‘ tab from left. After that, scroll down and click ‘Manage settings‘ link under Virus & threat protection settings.
Step 3: Go to Exclusion Settings in Windows Security (Microsoft Defender)
Now, in Manage Settings, scroll down to the bottom of the page. Here, click on ‘Add or remove exclusions‘ link under Exclusions section. You can use this setting to exclude files and folders from Defender in your Windows 11 or Windows 10 PC.
Step 4: Select the Type of Exclusion for Windows Security (Microsoft Defender)
Now, click on “+ Add an exclusion” button and select the type of exclusion you want to make. You can make 4 types of exclusions which are explained in the table below. So, go through the list and select desired exclusion.
|File||Exclude a specific file. It will be skipped during scan.|
|Folder||Exclude a specific folder on your PC, Defender won’t scan it.|
|File type||Select a file type to exclude from scanning. All the files with that extension will be skipped.|
|Process||You can select a background task or process to exclude from Defender scanning.|
In this tutorial, we are adding a Folder exclusion in Defender.
Step 5: Select Files or Folders to Exclude from Defender
As we have selected Folder type exclusion, a browse window will open. Now, go ahead and select the folder you want to exclude from Defender.
After that, selected file or folder will show up under the Exclusions. That was how you can exclude files and folders from Defender in Windows 11 and 10. Next time, defender scans your system, this folder will be excluded.
Step 6: Remove Exclusion from Windows Security (Microsoft Defender)
Now, you have successfully excluded selected folder from Microsoft Defender/Windows Security. However, if you decide to remove it from exclusions, you can easily do that too.
Just click on the exclusion to select it and then click on Remove button to remove this exclusion from Defender.
Exclude Files and Folders from Windows Security (Microsoft Defender) in Windows 11 or 10
Adding or removing exclusions in Windows Security (Microsoft Defender) antivirus is quite easy. After you exclude files and folders from Defender in your Windows 11 or 10, they won’t be scanned anymore. This will also improve your PC’s performance and reduce the load on CPU.
To be honest, Windows Security or Microsoft Defender is a good antivirus. TechRadar has written a good review for it. Well, hope you liked this guide. Let’s us know if you face any troubles following this tutorial in the comment section down below.