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09 December 2011, 11:49

Microsoft releases Windows Defender Offline tool beta

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Zoom Users can choose to create a bootable CD, DVD or USB flash drive
Microsoft has published a public beta of an offline version of its Windows Defender spyware removal software, formerly known as Microsoft AntiSpyware. Using the Windows Defender Offline tool, users can create a bootable recovery system for scanning and removing infections such as rootkits and other malware.

The Windows Defender Offline Beta appears to be a rebranded or revamped version of the company's Standalone System Sweeper software, which it released earlier this year. Like Standalone System Sweeper, running Windows Defender Offline prompts users to create a LiveCD, LiveDVD or LiveUSB by downloading more than 200 MB of data, including recent virus and spyware definitions.

Zoom Users who have already created a Windows Defender Offline USB flash drive can use the tool to update its definitions
Alternatively, users can download these files to create a Windows Defender Offline Beta ISO file for use at a later time or with a virtual machine. The tool can also be used to update the virus and spyware definitions on an existing Windows Defender Offline USB flash drive.

One difference, however, is that users are typically directed to Standalone System Sweeper by Microsoft Support, whereas users are prompted in Microsoft Security Essentials or Windows Defender to download the Windows Defender Offline tool. According to Paul Thurrott, the Offline Beta appears to be based on the Windows Defender version from the upcoming Windows 8 release.

More details about the Windows Defender Offline Beta can be found on the FAQ page. Microsoft's Windows Defender Offline Beta is available to download for 32- and 64-bit systems from the company's web site and requires a CD, DVD or USB flash drive with at least 250 MB of free space.

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