Microsoft releases beta for next version of Security Essentials

Microsoft announced a beta for the next generation of Microsoft Security Essentials today.

Available immediately, the new version includes a new protection engine and inspection system. The beta version includes the following features:

  • Windows Firewall integration – During setup, Microsoft Security Essentials will now ask if you would like to turn the Windows Firewall on or off.
  • Enhanced protection for web-based threats – Microsoft Security Essentials now integrates with Internet Explorer to provide protection against web-based threats.
  • New protection engine – The updated anti-malware engine offers enhanced detection and cleanup capabilities with better performance.
  • Network inspection system – Protection against network-based exploits is now built in to Microsoft Security Essentials.

Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) is designed to work on Windows XP, Vista and 7 and protects end users against virus threats and spy ware. MSE is Microsoft's free anti-virus and anti-spyware product that replaced Microsoft's paid Windows Live OneCare subscription service which was withdrawn last year. Neowin exclusively revealed Security Essentials in June, 2009 when it was codenamed "Morro".

The beta is available now at Microsoft's Connect download site.

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127 Comments

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well i liked MSE but i kinda feel that its slower and use more resource than avast 5. but since latest av comparative microsoft did a good job and surpassed avast and its in the same place as kaspesky.

Lets hope microsoft improve the performance about scan speed, more lightweight on resources (CPU AND RAM) and some other slowness on windows xp

MSE is working great on my Win7 64-bit laptop, but had some performance issues running it on a couple of older XP machines. Hopefully, this new version will overcome those issues and I can recommend it to XP users again.

I just got the new beta MSE .. so far it looks good and no install issues ..
Another plus for MS ... looking forward to the final release ...
Also, I'm hoping for a Sept. release of IE9 ...

i dont know about this, they product is great as it is!! then they start adding stuff into it and next thing you have a Nortons product!!!

wahoospa said,
Microsoft should have the best programmers in the world but they cannot make a download work.

Nobody's perfect.

wahoospa said,
Microsoft should have the best programmers in the world but they cannot make a download work.

DL problem is probably a technical difficulty with servers!!
MSE is really great security, no doubt!!

wahoospa said,
veternan
That doesn't work either. It just freezes like the other way.

Well, It didn't work for me either!!
what the hell...

veternan said,

Well, It didn't work for me either!!
what the hell...

Cancel and redownload again via FTM. Same thing happened to me. Retried and it worked.

Only complaint I have is how slow it is. A option to allow it to hog resources would be good, it's taking over an hour and a half to scan my files.

UPDATE: We are aware that some users are having issues downloading the Microsoft Security Essentials beta after signing into Microsoft Connect and we are working on resolving the issue. In the meantime, you can use the file transfer manager within Microsoft Connect to download the beta files. After logging into the Microsoft Connect site for the Microsoft Security Essentials beta, click ‘Download Microsoft Security Essentials Beta', select the version of Microsoft Security Essentials beta that is right for you (32 or 64 bit), and then click the Download button (Download selected file(s) using FTM).

Source: http://windowsteamblog.com/win...sentials-now-available.aspx

It looks like they removed from the menu "Upgrade Microsoft Security Essentials", to check for future updates. Am I missing something, or how do you check for updates now??

That never really worked properly anyway. Maybe new program updates will come through the virus def updating system now, and be more effective.

aznkid25 said,
It looks like they removed from the menu "Upgrade Microsoft Security Essentials", to check for future updates. Am I missing something, or how do you check for updates now??

Maybe they took out the option because it is a beta?

aznkid25 said,
It looks like they removed from the menu "Upgrade Microsoft Security Essentials", to check for future updates. Am I missing something, or how do you check for updates now??

Probably though Windows Update, same as you could before.

Did anyone else have issues with downloading when not using the download manager? It would get to about 80% and then just timeout. No issue at all with the download manager provided by MS.

Well I learned my lesson several times and will never ever venture into any "beta" ever again, so will wait for the thing to update itself later. lol I hope they fix a couple of annoying issues by then: One is whenever you are in a fullscreen game e.g. and MSE starts an update check, it kicks you out of fullscreen back to the desktop; Two is the realtime engine likes to occasionally lockup the system, well not the entire system but any process you try to quit or run until the msmpeng.exe service crashes. This is rare of course but has happened to me 3 times now (there's some error in the log about the scanning engine encountered an error and went to pass-through mode).

well, did everyone expect for the beta to run smooth, but still love the changes I have always been a MSE user and now its getting a nice tune up its going to put alot of other free anti virus programs in the dust.

6205 said,
To be worth version 2.0 they should include office 2010 like ribbon interface for MSSE.

What exactly will they populate the ribbon's tabs with? There's barely anything on the tab pages to begin with (except the settings screen).

6205 said,
To be worth version 2.0 they should include office 2010 like ribbon interface for MSSE.

If I had to choose, the "Metro" UI would be far more better than ribbon. The current one though is just perfect, does what it needs to do and conveys information nicely. Overcomplicated UI for such simple program isn't always the best idea.

Are there any more information about "web protection for Internet Explorer"?
In the settings I found only something about "Network protection".
I am not sure now, Essentials scan for HTTP traffic or how this part works?

the new version seems to introduce unnecesary bloatware:
- I don't like the firewall integration,
- I don't like the web protection component,
- I don't like the network protection

franzon said,
the new version seems to introduce unnecesary bloatware:
- I don't like the firewall integration

Erm, this is just using the stuff in Windows. Any 3rd party software can call for the firewall to be turned on or off if user gives permission etc. It doesn't really add any bloat to the antivirus itself.
franzon said
- I don't like the web protection component,
- I don't like the network protection

How are these unnecessary bloatware? They are useful for some users and iirc you can turn them off in the options if you don't like them. Would think extra security features in security program would be good idea.

franzon said,
the new version seems to introduce unnecesary bloatware:
- I don't like the firewall integration,
- I don't like the web protection component,
- I don't like the network protection

So don't use it? Is it really that difficult of a decision for you?

The previous release of MSE was a performance hog and a mess of a program. The quickest way to bring a Quad Core with 8 Gigs RAM to its knees I've ever seen!

If you move tens of thousands o harmless files, get ready for MSE to scan everything.

It also failed to keep itself updated and would constantly nag users.

I had to apologize to staff and then order it removed from all departmental computers.

Keep the "well, it works for me!" argument to yourself. I've seen MSE in action on too many systems and configurations to trust it.

Xenomorph said,
The previous release of MSE was a performance hog and a mess of a program. The quickest way to bring a Quad Core with 8 Gigs RAM to its knees I've ever seen!

If you move tens of thousands o harmless files, get ready for MSE to scan everything.

It also failed to keep itself updated and would constantly nag users.

I had to apologize to staff and then order it removed from all departmental computers.

Keep the "well, it works for me!" argument to yourself. I've seen MSE in action on too many systems and configurations to trust it.

Why have it on departmental computers? Why not have a proper corporate anti-virus system?

Xenomorph said,
The previous release of MSE was a performance hog and a mess of a program. The quickest way to bring a Quad Core with 8 Gigs RAM to its knees I've ever seen!

If you move tens of thousands o harmless files, get ready for MSE to scan everything.

It also failed to keep itself updated and would constantly nag users.

I had to apologize to staff and then order it removed from all departmental computers.

Keep the "well, it works for me!" argument to yourself. I've seen MSE in action on too many systems and configurations to trust it.

MSE is by far the best and most lightweight anti-virus software for Windows. Period. After using MSE, I will never touch another security software with a ten-foot pole.

Its good to know they are working on a new version, think i will wait till its out of beta before i load it. Let some younger people take the risk with there systems hehe

The 64-bit setup is telling me "The version of this file is not compatible with the version of Windows you're running," but I am running Windows 7 64-bit!

KaneHusky said,
The 64-bit setup is telling me "The version of this file is not compatible with the version of Windows you're running," but I am running Windows 7 64-bit!

Sounds like corrupt download to me. Try downloading again

Tuomas said,

Sounds like corrupt download to me. Try downloading again

Yeah that's what I'm assuming. Trying again with FTM this time.

KaneHusky said,
The 64-bit setup is telling me "The version of this file is not compatible with the version of Windows you're running," but I am running Windows 7 64-bit!

stuck at 81.46% (8 MB) on InternetDownLoadManager

aljaradi said,

worked as charm on FTM

It took me repeated Resume attempts after it timed out to finally get it completely downloaded and installed just fine.

KaneHusky said,

It took me repeated Resume attempts after it timed out to finally get it completely downloaded and installed just fine.

Yeah, I had the same problem trying to install at first. I did have to use FTM to resolve the issue, though.

A pretty lightweight - and pretty good. Although, can't say I like the gray color look.

They also need an option to disable "auto update", when I play games it sometimes minimizes them and starts the auto update, same thing with movies. It takes control!

Tpiom said,
They also need an option to disable "auto update", when I play games it sometimes minimizes them and starts the auto update, same thing with movies. It takes control!

It does that? Didn't know and haven't even seen that yet. Hopefully they'll fix that then.

If you are having issues with single file download, use the FTM. Seemed to work just fine for me.

EDIT: You can just install on top of your current MSE it seems. At least it allowed me to upgrade.
EDIT2: You have to restart if you do upgrade at least.

Tuomas said,
If you are having issues with single file download, use the FTM. Seemed to work just fine for me.

EDIT: You can just install on top of your current MSE it seems. At least it allowed me to upgrade.
EDIT2: You have to restart if you do upgrade at least.

Yeah, FTM worked. I was able to upgrade too, but it didn't make me restart (64-bit, Win 7)...

Chsoriano said,
Yeah, FTM worked. I was able to upgrade too, but it didn't make me restart (64-bit, Win 7)...

Really? What the? I want my time back from the restart Microsoft!

You know. I've been using this for awhile. It always said nothing found. I installed the trial of KAV, it found over 10 threats! what gives?

Dane said,
You know. I've been using this for awhile. It always said nothing found. I installed the trial of KAV, it found over 10 threats! what gives?

Sometimes, anti-virus programs report "false threats" (that aren't threats but they report them to stay on the safe side). It's possible KAV are reporting your files as false.

It might also be that MSE can't detect them...

Tpiom said,

Sometimes, anti-virus programs report "false threats" (that aren't threats but they report them to stay on the safe side). It's possible KAV are reporting your files as false.

It might also be that MSE can't detect them...

They were exploits or something with Java, it deleted them though.

Dane said,
You know. I've been using this for awhile. It always said nothing found. I installed the trial of KAV, it found over 10 threats! what gives?

There is no true "test" of antri-virus applications.

LiquidSolstice said,

There is no true "test" of antri-virus applications.

Indeed. I am just worried about using this software now compared to KAV. I did a free online scan before I installed the KAV trial, and it even found stuff.

Dane said,

Indeed. I am just worried about using this software now compared to KAV. I did a free online scan before I installed the KAV trial, and it even found stuff.

The best Anti-Virus are the ones you pay for. However, on the freeware side, MSE is the best but it has failed to detect some things on my clients computers from time to time.

I recommend KAV, or better yet, KIS if you are too worried about protection. I always give the choice to my clients. If they want to save some money, I install MSE. If they are willing to pay a KIS or KAV subscription, I will install it for them also.

Did it fix the problem when viewing folders with lots of files taking forever to refresh? thats the only reason i stopped using MSE. If they fixed that i would go back to using it.

ShiFteDReaLitY said,
Did it fix the problem when viewing folders with lots of files taking forever to refresh? thats the only reason i stopped using MSE. If they fixed that i would go back to using it.

The bug is still present in this version, but for me, it isn't as bad.

Andrew Lyle said,
I keep getting "connection to the server was reset" during download of either 64bit or 32bit...

Same here

Andrew Lyle said,
I keep getting "connection to the server was reset" during download of either 64bit or 32bit...

And here as well... but FTM download works fine.

warwagon said,
I wonder if it's still a CPU whore.

You must have a different version that what I've deployed to dozens of machines. It is extremely lightweight.

episode said,

You must have a different version that what I've deployed to dozens of machines. It is extremely lightweight.

At the moment Security Essentials on my 64bit Version of Windows 7 is occupying 80megs of memory which on machine with 6 gigs of ram isn't so bad, but on a machine with 512 megs of ram its not so light weight.

I will agree it runs great on a lot of machine. But there are machine where it hogs a **** ton of CPU power.

warwagon said,

At the moment Security Essentials on my 64bit Version of Windows 7 is occupying 80megs of memory which on machine with 6 gigs of ram isn't so bad, but on a machine with 512 megs of ram its not so light weight.

I will agree it runs great on a lot of machine. But there are machine where it hogs a **** ton of CPU power.

Something is wrong with your MSE then. With 4GB of RAM on a 64 bit system MSE is occupying 2.7 megs of RAM.

warwagon said,

At the moment Security Essentials on my 64bit Version of Windows 7 is occupying 80megs of memory which on machine with 6 gigs of ram isn't so bad, but on a machine with 512 megs of ram its not so light weight.

I will agree it runs great on a lot of machine. But there are machine where it hogs a **** ton of CPU power.


on a machine with 512mb ram it wouldn't be using as much, just as explorer/windows grabs more ram if you have more total available all to make things speedier... using more ram probably allows it to work with more files simultaneously and faster

Omen1393 said,

Something is wrong with your MSE then. With 4GB of RAM on a 64 bit system MSE is occupying 2.7 megs of RAM.

Agreed, my copy is only using 6Mb.

Duality said,

Agreed, my copy is only using 6Mb.

Actually there are two processes used by MSE, one requires you to 'Show all processes'. The two process names are "msseces.exe" and "MsMpEng.exe".

warwagon said,

At the moment Security Essentials on my 64bit Version of Windows 7 is occupying 80megs of memory which on machine with 6 gigs of ram isn't so bad, but on a machine with 512 megs of ram its not so light weight.

I will agree it runs great on a lot of machine. But there are machine where it hogs a **** ton of CPU power.

To be fair, when you only have 512 MB of RAM, ANYTHING can be considered a "ram hog".

To the above posters, RAM isn't the only factor for being 'lightweight.'

Perhaps he was referring to the problem MSE has, or used to have, when scanning a new directory full of lots of files.

warwagon said,
I wonder if it's still a CPU whore.

That would be Symantec or McAfee. Those are so terrible!

I prefer Avira, ThreatFire, or Microsoft Security Essentials.

warwagon said,

At the moment Security Essentials on my 64bit Version of Windows 7 is occupying 80megs of memory which on machine with 6 gigs of ram isn't so bad, but on a machine with 512 megs of ram its not so light weight.

LOL not even Netbook come with 512MB. MSE is one of the lightest Anti-virus out there...so CPU whore i think not.

I will agree it runs great on a lot of machine. But there are machine where it hogs a **** ton of CPU power.

warwagon said,
I wonder if it's still a CPU whore.

On a small number of machines, it is a whore on system resources. I wish I knew what triggers it because I find msmpeng.exe going up to 100% CPU on one system (which is still using OneCare) and all the others it is unnoticable. I only hope things will be better with a newer version of MSE when it gets updated.

rm20010 said,
To the above posters, RAM isn't the only factor for being 'lightweight.'

Perhaps he was referring to the problem MSE has, or used to have, when scanning a new directory full of lots of files.

Maybe it was. In my case, I've deployed it to countless computers but my living room HTPC (Windows 7 x64) has it running (I use KIS on my other computers) and more often than not it will use 100% CPU when I right click on something.

Also, it will try to scan all files when browsing my network shares of Home Group. Even if I change the current path to the local HTPC folders, it will stay scanning the files in the network.

About the detection rate, it has failed to detect a very nasty spyware spread through Windows Live Messenger in the past, which is bad but it is free and most of the time works very well.

It still looks quite ugly though. Why not make the tabs smaller? Or add a bit of colour to the background?

Jan said,
It still looks quite ugly though. Why not make the tabs smaller? Or add a bit of colour to the background?
Probably because it is beta and fancy backgrounds and resized tabs aren't as important as core functionality.

Besides, I don't think security apps need to have a pretty interface. The goal of a security app should be to "never be seen because there is no reason to see it as it just works".

Jan said,
It still looks quite ugly though. Why not make the tabs smaller? Or add a bit of colour to the background?

To be fair, in an ideal world you won't be looking at it much anyway.

Jan said,
It still looks quite ugly though. Why not make the tabs smaller? Or add a bit of colour to the background?

Why are you looking at your anti-virus window anyway?

episode said,

Why are you looking at your anti-virus window anyway?


Probably an Apple owner who likes to stare at pretty, shiny things with less function than form. Just a wild guess...

ir0nw0lf said,

Probably an Apple owner who likes to stare at pretty, shiny things with less function than form. Just a wild guess...

Yes. Because Apple computers can run MSE, right?

LiquidSolstice said,

Yes. Because Apple computers can run MSE, right?

I wouldn't worry. He's probably a Microsoft owner who likes to bash and moan too/about Apple users due to his despair and inferiority complex, which he forces into aggression at those he sees as having a decent experience. Just a wild guess...

O, and good to see MSE being updated. It's my antivirus of choice; clean, minimalistic and runs silently/and sucks up little resources.

Jan said,
It still looks quite ugly though. Why not make the tabs smaller? Or add a bit of colour to the background?

I agree with you, though I got used to it already.

Brendando said,

I wouldn't worry. He's probably a Microsoft owner who likes to bash and moan too/about Apple users due to his despair and inferiority complex, which he forces into aggression at those he sees as having a decent experience. Just a wild guess...

O, and good to see MSE being updated. It's my antivirus of choice; clean, minimalistic and runs silently/and sucks up little resources.

Exactly. I don't own any Apple hardware but I don't jump to conclusions like that.

LiquidSolstice said,

Yes. Because Apple computers can run MSE, right?


yep. it is called BootCamp. Apple computer is just a shinny and über expensive PC.

Ricardo Dawkins said,

yep. it is called BootCamp. Apple computer is just a shinny and über expensive PC.

So a Microsoft computer is an under-expensive sub-par piece of garbage? No, and no. Macs and PCs are different beasts, you can't label them like that. Of course, if you like being close-minded and don't want to embrace a future where there is more than one important computing factor at the table, carry on the way you are.

Brendando said,

So a Microsoft computer is an under-expensive sub-par piece of garbage? No, and no. Macs and PCs are different beasts, you can't label them like that. Of course, if you like being close-minded and don't want to embrace a future where there is more than one important computing factor at the table, carry on the way you are.

Microsoft computer? Such a thing doesn't exist. Microsoft doesn't make computers.

He is right in that an "Apple computer is a...PC." That's all it is...a Mac is an expensive PC that is designed by Apple to run Mac OS X.

Why are you labeling him as close minded just because he says that you can run Windows on a Mac using Boot Camp and that they're expensive PCs?

Last time I checked, you could wipe it completely and run Windows on it thanks to the usage of Intel processors and similar components as PCs.

Brendando said,

So a Microsoft computer is an under-expensive sub-par piece of garbage? No, and no. Macs and PCs are different beasts, you can't label them like that. Of course, if you like being close-minded and don't want to embrace a future where there is more than one important computing factor at the table, carry on the way you are.

Microsoft don't make computers. Plus the hardware from OEM makers like Dell, HP, Acer etc. is standard x86 architecture. Don't be fooled into thinking the hardware is anything special cause you paid £300 more for a logo.

stevehoot said,

Microsoft don't make computers. Plus the hardware from OEM makers like Dell, HP, Acer etc. is standard x86 architecture. Don't be fooled into thinking the hardware is anything special cause you paid £300 more for a logo.

Holy crap, all I said was that MSE doesn't run on Macs natively, therefore making the statement that a user doesn't like the looks of it because he's a "snobby" Apple user is utterly retarded. Calm the eff down.

stevehoot said,

Microsoft don't make computers. Plus the hardware from OEM makers like Dell, HP, Acer etc. is standard x86 architecture. Don't be fooled into thinking the hardware is anything special cause you paid £300 more for a logo.

I hate when people say you payed x for a logo as if there are no tangible differences. I was buying my wife a laptop and she didn't ask me for an Apple (she could care less what she used) but what she did ask for is a laptop with a usable trackpad like the one on her brother's MacBook. I spent a few days over the course of a week looking at all the laptops in all the local big box stores
and I couldn't find anything.

The value of a good trackpad is obviously subjective, but as someone who uses a $130 mouse I can't argue with someone for spending an extra $200 to get a laptop with a far superior trackpad.

LiquidSolstice said,

Holy crap, all I said was that MSE doesn't run on Macs natively, therefore making the statement that a user doesn't like the looks of it because he's a "snobby" Apple user is utterly retarded. Calm the eff down.

We can say the same thing about whiny Microsoft fanbois

ZekeComa said,

We can say the same thing about whiny Microsoft fanbois

Going to hope you don't think my last comment makes me a fanboy, because that would be pretty retarded. If anything, I was defending both sides.

During setup, Microsoft Security Essentials will now ask if you would like to turn the Windows Firewall on or off.

Why?

Donenzone said,

Why?

After installing it, my guess is Security Essentials already automatically enabled Windows Firewall, but because that could cause a conflict if you already have a firewall, they implemented this.

Donenzone said,

After installing it, my guess is Security Essentials already automatically enabled Windows Firewall, but because that could cause a conflict if you already have a firewall, they implemented this.

This is probably why, also many people use a hardware firewall on their router/modems so they turn windows firewall off so it doesn't mess with any LAN activity.

GP007 said,

This is probably why, also many people use a hardware firewall on their router/modems so they turn windows firewall off so it doesn't mess with any LAN activity.


I don't know about you but I've never seen the windows firewall successfully blocking something?
It's pretty funny coming out of a game after having played online for an hour or two and seeing the box asking if the firewall should keep blocking it or add the game to the exception list...

Leonick said,

I don't know about you but I've never seen the windows firewall successfully blocking something?
It's pretty funny coming out of a game after having played online for an hour or two and seeing the box asking if the firewall should keep blocking it or add the game to the exception list...

Hehe, yea I see that myself alot =)

Leonick said,

I don't know about you but I've never seen the windows firewall successfully blocking something?
It's pretty funny coming out of a game after having played online for an hour or two and seeing the box asking if the firewall should keep blocking it or add the game to the exception list...

Probably because it's an inbound firewall. If you want more granular control you can use the Windows Firewall with Advanced Security. This allows the most granular control.

Leonick said,

I don't know about you but I've never seen the windows firewall successfully blocking something?
It's pretty funny coming out of a game after having played online for an hour or two and seeing the box asking if the firewall should keep blocking it or add the game to the exception list...

The best firewalls don't tell you - that's what logs are for.

It's an inbound SPI firewall, so outbound traffic is allowed, and when outbound traffic requires a response on a random port then it's allow through as long as it's part of the session you started with the outbound traffic.

HW FW coupled with a software FW alongside Windows Vista or Windows 7 with something like MSE is a very good home user security system. IE as a browser too. (for the sandboxing more than anything else)

Don't be fooled into thinking Norton / ZoneAlarm etc. are "better" because they scream and shout everytime an ICMP packet hits your machine... it's a marketing con.