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  • Information
    Information regarding recent vulnerabilities

    HP is aware of the recent vulnerabilities commonly referred to as "Spectre" and "Meltdown". HP has published a security bulletin with patches for these issues and a list of impacted systems. We will continue to update the bulletin as more information becomes available and encourage customers to check the bulletin frequently.

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HP PCs - Using Windows Defender to Prevent Virus and Spyware Problems (Windows 8)

This document applies to HP and Compaq computers and tablets with Windows 8 and Windows Defender.
Windows Defender helps protect your computer against pop-ups, slow performance, and security threats caused by viruses and spyware. This type of malware can infect your computer without your knowledge: it might install itself from an email message, when you connect to the Internet, or when you install certain applications using a USB flash drive, CD, DVD, or other removable media. This document explains how to scan for and remove malicious software using Windows Defender.
Windows Defender helps to prevent malware from infecting your computer in two ways:
  • Real-time protection. Windows Defender notifies you when malware tries to install itself or run on your computer. It also notifies you when applications attempt to change important settings.
  • Scanning options. You can use Windows Defender to scan for malware that might be installed on your computer and to automatically remove (or temporarily quarantine) anything that is detected during a scan.
  note:
On some HP computers, Windows Defender is already installed, enabled, and is running automatically.
  note:
If you are not using the latest version of Windows 8, some graphics and information in this document may vary. You can get the latest version from the Microsoft Store.
Enabling Windows Defender
To enable Windows Defender, connect to the Internet and perform the following steps:
  1. From the Start screen, type Windows Defender to open the Search charm, and then select Windows Defender from the search results.
    Figure : Search results for Windows Defender
    Search results for Windows Defender
    The Windows Defender application opens.
      note:
    If you get an error message indicating that Windows Defender is not protecting your computer and you are not able to open the Windows Defender application, please continue to the next section at this time.
  2. If a PC status: Protected message displays at the top of the window, Windows Defender is enabled and Real-time protection is on.
    Figure : PC status: Protected message
    PC status: Protected message
    If a PC status: At risk message displays at the top of the window, Real-time protection might be turned off. Go to the next step.
    Figure : PC status: At risk message
    PC status: At risk message
  3. To enable Windows Defender, click the Turn on button.
    Windows Defender window displays the PC status: Protected message.
Unable to activate Windows Defender
If you are unable to activate Windows Defender and you get an error message saying that Windows Defender is currently not protecting your computer, it may be because your computer still has a different antivirus application installed. To resolve this issue, remove the old antivirus software before enabling Windows Defender. If you need help uninstalling your previous antivirus software, refer to the HP document Uninstalling Software (Windows 10, 8).
After uninstalling the antivirus application, you will be prompted to restart your PC. Restart your PC and then use the following steps to enable Windows Defender:
  1. From the Start screen, type action center to open the Search Charm, an then select Action Center from the search results.
    Figure : Search results for Action Center
    Selecting the Action Center
  2. Click the arrow in the Security category to expand the list of security items.
    Figure : Security section of the Action Center window.
  3. Click Turn on now next to Spyware and unwanted software protection or Virus protection to enable Windows Defender
    Figure : Security items of the Action Center window
    Turn on security items in the Action Center
    The Windows Defender application opens.
  4. Check if Windows Defender is enabled.
    If a PC status: Protected message displays at the top of the window, Windows Defender is enabled and Real-time protection is on.
    Figure : PC status: Protected message
    PC status:protected message
    If a PC status: At risk message displays at the top of the window, Real-time protection might be turned off.
    Figure : PC status: At risk message
    PC status: at risk message displays
  5. To enable Windows Defender, click the Turn On button.
    The Windows Defender window will then display the PC status: Protected message
Opening Windows Defender
Use these steps to open Windows Defender:
  1. From the Start screen, type Windows Defender to open the Search charm, and then select Windows Defender from the search results.
    Figure : Search results for Windows Defender
    Search results for Windows Defender
  2. The Windows Defender application opens.
    Figure : Windows Defender opening screen
    Windows Defender opening screen
    • If Windows Defender detects potentially harmful or unwanted software, the names of the software, along with the details, display on the opening screen. Use this information to decide whether to remove or temporarily disable the software.
    • If Windows Defender does not detect potentially harmful or unwanted software, no action is required.
Scanning for malware
You can use Windows Defender to run a quick scan of your computer or a full system scan. If you suspect malware in a specific area of your computer, use Windows Defender to run a custom scan on individual drives and folders.
Figure : Scan options in the Windows Defender window
Scan options in the Windows Defender window
Selecting items to be included in a Windows Defender scan
Windows Defender allows you to include archived items and removable drives in a scan.
Selecting items to be excluded from a Windows Defender scan
To increase the speed of a scan, you can exclude specific files, locations, file types, and processes from a scan.
  caution:
Excluding items from a scan might leave your computer vulnerable to the latest malware.
Removing malware
After Windows Defender scans your computer, it displays the results of the scan. If Windows Defender does not detect any harmful software, no action is required.
Figure : Scan completed message
Scan completed message
If Windows Defender detects potentially unwanted or harmful software, you can ignore, quarantine, or remove each item that is detected. When you choose to quarantine software, Windows Defender moves it to another location on your computer, and then prevents the software from running until you choose to restore it or remove it from your computer. For more information, refer to Working with quarantined items.
Working with quarantined items
Windows Defender moves quarantine software to another location on your computer, and then prevents the software from running until you choose to restore it or remove it from your computer. Windows Defender also provides an option to schedule the amount of time that passes before quarantined items are automatically removed.
Manually updating spyware, virus, and other malware definitions
Virus, spyware, and other malware definitions are files that Windows Defender uses to identify and notify you of any malicious or potentially unwanted software on your computer. To help keep these definitions up to date, Windows Defender works with Windows Update to automatically install new definitions as they are released. However, you can manually check online for updated definitions before scanning.
To manually update spyware, virus, and malware definitions complete the following steps:
  1. Click the Update tab.
  2. Click Update.
    Figure : Update button in the Update tab
    Update button in the Update tab
    Windows Defender starts searching and downloading virus and spyware definitions.
    Figure : Installing bar
    Installing bar
    When the search is complete and the new definitions are installed, a screen displays Virus and spyware definitions: Up to date message.
    Figure : Up to date message
    Up to date messageThe definitions are now updated.
Using Microsoft Active Protection Services (MAPS)
The Microsoft Malware Protection Center (MAPS) allows you to automatically report malware and other forms of potentially unwanted software to Microsoft. On the MAPS page, you can choose one of the following options:
  • I don't want to join MAPS. If you select this option, no information will be sent to Microsoft, and you will not be alerted if unclassified software is detected on your computer.
  • Basic membership. If you select this option, basic information about malware and potentially unwanted software will be sent to Microsoft. This information includes where the software came from, the actions that you applied or that were automatically applied, and whether the actions were successful.
  • Advanced membership. If you select this option, basic information is sent to Microsoft along with the location of the software, file names, how the software operates, and how the software has impacted your computer.
Figure : MAPS selection in the Settings tab
MAPS selection in the Settings tab

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