Having quality tools in your security arsenal is important for all PC users. Today we look at a portable utility from Microsoft that will help you combat and get rid of viruses, spyware, and other types of malicious software.
Microsoft Safety Scanner is a supplement to your current anti-malware software you’re already running. It’s free and portable so you can run it from a flash drive on any computer that you need to verify is clean of viruses and other malicious software.
1. Download Microsoft Safety Scanner to a convenient location on your hard drive or thumb drive. Then run the executable file as Administrator.
2. The agree to the terms of the end user license agreement and click Next.
3. You’re given an explanation of what MS Safety Scanner is. Remember it’s not a substitute for your current anti-malware software – but a supplement. You can use it to get a “second opinion” so to speak of what your current security software is telling you.
4. Now select the type of scan you want to do. You can choose a Quick, Full, or Customized scan where you select the directory to check. For best results you’ll want to run a Full scan but keep in mind it can take an hour or more depending on the size of your system.
5. After selecting the type of scan you want to do, you’ll see a progress screen while your system is checked for malware.
6. After it’s done you will be shown the results. Luckily in this example nothing was found.
7. If it does find a virus or other types of malware, it will let you know and remove the infection.
It will also provide you with detailed information regarding the rogue file.
Click on the Malware link and you’ll be taken to the Microsoft Malware Protection Center for detailed information.
While MS Safety Scanner is a good supplement to the current anti-malware software you’re running there’s a bit of a caveat. According to site it expires after 10 days. So the next time you want to run it, you’ll need to download the latest version again. This comes directly from the Microsoft site:
“The Microsoft Safety Scanner expires 10 days after being downloaded. To rerun a scan with the latest anti-malware definitions, download and run the Microsoft Safety Scanner again.”
It comes in 32 & 64-bit versions, so make sure to download the one that’s right for your system. This tool can also come in handy if you already know a computer is infected then run it from a flash drive to remove the malware.