Remove Windows Defender from Vista System Startup

Recently I discussed how to Disable Windows Defender for Microsoft Vista.  Going along with that topic, this groovy How-To will show the simple step-by-step process for removing Windows Defender from the Windows Vista Startup process.

UPDATE – Since I wrote this article, I’ve written YET ANOTHER another article on the subject which works for both Vista and Windows Server 2008.  I find it’s a little simpler as well.  Take a look at it here: Disable Windows Defender Service.

Ok….  Back to this original article…


1.   Click Windows Start button, Type MSCONFIG in the Start Search box, and Press the Enter key

Remove Windows Defender Vista


2.   Click Startup tab, Scroll down and UnCheck Windows Defender Startup Item. Click OK to Save config change

Remove Windows Defender Vista


3.   No need to reboot, Click Exist without restart

Remove Windows Defender Vista


Additional Information (on next boot):

Windows Vista monitors the use of MSCONFIG.  After you reboot and login, Vista will prompt you with a box explaining that you recently made a change and explaining how to back out the changes if desired.  Below is my recommended response to this Vista System Configuration Prompt.


4.   Check box Don’t show this message or start System Configuration when Windows starts and Click OK

Remove windows defender vista

All done!



  1. kelly

    January 21, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    what if windows defender opens and everything is aready disabled???

  2. MrGroove

    January 21, 2008 at 9:32 pm

    1st – Welcome to the site Kelly!

    From what I can tell, if Windows Defender is already disabled, you will gain little system resources from removing it from your Startup. You should be fine by just following the steps outlined here:

  3. Beavis, Cmdr.

    March 12, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    So, you can disable it, but you can’t uninstall the dang thing?! :s


  4. MrGroove

    March 12, 2008 at 5:36 pm

    @ Beavis
    Um… Yeah….. ;)

  5. MrGroove

    April 22, 2008 at 7:06 pm

  6. Jdurple

    June 17, 2008 at 11:59 am


  7. Gr

    July 7, 2008 at 5:50 pm

    I tried everything you have outlined but the run programs tab only shows the program being blocked and doesn’t show system configuration utility??Help!!!

  8. soulsofdeath

    August 27, 2008 at 10:43 pm

    to mr pft, well o great genius contrary to popular belief, there are a whole lot of people who dont know how to use ms config. so this article is just fine. who are you to just insult people you dont even know that this article helped, yea i can use ms config, i even finally figured out how to remove defender but ill be damned if ill put the post here where some moron like you has the nerve to insult people who have never said a word to or about you, its people like you who reaffirm my belief in hateing most people in general cause they think they are so smart or better than others. Have a nice day you jerk.

  9. Bracey

    September 8, 2008 at 6:10 pm



  10. soupkitchen

    September 13, 2008 at 4:44 pm

    Hmmm, sure it is easy to disable it if it actually shows – But there is nothing that sayed Window Defender in the system and it is blocking my Anti Virus software…

  11. MrGroove

    September 14, 2008 at 12:22 pm

  12. Tola Naomi

    November 8, 2008 at 11:17 am

    THANK YOU! This was driving me crazy and screwing up my ability to access my school work online. I appreciate they’re trying to protect me mind you BUT it really was working my last good nerve. I used both sets of instructions just to make sure it was really dead. I didn’t want to do an uninstall since I’ve read where people had MORE issues after doing that than if they had just disabled it. Really happy to be getting it out of the way of my homework! Thanks again.

  13. joel

    November 16, 2008 at 6:58 am

    thanks mate,, i got rid of this windows defender that does`t defend anything just mess with my system,,thank you

  14. MrGroove

    November 25, 2008 at 1:34 pm

    Comments Closed for this Tutorial.


    Please post all further Questions or Comments in our Free Tech Support Community Forum



  15. Mehr Liaqat Jalvi

    July 4, 2012 at 9:46 am

    sir, what is vbmm.exe ? in my windows 7 home premium this files comes repeatedly even i deleted it through malwarebytes anti malware software which detects it as malware virus. it slows down my system and when removed , system runs fasters but in few seconds this exe files placed automatically in my c:/ directory. please help?

    • Steve Krause

      July 11, 2012 at 3:28 pm

      VBMM.exe — sounds like a virus. I cannot find it anywhere.

      Have you installed Windows Security Essentials?

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