What is Antimalware Service executable on PC?

skull and a pc screen for antimalware if you're reading this alt text, it's for effect

Gone to close something in Task Manager and found ‘Antimalware Service’ hidden in there? Well, here is what it is and how to handle it.

Windows is a complex operating system, sitting underneath a nice user-friendly experience. However, while Microsoft might have spent years trying to make it easy for everyone, they don’t exactly explain everything.

Not everyone is going to go digging through Task Manager to find what’s eating up their RAM and CPU processes. Those that do look in and aren’t sure what they’re seeing might see ‘Antimalware Service’ crop up.

Antimalware Service Executable explained

Antimalware Service isn’t anything to afraid of, as it’s part of the Microsoft Defender service that comes baked into each Windows system. It’s nothing to worry about, however, it does work in real-time.

Article continues after ad

If you use CTRL+ALT+DEL and choose ‘Task Manager’, you’ll get an overview of what’s using up system resources. If Antimalware Service is at that point, using a lot of your system or more than you expected, it’s potentially running a scan or handling malware.

Microsoft Defender is a great entry-level amount of protection and is actually what we use on a frequent basis. However, if you’re concerned about its usage on your PC, you can do something to help prevent this.

If you know you won’t need real-time protection, you can go into the Settings app and find the page ‘Virus & threat protection settings’ via the search bar at the top. While we don’t recommend it, you can always turn off the real-time protection, which will require you to go to Microsoft Defender manually (it’s located in the settings app) and scan your PC yourself.

Article continues after ad

For whatever reason, if your system is currently struggling while using Microsoft Defender and the Antimalware Service is eating a lot of your resources, it might be time to consider an upgrade. A modern laptop or new desktop PC might actually be the solution to your problems.