Microsoft Security Essentials - Installation and Configuration

Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) is a free anti-virus software for Windows computers.

Installing Microsoft Security Essentials

Download Microsoft Security Essentials from Microsoft (LINK) or pick up a Norse Clean CD from the Technology Help Desk.

  1. Begin the installation.
    1. If you downloaded the file, double-click on the mseinstall.exe file.
    2. If you are using the Norse Clean CD, click on the Anti-Virus tab and then click on Microsoft Security Essentials.
  2. If prompted by a Security Warning, click Run.
  3. Click Next.
  4. On the License Terms screen, click I Accept.
  5. Select I do not want to join the program at this time and click Next.
  6. On the Optimize Security screen, click Next.
  7. Click Install to begin the installation process.
  8. When the install is complete, click Finish to download the latest updates and start a scan of your computer.
    1. Note – the scan may take several hours to complete. If you are using a laptop, please make sure the AC Adapter is plugged in.
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When the scan is complete, close MSE. It will continue to protect your computer by running in the background.

Configuring Microsoft Security Essentials

By default, MSE is configured to require little intervention on behalf of the user. This includes a weekly scan and to automatically download the latest anti-virus definitions on a regular basis. Users can alter these settings by right-clicking on the MSE icon and entering the appropriate tab.


Click Scan Now to start an immediate scan of your computer. You can pick between Quick, Full, or create a Custom scan.
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Click Update to download the latest updates.

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View all the items that MSE believes are potentially harmful and take the necessary actions
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If you wish to change the default security settings in MSE, you can do so under the Settings tab. These options are available:

  • Scheduled Scan (defaults to Sunday, 2am)
  • Default Actions
  • Real-time Protection
  • Excluded files and locations
  • Excluded file types
  • Excluded processes
  • Advanced
  • Microsoft SpyNet
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