How to Exclude a Folder or File from Windows Defender Scan?

Windows Defender is a Microsoft built-in antivirus software that safeguards your Windows device against viruses, trojans, and malware. It constantly scans every folder and file on your system in real time to detect any suspicious activity and takes necessary measures to neutralize any threats it detects.

While Windows Defender frequently scans your entire system to identify and eliminate threats, there are scenarios where it becomes necessary to exclude certain folders from its scans. One common reason is false positives.  False positives occur when antivirus software mistakenly flags legitimate files, folders, and programs as malicious or unsafe.

By excluding specific folders from Windows Defender’s scans, you can keep away your important files, folders, and any other file type from false alarms.

How to Exclude a Folder from Windows Defender Scan?

We can exclude any file, program, and folder from the Windows Defender application. The process is quite straightforward but it can be hard for some people. If you want to remove any file or folder from the Windows Defender’s Scan system, follow the below steps.

[wpsm_numhead num=”1″ style=”3″ heading=”3″]Open Virus & Threat Protection (Windows Defender)[/wpsm_numhead]

Open the Search box on your Windows 11 device and type ‘virus and threat protection‘. There you will see several results, click on Virus & Threat Protection.

Open Virus & Threat Protection (Windows Defender)

[wpsm_numhead num=”2″ style=”3″ heading=”3″]Click on Manage Settings[/wpsm_numhead]

Click on the Manage settings button under the Virus & Threat Protection settings.

Manage settings button under the Virus & Threat Protection settings

[wpsm_numhead num=”3″ style=”3″ heading=”3″]Add Exclusions[/wpsm_numhead]

Scroll down below and find the Exclusions section. Tap the Add or Remove exclusions option.

Exclude a Folder from Windows Defender Scan

Once done, Click on the +Add an exclusion button. Select the File or Folder that you want to exclude from the Windows Defender Scan.

That’s it!! Now Microsoft Defender Antivurs won’t scan items that you have excluded.

[wpsm_box type=”info” float=”none” textalign=”left”]
If you want to remove the exclusion, open the Exclusion section. Find the file that you want to remove, and click the down-arrow button. Select the Remove button and the file will be added to the Windows Defender Scan list. [/wpsm_box]

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