How to Fix Antimalware Service Executable Problem? [5 Effective Method]

Did you know that computers can get attacked by viruses in much the same way as our human bodies? Digital viruses can infect our computers resulting in slow performance, the loss of files or a complete system crash. Also known as malware, these malicious programs can cause damage worth thousands of dollars in seconds. Not to worry, our computers come with digital defenses against malware already built-in. In Windows 10, there’s a protective framework known as Windows Defender.

It contains a special program known as the antimalware service executable that hunts down malicious programs in your system and zaps them dead. There’s only one problem, this security program can overload your system and crash your computer! How does this happen and how can you prevent it? Discover more about how to turn off antimalware service executable below.

What is the Antimalware Service Executable?

This is a built-in security setting that protects your computer system from malware, hacks or privacy breaches in real-time. The antimalware service executable is a major part of Windows Defender. To view it, simply tap on the combination of Ctrl + Shift + Esc or simply click on the Start Menu and then Task Manager.

After activating Task Manager, scroll through its active processes until you arrive at Antimalware Service Executable that is indicated by msmpeng.exe. This executable program keeps your Windows system protected from digital threats. However, it can use up a lot of your CPU’s processing capability and slow down your overall system.

The Antimalware Service Executable is assisted by another Windows Defender program known as Full Scan. This additional process performs a deep scan of all the files within your computer. While Antimalware Service Executable protects against external threats, Full Scan protects from internal ones. Together, they keep your system secure but can overload your CPU. This can lead to a serious lag in your computer’s performance and even a full system crash. While they are helpful, it is important to monitor the operation of these antimalware service executable high CPU so as to preserve optimal processing capability.

Why Antimalware Service Executable is present in Windows

Every time that you log into the Internet, your computer is immediately exposed to a wide variety of viruses, trojans and worms. They can infect your machine and cause damage to files, programs or settings. These malicious programs can slow down your computer or act as a backdoor into your system for a malicious hacker. In the worst situations, they can shut down your computer and lock you out entirely. Thankfully, the Windows 10 operating system comes with a built-in virus protection system known as Windows Defender.

Windows Defender is a combination of programs that continuously analyze your computer system for digital threats such as viruses and worms. It also provides real-time protection against hacks when you connect to the Internet. Within Windows Defender, there’s a system program that is known as antimalware service executable denoted in the task list as msmpeng.exe. This program constantly scans your system for any digital threats that could have infected it. Unfortunately, Antimalware Service Executable can take up too much of your CPU processing capability. It has no problem hogging 100% of your processing resources! As a result, it is important to know how to control or shut down this program so as to keep your computer system running smoothly.

How to Disable the Antimalware Service Executable?

1. Adjust the scheduling options within Windows Defender

When Windows Defender activates the antimalware service executable for a Full Scan, this can result in very high memory usage. As such, it can be impossible to run any other program concurrently. A simple solution to this is scheduling your scans to occur at a time of the day when you are not using the computer extensively. This can be during the night, evening hours after work or any other downtime that you could have. Here is how to disable the antimalware service executable:

  • Begin by launching the Start Menu and then typing “task scheduler” in the search box. A list of programs will emerge and you can click on the top result so as to launch it.
  • Task Scheduler will emerge and present you with an interface that contains 2 panes. Have a look at the left pane and double-click on the Task Scheduler Library to expand it until you arrive at Library/ Microsoft/ Windows/ Windows Defender.
  • Open up the Windows Defender folder and double click on the Windows Defender Scheduled Scan that is situated in the middle section.
  • Once you’ve done that, click on the tab labeled Conditions and uncheck all the options. Having done that, proceed to tap on OK and this will immediately clear your scheduled scans.
  • Despite clearing your scheduled scans, it is important for you to maintain protection for your computer. To do this, you need to schedule a collection of new scans in such a way that your system’s performance will not be negatively impacted. This can be accomplished by double-clicking on Windows Defender Scheduled Scan and then select the tab labeled Triggers. Having done so, click on New. This will give you an opportunity to create a brand new scan schedule.
  • Proceed to set scan times that create a favorable balance between system efficiency and protection. The most favorable scan schedule is essentially once every week during a time when you are not actively using your computer system so that you don’t suffer through the CPU lag.
  • There are three other defensive programs that are contained within Windows Defender including Windows Defender Cleanup, Windows Defender Cache Maintenance, and Windows Defender Verification. These programs are contained within Library/ Microsoft/ Windows/ Windows Defender folder.
  • Repeat the process above for each of these programs so as to schedule Windows Defender effectively. Remember to pick a defensive schedule that promotes your computer’s efficiency while minimizing CPU lag.

2. Add the antimalware service executable to the exclusion list within Windows Defender

Windows Defender is very thorough during its system scans and usually checks every single file in your computer including its own file system. As would be expected, the antimalware service executable high CPU can lead to a major system lag. As a matter of fact, this is the main source of system lags from Windows Defender. Fortunately, you can prevent this by instructing the protective program from scanning itself using the steps below to how to stop antimalware service executable:

  • Launch the Windows Task Manager by pressing on Ctrl + Shift + Esc at the same time.
  • Navigate through the window and tap on the tab labeled Processes. Once you’re there, search for the process named Antimalware Service Executable and right-click on it.
  • In the emergent menu, select the option labeled Open File Location.
  • Look to the address bar and you’ll see the complete path of Antimalware Service Executable. Proceed to click on this address bar and copy the path in full.
  • Open up the Start Menu and type “Windows Defender”. Proceed to click on the top result so as to launch the Windows Defender Security Center.
  • Tap on Virus and Threat Protection and then Virus and Threat Protection Settings.
  • After opening up this section, scroll down to Exclusions and click on the option labeled Add or Remove Exclusions.
  • A new screen will emerge and within it, click on Add an Exclusion and select Folder.
  • Proceed to paste the file path that leads to Antimalware Service Executable (MsMpEng.exe) in the window’s address bar.
  • Lastly, tap on the option labeled Open and this folder will be excluded from the Windows Defender scan. This will dramatically reduce the processing load on your CPU during scheduled scans.

3. Completely disable Windows Defender

Sometimes you may feel that the CPU lag that is caused by Windows Defender is simply not worth the protection it offers. You may also have tried the other solutions unsuccessfully and completely disabling Windows Defender seems like a good solution. While antimalware service executable disables may solve the CPU lag problem, it will expose your computer to viruses, malware, and hack attempts as well. As such, it is advisable to install anti-virus software that will keep these malicious programs and hackers at bay. Here’s how you can antimalware service executable disable:

  • Activate the Run dialog box by pressing on the Windows icon button + R
  • Within the emergent dialog box, type Regedit and click on OK so as to open up the Registry Editor
  • Look through the navigation pane that is on the left of the window and double click on the folders until you arrive at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREPoliciesMicrosoftWindows Defender.
  • Search for a registry entry that is labeled DisableAntiSpyware and double click on it. Having done so, set its value to 1.
  • If you do not see the Registry entry that is labeled this way, right-click in the main Registry Editor pane and select New > DWORD (32 bit) Value.
  • Proceed to name the new registry entry as DisableAntiSpyware and double click on it. Within the file, set its value to 1.

4. Check your computer system for malware

Sometimes, there could be an underlying issue that could be causing Windows Defender to cause lags in your system. This problem can possibly be viruses, worms, trojans or other types of malware. There are viruses that could cause damage to your computer indirectly by attacking the Windows Defender program and sending antimalware service executable on a loop. This simple targeting strategy can completely slow down your computer. In such a case, it is necessary to check your computer system for viruses.

Choose a lightweight antivirus program and install it in your computer while making sure that its size does not add any extra load on your CPU. Run it while ensuring that it performs a deep cleanse of your system. It is important to update this anti-virus system with the latest Virus definitions before you apply it upon your computer system.

5. Clear the junk files from your computer’s hard disk

In some cases, the lags in CPU processing performance can be caused by having too many junk files in your computer. These include deleted files sitting in your recycle bin, temporary browser files, fragmented files and program log files. During a scan, Windows Defender usually checks all types of files including these junk files. This can cause unnecessary data load on your CPU resulting in very slow antimalware service executable windows 10 operation during a routine check.

There are two ways to get rid of junk files from your computer system:

  • Use the built-in Disk Cleanup function

The easiest way to get rid of junk files is by using the built-in Disk Cleanup function. This feature is provided by Windows 10 to help you clean up your onboard drives with efficiency.

  • Simply open up your My Computer window and then right-click on the drive that you want to clean up. Seeing as system programs are usually stored in drive C, this is most likely the one that you should clean up.
  • Right-click upon Drive C so as to reveal the drop-down menu.
  • Scroll down to properties and then tap on Disk Cleanup.
  • A new menu will emerge indicating all the types of junk files that are sitting in your system along with checkboxes adjacent to each type.
  • Check all the types which you would want to clean up. A suitable rule of thumb is simply to check the boxes on all the file types.
  • Having done so, tap on OK and accept the warning in the emergent dialog box.

This will effectively clean up all the junk files from your computer system.

  • Use a proprietary, third-party program

This is an easier alternative when it comes to eliminating junk files from your computer system because the program does all the heavy lifting for you. Simply go online and download a free, lightweight junk file removal program. Having done so, install it in your computer and activate its main function. Not only will it eliminate all the junk files, but it will also reveal their names, types and locations to you.


Q: What is Windows Defender?

A: This is a system program that works behind the scenes to protect your computer system from viruses, worms, trojans and hacks. It activates numerous sub-processes that work together to provide protection for your computer.

Q: What is Antimalware Service Executable?

A: Within Windows Defender, there’s a process known as the Antimalware Service Executable which activates live protection for your computer system from external or internal threats.

Q: Why does the Antimalware Service Executable cause your system to lag?

A: antimalware service executable windows 10 can embark on a self-analysis of its own files and this can cause logical errors which lead to a major crash in your system

Q: How can I fix the Antimalware Service Executable problem?

A: Above are numerous solutions that you can use to this effect. They are simple and non-invasive.

Q: How long does it take to fix the Antimalware Service Executable problem?

A: It should take only a few minutes to fix this issue in your Windows 10 system using the solutions described above.


The Windows Defender system is your computer’s front line of defense against malware and hacks that can corrupt your operating system or the files contained within. This defense mechanism is made up of numerous processes. Chief among these is Antimalware Service Executable which is usually indicated as msmpeng.exe in the processes list.

While it is helpful in your computer system, it can cause debilitating system crashes. Thankfully, we’ve compiled a collection of solutions that teach you how to stop antimalware service executable easily and quickly. Are you experiencing significant system lags or CPU overload? Implement our solutions and say hello to a faster, safer computer system!