How to Run Malwarebytes Alongside Another Antivirus

Malwarebytes Premium and Windows Security on Windows 10

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is an excellent security tool that is particularly effective against “potentially unwanted programs (PUPs)“And other traditional nasty antivirus software is not supported. But it is intended for use with antivirus and does not replace it entirely.

If you use Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, you must run it in conjunction with a main antivirus program to keep your computer safe. But the traditional advice is not to run two anti-malware programs at the same time. Here’s how to thread this needle.

On-demand analyzes

The free and standard version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware works only as an on-demand scanner. In other words, it does not run automatically in the background. Instead, it only does something when you launch it and click the Scan button.

This version of Malwarebytes should not interfere with your antivirus program at all. Just install it and run it occasionally to scan and find “potentially unwanted programs” that almost no one really wants. He will find them and delete them. Using an anti-malware program as an on-demand scanner is a safe way to get a second opinion.

You shouldn’t have to do any additional configuration here. If Malwarebytes reports some kind of error while removing malware it finds, you can potentially suspend or disable real-time scanning in your main antivirus program to prevent it from interfering, and then re-enable the malware. analysis in real time right after. But even that shouldn’t be necessary, and we’ve never heard of someone having a problem like this.

Malwarebytes Premium scans Windows 10 with Windows Defender running in the background

Run Malwarebytes in side-by-side mode

As of Malwarebytes 4, the Premium version of Malwarebytes now registers as the default system security program. In other words, it will manage all of your anti-malware scans and Windows Defender (or any other antivirus you have installed) will not run in the background.

You can always run both at the same time if you wish. Here is how: In Malwarebytes, open Settings, click the “Security” tab and deactivate the “Always register Malwarebytes in Windows Security Center” option.

If this option is disabled, Malwarebytes will not register as a system security application and Malwarebytes and Windows Defender will run at the same time.

Configuring Malwarebytes Premium not to register in Windows Security Center

Real-time analysis

The paid version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Premium also contains real-time scanning functions. Malwarebytes will run in the background, scanning your system and the files you open for problems and preventing them from taking root on your system in the first place.

The problem is that your main antivirus program already works this way. The standard advice is that you should not enable real-time scanning for two antivirus programs that are active at the same time. They can interfere with each other in a variety of ways, slow down your computer, cause crashes, or even stop working.

RELATED: Antivirus slows down your PC? Maybe you should use exclusions

Malwarebytes is coded differently and is designed to work with other antivirus programs without interfering. It can even work without other configuration. But, to make it work as well as possible and improve performance, you need to configure exclusions in Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Premium and in your standard antivirus program.

To do this in Malwarebytes, open Malwarebytes, click the Settings icon, select “Allow list” and add the folder (usually under Program Files) containing the files for your antivirus program.

Added exclusions for Windows Defender to the Malwarebytes authorization list.

In your antivirus program, load the antivirus program, search for “exclusions”, “skipped files” or a section with the same name and add the appropriate Malwarebytes files. You must exclude these files, depending on the official Malwarebytes documentation:

C: Program Files Malwarebytes
C: ProgramData Malwarebytes
C: Windows System32 drivers mwac.sys
C: Windows System32 drivers mbamswissarmy.sys
C: Windows System32 drivers mbamchameleon.sys
C: Windows System32 drivers farflt.sys
C: Windows System32 drivers mbae64.sys (64-bit systems only)
C: Windows System32 drivers mbae.sys (32-bit systems only)

For more specific instructions, you can search the web for “Malwarebytes” and the name of your antivirus program. Or just search the web for your antivirus program name and “exclusions” to find out how to add these exclusions and exclude files named on the Malwarebytes website.

Addition of exclusion for Malwarebytes to Windows Defender

Malwarebytes is designed to work with a normal antivirus program, so you shouldn’t have to worry about it most of the time, especially if you only use the free version. If you are using the paid version, setting up exclusions can help you avoid problems and maximize the performance of your computer. But even that will not be completely necessary most of the time.

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