Windows Server 2019: Defender Performance Issues

[German]Will there be major performance issues during running Windows Server 2019? Then Windows Defender may be the cause, as I read a few days ago.


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Microsoft ships Windows Defender as an antivirus solution in all Windows systems from Windows 8 upward. In Windows 7 there is the Defender, but not as antivirus protection. There you can install the Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE). Over the years I have received the information that MSE is a performance killer. So much for a preliminary remark.

Windows Server and the Defender Performance

If you search for ‘Windows Server 2019 Defender Performance issues’ on the Internet, you will get some hits. This Dell support article deals with the problem that a Defender scan using MsMpEng.exe can increase system utilization (HD) up to 100%. Then nothing works anymore for some time.

In this Microsoft Answers forum post someone complains that the Classic ASP application slows down by up to 80% when Windows Defender is enabled. The problem occurs on Windows 10 version 1809 and 1903 and also on Windows Server 2019 1809. Windows Server 2016 and Windows 10 version 1607 are not affected.

A reader comment about Windows Server 2019

In February 2020, I had the post Windows 10 / Server 2019: Slow Network on Hyper-V & Bar Metal here in the blog, in which I gave some hints on optimizing the performance in network operation based on a reader’s note. There blog reader Alexander Fuchs posted the following comment (thanks for that):

Meanwhile I found another problem child, which leads to performance problems on the 2019 server, the Windows Defender.

Alexander also provides a solution by suggesting to uninstall Windows Defender via PowerShell on Windows Server 2019. This may be possible in an administrative command prompt with the statement:


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Remove-WindowsFeature -Name “windows-defender”

Afterwards the server need to be rebooted. Then the performance issues caused by Defender should be gone. However, make sure that virus protection is available on the server.

Similar articles:
Windows Server 2019: Defender Performance Issues
Solution for slow start of Windows Server 2016?
Windows virus scanner: performance & stability issues


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