3 ways to disable the SmartScreen Filter or Windows Defender SmartScreen

SmartScreen Filter, Windows SmartScreen or the Windows Defender SmartScreen are the same protection feature, with different names, depending on the Windows version that you are using. While it helps protect your computer from malicious files, apps, and websites, some users consider it annoying and want to disable it. If you want to turn off the SmartScreen Filter, here is how it's done:

NOTE: We do not recommend disabling this feature. If you are not sure what it is and how it works, first read this tutorial: What is the SmartScreen filter and how does it work?. If you do need to disable it, you need to log in with an account that has administrator permissions.

How to disable Windows Defender SmartScreen in Windows 10

In Windows 10, the SmartScreen filter is used in many places to provide users with the best protection possible: in Microsoft Edge, in Internet Explorer, in File Explorer, and the apps that you install from the Microsoft Store. To disable it completely, you need to disable it for each of these areas. Here is how:

First, you need to open Windows Security or Windows Defender Security Center (as is known in older versions of Windows 10). One way to do that is to search for "windows security" and click or tap the appropriate search result.

In the Windows Security window, click or tap "App & browser control" in the column on the left. Then look on the right for all the settings that are about controlling how Windows Defender SmartScreen works.

Find the "Check apps and files" section on the right. Here, select Off and confirm your choice when a UAC prompt is shown.

Then, look for the "SmartScreen for Microsoft Edge" section. Again, choose Off.

Next, look for the "SmartScreen for Microsoft Store apps" section. Again, choose Off.

Now Windows Defender SmartScreen is turned off in Windows 10. If you ever want to enable it again, follow the same steps and choose the settings opposite to the ones you chose to turn it off.

How to turn off the SmartScreen Filter in Windows 7

In Windows 7, the SmartScreen Filter is active only in Internet Explorer. To disable it, start Internet Explorer. Then, click the Tools button or press ALT+X on your keyboard. In the menu that opens, go to Safety and then click "Turn off SmartScreen Filter."

You are asked what you want to do. Choose "Turn off SmartScreen Filter" and click OK.

SmartScreen Filter is now disabled from Internet Explorer. To enable it again, follow the same steps and choose "Turn on SmartScreen Filter."

How to turn off the Windows SmartScreen in Windows 8.1

If you use Windows 8, Windows SmartScreen is used both in File Explorer and Internet Explorer. To disable it, open the Control Panel. There, go to System and Security.

Click or tap Action Center.

In the column on the left, click or tap the link that says: "Change Windows SmartScreen settings."

In the Windows SmartScreen window, choose "Don't do anything" and press OK.

Windows SmartScreen is now disabled in Windows 8. To enable it again, follow the same steps and choose one of the other two values available: "Get administrator approval before running an unrecognized application from the Internet" or "Warn before running an unrecognized application, but don't require administrator approval."

Why did you disable the SmartScreen feature in Windows?

Before closing this tutorial, we are curious to know why you decided to turn off the SmartScreen feature from Windows. How did it annoy you? What problems did it cause? Comment below and let's discuss.