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Microsoft releases Windows Defender

Free antispyware tool available now

Microsoft released the final version of its Windows Defender antispyware tool today, suggesting that the company believes it’s sufficiently stable and bug-free for mainstream use.

The final release fixes about 400 bugs in beta 2 of the product, which was released in February. Beta versions of the program were downloaded 34 million times, a Microsoft spokesperson said.

Along with the bug fixes, customers using Windows XP and Windows 2003 get two free support calls for Windows Defender. The product is no longer supported for Windows 2000 users, since support for that OS ended in June, Microsoft said.

The software is available free of charge from Microsoft's website. It's in English now, with German, Japanese and other languages to follow shortly. It competes with free tools from Lavasoft, Spybot and others.

Windows Defender is also included with Microsoft's new antivirus product, Windows OneCare, which went on sale in June for $49.95 (£27) per year.


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