Stop Windows Defender from Deleting Program Files on Windows 10

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Do you have the same problem as Windows Defender that keeps deleting files such as videos, documents or downloaded .exe programs? Or does your Windows 10 automatically delete downloaded files and data without asking for confirmation? Although it seems unnecessary, it’s true. Windows 10 can continue to delete programs and documents even after rebooting because the Defender or the new memory sensor feature in Windows 10 allows it to do so.

Add a Windows Defender Exclusion

Follow these steps to add exceptions in Windows Defender.

a. Open Windows Defender by pressing the Windows Icon key, type Windows Defender, and press Enter.

b. Go to the Settings tab and select the Excluded Files and Locations option.

c. Find the .exe extension and locate it.

d. Add it to the list of excluded files and locations, follow the same procedure for excluded file types and processes, and then click Save Changes.

e. Try to verify the problem.

Allow the Executable File in Windows Defender

All executable files that are marked by Windows Defender are quarantined and deleted from your system. To run a quarantined file on your system, you must first open Windows Defender.

Go to the Virus and Threat Protection section and, under Current Threats, click Protection History. You will see a list of all the threats that Windows Defender has blocked. The list tells you very little except the date and time the threat was detected and blocked and the severity of the threat. For more information, click the Serious drop-down list. At this point, you must authenticate to the Admin user to continue.

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Once you have authenticated with the Admin user, you will see more details about the threat that has been blocked. You will see what Windows Defender did to it, i.e. quarantined or deleted it. You will also see why it was flagged, i.e. which threat was detected and in which file it was located. To run the file, open the Actions drop-down list and select the Allow option.

You may need to download the file again and this time Windows Defender will not automatically block or delete it. Again, be very careful if you choose to ignore Windows Defender’s warnings.

Disabling Windows Defender

  • Open the Windows Defender settings.
  • Click the Settings button to open a pop-up window.
  • Identify the protection in real time.
  • Turn off the power switch.

These tips are subject to the risk of data loss because excluded options are not scanned. In addition, the Windows Defender disable option is also a temporary solution that starts automatically after a certain period of time; it can also lead to a data loss situation.


There is no doubt that Windows Defender is a very useful antivirus program in most cases. However, it has to be admitted that it can sometimes make mistakes – considering important files as threats and deleting them. It is not uncommon for Windows Defender to delete my files.

As in other cases of data loss, when you find that Windows Defender has accidentally deleted your files, the first thing you should do is to stop using the destination drive (you’d better shut down your computer immediately). Then you should use MiniTool Power Data Recovery to easily recover your deleted files without the help of others. You can also check quarantined files in Windows Defender and choose to recover them independently.

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