Windows Defender Service show ‘Delay Start’ in Windows 8


I have seen sometimes that, due to some reasons like System Restore or reverting back to Windows Defender after uninstalling an antivirus, the ‘Startup Type’ of Windows Defender Service change to ‘Automatic (Delay Start)’. Of course, no one would like to start his/her antivirus after all startup programs are loaded.

When we manually open services.msc and try to change it then all we see is a greyed out option. It is really annoying to see greyed option, at least for me!

Now the solution part. Well, its solution is a registry edit which you have to perform after turning off Windows Defender. So, here are some precautions for the solution:

  1. You must disconnect internet before proceeding further, if required take a printout of instructions or open this page in another device but do not connect your PC to internet.
  2.  You should know basic registry editing. Registry editing may cause system corruption so follow steps with care. If you have any problem then lave a comment and I will help.
  3. As I said, you would require to turn off Windows Defender so ensure that your PC is clean from any malware.


1. Turn off Windows Defender.
Open Windows Defender –> Settings tab –> Administrator –> Uncheck “Turn on Windows Defender” –> Click on “Save Changes“.

2. Press Win key + R. This will open Run dialog. Type “services.msc” and hit enter.
In the bottom of list of services you will find “Windows Defender Service” with Startup TypeManual (Delayed Start)” or something like that. Minimize this windows.

3. Press Win key + R. Type “regedit” and hit enter. This will open Registry Editor. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\WinDefend. First right click on it and select Export. Select desired name and place and save it [It is a backup of that registry key, if something bad happens then you can use this key to revert back]. Now change “DelayedAutoStart” value to “0OR delete that key.

4. Maximize services.msc, right click on “Windows Defender Service” and click on Refresh. Bravo! You can see now “Startup Type” is “Automatic“.

5. Turn Windows Defender back on.
In taskbar you will see Action Center messages. Just click on “Turn on Virus Protection” to get Windows Defender working.

Now comments are welcome!


2 thoughts on “Windows Defender Service show ‘Delay Start’ in Windows 8

  1. thanks for providing this information in so simple way !!

  2. thanks for the post !! it helped to disable windows defender

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