Microsoft Security Essentials 'Virus and Spyware Definitions Update Failed' Error

When MSE is pre-installed on new Windows 7 computers

When they first start a new Windows 7 computer pre-installed with Microsoft Security Essentials, users can get a warning message informing them that MSE failed to update.

Microsoft confirmed this issue and revealed that customers simply need to connect the new machine to the Internet, and the problem will be resolved.

” When you start the computer for the first time and the Windows 7 Out of Box Experience (OOBE) wizard runs, you receive the following error message:

“Virus & spyware definitions update failed - Microsoft Security Essentials wasn't able to check for virus & spyware definition updates. Make sure your computer is connected to the internet and try again.”

According to the software giant, the source of the error message is nothing more than the missing Internet connection.

“To resolve this issue, make sure that you are connected to the Internet, and then try to download the virus and spyware definition updates again,” the company said.

OEMs have made a tradition of adding a variety of software on new computers, arguing that they increase the value of the PCs for customers.

However, users have often referred to pre-installed solutions as crapware, and the practice of pre-installed software on OEM machines has drawn criticism on numerous occasions.

Users that do want to download Microsoft Security Essentials can do so free of charge, provided that they’re running Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7.

Microsoft Security Essentials 2.1 recently found a new home, under, where users can find all downloads and information on the product.

The latest iteration of MSE is available free of charge in no less than 33 different languages. Of course, customers need to be running genuine XP, Vista and Windows 7 in order to take advantage of the security solution.

Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) 2.1 is available for download here.

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