Microsoft security product confusion to continue till 2011


Cooler King
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft security product confusion to continue till 2011

Microsoft won't be deciding what to do with the Windows Live OneCare brand until at least December 2010.

One of our readers recently wrote in to ask about the difference between Windows Live OneCare and Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE). We explained that OneCare has been on its way out the door since Microsoft announced the for-pay solution's death in November 2008. The company also noted in March 2009 that Windows 7 would not play nice with OneCare. Sales of the Windows Live OneCare subscription service, as well as Windows Live OneCare for Server on SBS 2008, ended on June 30, 2009. The software giant's replacement offering, Microsoft Security Essentials, was released in September 2009. In short, MSE was what our reader wanted. The question forced us to look into OneCare again, and we were a little perplexed at what we found.
When we visited the OneCare website, we noticed that Microsoft still offers users the option to scan their computers for malware with the Windows Live OneCare Safety Scanner. Furthermore, while playing with Windows Live Messenger, we got the following two prompts (the first sometimes occurs when receiving .PDF files and the second occurs while sending .EXE files):

Microsoft should have rebranded the online "Windows Live OneCare Safety Scanner" by now to something like the "MSE Scanner" and Windows Live Messenger should no longer prompt users to download Windows Live OneCare safety scanner components; it should download MSE scanner components. Furthermore, if the user has MSE installed, Windows Live Messenger should detect it and use it ("This file should be scanned, Messenger noticed you have MSE installed, would you like to use that?"). Currently the user has to manually tell Messenger to use MSE (or any antimalware scanner for that matter).

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