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Microsoft Releases New Security Essentials Beta

Tuesday Microsoft's Brandon LeBlanc said that the company has released a beta of the next version of Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE). For the uninitiated, this is the company's "no-cost light weight anti-malware" service, providing genuine Windows users with in-house protection from viruses, spyware, and other malicious software.

According to LeBlanc, the new version is now integrated into Windows Firewall and Internet Explorer--the current, pre-beta version is somewhat of a stand-alone entity, only scanning files downloaded to the user's hard drive.

Leblanc also stated that the beta now uses a new protection engine which offers "enhanced detection and cleanup capabilities with better performance." Best of all, a network inspection system is now included, protecting against network-based exploits.

"In addition to ongoing virus and spyware definition updates, we will be providing software updates to the beta for download through Microsoft Update on a periodic basis," Microsoft said. "To have these updates installed automatically, you must be subscribed to Microsoft Update with preferences set to automatically download and install new updates."

To download the new beta, head here to visit the Microsoft Connect page to sign in or register. For those who are having issues downloading the installer from the main link, Microsoft has also provided a file transfer manager (FTM).