In what I perceive as another apology from M$ for making such bloated code with so many features that the inconvenience for users is only rivaled by the convenience for hackers, Micro$oft has announced that 75,000 lucky souls in the US, Israel, and Brazil (sorry, little Kim Jong Un, no Beta for you!) will get to try it out this replacement for the pitiful Windows Defender. Windows Defender seemed so promising, but just sucked, hassled me about VNC, and sucked some more.
Of course I dashed right over to http://www.microsoft.com/security_essentials/, signed up, was approved, and downloaded the Beta for myself and a friend (she has an Windows7 x64 system, but doesn't know it yet) and installed it. It ran a scan. It found . . . nothing. Not totally unexpected as all I ever do with my XP machine is test software and run Quickbooks. It's not even really a machine - it's running in in a Virtual Box under Mac OS X Leopard. However, I'll rest a bit easier knowing that my current Antivirus - ClamWin has some backup should I ever step in a website I shouldn't have. Call me a glutton for punishment.
**UPDATE 6-Jul-09 The Beta has closed - if you don't have it already you have to wait for the final release.