The much awaited free anti-virus and anti-malware security solution from Microsoft, Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE), which previously codenamed as Morro is finally been officially released into limited public beta testing. Microsoft Security Essentials replaces Windows Live OneCare, and supersedes Windows Defender. It’s targeted at users who can’t pay or simply won’t pay for a security product.

Microsoft Security Essentials

Microsoft is planning to make available download of Microsoft Security Essentials public beta until the cap of 75,000 downloads are reached, or until the final product is available. So, those who interested to try out MSE should grab it fast.

According to Microsoft Security Essentials official homepage, the beta is available only to customers in the United States, Israel (English only), People’s Republic of China (Simplified Chinese only) and Brazil (Brazilian Portuguese only). So if you’re visiting from outside of supported countries, you will be redirect to instead, with “not available in your country or region” and “you appear to be in a country or region where the Microsoft Security Essentials Beta is unavailable” error messages.

But fear not, whatever you see on MSE web page will ultimately lead you to sign in via a Windows Live ID account, register at Microsoft Connect and then completing a simple MSE survey. User who doesn’t located at USA, Israel, Brazil or China can go to MSE Connect nomination page or MSE beta survey page directly to register for the public beta. If you fail to register too, just download the leaked Microsoft Security Essentials.

Once the application to Microsoft Security Essentials Beta is successful (active status), user can download the setup installer for Microsoft Security Essentials Beta from within Connect website itself. Microsoft Security Essentials is available for Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7 (both 32-bit and 64-bit for later two). Most importantly, the Windows operating system must be genuine and legit, and can pass the Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) validation. Validation is done during installation wizard.

Download Microsoft Security Essentials MSE

One interesting point to note is that the official beta of Microsoft Security Essentials is making available MSE version 1.0.1407.00, which appears to be older version than the leaked Microsoft Security Essentials, which has the version of 1.0.2140.0.

Update: Download Microsoft Security Essentials 1.0.1500.0