Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Premium Configuration Guide

Like the article says, Malwarebytes is most helpful when it’s run in tandem with an antivirus program … but it also helps if you set up Malwarebytes to fit the needs of your specific application too.

There seem to be two camps of users when it comes to Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware application for the Windows operating system. Some users swear on it and believe it is one of the best security programs for the operating system currently while others think it is snake oil and not useful at all. The company itself sees it as a complementary product that should be run next to antivirus solutions, and not something that should be run on its own.

Since I fall into the first camp of users, I’m running a premium version of the program on my main machine.

The following guide provides you with information about the most important configuration options that Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Premium offers. While you will find some of them in the free version as well, some are exclusive.

A click on settings in the program window opens them up. You find several pages worth of settings on the page that let you customize program features and even add new features to the program that are not enabled by default.

Detection and Protection

detection protection

This is probably the most important preference page of the program. It allows you to turn the program’s malware protection and malicious website protection on or off, enable the scanning of rootkits (which is not enabled by default), and define actions when potentially unwanted programs (PUP) and potentially unwanted modifications (PUM) are detected.

  1. Scan for rootkits – Anti-Malware Premium supports the detection of rootkits. If you want that functionality to be included, you need to enable it here as it is not by default. Anti-Rootkit is available as a standalone (currently beta) program as well.
  2. PUP and PUM actions – Define how you want these handled. You may treat them like malware, which would quarantine them when detected, display a warning instead, or ignore them altogether.
  3. Malware Protection – This is the heart of the program and should not be disabled.
  4. Malicious Website Protection – This blocks websites flagged as malicious from being loaded. You may want to turn this off if you encounter false positives on a regular basis (I usually do as I don’t need it).

Malware and Web Exclusions

malwarebytes exclusions

These two pages provide options to add exclusions to the program which it honors from that moment on. This means basically that anything that you add here is ignored by the program when it scan and checks resources.

  • Malware Exclusions – You may add individual files or entire folders to the list of exclusions.
  • Web Exclusions – This exclusion list supports IP addresses, domains and processes. If you select a process, all of its “web traffic” will be ignored by Malwarebytes.

Advanced Settings

advanced settings

The settings listed on this page let you customize program behavior, for instance on start of the operating system or how it should handle detected items.

  1. Automatically quarantine detected items – You may want to disable the preference if you get false positives regularly. If you don’t, you may find yourself opening the quarantine regularly to undo these automatic actions.
  2. Reduce priority of scans to improve multitasking – Enable this option if you notice slow-downs during scans, for instance if videos that stream to the computer stutter suddenly, if programs don’t react immediately anymore or if you experience lag in games or real-time communication.

Automated Scheduling

program updates

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Premium is configured to run a system scan once per day and to check for program updates once per hour. Existing tasks can be modified or removed, and new ones added on this page.

You may for for instance switch update checks to real-time instead of once per hour to receive updates as fast as possible. The fastest option checks once per minute for updates.

Depending on your requirements, you may want to use the fastest update check interval. You may need to experiment with various intervals to find the best setting for your needs.

General Settings

general settings

The general settings page provides you with options to customize notifications, and to enable or disable the Windows Explorer context menu entry.

You can disable notifications on this page for instance if you don’t require them.

Access Policies

access policies

Protect certain program features from being accessed by individual users or groups of users. You may for instance block access to the settings.

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