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A Rational Guide To Fix Windows Defender Error Code 0x80004004

Windows Defender is one of the greatest security software that can protect your Windows OS powered computer a lot. However, like all the other antivirus applications, Windows Defender is also not a glitch-free application. That’s the reason why some users face the Windows Defender error code 0x80004004. Usually, the error appears with a message that says the virus and spyware definition of the antivirus program cannot be updated. So, the Windows integrated antivirus doesn’t really help if it’s not updated. There might be several reasons that can cause the error that you’ve faced using the Defender. Therefore, in this article, we are going to discuss all the possible ways by which you can get rid of this error.

Reasons Behind the Windows Defender Error Code 0x80004004:

You might face Windows Defender error messages and the error code 0x80004004 is one of them. This error might appear due to a lot of reasons but the primary one is because of another antivirus program that you have installed on your system. As the program might create conflict with the Windows Defender, as a result, you encounter the error. The error 0x80004004 will not let you update the Defender on your PC. Another reason behind the error is that due to the missing system files from your PC. Bad internet connection is also a reason that prevents you from updating the Defender.

Effective Solutions to Fix the Windows Defender Error Code 0x80004004:

As you have seen that there might be a lot of reasons that can cause the error, Now, you might want to search for the solutions that can solve the error. Thus, in this section, we are going to discuss some of the most significant and appropriate solutions which will help you to take out of the error code 0x80004004.

Solution 1 – Set the Windows Defender Service to Automatic

This is one of the most helpful solutions which most of the users skip while troubleshooting the error. If you want to recover yourself from the error 0x80004004, then set the Windows Defender service to automatic and check if the error remains. If you have no idea how you can do that, then follow the steps as mentioned in the section below.

Step 1:

Press the Windows Start button and make a search for Services from the search box.

Step 2:

As the search result appears, select Services and right-click on it to see what it offers. From the list of options, select the ‘Run as administrator’ to open Services with administrative access.

Step 3:

The User Account Control or UAC will appear and ask your permission, press Yes and continue to proceed with the following steps.

Step 4:

Once the Services window opens, search for the Windows Defender Service from the list and double-click on it to open.

Step 5:

After opening the Windows Defender Service, change the Startup Type to Automatic from the drop-down list that appeared on the new dialog box. After that, select Ok option to save all the changes that you performed in the service section.

With the steps mentioned above, you can easily change the startup type of the Windows Defender service to automatic on your PC. After completing all these steps, check whether you are still facing the Windows Defender virus and spyware definitions connection failed message on the Defender. If the error is still there on your system, then follow the next solution.

Solution 2 – Disable Third-Party Security Applications, If Any

The error code 0x80004004 on your Windows Defender might appear due to third-party antivirus applications. Having two antivirus programs installed on your computer might create conflicts. If you have installed any third-party security programs on your Windows PC, then disabling it on a temporary basis might help. So, disable the Defender before you try to update the Defender. In case, you are not certain about the process to disable an antivirus program temporarily, then go through the following section.


  • Click on the Tray Icon which you can find at the bottom-right corner with the look of a triangle.
  • After that, find the third-party antivirus program that you have installed and right-click on it.
  • From the list of several options, you should see the option that says something like shield control or protection. Then, select any one from the options to set the duration for which you are disabling the antivirus.
  • After that, you will face up with a dialog box which will ask your permission, click on the Yes button.


You can easily disable the third-party antivirus program on your computer with the help of these steps. Most of the antivirus programs allow their Windows users to disable them directly from the taskbar. Once you have successfully disabled the third-party antivirus program, then you should check the error. It shouldn’t be on your system any longer, but if it’s still there, then you can follow the next solution.

Solution 3 – Run SFC Scan

Among the so many Windows Defender error messages, the one that you receive at the time of updating it is annoying. If the above methods didn’t work out for you, then another thing you can do is to run the SFC scan on your Windows PC. To do that, follow the steps mentioned in the section below.


  • Open the Command Prompt with administrative access on your Windows PC. To do that, press the Start button and make a search for ‘cmd’ as the result appears right-click on it and select ‘Run as administrator’.
  • Since the Command Prompt opens, type the following command and then press the Enter key.
    sfc / scannow


The scanning may take a while and as it completes, you should open the Defender again. After that, check for updates in the Defender, it shouldn’t show you the error any longer. Because if there were any system files corrupted, then SFC is such a tool that can rectify them.

So, that’s all you should know about the cause and their solutions about the Windows Defender error code 0x80004004 on your PC. Hope the article could help you as a guide to take you through all the steps in the solutions precisely. However, in case, you fail to resolve it, then opt for a professional’s help.