How to Run a Full System Scan on Windows 11: A Step-by-Step Guide

Running a full system scan on Windows 11 is a simple process that helps ensure your computer is free from malware and other security threats. You’ll be using the built-in Windows Security app, which provides a comprehensive solution for scanning and protecting your system. Follow these steps to give your computer a thorough check-up.

How to Run a Full System Scan on Windows 11

Running a full system scan on Windows 11 involves using the built-in Windows Security app. These steps will help you navigate the app to perform a complete scan of your computer.

Step 1: Open Windows Security

First, open the Windows Security app by clicking on the Start menu and typing "Windows Security".

Once you’ve located the Windows Security app, open it. This app acts as the control center for your computer’s security features.

Step 2: Navigate to Virus & Threat Protection

Next, click on the "Virus & threat protection" option from the main menu of the Windows Security app.

This section is where you can manage your antivirus settings and run different types of scans.

Step 3: Start a Full Scan

Now, click on the "Scan options" link under the "Current threats" section. Then, select "Full scan" and click "Scan now".

A full scan will check every file and program on your computer to ensure there are no hidden threats.

Step 4: Wait for the Scan to Complete

Be patient as the scan can take several minutes or even hours depending on the size of your files and speed of your computer.

During this time, you can continue using your computer, but it may run a bit slower since a full scan is thorough and resource-intensive.

Step 5: Review the Scan Results

Once the scan is complete, review the results. If any threats are found, follow the prompts to remove or quarantine them.

This is crucial as it helps maintain your computer’s security by addressing any identified issues.

When the full system scan is complete, Windows Security will provide a summary of the results. If any threats were found, the app will guide you through removing or quarantining them. Your computer should be more secure, and you can rest easy knowing you’ve taken steps to protect it.

Tips for Running a Full System Scan on Windows 11

  • Schedule regular full scans to ensure ongoing protection.
  • Keep your Windows Security app up to date for the latest protection.
  • Avoid using your computer for resource-heavy tasks during a scan.
  • Make sure your computer is plugged in, as full scans can drain battery life.
  • Consider running a scan in Safe Mode if you suspect severe malware.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I run a full system scan?

It’s recommended to run a full system scan at least once a month.

Can I use my computer while performing a full scan?

Yes, but it may run slower. For best performance, avoid heavy tasks during the scan.

What if a threat is found during the scan?

Follow the prompts to remove or quarantine the threat as directed by Windows Security.

Do I need an internet connection to run a full scan?

No, but having an internet connection ensures your virus definitions are up to date.

Is Windows Security enough, or do I need additional antivirus software?

For most users, Windows Security provides sufficient protection, but some may prefer additional software for extra features.


  1. Open Windows Security.
  2. Navigate to Virus & Threat Protection.
  3. Start a Full Scan.
  4. Wait for the Scan to Complete.
  5. Review the Scan Results.


Running a full system scan on Windows 11 is an essential task for keeping your computer safe from potential threats. By following these straightforward steps, you ensure that your system is thoroughly checked for any malicious software that might be lurking in the shadows. Regular scans, combined with other good security practices like keeping your software updated and being cautious with downloads, will help maintain your computer’s health.

If you found this guide helpful, consider checking out more tips on maintaining your computer’s performance. Keeping your system clean and secure is not a one-time job but an ongoing process. Stay vigilant and make use of the tools available to you. Running a full system scan on Windows 11 is just one part of a broader strategy to keep your digital life safe and sound.

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