Microsoft has made available a public beta version of their new free antivirus software program Microsoft Security Essentials which was formerly known as Morro. The antivirus software is available for 32-bit editions of Windows XP and 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Windows Vista and Windows 7.
It was formerly speculated that the beta would be limited to users from the United States, Israel, China and Brazil. This is apparently not so as you can download the Microsoft Security Essentials Beta from Europe and probably other locations as well. Having said that it is clear that there is no IP check at this point in time. A Windows Live account is required to start the beta download of the antivirus software and it could be that there are checks in the background that check the system language or country of the Windows Live account.
The start page contains a quick survey that has to be completed before the download options become available after logging in. You can read a first review in the Microsoft Security Essentials leaks article here at Ghacks.
It would be interesting if users from other countries (that Microsoft excluded from the beta) can also download the Microsoft Security Essentials antivirus software. The Security Essentials website contains information about the product and the link to Microsoft Connect from where the security program can be downloaded.
Update: Microsoft Security Essentials is no longer a beta version. The latest version of the application is available for all recent versions of the Windows operating system regardless of the language installed or country the user is residing in.
I would not recommend to only run Security Essentials though at this time as it is not a full blown program that takes care of the majority of threats you are facing on the Internet and when working with your computer.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.