With version one of its free anti-malware product just out the door, Microsoft is lining up testers for the next release of Microsoft Security Essentials.
That's according to Ars Technica. Ars has posted what it says is an e-mail message that Microsoft sent to a subset of Windows 7 beta testers, inviting them to apply for an "ongoing beta" for MSE.
(Note: I am hedging this not because I don't believe Ars, but because so far I can't find anyone who has been invited. Update: I've now seen the e-mail myself and know Ars is on the money, so I've removed the hedging. I've asked Microsoft for comment on the Ars story and e-mail but no word back so far.)
Here's what Microsoft is telling potential beta applicants about its testing plans for the next release of MSE:
- Microsoft is planning to roll out an ongoing beta program for MSE that will include new private beta builds and lots more testers.
- The first group of invitees are participants of the Windows 7 beta program.
- Those who are not selected to participate in the beta (word will come by November 1, 2009) will have an opportunity to participate in a Customer Preview Program, available next year.
Microsoft made available for download at the end of September the final version 1 of MSE. MSE (codenamed "Morro") is the replacement for Windows Live OneCare and a superset of Windows Defender. Microsoft officials have said it will work on Windows XP SP2, Windows Vista and Windows 7.
Microsoft is targeting MSE at customers who are unwilling and unable to pay for security software. Company officials have said they believed it was worth offering customers a free product to help thwart security breaches on unprotected Windows PCs that potentially could be used to infect other users’ systems.
Any readers out there get an invitation to the next MSE beta? Whether you did or not, what are you hoping Microsoft introduces as part of MSE version 2?