Following a year-long development phase and several months in limited public beta, Microsoft has finally released the full version of its anti-malware scanner today -- Microsoft Security Essentials. Formerly codenamed Morro, this free-of-charge replacement for OneCare is designed to provide consumers with real-time protection against Trojans, computer viruses, spyware and rootkits.

Although it lacks the personal firewall, backup and PC tuning features found in its late sibling, Security Essentials has fared quite well against similar suites in tests conducted by -- the only restriction on use is that it has to be installed on a "genuine" Windows PC.