Windows Command-Line: Inside the Windows Console

Console Internal Architecture
Console Internal Architecture

Welcome to the third post in the Windows Command-Line series. In this post, we’ll start to dig into the internals of the Windows Console and Command-Line, what it is, what it does … and what it doesn’t do!


A Guide to Upgrading your Ubuntu App’s Release

Canonical recently released Ubuntu 18.04 in the Microsoft Store. We received many questions around the various Ubuntu releases in the Store in addition to how best to upgrade your existing releases. With the help of our friends at Canonical, we have created a guide to upgrading your Ubuntu release. We will soon add a short-form…

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Windows Command-Line: The Evolution of the Windows Command-Line

Comparing Console in Windows 7 and Windows 10
Comparing Console in Windows 7 and Windows 10

Welcome to the second post in this “Windows Command-Line” series. In this post we’ll discuss some of the background & history behind the Windows Command-Line. Specifically, we’ll explore its humble origins in MS-DOS, to its modern-day incarnation supporting tools like PowerShell and Windows Subsystem for Linux.


Windows Command-Line: Backgrounder

DEC VT100 Terminal
DEC VT100 Terminal

This is the first of a series of posts in which we’ll explore all things command-line – from the origins of the command-line and the evolution of the terminal, to what we’re doing to overhaul and modernize the Windows Console & command-line in future Windows releases.


Improved per-directory case sensitivity support in WSL

With the Windows Subsystem for Linux, we’ve always allowed you to treat your files as case sensitive, just like Linux does. In the past, if you had files whose name differed only by case, these files could not be accessed by Windows, because Windows applications treat the file system as case insensitive. A while ago,…

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Windows Subsystem for Linux //Build 2018 Recap

Last week, the WSL team attended Microsoft //Build 2018. We had a great time meeting many of you and answering questions at the command line booth. In case you missed it, you can watch out session, Set up a Windows Dev Environment that Feels Like $HOME, online on Channel9. In this post, we will summarize…

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Join us for a hot cup o Chocolatey!

Setting up a dev box should be easy and fast.  At BUILD 2018 we announced a collaboration with Chocolatey and Boxstarter.  The project founders discuss the collaboration in the following video. Improving Machine Setup Have you set up a new dev machine and found it was frustrating or time consuming?  It’s important to have a…

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Introducing extended line endings support in Notepad

For many years, Windows Notepad only supported text documents containing Windows End of Line (EOL) characters – Carriage Return (CR) & Line Feed (LF). This means that Notepad was unable to correctly display the contents of text files created in Unix, Linux and macOS. For example, here’s a screenshot of Notepad trying to display the…


Tabbed Console starts here

[2018-06-29: Important Note: As announced in the release notes for Windows 10 Insider build 17704, Sets and Tabs will NOT ship in the next mainstream release of Windows (codenamed RS5). Please read the first bullet under the heading “General changes, improvements, and fixes for PC” for more details.]   [2018-04-16: Updated to better reflect “Sets”…


Copy and Paste arrives for Linux/WSL Consoles

As of Windows 10 Insider build #17643, you can copy/paste text from/to Linux/WSL Consoles!!! We know that this is a feature MANY of you have been waiting for – our sincerest thanks for your patience & continued support while we untangled the Console’s internals, allowing us to implement this feature. To ensure that we don’t…


Open Sourcing a WSL Sample for Linux Distribution Maintainers and Sideloading Custom Linux Distributions

We are happy to announce that we have open sourced a WSL (Windows Subsystem for Linux) sample  for Linux distribution maintainers.  This sample allows distro maintainers to build WSL distro packages for the Microsoft Store and developers to create custom Linux distro packages for sideloading.  You can find the distro launcher repo on GitHub. This…

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What’s new for the Command Line in Windows 10 version 1803

The next Windows 10 update includes many new features for Command Line developers. In this post we’ll review WSL, Hyper-V, new tools, and UWP Console applications coming to the Microsoft Store.  We want to thank everyone who tried these updates via the Insiders program and provided feedback.  We really appreciate hearing from you both when…

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Debian GNU/Linux for WSL now available in the Windows Store

We’re excited to announce that you can now download & install Debian GNU/Linux via the Windows Store! After we announced that you’d be able to install and run multiple distro’s side-by-side on WSL , we are happy to introduce another one of your favorite Linux distros to the Windows Store. As promised, we are expanding…

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Kali Linux for WSL now available in the Windows Store

We’re excited to announce that you can now download & install Kali Linux via the Windows Store! Our community expressed great interest in bringing Kali Linux to WSL in response to a blog post on Kali Linux on WSL. We are happy to officially introduce Kali Linux on WSL 😊. Introducing Kali Linux running on…

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Per-directory case sensitivity and WSL

If you have used the Windows Subsystem for Linux, you’re probably aware that it allows you to treat your Windows file systems (mounted under /mnt/c, /mnt/d, etc.) as case sensitive. This means, among other things, that you can create files whose names differ only by case (e.g. foo.txt and FOO.TXT). However, using those files in…

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Windows/WSL Interop with AF_UNIX

Starting in Windows Insider build 17093, a WSL application can communicate with a Windows application over Unix sockets. Back in December, we blogged about bringing AF_UNIX to Windows. Now, we’re building on that functionality. Consider a requirement where you want to run some kind of service as a Windows application. Additionally, you would like to…

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OpenSSH in Windows 10!

SSH is one of the most important tools in the *NIX world, through which users communicate with shells, applications, and services running on remote machines, devices, VM’s and containers. Windows users most often remotely access Windows machines, devices, VM’s and Containers via the amazingly powerful Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) which, as the name says, remotes…


Tar and Curl Come to Windows!

One of the most frequent asks we hear across the entire Windows command-line spectrum is “I need curl” and/or “I need tar”. If you’re one of these people – HAPPY NEW YEAR! 🙂 Windows 10 Insider build 17063 and later now include the real-deal curl and tar executables that you can execute directly from Cmd…


Chmod/Chown WSL Improvements

We’ve added new file system features to WSL in Insider Build 17063. You can now set the owner and group of files using chmod/chown and modify read/write/execute permissions in WSL. You can also create special files like fifos, unix sockets, and device files. We’re introducing new mounting options with DrvFs for projecting permissions onto files alongside…

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