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Ubuntu on WSL

Install a complete Ubuntu terminal environment in minutes on Windows 10 with Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL).

Access the Linux terminal on Windows, develop cross-platform applications, and manage IT infrastructure without leaving Windows.

Download from the Microsoft Store

Instructions for installing Windows Subsystem for Linux

Deploying WSL at your company?

We help companies achieve a seamless integration with their WSL deployments. Contact us to learn more about how we support enterprises on the Windows Subsystem for Linux.

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Access the Linux terminal on Windows

In seconds, be able to access the Linux terminal and run Linux applications and workflows on your Windows machine.

Take our command line for beginners tutorial ›

Develop cross-platform

Build and debug Linux applications with Windows tools like Visual Studio Code, Visual Studio, and JetBrains IDEs before deploying to the cloud.

Discover how to easily access "Kubernetes on Windows with WSL2" in our webinar

Manage IT infrastructure

From the same workstation, manage mixed Linux and Windows infrastructure both on-prem and across public clouds.

Learn from our community members and experts at the WSLConf

What you never thought was possible on Windows

  • Editors

    Run your choice of Linux text editors, including vim, emacs, and nano

  • Servers

    Spin up Node.js, install your dependencies with npm, and start testing your web app

  • Development

    Install compilers and libraries from the Ubuntu repository, maintained by Canonical

  • Shells

    Use your choice of Linux shells, such as bash, zsh and fish

  • Containers

    Work with LXD and Docker containers on Windows

  • Scripting

    Automate Linux and Windows tasks with advanced bash scripting

  • Network hardening

    Leverage Linux security tools to test and harden your network

  • Data

    Crunch big numbers with tools for R and Python

  • Kubernetes

    Build, test, and deploy Kubernetes clusters on Windows

Why WSL

Easy to Use

Ubuntu is intuitive, user-friendly, and offers the flexibility for customizations when operating within WSL.

Security

Achieve the same first-class, out-of-the-box, compliant security that is synonymous with Ubuntu. With long-term support releases, you'll have five years of security patches and updates.

Enterprise support

Ubuntu is certified on WSL through close collaboration with Microsoft. Enterprise support is provided for Ubuntu from Azure to Windows workstations creating a seamless operating environment.

Install Ubuntu on Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL)

  1. Enable WSL on Windows 10

    Open PowerShell as Administrator:

    Type the following command to enable WSL 1:

    dism.exe /online /enable-feature /featurename:Microsoft-Windows-Subsystem-Linux /all /norestart

    Type the following command to enable WSL 2:

    dism.exe /online /enable-feature /featurename:VirtualMachinePlatform /all /norestart

    Restart your computer.

    Restart-Computer

    After restarting, download and install the WSL 2 Linux kernel from Microsoft for your device architecture:

    • x86_64 for Intel and AMD devices
    • arm64 for Snapdragon and other ARM devices

    Finally, it is recommended to set WSL 2 as the default WSL environment.

    Open PowerShell as Administrator as above and type the following command:

    wsl.exe --set-default-version 2
  2. Install Ubuntu

    Download Ubuntu for WSL from the Microsoft Store.

    Download from the Microsoft Store

  3. Run Ubuntu

    Run Ubuntu from the Start Menu.

  4. Set up Ubuntu

    Select a username and password for your administrative user.

    Once complete, it is recommended you download and try the new Windows Terminal for the best Ubuntu on WSL experience.

Getting Started with WSL

WSL 1 vs WSL 2

WSL 1


  • Powered by a Linux binary translation layer.
  • Supported on all versions of Windows 10 since Fall Creators Update.
  • Supported on all editions of Windows 10, including Home, Pro, Enterprise, and Server.

WSL 2


  • Powered by a Linux kernel running on Hyper-V technology.
  • Features significant speed and networking improvements.
  • Available to everyone, on all editions of Windows 10, as of the May 2020 update from Microsoft.

Latest WSL news from our blog ›

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