Command Prompt / Console / Windows Subsystem for Linux

Shrouded in the mists of time, the Windows Console was created. For millenia, geeks and developers wrought their command-line tools but after a while, a great lacking was noticed. And so, legions of ever intrepid command-line mavens migrated to other shells and consoles, ’til but a stalwart few remained.

In Windows 10, with a deep rumbling, the ancient, weary, Windows Console heaved a great sigh and began to tremble. New features appeared, but slow was the (aparrent) progress.

But then, in early 2016, from under a rock evolved a group of new console dev’s. And then a PM. The journey to modernity had begun … again! WE’RE BACK! AGAIN!

Please post your asks, ideas, wants and needs below: We ARE listening, and we ARE grateful for your feedback!

@RichTurn_ms, Paul, Mike1 & Mike2.

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  1. Editing area of cmd should be consistent with standard Windows UI design principles

    Right now there is Quick Edit mode, which controls 2 things.

    1) Whether or not right clicking immediately pastes (Quick Edit=On) or displays a context menu (Quick Edit=Off)
    2) Whether or not click drag can select text (Quick Edit=On) or does nothing (Quick Edit=Off)

    However, any normal text editor or program which uses a standard windows edit control behaves like Quick Edit=Off for right clicking and Quick Edit=On for selection. So the behavior of cmd is both inconsistent with Windows' own UI design principles as well as very inconvenient.

    If you want to select text like people always select text…

    38 votes
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      3 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    • Very Nice Looking Command Prompt

      Win10techPview - cmd.exe (console) word wrap not available and not working. when changing buffer / width / height params they do not remain set once you exit properties and then open properties again.
      Ugly fonts still - could do with a nice revamp there????

      20 votes
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        1 comment  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • Change code page in the command window settings

        Can you please add a GUI control in CMD window settings to change the code page, instead of CHCP command & remembering the boring numbers?

        Especially, allow us to enable UTF-8 encoding easily (it already works, great, thanks!)

        11 votes
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          0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
        • New CMD UI Idea

          I use CMD to run Apps like Blender from Blender foundation were the is a lot of text being posted onto CMD from the application it would be amazing if you could set CMD to always appear on top of other windows, just like Task Manager that way you could being working in the application and see any text in Cmd

          6 votes
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            0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
          • Context menu keyboard shortcut "hints"

            The User Interface can be improved; restore old keyboard shortcut "hints."

            In particular the context menu <right click on the title bar> does not show keyboard "hints." There is no _Underscore_. No _E_ > no _M_, _C_, _S_...

            My oldest working version is Vista. The "hints" are missing.

            3 votes
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              0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • Right-click on any Explorer folder and open a cmd prompt there (and vice versa)

              Right click on any Explorer folder and open a cmd prompt with that folder as the current directory.
              The thing is the most tedious thing about command prompt is directory navigation. And if I already have an Explorer window why make me work so hard to get there in the command prompt?

              19 votes
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                4 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Pointer focus: it's is a key part of why command prompt is easier on Linux

                Pointer focus means that instead of having to click on a window to give it focus, a window has focus when you hover over any visible part of it with the mouse, without disturbing it's place in the Zorder and therefore you can issue commands at a semi-background command prompt window without the disturbance of bringing it up in front of whatever other window(s) you are working with.

                3 votes
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                  0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • Why do you continue to restrict us?

                  First, I love the new experimental features! Only complaint, not enough of them. Lots and lots of developers use Linux simply because of the customization offered by those OSs, so give us more!

                  Tabs, more fonts, colors, backgrounds. Maybe Im understating how difficult it would be to enable this stuff, but **** turn it into an option. A lot of Windows users will never know its there, so make these types of options available as a non-default setting. You could even hide it :) We will find it I promise.

                  6 votes
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                    1 comment  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                    We hear ya. Alas, we’re a very small team (3 dev’s) and have a loooooong list of (several hundred) issues & asks that we’re prioritizing and working through, many of which involve modernizing a fragile, >30 yr. old code-base, which must be done with great care.

                    If you want more colors, emit 24-bit RGB color sequences. We have improved font support, backgrounds, transparency, zooming, fluent UX, better tabs, animations, regions, and several tens of future features. on our backlog.

                    Bear with us while we continue to crank through our feature list.

                  • Findstr option needed

                    Findstr needs an option to return the count-of-matches, like "FIND /C"

                    Since "C" is already occupied for FINDSTR, how about "/T" (for Total) - and implement the same "/T" as a synonym for "/C" in FIND?

                    4 votes
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                      1 comment  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Please add an easy way to Tail a file

                      Please add an easy way to tail a file, currently the command in power shell is too complicate to figure out and it has a lot of latency to show file changes. Implement it as same as in Linux ;)
                      tail -f myfile.txt

                      15 votes
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                        1 comment  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • Ecko

                        Introduce a modified `echo` command (adding a switch to the existing may be awkward for backward-compatibility, so not an option...) but this `ecko` command does NOT issue a newline, allowing a report line to be built in segments rather than being accumulated into a variable and then displayed.

                        2 votes
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                          1 comment  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • Support long paths (>MAX_PATH)

                          Please support long paths (>MAX_PATH) - robocopy supports that, the Windows API supports that (=> "\\.\").
                          Right now I have to use subst to shorten the path, which is a real pain.

                          55 votes
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                            2 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                          • Spinner

                            Permit a SPINNER [optionalstring] command

                            General structure:

                            spinner somestring
                            for ...(
                            spinner
                            )
                            spinner /end

                            where the first (optional) invocation sets a series of characters to be used as the spinner,

                            The second invocation, within (typically) a FOR loop advances the spinner to the next character in the string The spinner character replaces the cursor.

                            The third restores the initial cursor and resets the spinner string to the default "|/-\"

                            hence

                            for /l %%x in (1,1,8) do (
                            spinner
                            timeout /t 1 >nul
                            )
                            spinner /end

                            would replace the cursor with a spinner which changes once per second

                            spinner Microsoft …

                            1 vote
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                              1 comment  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                            • SET /p additional options

                              Allow

                              set /r[character]

                              to replace input-characters with character (default "*") on the display for obscuring password-input, games, etc.

                              set /n

                              -similar, but does not show input at all so lenth-of-password is not visible.

                              2 votes
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                                0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                              • cmd.exe FOR /f options

                                FOR /f should have attional options:

                                EACH : same as delims but each delimiter encountered should increment the token counter. Hence with 'delims=,' the text ,col2,col3,,,col6 would assign token1=col2; token2=col3; token3=col6 but 'each=,' would assign token2=col2; token3=col3; token6=col6 (as logical columns 1,4 and 5 ar missing)

                                Option QUOTE should be implemented to turn off recognition of delimiters within "q,u,o,t,e,s"

                                "SKIP=0" should be allowed

                                NEWLINE should be allowed to assign NO tokens on an empty line

                                LINENUM should assign the line number (32-bit limit, not 16-bit) to the LAST token+1. Thus "linenumtokens=1-3" %%A would assign the line number to %%D

                                2 votes
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                                  2 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • Quick launch shortcut

                                  It would be great option to let shell be Quake-style - to have it launched on start and quickly toggled by hotkey. Idea is inspired by Terra Terminal and Guake for *nix

                                  2 votes
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                                    0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                  • Windows Console should support tabbed 'pages'

                                    Great to see some of these improvements, especially the cut/copy/paste keyboard shortcuts. However, I've been seeking for a way for the cmd window to have a tabbed interface for a while. So, for example, I can run a ping/tracert etc. in one tab, a chkdsk in another tab, and something else in a third, without having multiple windows open taking up screen real estate.

                                    Also consider adding panes side-by-side within the console.

                                    1,553 votes
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                                      62 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • cmd.exe enabledelayedexpansion

                                      enabledelayedexpansion/disabledelayedexpansion should be permitted as a swich, a la echo on/echo off rather than just as an option for setlocal which necessitates extraordinary actions to retrieve altered values within the setlocal/endlocal block.

                                      1 vote
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                                        0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • UTF-8

                                        I really really want utf-8, I do not use any legacy console apps from 80-s, so please please please make it happens :)

                                        735 votes
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                                          21 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                                          As Chip said, UTF-16 is rather baked into the stuff we do. The console host does use UTF-16 somewhere in there. :P We just have the matter of dealing with code pages throughout the history of computing existence that causes us heartburn every time we think about how to fix this. :( It’s definitely something that we would like to look into on our backlog.

                                          —Michael

                                        • Make links clickable

                                          Parse console output for urls and make it possible to open them with a click (or ctrl+click).

                                          303 votes
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                                            4 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                                            Yep, this would be really cool. Not just for URLs, but things like paths too. Script emits a path to an error log? Just ctrl+click it to open!

                                            I can see some trickery around the parsing (performance impacts? security? and of course the parsing itself…) and the launching of another app (security again?). But it would be awesome.

                                            It’s on our backlog for sure.

                                            —Michael

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