Command Prompt / Console / Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL)

Greetings from the Windows Command-Line Teams, including the Windows Console and Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) teams!

We’re hear to learn about the features you’d like to see in the Windows Console (the terminal app itself), Cmd and PowerShell shells, and the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) upon which several Linux distros now run!

Note: Please don’t file bugs & issues here: file issues on our GitHub repos instead:

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

Windows Console & WSL Teams.

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  1. OpenCL & CUDA GPU support

    It would be nice to have (relatively) easy access to the dedicated GPU's on our Win10 PC's, and OpenCL support for the AMD Drivers & CUDA for NVidia drivers etc.

    What I am thinking on specifically (although there are many many uses for it and CUDA support) is hashing functions that are lackluster within windows itself, but benefit immensely within Linux and Unix.

    Cryptocurrency mining for example, is known to be much faster on Linux systems than Windows. Do you see any support for OpenCL and/or CUDA in the future?

    3,592 votes
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      369 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

      Hey WSL users, as many of you have been asking for an update: we still do not have anything on the books yet for this feature, but we have NOT forgotten this request.

      As we navigate requirements and evaluate our WSL work, we ask that you please continue voicing your desires and upvoting this issue. Feel free to ping me on twitter @CraigWilhite to tell me more about how you’d like to see this feature in WSL.

    • 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.

      1,599 votes
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        65 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • Support AF_PACKET address family (tcpdump/wireshark...)

        From https://github.com/Microsoft/BashOnWindows/issues/1628

        It would be great to get support for AF_PACKET, as some networking tools or software rely on that.

        Samples of tool that won't work without it:
        - tcpdump (socket: Invalid argument)
        - wireshark
        - some nmap functions
        - Scapy

        1,443 votes
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          224 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  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 :)

          757 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 WSL filesystem accessible from Windows

            Access to the Windows filesystem from WSL is easy enough. Now we need access to the WSL filesystem from Windows.

            447 votes
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              11 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • Alternate install location option would be nice

              Currently the only place the linux lxss folder can be located is inside the user's user profile directory. It'd be nice to be able to put this folder anywhere on any drive for those of us with small SSD c: drives.

              431 votes
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                11 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Access to "real" linux devices in /dev

                ...or at least to /dev/sda? (disks) block devices. It could be very powerful to run things like
                dd if=/dev/sda2 of=some-remote-mounted-volume/my-backup-C.img

                391 votes
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                  10 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                  Related to “Add USB Device support”: https://wpdev.uservoice.com/forums/266908-command-prompt-console-bash-on-ubuntu-on-windo/suggestions/16759696-add-usb-device-support

                  This is a common ask and, now that we’ve gotten through most of the fundamental engineering, we’ll be more able to start looking-into device support sometime relatively soon, though no guarantees about when and what ;)

                • Make links clickable

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

                  325 votes
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                    6 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

                  • Mouse Scroll Wheel or CTRL +/- to zoom text size

                    Another needed step to make the Cmd feel more responsive and dynamic.

                    309 votes
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                      on the backlog  ·  10 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Add "sudo" tool/command in cmd/PowerShell

                      On *nix you can run a command from a non-root shell, which is the equivalent of a non-administrator Command Prompt, with administrative privileges, similar to what UAC does when it asks a user if they would like to give an application administrative privileges. To disable a network adapter, for example, you can run "sudo ifconfig eth0 down". The prefixed "sudo" command will run "ifconfig eth0 down" with what is essentially administrator privileges in Windows. Currently you have to do some long-winded (long-typed?) "runas", which requires that a username and password are provided. I don't necessarily need Command Prompt to always…

                      259 votes
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                        7 comments  ·  Cmd (classic shell)  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • A file created in C:\Users\<user>\AppData\Local\lxss\root from Windows isn't visible in WSL

                        I would like to be able to create files in the WSL root directory using Windows tools (VSC, NotePad++...)

                        I can modify files there (e.g. .bashrc) but if I create new files they are not visible from the WSL side.

                        206 votes
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                          19 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • Global hotkey to activate/deactivate running console window.

                          It would be great if there could be a global hotkey to activate and deactivate the console window.

                          This is also called a "quake style" command line, similar to the console in Quake games.

                          For example, if I have the console running in the background, but my current focus is Visual Studio and I hit Ctrl+`, it should activate the console window by making it the current focus. Hitting Ctrl + ` again would make Visual Studio the focus.

                          iTerm2 on the Mac has this and it's my favorite feature.

                          194 votes
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                            14 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                            You will be Rich’s best friend forever. He loves the idea of a Quake console as well and talks about it all the time. :P I know for sure this is in our backlog already.

                            Some of the suggestions like persistence and multiple sessions and whatnot seem related to the “history between sessions” and tabs/multiplexing ideas. Same technical challenges apply, but sounds possible at some point. :)

                            —Michael

                          • Transparency enhancement

                            Transparency is a nice visual enhancement, should generally only apply to the window contents and not the surrounding "chrome" of the window, such as the title bar and scroll bar.

                            Optionally, the Console "frame" could be made transparent when focused/un-focused, controlled via separate transparency slider

                            172 votes
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                              on the backlog  ·  13 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                            • Offline installer for bash

                              It needs to be possible to install bash offline.

                              There are a thousands of us who'd kill to be able to use bash on Windows machines attached to classified and other machines that are offline, and can't ever be connected to the Internet for any reason.

                              168 votes
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                                10 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                                Hey all. Thanks for posting this ask: Its something we hear on a semi-regular basis.

                                We understand and appreciate many of the scenarios in which one might want to install a Linux distro offline using a previously downloaded/acquired image. However, we just didn’t have cycles to handle this request in the Win10AU release.

                                It’s on the backlog and we will consider for a future release.

                              • Support tiled panes in Windows Console

                                Let me start by saying that I love the idea of having tabs on the console. But for me, I like to have as much content on one screen as possible. So usually what I like to do is have on monitor with one window on full screen and have multiple consoles within the same window. That way I don't have to switch between tabs...

                                Here is a example of what I mean: http://imgur.com/7mrfMn9

                                ---

                                Rich: While we added tmux & virtual terminal support in Bash in Win10AU, we need better pane tiling, tabbing, layout, etc. in Windows too.

                                139 votes
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                                  11 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • Backspace should delete selected text

                                  Now that you can easily select text [with ctrl+a or just by dragging over it] and copy and paste text [with ctrl+c & ctrl+d], why not make that we should not be required to delete every character separately?! Please make the backspace and delete key work to delete all selected text.

                                  121 votes
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                                    2 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                                    Oooh yep. That is a natural extension of what we’ve done. It’s just a lot trickier to manipulate the input line (there are different input modes that apps can subscribe to and whatnot) than it is to enable more ways to select the output. But I hear you for sure. Now that we select more like a text editor, I want it all! It’s on the backlog. :)

                                    —Michael

                                  • Linux like mouse click selection and copy/paste

                                    In *Nix systems we can drag select text. Alternatively double left-clicking will smartly select a word/path (etc) boundary. Clicking for the third time selects the entire line. In all instances above it will auto copy to the selection to the clipboard.

                                    Whilst we have some slightly better options with Quick edit and insert mode there's still some subtle differences than the experiences above.

                                    Can we more closely mimic this behaviour?

                                    115 votes
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                                      3 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • Consider adding a status-bar

                                      2.Please add an (optional) status-bar showing the cursor position in X:Y coordinates, Insert key mode, Text selection mode, etc.

                                      [Transposed from my original asks posted in 2011 :)]

                                      92 votes
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                                        on the backlog  ·  4 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • Consider supporting zoom

                                        As I get older, my eyes are struggling to focus on tiny text.

                                        It'd be awesome if the new Win10 console could support zooming in and out via keyboard shortcuts like [CTRL] [+] and [CTRL] [-] and via [CTRL] [mousewheel] and via touch-pinch.

                                        38 votes
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                                          on the backlog  ·  4 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • 35 votes
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                                            on the backlog  ·  5 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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