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Please enable WSL to run 32 bit ELF binaries

It seems that executing 32bit ELF binaries results in "Exec format error" - guessing the kernel doesn't have 32 bit emulation support (compilation is fine, but precompiled binaries don't run). A vast number of legacy programs are still 32 bit, please add support if it won't completely destroy everything in the process - thanks!

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    Anonymous shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    128 comments

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      • Jim Mi commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        ELF32 is deprecated even in linux world, i dont think its wise to support multilib on WSL, if you really need 32bit, go to RHEL which has multilib enabled by default

      • Andrew Campbell commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Yes, quite disappointing. But the way around this is simply to install you favorite linux directly on metal ( your hardware ), then install virtualbox for linux and then install windows 10 inside of virtualbox. It's fairly simple. Then you can run all your favorite linux and windows programs at the same time, natively in each. Once everything is installed, you can select seamless mode in virtualbox. This allows both linux and windows programs to run on the same desktop.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        My use case is to run 32-bit toolchains that target embedded processors. I am currently doing it in a VM but I was hoping that WSL would let me get rid of various layers of complexity. Alas.

      • Paddy K commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Please add support for ELF-32 binaries on WSL x64. Embedded linux systems are elf-32

      • Alejandro Tellez commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        WSL *needs* 32-bit support.
        Not everyone around here is willing to run a virtual machine, or even less risk partitioning their HDD in order to install Linux.
        I've read comments, and it seems most binaries still use some 32-bit code. By not adding 32-bit support, you're turning WSL into quite an useless feature.

      • Andrei commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Question: Using Docker with "Linux Containers" with 'mirrored WSL setup/container' as delegator for executing x86 binaries ?

        Considering the fact that Linux Containers are actually containers that run on top of VM based linux kernel, that should be possible and feasable, with just redirecting only the 32bit ELF to the container.

      • Elin commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Pleease pleease add support for this, it would simplify things alot! :)

      • Maverick commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I would not need the virtual box any more if 32-bit ELF works with WSL. I love WSL and wish to keep using it.

      • Alexey commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        32bit ELF is necessary for me because i need to use gcc and nasm in 32bit mode in my student projects. We study 32bit architecture and supporting ELF 32 is crucial especially for assembler.

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