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. 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.

    448 votes
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      12 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    • VPN / Routing support in bash

      The Bash shell should understand VPN / routing changes in windows sow ssh works with DNS names and routing

      152 votes
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        5 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • Sound card & ALSA support

        Consider adding support for sound cards & ALSA to WSL?

        290 votes
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          26 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

          I want to point out that we have very clear that WSL does not support X/GUI desktops, apps, and tools.

          This said, we totally understand the utility of audio support in several scenarios. While this is not currently a high priority for us, it’s something we’ll definitely consider for the future.

          If you’re interested in accessibility & screen reader support, we’ve actually exposed the contents of the Windows Console to UIA for the first time in Fall Creators Update, allowing Narrator & other screen readers to read command-line output more easily: https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/commandline/2017/10/11/whats-new-in-windows-console-in-windows-10-fall-creators-update/

        • 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

          417 votes
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            13 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 ;)

          • Wayland Compositor implementation and library integration

            Currently, graphical programs in Linux use a variety of technologies to render their output. Microsoft has expressed interest in eventually supporting Linux-based GUI programs.

            In order to implement this, Microsoft should implement a translation layer to allow WDDM to act as a Wayland compositor. Microsoft should also reroute calls to SDL, Cairo, and OpenGL to their respective Windows versions, which in the case of 1 and 3 are already mature (Cairo on Windows has an immature DX2D implementation and a mature Win32 GDI implementation).

            While writing a whole compositor translation layer is likely a huge amount of work, it also…

            37 votes
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              1 comment  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • Things that we miss (Our experience using BashOnWindows)

              Hi, we are a team who work using node.js. We are very excited about BashOnWindow because using it, we can write bash scripts to setup, and start our development environment in any OS. There is only two things that we miss in order to use it efectively:

              * Launch new terminals: Since there is no graphic server, We can't run commands in a new terminal. For example, I can't write a script that starts 'webpack-dev-server' and 'meteor'. In practice, this is a huge limitation.

              * Lack of file exposure: If you copy a file from Windows to BashOnWindows using the…

              5 votes
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                0 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Really need a visual bell for accessibility reasons

                Implement an option to enable a visual bell and another to disable the audible bell. This would greatly improve accessibility of the console and provide a quieter option for the tab-centric autocompletionist.

                2 votes
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                  0 comments  ·  Console/Terminal  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • Use Bash in Visual studio

                  It would be nice if I can use Bash inside Visual studio just like use powershell in Visual Studio.

                  77 votes
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                    2 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                  • Add snappy package system support

                    Ubuntu is pioneering a new packaging format called Snappy: https://www.ubuntu.com/desktop/snappy

                    It would be great to get this supported and implemented in WSL's Ubuntu - the important bits to support in the WSL Kernel I believe are AppArmor (http://wiki.apparmor.net/index.php/Main_Page) equivalents which are built into the Linux Kernel as an optional item to add Mandatory Access Controls.

                    In userland, snapd needs to be running via Systemd, so background daemons potentially need to be added.

                    21 votes
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                      1 comment  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Host an apt repository specifically for WSL packages, configured by default in WSL sources.list

                      I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person with or soon to have a Linux-side package that is specific to the WSL environment.

                      It would be useful if Microsoft supported an apt repository that these packages could be submitted to (since obviously they should not be in the standard Ubuntu repositories) which would be included in the default /etc/apt/sources.list, to ease finding and installing these under WSL.

                      49 votes
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                        2 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • Printing from Bash on Ubuntu on Windows (CUPS Print Spooler)

                        It would be great to be able to print from WSL using the familiar lp command, as one does in ordinary Linux. I've tried installing and starting CUPS, but am having problems doing so. Having a means of printing, whether using CUPS itself, or emulating CUPS by connecting it somehow to the Windows printing system, would be very useful.

                        11 votes
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                          1 comment  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • Consider making bash work better with VS and VS Code

                          It will be convenient if VS and VS Code can debug python and C/C++ console programs with python and gcc/g++ in WSL.

                          48 votes
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                            1 comment  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  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.

                            171 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.

                            • 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.

                              211 votes
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                                19 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                              • Use interoperable NTFS symlinks in DrvFS when possible

                                From recent blog post I understand a new type of reparse point was introduced to support symlinks. This new reparse point type is not understood by windows.

                                If instead this type was only used when necessary (e.g. symlinks to devices) and interoperable types used for the more common file/directory symlinks a significant barrier would be removed.

                                Bypassing the traditional access restrictions on symlink creation does not seem like an unreasonable risk given the target userbase.

                                114 votes
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                                  3 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • lm-sensors

                                  lm-sensors is a great tool I used to check my CPU temperature.
                                  On Windows 10 Bash is not working.

                                  If you ported Bash on Windows 10 I suppose is to use tools like this one.

                                  12 votes
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                                    1 comment  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                  • Allow changes to stack size via the ulimit command

                                    The stack size on WSL is currently static. It would be great to have the flexibility to change it in bash using the ulimit command.

                                    My interest in this is admittedly narrow (it comes up in scientific computing with legacy code) but I imagine there would be other uses.

                                    64 votes
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                                      15 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • SHIFT+PU/PD not scrolling #1035

                                      idea already captured in github issue. Just wanted to promote it.

                                      shift+up
                                      shift+pageup

                                      should scroll up the console output buffer with keyboard only... not needing mouse.

                                      4 votes
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                                        2 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • it's awesome, but ... TUN device would be nice

                                        First of all: http://content.screencast.com/users/iksiq/folders/Jing/media/d81387e0-40ca-4bcc-b408-3c85b4749f06/2016-08-22_1336.png - that's just awesome ;-)

                                        Also, stuff like NVM, GVM, RVM - works really, really well - finally multiple versions of GO and NODE! ;-)

                                        But, it would be awesome to have access to TUN/TAP devices to be able to run openvpn connections and use bridged networking from under of ie. qemu.

                                        That would definitevly allow me to move from things like "cygwin" or other odd hacks - i'm really tired with them and i must admint, atm. i'm only waiting for full support of alienware hardware on linux to move. But with all of that…

                                        50 votes
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                                          3 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • netstat appears to report nothing

                                          Typing netstat , netstat -an etc provides no results, where the console version works fine.

                                          16 votes
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                                            2 comments  ·  WSL/Bash  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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