Windows Subsystem for Linux Windows Interoperability Brings Linux Commands to Windows CLI

The Windows Subsystem for Linux can invoke native Windows binaries and be invoked from a Windows command line. This feature is available to Windows 10 users running Anniversary Update build 14951. This new interoperability functionality delivers a seamless experience between Windows and WSL. Technical details on how this interoperability works can be found on the WSL blog.

Source: Windows Interoperability | MSDN

This is pretty cool. From either command prompt (CMD) or PowerShell you can use the syntax bash -c “ls -la” to invoke basic Linux commands without launching the Ubuntu environment. More advanced tools like curl are also available.

The article indicates the reverse is also true but I wasn’t able to get Windows binaries running from the bash window. I don’t know if it’s a bug or something about my configuration.


Windows gets bash(ed) plus a full shot of Ubuntu

More importantly than bringing the shell over to Windows, developers will now be able to write their .sh Bash scripts on Windows, as well (or use Emacs to edit their code). Microsoft noted that this will work through a new Linux subsystem in Windows 10 that Microsoft worked on with Canonical.

Microsoft is bringing the Bash shell to Windows 10 | TechCrunch

So this if what all those Microsoft folks at Great Wide Open were so damn giddy about a couple of weeks ago. I must say I’m dumbfounded. Bash will roll out in a Windows 10 update this summer, sooner if you’re part of the Insider program.