It’s been a while now since Microsoft declared its love for Linux and, at first, it felt strange to see Windows 10 embrace the Tux penguin. However, the fact that Windows 10 is able to run native Linux applications directly, without having to resort to using virtual machines, is a proof of Microsoft’s new strategy of embracing other ecosystems. Microsoft teamed up with Canonical and now you can install the Ubuntu software subsystem in Windows 10. That allows you to run Bash directly from Windows 10. Strange times we’re living in, right? They are also interesting times, so let’s see how to enable the Linux Bash in Windows 10:
NOTE: The features shared in this article apply only to Windows 10 with Anniversary Update or to Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 14367 or newer. Windows 10 Anniversary Update will be available for free, to all Windows 10 users, as of July 2016.
Step 1. Enable the Developer mode in Windows 10
The first thing you’ll have to do is enable the Developer mode in Windows 10. That is done from the Settings app. The fastest way to open the Settings is to simultaneously press the Windows + I keys on your keyboard, but there are other ways too: 6 ways to open the Settings app in Windows 10.
In the Settings app, click or tap Update & security.
Click or tap For developers in the column on the left. On the right side, select the option called “Developer mode”.
Because the Developer mode allows you to install apps that don’t come from the Windows Store , you will now get a warning that, if you enable the developer features, you “could expose your device and personal data to security risks or harm your device”. Take notice of this warning and don’t install apps from places other than the official Windows Store , unless you absolutely know what you’re doing.
In order to enable the Linux Bash on your Windows 10 computer or device, you will have to agree with this notification, so click or tap Yes to move forward.
Step 2. Install the Windows Subsystem for Linux
O pen the Windows Features window. The fastest way to do it is to use Cortana to search for “windows features” but, if you prefer to open it using the old Control Panel , you can find all the steps explained here: How to add or remove (un)wanted Windows features, programs or apps.
Scroll the list of options from Windows Features and check the feature called “Windows Subsystem for Linux”. Then click or tap OK.
Wait a few moments for Windows 10 to apply the necessary changes.
When the changes are done, Windows 10 will let you know that you have to reboot your computer or device in order to finish installing.
Restart now or choose to restart later if you still have work to do on your Windows 10 computer or device.
Step 3. Download and install Ubuntu on Windows 10
After you rebooted, use Cortana’s search field from the Windows 10 taskbar to look for bash. Click or tap on the bash search result.
Windows 10 will launch the Linux Bash and it will ask you to install Ubuntu on Windows. Type “y” to continue.
Windows 10 will download and install the required files from the Windows Store. You’re going to download about 1 GB of files so, depending on your internet speed, as well as your computer’s performance, this part of the process could take a while.
When Ubuntu on Windows has finished installing, you will be asked to enter a new “UNIX username”. This will be used to create a user account for you. Note that it’s a different account than the one you use for Windows 10, and they don’t have to be the same.
You will also be asked to enter a password for your user account. Once you’ve entered it too, the Linux Bash configuration is over.
Windows 10 will also add a convenient shortcut for Bash on Ubuntu on Windows in your Start Menu , which you can later use to quickly start Bash.
You can now go ahead and use Bash on your Windows 10 computer or device just as you would on a computer running Ubuntu from Canonical.
Enabling the Linux Bash on Windows 10 is not very hard and it implies changing just a few settings. However, working with Bash might be something that’s not quite for everybody. If you are a developer, if you love running commands in a text environment, or if you have some experience in working with Linux, then you’ll probably be very excited with the love Windows 10 how shows to Linux users.