Microsoft turns WSL into a Windows 11 app

turned Microsoft Corporation’s Windows Subsystem for Linux WSL into an application that you can simply download and install from its App Store via Windows 11.

WSL is the compatibility layer for running Linux binary executables implicitly in Windows 10, Windows 11, and Windows Server 2019.

In May 2019, WSL 2 was announced, introducing significant changes as the true Linux kernel through a subset of Hyper-V features.

WSL allows developers to run the GNU/Linux environment – including most command line tools, utilities, and applications – directly through Windows without modification and without a virtual machine or dual boot setup.

A preview version of the app is now available, allowing Windows 11 users to install WSL without having to head to Add/Remove Programs and select WSL as an optional Windows component.

This separate app is now serviced through the Store, which means the company can update WSL independently of Windows. This allows WSL users to get the latest updates and features of WSL faster, without having to modify your version of Windows.

Although there have been no new changes with this Store app release yet, this means that future updates can appear without having to wait for a larger version or update of Windows.

The company enabled GUI applications for Linux via Windows 10 for developers last year.

As a result, running graphical Linux applications based on X11 and Wayland is now available. Features like these will be available immediately in the Microsoft Store in the future.

Read also: How to use Android apps in Windows 11

Microsoft Offers Linux Integration With Windows In Its Store

The new app in the Store seems to work on Windows 11 only. The company did not mention Windows 10 in its blog post, which indicates that you need to update to take advantage of the Microsoft Store app.

However, this is good news for Windows 11 users. Especially those who work in enterprise environments where it takes a bit longer to get the latest versions of Windows.

In addition, the company continues to support the optional component version of WSL. This is so you can run it side by side. It also aims to move Windows 11 users to the Microsoft Store version.

Our goals are to make WSL in the Microsoft Store the best way to install and use WSL. You can get the latest updates faster through this path. In the long run we would like to move WSL users to use the Store version.

Read also: The most prominent performance issues in Windows 11

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