WSL: A game Changer for Windows Developers


Windows Subsystem for Linux is a compatibility layer in Windows that allows users to run native Linux command-line tools and software directly on a Windows operating system without the need for a virtual machine or dual-boot setup.

Are you tired of the limitations of Windows development? WSL can change that. Here are five reasons why you should use WSL for developing.

benefits of wSL for developers

1. Access to Linux tools and libraries

One of the biggest advantages of using WSL for development is the ability to access Linux tools and libraries from within the Windows environment. You can use Linux libraries and packages in your projects, which can greatly simplify development and improve compatibility across different platforms.

2. Consistency across environments

A benefit of using WSL is the ability to maintain consistency across different development environments. With WSL, you can develop and test your code on a Linux environment that is similar to what you’ll encounter on a production server.

3. Improved performance

Running Linux tools and software natively on Windows machines can be challenging, but WSL has improved this significantly. WSL 2, in particular, uses a virtual machine to provide a more seamless experience, with better performance and compatibility. This means that you can run Linux tools and software on your Windows machine without sacrificing speed or stability.

4. Ease of setup

You can install WSL from the Microsoft Store or using PowerShell, and then choose a Linux distribution to run on your machine. The whole process takes just a few minutes, and you’ll have access to all the benefits of Linux in no time.

5. Flexibility

Finally, flexibility. Use either a Windows or Linux-based IDE, depending on your preference. Plus, select different Linux distributions depending on your project’s requirements. With WSL, you can run a Linux environment on your Windows machine, and enjoy the best of both worlds.

Installation of WSL and the distribution

  • To install WSL on your machine, open PowerShell or Windows Command Prompt in administrator mode, type “wsl –install” and restart your machine. This will activate the essential features and install the Ubuntu distribution of Linux.
  • When installing WSL, Ubuntu is the default Linux distribution. To change it, use “wsl –install -d <Distribution Name>”. For available distributions, use “wsl –list –online” or “wsl -l -o”. To install additional distributions, use “wsl –install -d <Distribution Name>” after the initial install.
  • After installing WSL, it’s necessary to create a user account and password for your new Linux distribution.
  • To check which version of WSL you’re running and view installed Linux distributions, use “wsl -l -v” in PowerShell or Command Prompt. To set the default version to WSL 1 or 2 for new installations, use “wsl –set-default-version <Version#>”.


In conclusion, using WSL for development offers many benefits, including access to Linux tools and libraries, consistency across environments, improved performance, ease of setup, and greater flexibility. If you’re a developer who wants to take advantage of these benefits, then WSL is definitely worth considering. With WSL, you can run a Linux environment on your Windows machine, and enjoy the best of both worlds.

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