Ubuntu’s makers Canonical had worked with Microsoft to bring you the much debated Bash on Windows. Although the same has had mixed reviews, many hardcore Linux users questioned its usability and some even considered Bash on Windows a security risk.
Unix’s Bash shell was ported to Windows using a new feature called the “Windows Subsystem for Linux” or the WSL. We already saw how you can install Bash on Windows easily.
The Bash on Windows from Canonical and Microsoft is simply the command line version of Ubuntu, not the regular graphical user interface.
Well, the good thing about Linux enthusiasts is that give them some time and they’ll do things on Windows Subsystem for Linux for which even the original developers will react with, “Wait, we can do that?”.
That’s precisely what is happening out there.
Yes. IT IS Ubuntu’s Unity shell running on Windows! Pablo Gonzalez, a programmer who goes by the name Guerra24 on GitHub has put together this beauty. With this, he has shown that what we can do with the Windows Subsystem for Linux is much more than what it previously was conceived for.
Now if Ubuntu Unity can be put on Windows subsystem, why not some other Linux distribution?
Arch Linux for Bash on Windows
Hold on, hold on there. The project is still in beta. It is being developed by “mintxomat” on GitHub and is currently is on version 0.6. The first stable version will be released in late December this year.
Well, what’s the distinguishing point this project brings to the table?
You might already know that the Windows Subsystem for Linux is available on Windows 10 exclusively. But Arch Linux on Windows Subsystem for Linux (AWSL) has been successfully tested on windows7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012(R2) and Windows 10 of course.
Whoa, how did they do it?
The developer says that AWSL protocol achieves this kind of portability by abstracting different frameworks available on different versions of Windows. So it’s the next level when AWSL finally hits 1.0. And as we discussed the portability stuff already, this project will be the first to bring Bash on all versions of Windows.
This project is ambitious and promising. If You can’t wait till December then go ahead and give it a try. Just remember it’s a developers preview which is unstable at the moment. But hey, when’s that stopped us?
You can check out the project on GitHub:
Do share the article and let people know Arch Linux is going to land on Windows soon. Also, let us know which distro you want to see on WSL next. Cheers.
Update: It’s been over a year and it is still not available officially. Meanwhile, installing Arch Linux as your main OS is always the option.