Ubuntu Bash on Windows 10    

Oct. 13, 2016, 12:17 p.m.

Bash on Windows 10

I run on GNU/Linux on all my machines at home(a mix Arch, Mint, and Ubuntu), and nd until recently, I used Ubuntu at work as well. Now, I work in an environment where Windows  10 is the platform for development. We use a set of standard tools: IntelliJ, Git, Bitbucket, JIRA, etc.. So far everything is going well. I remember reading a couple of articles on Bash on Windows 10. So, naturally, one of the first things I did, was installing Bash. I don't have anything against Windows, I just prefer to do my development in a GNU/Linux environment.

To my surprise, Bash on Windows is not just Bash. Trying to enable it gives a hint. You first have to enable Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL). Then, you can turn on Windows feature Bash on Ubuntu (I am writing this from memory, don't quote me on the name).If you run lsb_release -a, you will get the following output (screenshot from Microsoft's site).

Command Prompt output from Microsoft

It is running Ubuntu user-mode binaries from Canonical. To learn more or for installation instruction head over to Microsoft's site. To be honest, I had no idea what that meant. Well, it turns out that a lot more is available than just standard bash commands. You get to create a sudo user during installation. You can run sudo apt-get <option> [parameter]. The Ubuntu repositories are available to you, and you can add PPA's if need be.

 

Running graphics apps

On Microsoft's website, it states that Bash does not support graphical applications. But I was successful at running GitG.`

To run graphical applications head over to sourceforge (or any other sources) and install and launch Xming X Server for Windows. Launch Ubuntu bash. Edit your bashrc file with vi (vi ~/.bashrc) or the editor of your choice and append this line: export DISPLAY=:0.  Now, you can install graphical applications from Ubuntu repositories and launch them. I have only tried this with GitG so far. I cannot confirm for other applications. 

Please comment below if you've had success with other graphical apps. Thank you

 

 


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