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Microsoft Promotes Windows Subsystem For Linux "WSL" To GA Status

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  • Microsoft Promotes Windows Subsystem For Linux "WSL" To GA Status

    Phoronix: Microsoft Promotes Windows Subsystem For Linux "WSL" To GA Status

    While the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) has been around for six years now and with WSL2 is on to running graphical Linux apps with GPU acceleration and a wide array of capabilities, including the ability to run systemd and the like, only today has Microsoft promoted WSL to "general availability" status on Windows 10 and Windows 11...

    https://www.phoronix.com/news/WSL-GA-Windows

  • #2
    While it's always nice to see increased Linux usage, having this tucked away inside Windows means even less incentive for corporation desktops to switch over to a bare-metal setup.

    In the end, Microsoft's embrace mentality always turns out to be a winning strategy for them, unfortunately...

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Linuxxx View Post
      While it's always nice to see increased Linux usage, having this tucked away inside Windows means even less incentive for corporation desktops to switch over to a bare-metal setup.

      In the end, Microsoft's embrace mentality always turns out to be a winning strategy for them, unfortunately...
      Correct on all counts, but can you blame them? The corporate desktop is cornerstone of the Microsoft empire. All other Microsoft products are tied to it - MS Office, Exchange, Active Directory, Sharepoint, etc. They'll defend their corporate peecee marketshare like their existence depends on it, because it does.

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      • #4
        Original WSL still exists? I thought it was dropped...

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Linuxxx View Post
          While it's always nice to see increased Linux usage, having this tucked away inside Windows means even less incentive for corporation desktops to switch over to a bare-metal setup.

          In the end, Microsoft's embrace mentality always turns out to be a winning strategy for them, unfortunately...
          I dont mind it, I just wish we had a better way to run windows inside of VMs, maybe one day, well at least we have wine

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Quackdoc View Post

            I dont mind it, I just wish we had a better way to run windows inside of VMs, maybe one day, well at least we have wine
            It does make me wonder what the long game is with WSL. If this is a crawl, walk, run, fly strategy then I suppose WSL1.0 was crawl, and WSL2.0 is walk. What's the userbase saying about it and is it simply a toy that lets those in Windows-land play but with no serious look towards production-level use. As a Windows guy who's played with everything from BeOS, QNX, BSDs, Plan9 and walks around with a Parted Magic bootable USB in his pocket, WSL simply confounds me. My perception of it is simply Microsoft selling it as "Hey, Windows can also do this thing." But I just don't see the utility of it when you can bare metal and get get full on perf rather than this off brand environment. Maybe I don't know enough about it to even judge it but it certainly doesn't seem to make much news that I come across. Gonna have to wait until WSL3.0?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by kozman View Post

              It does make me wonder what the long game is with WSL. If this is a crawl, walk, run, fly strategy then I suppose WSL1.0 was crawl, and WSL2.0 is walk. What's the userbase saying about it and is it simply a toy that lets those in Windows-land play but with no serious look towards production-level use. As a Windows guy who's played with everything from BeOS, QNX, BSDs, Plan9 and walks around with a Parted Magic bootable USB in his pocket, WSL simply confounds me. My perception of it is simply Microsoft selling it as "Hey, Windows can also do this thing." But I just don't see the utility of it when you can bare metal and get get full on perf rather than this off brand environment. Maybe I don't know enough about it to even judge it but it certainly doesn't seem to make much news that I come across. Gonna have to wait until WSL3.0?
              My primary usage is accessing Linux file systems and disks on Windows so I can have the file system benefits of Linux and the gaming benefits of Windows at the same time. There's the elephant in the room of DirectStorage, but, all things considered, copy/pasting games to the right drive isn't a big deal.

              While it might not be the best for production use, it works great for prototyping and developing because you can test on Linux and Windows environments very easily and you can use a workflow that consists of Windows and Linux tools. In regards to performance, bare metal will almost always win, but WSL2 doesn't need the best performance. Like Wine, DXVK, QEMU, and other such things, WSL2 just has to run stuff good enough. It doesn't help that like Wine, DXVK, and QEMU, WSL2 can get near to bare metal performance with certain things.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by kozman View Post

                It does make me wonder what the long game is with WSL. If this is a crawl, walk, run, fly strategy then I suppose WSL1.0 was crawl, and WSL2.0 is walk. What's the userbase saying about it and is it simply a toy that lets those in Windows-land play but with no serious look towards production-level use. As a Windows guy who's played with everything from BeOS, QNX, BSDs, Plan9 and walks around with a Parted Magic bootable USB in his pocket, WSL simply confounds me. My perception of it is simply Microsoft selling it as "Hey, Windows can also do this thing." But I just don't see the utility of it when you can bare metal and get get full on perf rather than this off brand environment. Maybe I don't know enough about it to even judge it but it certainly doesn't seem to make much news that I come across. Gonna have to wait until WSL3.0?
                all WSL2 is, is a pretty well integrated VM, and its preformance is pretty good, (gpu perf is kinda poop tho due to the backwards way of implementation that windows elected for). so it does the job of letting you run linux apps on windows pretty well, in fact, right now if you want to do some serious video encoding, WSL2 is actually pretty good way to go about it assuming you don't need gpu stuff, (like vulkan) as you could spin up an arch vm using wsl2, and use av1an. which actually leads to better preformance then just using windows due to scheduling benefits of the linux kernel.

                it also is quite nice for development, since the development and compilation ecosystem on linux is IMO far better then windows. and things like webserver hosting if you are trying stuff works really well too via wsl2. ofc I prefer native linux, but WSL2 for windows users is actually really nice

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                • #9
                  I still find it garbage compared to the real deal and will continue to recommend people Linux!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Linuxxx View Post
                    While it's always nice to see increased Linux usage, having this tucked away inside Windows means even less incentive for corporation desktops to switch over to a bare-metal setup.

                    In the end, Microsoft's embrace mentality always turns out to be a winning strategy for them, unfortunately...
                    I find it half ironic Linux users don't understand the desktop market, although it's also half fitting given how Linux has never been successful in the desktop space to begin with, so that's a given.

                    For the record, Microsoft has already lost the desktop space. Only Microsoft knows this, nobody else. They know they've lost to Android and mobile phones, the only thing they have left are their two most profitable ventures: Cloud computing (Azure), their new biggest revenue stream, and data collection, their second biggest revenue stream. Desktop is an old market for them, one they have solid footing in, but one they are not fooling themselves into believing is sustainable. Windows has not been their primary market for a long time.

                    Believe it or not, Microsoft has always had a semi-altruistic outlook about developers. Microsoft has always been developer-first. This is to get more software for their platform so they get more customers. At times, this has been out of genuine altruism. At other times, it really was just a marketing strategy. But either way you flip it, they're developer first.
                    This is why WSL exists. Any other company (even Microsoft from the past) would have disregarded Linux as a waste of time. Microsoft (especially modern Microsoft led by Satya) knew that developers simply liked what Linux was. Not trying to sway Linux devs, not trying to encroach on it's market. Literally just letting developers use the tools they like instead of trying to blindly suppress or ignore it, so that developers wouldn't completely abandon their platform.

                    WSL is genuinely a case of MS just giving people what they want. If anything, it was probably spurred by Microsoft employees themselves (you do realize Microsoft is run by humans and it's not a robot empire? Maybe the higher-ups are pointy-headed bosses but it's still the hacker-run company it's always been), the same people who initiated VSCode and .NET's open source ventures. Microsoft likes to have all their ventures lead back to their monopoly, but ultimate, they have always been developer-first and they largely just make things developers want, it's up to you how invested you get.

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