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How to Update WSL

How to Update WSL

The Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) bridges the gap between Windows and Linux, allowing developers to harness the power of both operating systems simultaneously. Whether you’re a seasoned developer or just getting started, keeping your WSL up-to-date ensures you have access to the latest features, security enhancements, and performance improvements.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to update WSL on your Windows machine. Let’s dive in!

How to Update WSL

  1. Install WSL

You can now install everything you need to run WSL with a single command. Open PowerShell or Windows Command Prompt in administrator mode and enter the following command:

 wsl –install

This command enables the features necessary to run WSL and installs the default Ubuntu distribution of Linux. If you prefer a different distribution, you can change it later (more on that below).

  1. Change the Default Linux Distribution

By default, the installed Linux distribution is Ubuntu. To change the distribution, use the -d flag. For example, to install a different distribution (e.g., Debian), enter:

 

wsl –install -d Debian

Replace <Distribution Name> with the name of the distribution you want to install. To see available distributions, use:

wsl –list –online

How to Update WSL

3. Upgrade to WSL 2 (Optional)

If you’re still using WSL 1, consider upgrading to WSL 2 for improved performance and compatibility. Follow these steps:

  1. Open an elevated PowerShell.
  2. Run the following command to enable the WSL optional feature:

3.  dism.exe /online /enable-feature /featurename:Microsoft-Windows-Subsystem-Linux /all /norestart

  1. Restart your machine.

4. Update the WSL Kernel (Windows 11)

On Windows 11, you can update the WSL kernel and other components with a single command. Open PowerShell or Command Prompt (admin) and run:

wsl –update

How to Update WSL

Conclusion

Keeping your WSL up-to-date ensures a smooth development experience. Whether you’re a Linux enthusiast or a Windows developer, WSL bridges the gap and empowers you to work seamlessly across both worlds.

Remember to check for updates periodically and explore additional Linux distributions to find the one that best suits your needs. Happy coding! 🚀

 

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