Getting Started with Windows Subsystem for Linux Unlock the Power of Linux and Web Development from the Comfort of your Windows Desktop

  • Nathan Haines

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Learn what you need to know to manage a command-line interface with a powerful new twist using Bash on Ubuntu on Windows. This video shows you that Windows Subsystem for Linux is an exciting new technology that allows Windows users to run Linux applications right on their Windows desktop without virtual machines or complicated setup. Exploring the Linux command line or testing exciting web technologies becomes a breeze.

You will learn basic operating system concepts, how Windows and Linux are different, how to install Windows Subsystem for Linux and Ubuntu on Windows using the Windows Store, and how to navigate the command line and install and maintain Linux software in a secure manner. You will be able to use the Linux command line; recognize various error messages; use Windows to execute instructions found in books and web forums; and develop documentation to set up and work with web frameworks that assume the user is running Linux.

Text software interfaces can be intimidating when first encountered by novice users, and expert users may be more familiar with DOS-style text commands. This video clearly and calmly explains what is happening when the screen fills up with text or when no response is given, helping to take the confusion out of the text experience.

What You Will Learn

  • Install Windows Subsystem for Linux

  • Understand how Windows and Linux can fit together

  • Use command-line basics

  • Manage software

  • Work with Files

Who This Video Is For

Those who want to use Linux on their Windows desktop to work with Linux software

This video covers what you need to know to manage a command-line interface with a powerful new twist using Bash on Ubuntu on Windows. It shows you that Windows Subsystem for Linux is an exciting new technology that allows Windows users to run Linux applications right on their Windows desktop.

About The Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan Haines is an author, instructor, speaker, and computer consultant who fell in love with Ubuntu in 2005, and helped found the Ubuntu California Local Community Team to share that excitement with others. As a current leader of Ubuntu California and a member of the Ubuntu Local Community Council, he works to help others share Ubuntu worldwide.

When not working with computers, he’s more than likely admiring the latest Nintendo hardware, wishing he had more time for retro console and PC gaming, and indulging in linguistic curiosity by studying German or dabbling in Old English or Tolkien’s constructed Elvish languages. The queue of sci-fi and fantasy books on his Kindle is probably growing instead of shrinking, although sometimes camping trips help with that.

As a hybrid author who enjoys stiff drinks, moonlit walks on the beach, and five-star reviews on his books, he would love to hear from you at


About this video

Nathan Haines
Online ISBN
Total duration
1 hr 8 min
Copyright information
© Nathan Haines 2020

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Video Transcript

Welcome to getting started with Windows Subsystem for Linux. My name’s Nathan Haines, and I’m the author of the book, Beginning Ubuntu for Windows and Mac Users, where I give simple, practical advice to everyday computer users who want to use Ubuntu. In these videos, I’m here to talk to web developers and other IT pros and enthusiasts who want to use Windows and the desktop, but still want to work with Linux software without doing a full Linux install on a new computer or virtual machine.

Windows Subsystem for Linux, or WSL for short, gives you the full power of the Linux command line on your existing Windows 10 computer. And I’m going to help you get started. First, I’ll talk about where Windows and Linux came from. I won’t go too deep, but a little history will explain why they seem so different at times. And then I’ll explain where WSL fits in.

Next, I’ll show you how to enable WSL and install Ubuntu. There are several Linux distributions available, but Ubuntu is the best place to start if you’ve never used Linux before. Once everything is ready to go, I’ll go over some command line basics, so you can move around on the command line. And you’ll know how the Linux file system works.

Then I’ll talk about how to maintain and care for your Linux environment. Checking for updates and installing new software is simple. And I’ll explain how to keep everything up to date. I’ll show you how to edit text files from the command line, and how you can access your windows files from Linux and your Linux files from your favorite Windows applications. So you can continue to use your favorite development and text editing tools together with Linux.

Then I’ll step through a quick install of some Linux software to bring it all together. We’ll follow the online documentation for installing on a Linux server. Everything works perfectly, because with WSL, you’re working with real Linux tools and software.

Last of all, I’ll cover some housekeeping tasks, such as removing or reinstalling the Linux environment. After these videos, you’ll be able to use Windows Subsystem for Linux to work with Linux software on your Windows computer, and all that experience will transfer to actual Linux servers. I’m looking forward to taking this journey together with you.