News:Big news from Microsoft. BASH on windows.
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6.5 years ago
poisonAlien ★ 3.1k

Microsoft dropped the news at Build 2016. BASH will be finally arriving on windows.

"This is not a VM. This is not cross-compiled tools. This is native." -Microsoft's Kevin Gallo

I have seen many posts on this forum regarding which laptop to buy and most of the answers suggesting MAC. Considering how expensive mac systems are, this is great news for those who own a windows laptop and still be able to take advantage of powerful shell. Great news for developers overall !

windows News • 2.9k views
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I am not sure what this means. BASH alone does very little, it is just a shell, and it is not all that great at that either.

Does this mean that POSIX type of C code can be compiled on windows? That would be huge and in fact would make Windows suited for Bioinformatics.

(edit: I see that it is a full VM, it is really strange to call that BASH on windows, it feels like a there is something not stated here )

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Is this a Windows 10 only feature (have not seen the video on theverge yet)?

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To boost windows 10's sale, it's most likely to be windows 10 exclusive.

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I don't think it will boost sales in any way as 99.9% of Windows users could not care less. Anyway, this is very nice news but I don't believe it before I see it. Are they e.g. going to provide all GNU coreutils with the shell? Time will tell. Edit. I see it's basically Ubuntu VM on top of Windows.

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Linus Torvalds in a 1998 interview with CNN:

".. what if Bill Gates called and said he wanted to develop for Linux?"

.

"If Microsoft ever does applications for Linux it means I've won."

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No, I think this is a huge step in the right direction.

There are quite a few number of people that pick Mac OSX because it gives them access to most Unix tools: servers, databases etc.

In the past people could not build lots of cool stuff on Windows because they did not have access to the vast open source pool of software - now they have.

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GNU Coreutils was always available as a third party EXE, and so was Ubuntu VM using VirtualBox or VMWare. I don't see how this is in anyway going to improve my life unless I can open a terminal from Windows, run a unix command with pipes and such.

A good start would be replacing \r\n with just \n, as Windows is the only OS using the carriage return character now. Until then, I'm not accepting Windows as a valid platform for text processing even.

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oh yes, it works just like that:

you open a terminal and run a unix command with pipes and such.

It is an Ubuntu shell that it opens,

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OMG! If that's the case, I am definitely sold. While I am still going to buy a MBP later this year, I can at least put my Windows 10 laptop to good use. FWIW, I hope Windows abandons its registry and moves to a root-folder based organization, leaving behind stuff like the GAC and DLL hell :D

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Even I have not seen the video yet. (Sitting in lab and I dont want others to think I'm the guy who watches videos at work :D ). It looks like its going to be windows 10 exclusive. But a great news anyways.

They made windows 10 as a free upgrade. And now this ! kudos microsoft.

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I Switched to the rapid developer preview track months ago just to unlock this feature and test it out. It's pretty slick and people have been messing around with it for awhile. It was designed to target developers, because OS X has taken a lot of market share in that segment. I still prefer OSX overall, but this is a great step for MS. Definitely makes the platform more flexible and viable as a development and scientific platform

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6.5 years ago
GenoMax 120k

Being able to SSH/SFTP without having to install another program/emulator is a welcome development.

Here is some additional information from Scott Hanselman (from the comments section from the blog link included in original post). I am copying this here since it would be of interest (and there is no way to link Scott's comment from that blog directly).

• It's real binaries.
• syscalls to the Linux kernel are handled by the Windows kernel
• You can apt install whatever. I've added my own sources, and apt'ed from there.
• conhost was updated with VT100, ANSI, and lots more support which ALL console apps (bash, md, powershell, etc) inherit.
• There's no HyperV or virtualization here. Run cpuspeed or cat /proc/cpuinfo and check it out.
• If a linux process opens a port then a windows proc can't open that port.
• max path is only an issue with explorer, but you can do as deep as you want in the Linux FS and have issues (possibly) with /mnt/c just as you would with Samba.

Christopher Price added this

Not exactly. Think of it as the kernel being taught to execute Linux APIs.

When Apple debuted OS X, it could run legacy apps (OS 9) in the Carbon API set, or OS X apps through the Cocoa API set. This is similar to how Windows 10 works - Microsoft "simply" added a .sys driver that contained a port of Linux kernel APIs to the Windows NT kernel.

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syscalls to the Linux kernel are handled by the Windows kernel

Hm. I'm suspicious. I already hate having to write sepurate Python code for Linux and for Windows. Now i need to write it for Linux, Windows, and Linux on Windows? :P But hey, if the opposite is true and any linux code will now run seemlessly on windows, then i'll be very happy. Big question for me is what will an os.fork() do.

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You should be able to execute your Linux-written scripts under this system. As far as Python is concerned it is running on linux, not windows.

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6.2 years ago
durand.dc ▴ 50

I've installed the latest version of windows 10 (preview version 14393.0), and I've tried bioperl, hmmer, blast+, java in the bash environment. They work fine (I know these programs have native windows version). As far as I know, this environment is quite complete, one can just use it as what you do with a real Ubuntu system. I also tried cygwin days before, it was painful, and if you need it to be complete, it took a lot of disk space and a huge amount of time to install and update. While with windows 10 bash, it is small and complete out of box. Really handy when using apt-get command. I am a linux beginner, I find it is better to learn it this way than using a slow virtual machine. Hope I am right about it.

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Final Windows 10 anniversary update (which will include this functionality) is supposed to be released August 2nd. I am (dare I say we are .. perhaps not) cautiously optimistic that this is a good thing in the long run. It is going to take time for developers tor react once the final update is available and for us to figure out how to make things work.

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This is actually huge, will be a fully functional option when it comes of Bioinformatics. It is very responsive and fast.

I've been playing around with it as well. It is a close to being a full fledged Ubuntu system. Calling it BASH is a misnomer, it is a Unix virtual machine like virtual box (but without the X-Windows capabilities).

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The full name is actually Bash on Ubuntu on Windows. People have shortened it to Bash on Windows for convenience. And while it seems like a VM it isn't really correct to call it one for various technical reasons since it is quite a deep integration. My understanding is that the interface layer that acts as an API for system calls to the kernel is much thinner. You also don't get the same interference between system resources and the OS like you do with a virtual machine.

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blast2.4.0+ would not work, while blast2.2.25+ from the ubuntu archive works fine.

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Now for the next step - using apt-get to install and manage software that Windows apps can then use so I can sudo apt-get update my way into bliss :)

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6.5 years ago

Well, it will be nice to compare with CygWin, which is very nice and configurable indeed, and available for almost any version of Windows, not just Windows 10

I will ask myself if this is only bash or it will allow to work with linux programs as well.. Having Windows and native Linux installed at the same time...

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I've found MobaXterm to be the most convenient solution for Windows. Not exactly the same as Cygwin, but very useful nonetheless.

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From what I have seen in the video, (almost) everything that can be installed and run via the command line is fair game. The video does not mention linux applications that required a GUI. It a test version though.

As far as I am concerned I will stick linux distros (Ubuntu) in my computers, but it could be useful to teach stuff to the lab people.

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To date (March 2018) you can install a GUI into your WSL (WSL is the Windows Linux System without problems. Several links like this one can be followed