Install Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL 1) – Installing Ubuntu 20.04 LTS


In this guide I will be showing you how you can install the Windows Subsystem for Linux on Windows 10. An update to this will be released in Windows 10 version 2004 in late May 2020. You can find out more about this here. Important thing to note is that WSL 1 (covered in this guide) does work along side VMWare and Virtualbox whereas WSL 2 does not.

Install Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL 1) – Installing Ubuntu 20.04 LTS


In order to follow this tutorial you will need the following:

  • Admin rights

Enabling the Windows Feature

Step 1 is to enable the optional feature for WSL. To do this, you will need to open up Powershell as root. You can do this by opening the start menu, searching for Powershell, right clicking it and selecting Run as Administrator

A User Account Control window should popup asking if you would like to continue. Click Yes.

In the new Powershell window, you will need to enter the following.

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

This may take a few seconds but once complete, you should see the following:

At this point, you will need to restart your machine.

Installing the Linux Distro

After the reboot, you are now able to install the Linux distro you would like to use. To do this you will need to open up the Microsoft Store. From the start menu, search for Store and open up the Microsoft Store.

When the Store opens up, do a search for Linux (or the OS you would like to use). Microsoft provided the below links to the most common (with my addition of the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS). For the rest of this guide, I will be using the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

On the Store page for the OS you would like to use, click Get

If you are not signed in already, don't feel you have to. It will work just fine without. You can then click install. Windows will then start downloading everything needed to run Ubuntu 20.04 and then install it.

Setting up Linux

After your Linux distro has been installed, you will be able to launch it. This can either be done from the Microsoft Store OR from your start menu by searching the name. First time you do this, you will probably get a message saying that it is installing and may take a few minutes.

After a few minutes, you will be asked to enter a new Unix Username and password. After that, your all done! You will then have a bash prompt you can do all of your linuxy things!

Bonus content

If your new to WSL, here are some links to other guides you may find useful.