Are you on Windows 11? Then it is possible to install and enable the WSL- Windows subsystem for Linux directly using Windows Features or command line.
Microsoft has made lots of changes since the integration of WSL in Windows 10 which is now also available in Windows 11 as well. Earlier it was not possible to run Linux on Windows without using Virtual Machines platforms, however with WSL 1/2 now it is. However, to activate and use the Windows subsystem for Linux- WSL the user has to go through the “Turn Windows features on or off” or “Command line“.
Install and enable WSL on Windows 11
Open Turn Windows features on or off
On Windows 11 or 10 go to the search box and type – features. Soon you will get “Turn Windows features on or off“, select it to open the same.
Install Windows Subsystem for Linux
Scroll down and search for the Windows subsystem for Linux and check the box given for it. After that, click on the OK button to install and enable WSL.
Reboot the system
Finally, reboot the system to properly integrate this feature.
Use Powershell command to enable WSL
If you don’t want to use the above GUI method, then simply right-click on the Start button of Windows 11 and select “Windows Terminal (Admin)“.
Paste the given command and hit the Enter key.
Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName Microsoft-Windows-Subsystem-Linux
Type Y, hit the Enter key to restart the system.
Right-click on the Start button and type the below command to install any available Linux distro, for example, if you want to get Ubuntu WSL then the command will be:
Alternatively, you can use the Microsoft store for WSL distros.
wsl --install <Distro>
To check the available Distro:
wsl --list --online
To install Ubuntu:
wsl.exe --install ubuntu-20.04
Once done, go again to the Search box and type Ubuntu to access the Linux bash.