“Linux on Windows” missing after a Win 10 upgrade? No problem!

Another Windows 10 upgrade is here: the Windows 10 October 2018 update.

For those of us using WSL, or “Linux on Windows”, that means potential mayhem.

When the last Win 10 upgrade version was released, I installed it. I then discovered that my Ubuntu icon no longer loaded anything – except a Bash window with an error message that Ubuntu on Windows was no longer installed!

Oops.

Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to fix!

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Run cron jobs in Windows Subsystem for Linux

If you’re running Ubuntu or another linux shell in Windows 10 via WSL (Windows Subsystem for Linux), you’ve probably wondered about using cron.

Cron is super-handy for doing things, like, running a backup.

You see, as useful as WSL is, it stores all the linuxy files in a way that is not exactly easily backup-able by File History or anything else… as far as I can tell.

Worse yet, even when you try to set up a cron job to run a backup, it doesn’t work!

What to do, what to do?

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How to update or install “Linux on Windows” in Windows 10

In the olden days, there was only “Bash on Ubuntu on Windows 10”. This little gem gave you something like reverse WINE.

You got an Ubuntu linux install that’s running on top of the Windows kernel – with full file system access, the ability to install and run all kinds of linux command-prompty stuff like git, and even graphical linux apps like gitk.

Fast forward a few years, and things have changed…

What if you’re still running Bash on Ubuntu on Windows (Ubuntu 14.04) and you want to upgrade to the latest Ubuntu 16.04 without reinstalling everything?

Or, what if you want a different flavor of linux?

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How to install git and gitk on Bash on Ubuntu on Windows 10

gitk on Bash on Ubuntu on Windows 10You may have heard about “Bash on Ubuntu on Windows”. If not, you can check out my post on Bash for Windows 10.

First, you’ll need to make sure you have the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, which you’ve probably received automagically by now.

Then, you’ll need to manually install Bash on Ubuntu on Windows to get your bash prompt.

When you’re done, you’ll probably listen to Microsoft when they say “no GUI stuff!” on bash… But actually, you can set yourself up with a lovely development environment including git – and even gitk – right in Windows.

And it’s much easier than you might think…

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The Windows 10 Summer Update will include… Linux?!

Ubuntu Bash + Windows 10This summer, Windows 10 will be 1 year old. Microsoft recently announced that they’ll be releasing another “major” update for their latest OS around this time.

Most of the new features are nothing terribly earth-shattering. Probably the most impactful change to most users will be a slight modification to the Start Menu.

For power users, however, they’ve got something rather big planned: Windows 10 will soon include the Ubuntu Linux Bash shell (probably as an optional app/download).

What in tarnation is going on here?!

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