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More Unix Tools Coming To Windows 10 (neowin.net) 123

Long-time Slashdot reader Billly Gates brings news about beta 4 of Redstone (the Spring version of Windows 10's Creators Update for 2018): - Beta 4 of Redstone aka Build 17063 includes BSD utilities bsdtar and curl from the command prompt and Unix sockets (AF_Unix). These are also rumored to be part of a future version of Windows Server.

- WSL will now run background tasks and will continue to run them even after the command prompt window is closed...

- A previous story mentioned a discovered OpenSSH for Windows... OpenSSH and VPN can now be accessed via PowerShell in remote connections via the PSRemote commandlet. With the extra background support added you can for example keep a Secure Shell session open on a server/client and reconnect later.

- Also a tool is available called WSLPath to convert Linux to Windows path options

There will also be some graphical Windows Shell improvements with Microsoft's design language, and "Timeline," a new way to resume past activities...
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More Unix Tools Coming To Windows 10

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  • cygwin (Score:4, Informative)

    by thinkwaitfast ( 4150389 ) on Sunday December 24, 2017 @05:48PM (#55801959)
    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      You're joking, right? They don't even ship an uninstaller with that POS. Cygwin is useless trash that should be taken out back and shot. It might have been useful ten years ago but it's just trash now.

      • https://nuwen.net/mingw.html [nuwen.net]

        Portable and doesn't require any uninstall other than deleting the directory.

      • Worked for me.

        del *.*/r is the uninstall command.

      • Re:cygwin (Score:4, Informative)

        by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Sunday December 24, 2017 @10:45PM (#55802891) Homepage Journal

        Works fine for me. It's actually more integrated with Windows than UFW is - you can do things like "cmd /c start ." from a bash prompt and Windows will open an Explorer window to view whatever directory you're in. Have it run OpenSSH and you can do things like remotely ssh in and shutdown or reboot the PC.

        Cygwin's only major flaw is the lack of a proper package management system (you have to run a GUI tool outside of the Cygwin environment which only half works, and there are no automatic updates.)

        UFW is more Unixy, but the price for that is a lack of good integration with the Windows side of the computer it's running under.

      • by murdocj ( 543661 )

        Cygwin is a gift from the gods. It works, it does what I want, and it doesn't get in the way.

      • 1. Right-Click C:\Cygwin64
        2. Select "Delete"
        3. Empty trash

        All done!

  • by GbrDead ( 702506 ) on Sunday December 24, 2017 @06:03PM (#55802015)

    Will 2018 be the year of Windows on the command line?

  • Nitpick/Pedantry:
    It's not "beta 4 of Redstone"; version 1803 is codenamed Redstone 4 (RS4). 1709/Fall Creators is Redstone 3 (RS3), 1703 was RS2 and so on.
    Windows 10 Preview builds don't have beta designations, only a build number, and eventually release candidates which have the final release build number but aren't necessarily individually numbered themselves.
  • When I was using Windows I always had Cygwin installed, and when I switched to using a Mac one of my favorite aspects (seriously) was having a real shell and all of the unix utilities again. While Cygwin works, the integration with Windows was never great (perhaps that changed over time) and I seem to recall having to use c: or something like it so the mapping to the filesystem was annoying.

    I use still like curl, vi, emacs and even grep/sed/awk stuff all the time still, not to mention shell scripts - maybe

    • When I was using Windows I always had Cygwin installed, and when I switched to using a Mac one of my favorite aspects (seriously) was having a real shell and all of the unix utilities again.

      I went from Windows to Linux, but then (circa 2003) switched to Mac because it gave me all the Unix tools I relied on, along with easier access to mainstream programs I needed - like Photoshop.

      Now, Microsoft is moving towards the command line for power users, while Apple appears to be dropping hints they want to lock down computers the same way they lock down iOS. When I'm ready for a new computer in two or three years, I'm not sure it'll be a Mac. I still have a lot of history-driven distrust of Microsoft,

      • When I was using Windows I always had Cygwin installed, and when I switched to using a Mac one of my favorite aspects (seriously) was having a real shell and all of the unix utilities again.

        I went from Windows to Linux, but then (circa 2003) switched to Mac because it gave me all the Unix tools I relied on, along with easier access to mainstream programs I needed - like Photoshop.

        Now, Microsoft is moving towards the command line for power users, while Apple appears to be dropping hints they want to lock down computers the same way they lock down iOS. When I'm ready for a new computer in two or three years, I'm not sure it'll be a Mac. I still have a lot of history-driven distrust of Microsoft, though... but Linux is still there.

        And perhaps, by that point in time, systemd will include its own 64-bit Windows emulation layer. At which point I might opt for early retirement and no computers at all.

        I am the original author. I believe since WSL uses Ubuntu that is runs SystemD by default so you won't escape that easily. If you really want to be purist I suppose you could launch a VM of FreeBSD in either platform if your future PC has enough horsepower to take the hit in performance. SuSE is the other one that is on the Windows appstore which also switched to SystemD if I am not mistaken.

  • In particular for cloud computing, and acknowledges the long matured superiority of Unix(es) in that regard.

    I notice this in the relative ease to use and automatically install stuff on newer Windows running on virtualization environments, at least compared with the older versions, which were cranky and prone to failures when trying to automate software deployments, just because the OS wasn't designed to be fully usable with shells/terminals.

    Of course, Linux and the Unix(es) still are much more stable a
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Have had unix tools for 40 years already, no need for a newcomer.

  • by innocent_white_lamb ( 151825 ) on Sunday December 24, 2017 @06:50PM (#55802151)

    "Those who do not understand Unix are condemned to reinvent it, poorly."

  • Unless Microsoft starts pumping out MS Unix with a Windows front end, none of the reasons for using Linux, BSD, or another Unix go away. This just seems like it would be cosmetic stuff for geeks who are used to being able to awk grep and sed their way out of most problems.
    • Re:Why? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Billly Gates ( 198444 ) on Sunday December 24, 2017 @08:27PM (#55802449) Journal

      Unless Microsoft starts pumping out MS Unix with a Windows front end, none of the reasons for using Linux, BSD, or another Unix go away. This just seems like it would be cosmetic stuff for geeks who are used to being able to awk grep and sed their way out of most problems.

      3 things:
      1. MS is scared of competition. Their biggest nightmare has come true not from Linux, but from Mobile. If they do not stay relevent people won't buy win32 based apps or Windows
      2. Visual Studio was in trouble as the cool kids use node.js, android and IOS development tools there is less demand for Visual Sudio and win32 desktop development. Good Android Studio, IntelJ, and even xcode are all knocking on Microsoft's doorstep
      3. Virtual Machines are a pain for non I.T. professionals to configure and consume lots of resources

      So Ubuntu and now Suse for Windows gives you the Linux command set. You can even use Debian tools like 'tasksel' to configure a whole LAMP stack and apt-get install npm from bash.exe and have a whole development environment FAST. If you mess something up just uninstall and reinstall Ubuntu/Suse from the appstore or add/remove features and start over.

      These updates make it easier to cut and paste SMB and Linux paths and are nice when SSH into servers.

      Visual Studio also has Android emulators that use Hyper-V underneath and include CLANG and other compilers if you go into options to help OpenSource and mobile developers. No you did not misread that!

      What it shows is in 2017 that MS realized they are no longer IBM anymore. Times change and they want to remain relevant.

      Ms also wants to host Linux and FreeBSD servers in Azure as well. I guess this is reason 3.5. As long as they get paid they do not give a shit what OS you use as to MS the platform is not Windows anymore. It is Azure and Windows or Linux are just one of it's layers that run on top. But that is semi unrelated to WSL but explains why VS is warming up to Linux as well.

      Competition is good and as MS is very unpopular here, I have to say Apple scared me worse when Jobs was in charge when they started getting powerful. Just think what would happen if MacOS won the 1980s OS wars instead of Windows?

      • Just think what would happen if MacOS won the 1980s OS wars instead of Windows?

        I always wondered what might've happened if Taligent [wikipedia.org] had seen the light of day.

    • by garcia ( 6573 )

      Those tools were long available in w32/64 versions; I've been using them for at least 15 years when on Windows.

      No, this isn't just adding UNIX tools to the CLI; it's doing what the other major OS players have been doing forever: having a common command line which can do a lot more cross-system work that PowerShell couldn't keep up with.

      Who cares if it's Microsoft? You know you have to deal with their shit now and again; be glad it'll soon be iin a way you're more comfortable doing.

  • Linux programs, scripts, solutions, will now be able to interact with Windows and services that are unique to Windows, creating Linux solutions which will depend on Windows to work properly.

    That's the extend part.

    • That's the extend part.

      I see the other direction more likely: once Windows admins get used to Linux programs, the move away from Windows to Linux becomes much easier.

    • Linux programs, scripts, solutions, will now be able to interact with Windows and services that are unique to Windows, creating Linux solutions which will depend on Windows to work properly.

      That's the extend part.

      FYI I am the author of the story. Lately, hosting daemons on SystemD scares me more than running them via services on Windows :-D~ ... ducks.

      • by arth1 ( 260657 )

        FYI I am the author of the story. Lately, hosting daemons on SystemD scares me more than running them via services on Windows :-D~ ... ducks.

        In either case it's hand-editing obsolete MSDOS .INI files and trusting in kitchen sink daemons that run with way too high privilege and can take your entire system down. Not much difference, but then again, the systemd creators grew up with Windows, and did what they were comfortable with.

  • by dbreeze ( 228599 ) on Sunday December 24, 2017 @07:53PM (#55802335)

    I don't care how much they embrace and extend I'll never spend a penny on Microsoft, or use it for free. I'm old enough to remember how they got their monopoly position. An evil corporation run by evil humans.

    • by jbn-o ( 555068 )

      Nobody gets proprietary software for free as users pay with their software freedom (the freedom to run, inspect, share, and modify the software); Microsoft's nonfree software is no exception. No matter how little money Microsoft's nonfree software costs you, you'll end up paying with your freedom if you run it atop a nonfree OS such as Microsoft Windows.

  • It never made sense to me why Microsoft didn't just toss in Unix tools at some point, like around Server 2003r2 - 2008r2.

    The CLI tools wouldn't have meant less Windows server or server programs sold on its own, it actually would have meant some marginal number of free Unixes not installed because the existing Exchange, IIS or SQL box had the tools to do the job.

    I see a lot of Unix installed because native Windows tools are totally brain damaged and while a Unix instance raises support questions, it's also f

    • PowerShell integrates with WMI and .NET stuff like Active Directory alot easier for stuff like Exchange or SQL Server.

      This is real bash and Ubuntu binaries running, but is mainly for developers as to not loose marketshare to Linux and MacOSX. Not for system admin stuff. However the latest beta make using OpenSSH much easier for system admins too if you need it and no longer need Putty.

      • by swb ( 14022 )

        Yeah, but the "integration" is in the individual commands and the binaries behind them, not in shell script syntax or logic.

        I get that in PowerShell it's object oriented and you can pipeline objects, which is indeed useful for stuff like Exchange where you actually deal in objects like "mailbox", etc.

        But I don't see where there's still not a lot of usefulness for plain-old unix style pipelines and text processing. Powershell is unusually brain damaged in this regard, outright missing many simple Unix text

    • "It never made sense to me why Microsoft didn't just toss in Unix tools at some point, "

      Lock in, validation of their (perceived) competition, indoctrination of the M$ way... worked for them for decades to solidify a monopoly position. Nothing has changed, except the market shifted and now they are trying embrace - extend again.

      Have already seen it work for them... a competent and talented developer came to one of my projects, and we could not for the life of us figure out why he had so much problem reprodu

  • Also a tool is available called WSLPath to convert Linux to Windows path options

    Thank the lord!

    • by arth1 ( 260657 )

      I wonder how that works with paths like
      /path/to/src/aux.c
      /path/to/con/file1
      /path/to/ST:TNG/s1ep2

      Or where only the case differs:
      /path/to/makefiles/makefile1
      /path/to/Makefiles/Makefile1

      Never mind NFS network paths like
      /net/remotehost/path/to/file

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Here's my guess at how Microsoft will solve the middle problem:

        c:\path\to\MAKEFI~1\MAKEFI~1
        c:\path\to\MAKEFI~2\MAKEFI~1

        p.s. I think I just threw up a little bit in my mouth.

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