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How to run Linux GUI apps on Windows with WSLg?

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  • Difficulty Level : Medium
  • Last Updated : 28 Mar, 2022
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In this article, we will see how you can install your favorite Linux GUI application on your Windows PC/Laptop. For this, we will use WSLg. WSLg which stands for Windows Subsystem for Linux GUI is an open-source project that enables the support for running Linux GUI applications on Windows in a fully integrated desktop experience. 

WSLg offers a seamless experience for developers, scientists, and hobbyists who prefer or want Windows on their PC but also require the option to run tools or apps that function best, or solely, in a Linux environment.


  • You must be running Windows 10 version 2004 and higher or Windows 11.

To check your current Windows version, hold the Windows logo key + R, type winver, select OK, or go to Windows settings > System > About.

Steps for installation:

Step 1: Open CMD (Command Prompt) using administrator privileges.

Step 2: In this step, we will install a Linux distribution of our choice. Type wsl -l -o in the terminal to get a list of available Linux distributions.

Step 3: let’s install Ubuntu version 20.04. Type wsl –install -d Ubuntu-20.04 in the terminal to download and install it.

Step 4: After installing, the Ubuntu terminal will be launched automatically. Here we have to create a default UNIX user account, so provide a new UNIX username and a password (onetime setup).

Step 5: Now go back to the CMD and type wsl –list -v to view the running version of Ubuntu. If the version number is not 2, then type wsl –update in the terminal.

Step 6: Now go back to the Ubuntu terminal and type sudo apt update to download package information from all configured sources.

Step 7: Lets install a GUI Linux application like ‘Nautilus‘ which is one of the most popular file managers in Linux. Type sudo apt-get install nautilus in the Ubuntu terminal.

Step 8: After installing, we can find the software under the Windows Apps section. 


As you can see we have successfully installed a Linux GUI app on our Windows machine. 

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