We received some great announcements from the company at Microsoft’s Build Conference until now, but here’s a shocker. The Redmond giant announced today that it is bringing the GNU project’s Bash shell to Windows.

Until now, the default terminal for developers on Windows was Microsoft’s own PowerShell while the Bourne Again SHell had been the standard for Mac OS X and a number of Linux systems. The announcement came out of the blue as Microsoft hasn’t always been one to associate with its rivals in any way. But in recent times, after Satya Nadella took onto the reigns, becoming the CEO of the tech giant, the company has seen to open up more, offering support to Linux on various levels like its Azure platforms etc

Apparently, developers will now be able to write their .sh Bash scripts on Windows or use emacs to edit their code. According to the company, this works through a new Linux subsystem in Windows 10 that Microsoft has developed with Canonical.

Bash has many advantages over other shells, here are the key highlights:

  • Command line editing
  • Unlimited size command history
  • Job Control
  • Shell Functions and Aliases
  • Indexed arrays of unlimited size
  • Integer arithmetic in any base from two to sixty-four

The shell support is supposed to arrive as part of the Windows 10 Anniversary Update this summer. Windows Insiders, however, will be able to get their hands on this feature long before that. Being the optimist, Microsoft added that it may bring in other shell supports to Windows in the near future, too.


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