[arch-dev-public] Windows Subsystem Linux - Arch Linux as official container?

Thomas Bächler thomas at archlinux.org
Thu Feb 1 19:09:26 UTC 2018

Am 29.01.2018 um 22:00 schrieb Christian Rebischke via arch-dev-public:
> Hello everybody,
> I would like to start a discussion about Windows Subsystem Linux and
> Arch linux. You all might know that Microsoft has increased their
> participation in open source software a lot since Satya Nadella is CEO
> of Microsoft.
> They even implemented a subsystem on Windows 10 for executing natively
> ELF binaries on Windows. This system is based on docker images and some
> nice guys from Microsoft have asked Allan and me if Arch Linux would be
> interested to participate in this project.
> The steps for getting into the project are:
> * Signup in the Microsoft Appstore (we would get a free voucher if we
>   want to participate) as Organization (we need the ok from one of our
>   trademark holders for this step)
> * modifying our docker container a little bit
> * pushing it into the microsoft appstore
> So what do you think? Should we participate in that project?
> Here are some pros and contras:
> pro:
>     - CentOS and Ubuntu are there too
>     - Would be a nice chance to increase the awareness about Arch Linux
>     - might get people to change from Windows to Arch Linux (or linux in
>       general)
>     - Nice way to test our docker image in production
>     - People who are forced to work on windows at work can use Arch
>       Linux at work as well
>     - More bugreports / feedback / forum activity?
> contras:
>     - Microsoft is Microsoft (I think I don't need to explain)
>     - More Newbies?
>     - Somebody would need to maintain it (I would do it)
>     - If Arch Linux partnerships with Microsoft could lead into bad image?

I'd like to give some feedback too. Personally, I love WSL, since I am
stuck with Windows 10 at work and it gives me certain applications I
otherwise don't have.

AFAIK, with the "Fall Creators Update" Version, they updated WSL to only
be available via the appstore and as far as I can see, this makes
installing Arch via other means significantly more difficult.

Right now, I only have experience with the version before the fall
creators update, and that has issues:

* As others mentioned, some glibc functionality relies on certain
clone() flags that WSL did/does not support.
* pacman needs an LD_PRELOAD hack since it insists on using chroot even
without a --root option, but WSL does/did not have chroot.

I would hope they fixed these problems by now, but I did not check yet.

I personally would love to see an official WSL Arch image, since it's
very useful to me. That said, I don't like the way they promote WSL,
because it is Linux the way that wine is Windows (read: it isn't).

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