Once seen as one of its biggest competitors, it appears that Microsoft has started to embrace Linux as a platform and has begun to find ways of supporting the operating system better rather than just releasing software that doesn’t run on it in a bid to force people to rely on Windows exclusively. Not only has Microsoft previously announced that it will be shipping a full Linux kernel inside Windows 10 to cater for those companies and developers that develop for the Linux OS, but they’ve announced that there will be a full integration of Linux files in File Explorer, meaning that you can search for files in your Linux kernel directly from the Windows search feature.
Microsoft is looking to add a new Linux icon (the famous Tux, the penguin mascot for the Linux kernel), which will be available in the left-hand navigation pane in File Explorer, providing access to the root file system for any distros that are installed in Windows 10.
The company is also reportedly testing the Linux File Explorer integration in a new build of Windows 10 that’s available for testers today. Previously, Windows 10 users would have to manually navigate to a UNC path to gain access to Linux files from the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL). It will now take care of this automatically, making it even more inviting for people to run and develop on Linux directly from their Windows machines.
This is just another in the many things Microsoft has done for Linux after it added Bash shell integration and native OpenSSH in Windows 10, with even Ubuntu, SUSE Linux, and Fedora all available in the Windows Store. Microsoft also launched a new Windows Terminal command-line tool last year that better integrates functionality across both.
The new update is expected to ship to all Windows 10 users for download once it has successfully passed this testing run.
Last Updated: April 13, 2020