I think it's a good marketing move from MS.
However, I'm not sold on it being a great thing other than letting you use sensible tools for text processing on Windows directly. Performance is actually worse than a VM for most of the stuff I've tried using it for (no, seriously, I get better performance for file access by using SMB over a private network interface to a VM than I do using 'direct' access to the files through WSL), and there's a lot of useful things (especially for IT professionals) that you just can't do with it (like recovering data from a dying hard drive out of an old Linux server).
With respect, you've clearly not taken a look at WSL2 then, which uses lightweight VM to run a real Linux kernel image atop which each distro is hosted its own container. Net result is that you get 100% Linux compat, Hyper-V levels of perf (i.e. v. near native for most scenarios), and all the convenience of distros' that startup from cold in < 2s.
Can't please 'em all, Rich!
... can't wait for wsl 2 to be available in the slow insiders releases.
Oh, no, I've looked at WSL2.
The filesystem performance benefits are mostly contingent on you having all your data inside the container, which is not an option for me (I need access to the actual datasets I'd be working on outside of WSL as well without having to sync them manually).
The pass-through filesystem performance may improve a bit because of the switch to 9P2000L over VirtIO for file sharing, but unless they've decided that Windows Defender doesn't need to be involved, it won't be enough to mater for many potential use cases, including mine.
Also, it's not 100% Linux compatible. It still doesn't let you poke at raw block and character devices, so anything that needs to work with hardware directly (like all of the IT related stuff that it would be useful for other than a simple network console) just plain won't work.
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