I have to admit that I was not able to work on windows ever.
I mean I tried, but my workflow was not fit windows. I use the terminal and gnu stuff mostly, I do not use an IDE, I use vim and shell, and that is good for me.
That means I could work with Linux… mostly. But all the time I tried, I hit walls as there were a VPN software I had problems to work with, or some video chat app, or an admin tool for eg. Netware, or simply the computer my employer-provided was not working with Linux, it’s battery drained super fast, or the touchpad did not work well, you name it. And I know that there are machines which has excellent Linux support, like the Dell’s XPS developer edition or some Lenovo machines, but I never had those. – I even had a year back in the early 2000s when I used FreeBSD as my main OS because the PCI modem I had money for wasn’t working good with Linux. (It wasn’t worked well under Windows tbh.)
Back in 2009 I bought my first iMac, and working on that machine was awesome! Everything worked out of the box, there was no hardware which would cause any problem, and when I had to code something, I just opened my terminal and started work in an environment, which was pretty close to a Linux experience. I needed to change a few utils for their GNU replacement, but that’s all. I was able to work on my Mac as I was able to work on my Linux box – but it was way better. Hooray.
Years passed, and my main work environment became OSX, I loved it, I had a fine Macbook Air, and everything worked as it was planned for.
One day I bought a PC for home because I wanted to play video games, and sometimes I tried to work with that, but I was not able to, as my work environment were just not fit there. I tried everything. I tried to run Virtualbox and ssh-d into that, but I hated all the terminal emulators I’ve found. It was simply inconvenient every possible way.
In the meantime, my love with the Mac ended – the ‘new’ series for MacBook pros with touch bar and crappy keyboards just killed the experience for me. I am still working on a Mac because that is still the best option, but the love is gone.
When WSL was released, I tried to use it, but it wasn’t good either. I missed locally starting my daemons such as MySQL or Docker, and it was not fit to my workflow. Of course, I was able to run my services under windows, and access them from my WSL installation, but it wasn’t good. It was a bad experience. The best thing I was able to do to spin up a cloud instance and use my WSL installation to ssh into that.
When I first hear about WSL 2.0 it sounded great to me, so I decided to try it out as early as I can. I rolled into the insider program and I installed a version which had it included and started to work with.
So far it is good. It provides me the Linux experience from the moment I open my terminal. All my workflows and utilities behave the same was as I was used to, and it has a seamless integration to my windows desktop.