How Do I Install Wsl2 Kernel Update?


Welcome to our in-depth guide on installing the WSL2 kernel update. If you’re looking to enhance your Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) experience, this update is essential. In this article, we’ll walk you through the entire process, providing detailed instructions and valuable insights to make the update seamless. So, let’s get started on your journey to a better WSL2!

Getting Started with WSL2 Kernel Update

In this section, we’ll explore the fundamentals of the WSL2 kernel update.

What is WSL2?

Before we dive into the update process, let’s briefly understand what WSL2 is. WSL2, short for Windows Subsystem for Linux 2, is a compatibility layer within Windows 10 and Windows 11 that allows you to run a Linux distribution alongside your Windows operating system. It provides a powerful and seamless way to work with Linux tools and applications on your Windows machine.

Why Update the WSL2 Kernel?

Updating the WSL2 kernel is crucial for several reasons. It brings performance improvements, security enhancements, and bug fixes, ensuring your WSL2 environment runs smoothly and securely.

How do I install WSL2 kernel update?

Now, let’s get into the heart of the matter and learn how to install the WSL2 kernel update.

Step 1: Check Your Windows Version

Before proceeding with the update, ensure that you have a compatible Windows version. The WSL2 kernel update requires Windows 10 version 1903 or higher or Windows 11.

Step 2: Enable WSL2

If you haven’t already enabled WSL2, you’ll need to do so. Here’s how:

  1. Open PowerShell as an administrator.
  2. Run the command: wsl --install.

This command will install and set up WSL2 on your system.

Step 3: Download the WSL2 Kernel Update Package

To download the WSL2 kernel update package, visit the official Microsoft WSL2 Kernel Update GitHub repository. Look for the latest release, and download the package corresponding to your Windows version.

Step 4: Install the Update

Once you’ve downloaded the update package, follow these steps:

  1. Open PowerShell as an administrator.
  2. Navigate to the directory where you downloaded the update package.
  3. Run the following command, replacing wsl_update_x64.msi with the actual name of the update package you downloaded:
wsl --update-kernel --package wsl_update_x64.msi

Step 5: Verify the Update

To confirm that the update was successful, you can use the following command:

wsl --list --verbose

If you see “2” under the “WSL Version” column for your Linux distribution, it means you’ve successfully updated the WSL2 kernel.


We’ve compiled some frequently asked questions about the WSL2 kernel update.

Is it necessary to update the WSL2 kernel?

Yes, updating the WSL2 kernel is essential to ensure the best performance, security, and compatibility with the latest Linux features and applications.

Can I revert to the previous kernel version if needed?

Yes, you can switch back to the previous kernel version if you encounter any issues with the update. Use the following command:

wsl --set-version <DistroName> 1

Do I need to restart my computer after installing the update?

No, you don’t need to restart your computer after installing the WSL2 kernel update. The changes take effect immediately.

Is this update compatible with all Linux distributions in WSL2?

Yes, the update is compatible with all Linux distributions that you can run within WSL2.

Will updating the kernel affect my existing WSL2 installations and data?

No, updating the kernel should not affect your existing WSL2 installations or data. Your Linux distributions and files will remain intact.

Where can I find more information and support?

For additional information and support, visit the official Microsoft documentation on WSL2 and kernel updates.

How to update WSL2 kernel?

To update the WSL2 kernel, you can use Windows Update or manually download and install the latest WSL2 kernel update from the Microsoft website.

How do I install WSL2 kernel update?

To install a WSL2 kernel update, you can use Windows Update to automatically download and install it, or you can manually download and install the update from the Microsoft website by following their instructions.


Congratulations! You’ve successfully learned how to install the WSL2 kernel update, enhancing your Windows Subsystem for Linux experience. Keeping your WSL2 environment up to date is crucial for optimal performance and security. If you have any further questions or need assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out to the WSL2 community or refer to Microsoft’s official resources.

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