Linux’s sudo command is coming to Windows 11

Microsoft is gearing up to integrate a built-in sudo command into Windows 11, in a move to lure more developers into using its operating system. Sudo, derived from “superuser do,” is a well-known feature in Unix-based systems, such as Linux and macOS, enabling users to execute programs with elevated security privileges or under a different user profile—a valuable tool for script testing and development workflows.

This novel integration within Windows aims to streamline the process for developers, allowing them to run elevated tools directly from an unelevated console session. “It is an ergonomic and familiar solution for users who want to elevate a command without having to first open a new elevated console”, explains Jordi Adoumie, a product manager at Microsoft.

Currently, sudo is in a testing phase as part of the latest Canary build of Windows 11, and it is expected to be rolled out to regular Windows 11 versions later this year. Microsoft is introducing three configurable modes for the sudo command: a new window, input-disabled mode, and inline mode. The inline mode closely resembles Linux’s sudo behavior, while the other modes impose stricter controls.

Adoumie outlines Microsoft’s commitment to expanding documentation for Sudo for Windows over the coming months, with a focus on detailing the security implications of running sudo in the ‘Inline’ configuration. The company is also trying to contribute to the open-source community by releasing the sudo project on GitHub. Microsft has plans to unveil more insights into the future of sudo in the Windows environment in the months ahead.

This move comes after Microsoft’s significant embrace of Linux, including the integration of a full Linux kernel in Windows 10, the introduction of the Bash shell, native OpenSSH support, and the availability of Linux distributions like Ubuntu, SUSE Linux, and Fedora in the Windows Store. The addition of sudo seems to be an attempt to provide developers with a versatile and inclusive environment for their coding needs.

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