Do you have version 1 or 2?

How to check WSL version on Windows 10

You can easily determine the version of the Windows Subsystem for Linux version with this wsl.exe command.

Windows 10 check WSL version

On Windows 10, as of this writing, there are two versions of the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) available, including versions 1 and 2.

WSL 1 was the original release, and it introduced the ability to run Linux distros natively alongside Windows 10. WSL 2 is the second version that now uses virtualization to run the Linux kernel inside a lightweight virtual machine, offering the same benefits as the first version, plus better system performance and full system call support compatibility.

If you recently upgraded from WSL1 to WSL2, and you want to confirm the installation complete successfully or wonder what version of the architecture you have, Windows 10 includes a command you can use to check whether you have WSL2 or WSL1 installed on your device.

In this guide, you will learn the steps to confirm the Windows Subsystem version for Linux installed on Windows 10.

To check the WSL version installed on Windows 10, use these steps:

  1. Open Start on Windows 10.

  2. Search for Command Prompt, right-click the top result, and select the Run as administrator option.

  3. Type the following command to check the WSL 2 or WSL 1 is installed on the device and press Enter:

    wsl --list --verbose
    WSL check version command
    WSL check version command
    Quick tip: You can also write the command like this: wsl -l -v.
  4. Under the “Version” collum, confirm the Windows Subsystem for Linux version installed.

Once you complete the steps, if the output is 2, then WSL2 is installed on your machine. Since the command became available with version 2, if you get an error or there is no version number, you have WSL1 installed on Windows 10.