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How To Install Xastir on Win10

Step-by-step instructions for getting Xastir to run in the Windows Subsystem for Linux bash shell.

1. In order to install Xastir via the bash functionality available in Windows 10, first you need to enable bash in your Windows installation.


Your PC must be running a 64-bit version of Windows 10 1709 or later.

There is an alternate approach using Cygwin that is described in HowTo:Windows. That approach will work with 32 or 64 bit Windows >=7.

To find your PC's CPU architecture and Windows version/build number, open Settings>System>About. Look for the OS Build and System Type fields. The System Type field shows whether your build is a 64 bit version or not, and the OS Build field will indicate whether you're on build 14393 or later.

A. Turn on Developer Mode (No longer neccessary if using version 1709 or later)

Open Settings -> Update and Security -> For developers

Select the Developer Mode radio button

Note: Settings is one of the new Windows apps that showed up as of Windows 8, so it's not part of the Control Panel

B. Enable the Windows Subsystem for Linux feature

Open a PowerShell prompt as administrator and run:

 Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName


Alternatively from the Windows GUI...

Use the Cortana search and enter "Turn Windows features on or off", and select what it finds. A Windows features box will appear. Scroll down and check the box for "Windows Subsystem for Linux (Beta), and click OK.

C. Reboot - after enabling the subsystem for Linux feature, you must reboot your computer!

D. Run Bash in Windows

Go to the Microsoft Store. Search for "Linux" and change the Department to "Apps". Any of the free Ubuntu, SuSE, or Debian distro's should work fine. WLinux is a Debian distribution specifically modified for WSL but is not free.

Open a Windows Command prompt and type...

 bash <enter>

A message will be displayed indicating you are about to install Ubuntu on Windows, and it will prompt you as follows:

 Type y to continue

Enter 'y', which will accept the license and install Ubuntu.

After you have accepted the License, the Ubuntu user-mode image will be downloaded and a "Bash on Ubuntu on Windows" shortcut will be added to your start menu.

To launch Bash on Windows, either run bash at a cmd/PowerShell command-prompt, or use the start menu shortcut.

E. Create a Unix User

The first time you install Bash on Windows, you will be prompted to create a UNIX username and password. UNIX username and password can be different from, and has no relationship to your Windows username and password.

2. Xastir is a graphical application, so the next step is to enable running graphical applications in your Linux installation.

It is possible to run graphical Linux applications in Windows 10 but it's not officially supported. Users of Xastir have done it successfully, however.

A. Install an X Server

NOTE: Skip this step if running "WLinux".

There are several different X servers you can install on Windows. The Xming server is recommended here simply because this Wiki author tried it, and it worked well. It's also been reported that "X410" from the Microsoft store works well.

The Xming server can be found at

Download and install it - all that's needed is to accept the defaults when installing. After accepting the defaults, Xming should automatically launch and run in your system tray, waiting for you to run graphical programs.

B. Install Xastir

As of this writing, the beta bash feature in Windows 10 installs Ubuntu version 14.04, so launch you bash shell in Windows, and follow the steps in the Xastir Wiki to install Xastir.

Find the correct install instructions in this Wiki for the Linux distro you're trying to use. Example:

C. Set the Display Environment Variable

NOTE: Skip this step if running "WLinux".

set the “DISPLAY” environment variable to point at the X server running on your Windows 10 PC. If you don’t do this, Xastir will fail to launch. To do this issue the following command in your bash shell:

 export DISPLAY=:0

D. Run Xastir!

Still at the command prompt in your bash shell type the following:

 xastir &