I was a happy wsl user for a while, until I've installed Hyper-V.

What I was doing is typing wsl in cmd and it would launch ubuntu and I could do what I needed in there.

Now, after I've rebooted, wsl command will instead run something else. The command prompt is for wsgl, not root, and the system contents are different. cat/etc/os-release shows:

 NAME="Common Base Linux Mariner".

Even weirder still, running wsl --system will run my Ubuntu! os-release will show PRETTY_NAME="Ubuntu 22.04.2 LTS" and everything works fine

I also have no other distros installed. wsl --list gives:

Windows Subsystem for Linux Distributions:
Ubuntu (Default)

How can I revert it back to make wsl call my Ubuntu and not this whatever it is?

  • WSL1 or WSL2? wsl -l -v
    – Panki
    Commented Jul 7, 2023 at 12:49

1 Answer 1


If you run wsl --list --all then one entry will have "(Default)" next to it. That will be the default distro entered when just running wsl.

>wsl --list --all
Windows Subsystem for Linux Distributions:
Debian (Default)

You can change this with wsl --setdefault <distroname>.

>wsl --setdefault kali-linux
The operation completed successfully.

>wsl --list --all
Windows Subsystem for Linux Distributions:
kali-linux (Default)

Alternatively you can normally pick the distro by running the specific command; e.g. debian will enter the Debian distro; kali will enter the Kali distro, and so on.

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