Windows Package Manager is a free and open source utility from Microsoft that allows you to download, install and manage applications from the command line in Windows 10 or Windows 11. First introduced in 2020, the software is essentially the Microsoft’s answer to command-line package managers commonly used in GNU/Linux distributions. But instead of starting commands with “apt”, as you would in Debian or Ubuntu, for example, you start them with “winget”. And run them on Windows PC.
Now Microsoft has released Windows Package Manager 1.3 with support for a few new commands, options and parameters. It also adds support for portable applications that are not installed in the Windows registry.
Windows Package Manager is pre-installed on Windows 11 and recent versions of Windows 10, but if it is not already installed on your computer, you can configure it by installing Application Installer from the Microsoft store.
Once installed, you can launch any Windows command line utility, including Command Prompt, PowerShell, or Windows Terminal, and type “winget” (without quotes) to get a list of commands that you can use. will allow you to perform operations such as installing, upgrading or uninstalling the software, listing all the installed packages or changing the settings, among others.
Not everything Windows applications can be installed using the Windows package manager: developers must submit their programs to Microsoft Repository. But you can use “winget search” command to search by keyword to find available packages.
Also keep in mind that even though Windows Package Manager is a command line utility, not everything happens in the command line. When using the “winget install” command, you will see a progress bar as the app downloads and the installation begins, but if the app has a graphical installer, the one -ci will open and guide you through the process.
Anyway, back to version 1.3. Among other things, the update brings:
- The “winget -info” command now displays the system architecture, with information about your processor architecture, operating system version, and Windows package manager version.
- “Winget show” will now display any documentation available on a package.
- Developers can now submit portable packages to the winget repository, which does not write data to the Windows Registry. Windows Package Manager will add entries to Windows when you install them so they can be launched, managed, and uninstalled like any other Windows application.
- Adding “–verbose-logs” to any command will send additional information to your logs for troubleshooting or analysis.
- The progress bar should be smoother.