The Windows Package Manager is a command-line utility and set of services for installing applications on Windows 10. Windows package manager is also known as winget.

Windows package manager is free and open-source package manager which is created by Microsoft for Windows 10.

Winget helps developers to save time while installing, configuring, upgrading, and removing applications.

In this tutorial, we learn how to install Windows Packager Manager on Windows 10 and its basic usage.

How to Install Windows Package Manager

Windows Package Manager is supported from Windows 10 build 16299 (version 1709) or later. You can follow this guide to check your Windows 10 build and version.

People who signed up for the Windows Package Manager Insider group and Windows Insiders may already have the tool. The Windows package manager is in-built in the Windows App installer which can be downloaded from the Microsoft Store. The recommended way to install windows package manager is from the Windows Store.

The latest build of the Windows package manager is also available from the GitHub release page.

1. Using Microsoft Store

To install the Windows package manager install App installer from the Microsoft store.

  • Open Microsoft Store
  • Click the search icon, then type ‘app installer'.
Search App Installer
  • Click App installer from the search results to open the application page.
  • On the App installer page, click ‘Get’ to begin the installation.
Microsoft store App installer install page with highlight on 'Get'
App installer Page
  • Finally, follow instructions to complete the installation of the application.

This will install winget on window 10. App installer app will have the latest stable version of winget, a reinstall will update winget.

2. Install from GitHub release page

Windows package manager is available to download from the Github page. A much more fresh version is always available from Github.

Lets check how to install package manager from appxbundle which is available in Github release page.

GitHub Windows Package Manager release page with highlight on the appxbundle file
Github release page
  • Upon download completion, open the downloaded file to begin the installation.
  • After installation initiates, click ‘update’ to add winget-cli to the existing App installer on your PC.
the Windows Package Manager install highlighting update
Install package manager

How to Use Windows Package Manager (winget)

Winget is a client interface for Windows Package Manager. Winget is commonly used to install, upgrade, configure and search applications in Windows 10.

Windows Package Manager (winget) will be available from Command Prompt, Powershell or any other shell in the Windows Terminal application if install from the bundle available in github.

Meanwhile, if you installed through App Installer, run Winget by typing ‘winget’ from a Command Prompt or Windows Powershell.

command prompt page to launch winget
Winget launch

Winget Commands

Lets check the commonly used winget commands.

01. Search command

Winget search flag helps to search applications.

For example:

winget search vlc
the winget search for application (vlc) with Powershell
winget search

02. Install command

Winget install flag helps to install new applications on the computer.

For example:

Installing package by specific version:

winget install vlc --version 3.0.15

Installing package by ID:

winget install vlc --id videoLAN.VLC 

Installing package by specific id and version:

winget install vlc --id videoLAN.VLC –version 3.0.14

This action will initiate the installer and carry out the installation process for itself without any further help.

Using winget to install application (vlc) through Powershell
install app

03. Upgrade command

Winget upgrade flag helps to upgrade existing applications on the computer. The upgrade --all command can be used to identify and upgrade all applications with upgrades available.

For example:

Upgrading package by specific version:

winget upgrade vlc --version 3.0.15

Upgrading package by ID:

winget upgrade --id VideoLAN.VLC
Using winget to upgrade application (vlc) through Powershell
winget upgrade

04. Show command

The show flag display details of the specified application, including its source and metadata. The show command has a list of source option available to find specific application like --id, --name, --version,--source and so on.

For example:

To show details of package by ID:

winget show vlc --id VideoLAN.VLC
Using winget to show application (vlc) details through Powershell

05. List command

The list flag displays the list of applications currently installed on the computer and source from which they were installed from. This command also identifies which application has update for upgrade.

For example:

Showing list of application in 12 entries:

winget list -n  12

Showing list of application by source:

winget list -s winget
Using winget to show list of applications on the computer through Powershell
winget list

06. Settings command

The settings command allows to customize Windows package manager client experience by configuring the settings.json file.

Settings command open json file in your default text editor. The .json file allows setting source, autoUpdateIntervalInMinutes, visual, progressBar and installBehavior, and more to come in future versions.

Winget settings launch on Wordpad
winget settings

How to uninstall winget

It is impossible to uninstall Winget-cli completely, although it is can be removed from the program list but its functions still remain accessible through Powershell. To remove winget from program list, follow the steps below:

Go to Settings, then click Apps.

When the Apps and Features page comes on, scroll down and cick on WinGet Source. Under the WinGet Source sub-options, click Uninstall.

Conclusion

Microsoft Community Repository already has many packages contributed, which can be searched using winget search <package name>.

To display additional help type winget --help.

Also now you can easily submit packages to the Microsoft community repository by winget install wingetcreate to install the Windows Package Manager Manifest Creator.

With the Windows Package Manager, Microsoft reaffirms their promise of making software delivery easy. In this tutorial we learned how to install and use windows package manager..