You may not know it, but Windows 11 natively embeds a very practical tool allowing you to search, download and install software on your machine, without you having to do it manually. Winget, this is the name of this tool, may at first seem quite complex to use. And for good reason, the utility does not have a graphical interface: you must go through the Terminal and enter command lines. Do not worry, its use is within everyone’s reach once its operation is assimilated.
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Thanks to this tool, you will be able to install the most recent versions of your favorite software very quickly on your computer, without having to explore the web to manually download the installation file which you then have to run individually. An ideal tool therefore if you have just reinstalled a clean version of Windows. Here’s how to use it.
1. Open Terminal
Right-click on the Windows 11 Start menu, then click Windows Powershell (admin) to open Terminal in administrator mode.
Then click on Yes in the alert window that is displayed to validate the opening of the Windows Terminal.
2. Run Winget
To run Winget, simply type the command winget and press the Enter key on the keyboard.
The utility launches and displays the list of commands that can be used. The execution of a winget command always starts with typing the term winget , followed by the command.
3. Search for an app
To download and install programs on your PC, the Winget package manager will look directly in the Microsoft repository. But before that, you need to search for the software you are interested in.
To do this, type the command winget search followed by the name of your application and press the Enter key on the keyboard. If the software name is made up of several words, enclose it in quotes.
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You can also type winget search directly and validate to display the complete list of applications that can be installed this way.
Winget’s search results list is divided into several columns:
- Name: Name commonly given to the application, but which may not be unique
- ID: Unique identifier allowing to identify the application with exactness
- Version: Application version number
- Source: Source of origin of the software. There are two, winget for win32 apps and msstore for apps from the Microsoft Store.
4. Install software
Once the name of the application has been found, type winget install followed by the name of your software to start downloading and installing it on your PC.
To install the LibreOffice office suite, for example, type winget install LibreOffice .
If the name of your software is a single term, you can enter it as it is, on the other hand, if it is composed of several terms, you must put it in parentheses (it will then be displayed in blue).
To install the Gmail Desktop application on our machine for example, we enter the command winget install “Gmail Desktop”.
5. Refine your results
Winget may find several packages matching your criteria. Since the name is not unique data, it is likely that a name is present in the title of several software. Winget then displays a list of all items found related to your query. So you need to choose the right package to install.
There are several solutions for this. You can thus tell winget to install your software by specifying its exact name (with the -e command ), using its ID, or specifying its source (by adding –source=NomDeLaSource ).
Let’s take Firefox for example. With the simple command winget install firefox, two results are offered: Mozilla Firefox Browser (msstore) and Mozilla Firefox (winget).
To install the winget version (win32), we will enter the command winget install “Mozilla Firefox” -e (respecting the case of the name).
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Another example, to install VLC, the request winget install vlc returns two results: VLC and VLC Media Player.
It is here possible to specify the exact name of the software in the installation command, but you can also simply indicate its source, for example by entering winget install VLC –source=winget .
In the same way that Winget lets you install software by entering a command line, you can uninstall it using a command line.
To uninstall software from your PC, use the command winget uninstall followed by the name of the program and validate it by pressing the Enter key on the keyboard.
To uninstall LibreOffice for example, we use the winget uninstall LibreOffice command .
Note that most of the operations launched with Winget are performed in the background without you needing to validate any window (or on rare occasions).