Tag Archives: Commandline

SLW 20: WinGet with Demitrius Nelon

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Demitrius Nelon

My guest today is Demitrius Nelon who joined Microsoft in 2019. He is responsible for the Package Manager for Windows, better known as WinGet.

Demetrius talks about his personal background and career journey, mentioning his service in the U.S. Navy and his work at various technology companies, including Microsoft, VMware, and Amazon.

Prior to the employment of Demitrius Microsoft started to work on a Package Manager, primarily targeted on developers. They were inspired by the software of an independent developer from Canada named Keivan Beigi. His AppGet tool led Microsoft on the path to their own implementation. Keivan was a guest on the Sliding Windows in episode 18.

Initially named AppInstallerCLI, due to its positioning under the umbrella of Microsofts sideloading application named AppInstaller, Scott Hanselmann recommended to change the name to WinGet which became popular fast.

WinGet was initially (also) considered for use on servers but was only deployed on Windows Desktop due to evolving business requirements. Today, many admins complain that WinGet is not available everywhere.

Compared to Chocolaty WinGet eliminates arbitrary code by using a declarative syntax called a manifest.
Demitrius discusses the security precautions taken to ensure the safety of the manifests and the considerations for vendors hosting the manifest and installer without independent verification.

This episode provides in-depth insights in the development of WinGet so far, its inner struggles and the many visions of the developing team. Of course, we also discuss the necessity of PowerShell cmdlets, the integration of native commands utilizing argument completers and the long wishlist of the Microsoft’s customers embracing such an overdue, long awaited tool.

The interview was recorded in Prague on June 22, 2023.

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Show Notes


00:00:00 Intro (This Is Who I Am by Rewob)
00:01:15 about Demitrius Nelon
00:04:57 The Evolution of Windows Package Manager aka WinGet
00:09:11 Winget’s Potential
00:11:12 Winget Internals
00:14:30 Manifest Creation and Vendor Adoption Challenges
00:34:51 Windows Store, Acceptance, Recognition, Security boundaries
00:41:13 Efforts to bootstrap Winget on Windows Server
00:45:10 Community-built tools like Winget UI
00:52:14 A Linux-like tool for Windows
00:54:51 WinGet and PowerShell
01:06:43 Configuration as Code and Desired State Configuration
01:12:48 WinGet, Linux, WSL: Better together?
01:15:49 Outlook: Employees, Community, future Features
01:21:20 Farewall/Outro http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/rewob/66100

Bonus content


Rewob: This Is Who I Am

SLW 18: A package manager for Windows with Keivan Beigi

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When Microsoft announced a “Windows Package Manager” (better known as WinGet) in the context of the Build conference in 2020, hardly anyone suspected that this overdue, long-desired tool was not a “Microsoft original”. 

A Canadian programmer, my today’s guest Keivan Beigi, had developed a package manager called “AppGet” a few years earlier and made it available under an open source license. When Microsoft employees contacted him one fine day, what belonged together seemed to come together. But then the story took its own course. When Microsoft finally published the first preview of WinGet six months later, it was all too obvious that they  simply copied AppGet – without giving credit, which caused loud criticism. 

I talk to Keivan about the background of his technology, package management in general and Microsoft’s fickle strategy towards its own community.

In the bonus section, you’ll find a reference, a little salute to the colleagues of Windows Weekly, Paul Thurrott and Mary Joe Foley, whom we both admire, and who played a significant role in making Keivan “famous” from one day to the next.

The interview was recorded on December 20, 2021 in Vancouver and Duisburg.

RSS feed: AAC | MP3

Direct download: AAC | MP3

Show notes


00:00:00.001 Intro: Bluenotes by Airtone
00:01:20.382 Welcome
00:02:18.802 Keivan’s beginnings
00:09:52.663 Stuck with Windows
00:14:59.809 The missing package management
00:28:39.052 Rocket science
00:31:14.582 From AppGet to WinGet
00:41:33.521 Conspirancy theories
00:45:10.348 WinGet vs AppGet
00:48:51.328 The vendor vs the community
00:51:47.876 WinGet++
00:58:57.169 Package formats
01:05:55.381 Predeictions
01:08:28.942 No regrets
01:12:18.061 Hot reload
01:16:13.781 Competing languages
01:22:30.785 Wrap-up
01:24:41.144 Bonus:Off the records


Airtone: Bluenotes