How It Happened

When I typically install Windows, I change a lot of settings to improve privacy and performance. Whilst doing so, I also wanted to disable some CPU exploit protections that have been enabled, to gain more performance out of my system.

I was going through Windows Security and started disabling options. I then proceeded to use WSL, which was having issues, but no clear pattern at that time to the cause of them. I did some experimentation, and messed around with Windows Security long enough, to determine that it was the Exploit Protection that was messing up WSL. I am still not sure why that was the case. When those options were disabled, it made WSL hang indefinitely. The executable would not work on any parameter passed to it.

No Documentation

There does not seem to be any documentation that I could find regarding this issue. Not on any Microsoft page, and not on their GitHub.


If you encountered the same issue, I hope that finding this blog post has helped you.