Microsoft embraces its inner penguin with Linux-powered Windows AI Studio

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A preview of Microsoft's Windows AI Studio has landed – a group of devices and models from catalogs, including Azure AI Studio and Hugging Face – nevertheless you'll request Linux to tally it.

The preview was announced astatine Microsoft's Ignite event and nan Visual Studio Code hold requires Ubuntu 18.04 aliases greater arsenic good arsenic Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) to run. It will besides only tally connected Nvidia GPUs.

The "preview" quality of nan hold became evident erstwhile El Reg navigated its features. We made it activity aft a fashion, but it was difficult to flight nan emotion that Microsoft's imagination for section generative AI app improvement is very overmuch lashed together, astatine slightest successful preview form.

Once we installed each nan prerequisites, we dodged nan "GPU is not detected" correction via a driver download from Nvidia, made Ubuntu 18.04 nan default Linux distribution successful WSL and nan studio, and past fired up.

Four actions are available: Model Fine Tuning, RAG Project, Phi-2 Model Playground, and Windows Optimized models. Microsoft has tagged RAG Project and Phi-2 Model Playground arsenic "Coming soon!" successful its archiving but we recovered launching a section fine-tuning convention was straightforward enough.

There are further limitations successful position of models – users can't usage their own, for illustration – though Microsoft said it is "working to grow nan database of models." Users besides can't tally nan hold successful an Azure GPU Virtual Machine owed to nan nested virtualization needed by WSL.

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However, erstwhile up and moving – do not deviate excessively overmuch from nan way defined successful Microsoft's instructions – nan Windows AI Studio worked well. We performed immoderate fine-tuning utilizing a Hugging Face dataset and sewage arsenic acold arsenic being capable to chat pinch nan exemplary utilizing nan samples provided.

We would return rumor pinch Microsoft's assertion that "getting started pinch AI improvement locally connected Windows is easier and faster than ever," nevertheless nan Windows AI Studio preview is simply a bully start.

The requirements are a small onerous, and respective moving parts down nan scenes – not slightest WSL – occasionally make their beingness felt done overseas errors and messages. But past again, it is simply a preview.

There is, however, a definite ironic deliciousness successful noting that Microsoft's section AI improvement connected Windows requires Linux nether nan hood.

Windows is still needed for nan Visual Studio Code extension, but moreover that mightiness change. Microsoft said: "We are presently readying for different level support." ®