Kali Linux is indeed one of the best operating system for ethical hacking. There are plenty of ways to install Kali Linux on USB as well. We can run Kali in Live mode using a USB flash drive. Read the full article to know more.
Almost every single person who is interested in Ethical hacking knows about Kali Linux. It’s the well recognized and reputable operating system when it comes to penetration testing. WWE can also call it handy OS because it can be installed on USB flash drive.
I’ve been using Kali from last few years using a USB. To Install Kali Linux on USB, we need Win 32 Disk manager or Rufus utility tool. Then all we need is a Kali Linux ISO image file and a USB drive. Once you have all these things, the only thing left is to flash Kali image to the flash drive and start using Kali on Pendrive.
There’s even no need to install Kali Linux on PC. Just install it on PC and boot into it using any computer device e.g laptop, PC etc. There are multiple booting modes supported by Kali e.g Live boot mode, persistence mode and many other like that. It doesn’t even matter which OS you’re currently using e.g Windows 10, Windows 8, or Windows 7, XP, the methods I’ve shown here will work on any OS.
Advantages Of Installing Kali Linux On USB Pendrive
Before getting started, let’s talk about the advantages and reason behind why you should use it via USB instead of creating the virtual machine or installing it on the different partition of hard drive.
- It’s totally portable. Any computer machine can be used to boot through it. No need to carry your laptop.
- No need to create a different partition on your hard drive.
- Running Kali using virtual box is really headache sometimes. Booting errors or missing drivers are the common problems.
- Persistence mode let us save data on USB which won’t be erased after reboot.
Methods To Install Kali Linux On USB
Note: Make Sure You’ve Following Things
Before getting started, make sure you do have the following things. If any of these things is missing, you won’t be able to create bootable Kali Linux USB flash drive.
- A computer machine e.g laptop/pc.
- Kali Linux ISO image file. If you don’t have then download it from here.
- USB Pendrive, (4 GB minimum).
If you have all these things with you, then you’re ready to proceed further. Just follow any of these easiest steps given down below. All these methods are really very easy to follow.
Method 1. Using Win32 Disk Manager
It’s one of our favorite tool to burn Kali ISO image to Pendrive. You can download it for free. Not only Linux images but all the raw disk can be written to removable devices. Very useful and working utility for Windows users.
Another amazing thing about Win32 Disk Imager is that it’s very easy to use. No options, no coding, just follow the steps:
- Download the tool from here.
- Make sure your USB Pendrive is plugged into PC/Laptop.
- Open the Win32 Disk Manager and from the Device, drop-down menu selection, choose your external USB.
- Click on the Folder icon, browse the Kali Linux ISO image. Make sure that under files type, you’ve selected *.* files. Otherwise, you won’t be able to see your ISO image.
- Now, click the Write button.
- Popup window will appear, accept the warning.
- Wait till the progress is completed, You’ll get the notification once progress is 100% done.
- Once done, plug out your USB and use it the way you want.
I love using Win 32 Disk manager, the reason is just simple. It’s because it’s really very easy to use utility and comes with a very simple user interface. But, there are two more methds waiting for you down below. I reccomend you to check those methods as well.
Method 2. Using Rufus Bootable USB Maker
Rufus is another free and amazing utility to write an ISO image file to external storage devices. Not only image writing but it can do other amazing tasks as well.
You need to choose some options in order to create bootable Kali Linux pen drive. We’ve shown the steps down below to install Kali Linux on USB using Rufus.
- Download the Rufus tool.
- Make sure USB is plugged into your PC/laptop.
- In the device selection, select your USB device.
- Set partition scheme as GPT partition scheme for UEFI.
- The file system should be FAT32.
- Set cluster size to 16KB.
- Then click on Start button and wait till the process is done.
- Once all done, you’ll see the READY message.
Method 3. Using Windows Command Prompt (CMD)
Note: This method is only for advanced users because otherwise, you might end up with no result or loss of data. Or understand the commands deeply before executing them. (Administrator level access required)
- Insert your USB device to your PC/laptop.
- Press Win+R and type “cmd“, hit enter.
- In the command prompt, type diskpart.
- Provide the admin access in order to run diskpart.
- Now, type list disk. All the disks connected to pc/laptop will be listed. See the disk size to determine which USB you want to install the Kali Linux.
- Let’s say disk 1 is your USB, so type select disk 1.
- Type clean and hit enter.
- Type create partition primary.
- Now, type select partition 1.
- We need to format that partition now, so type format fs=fat32 quick.
- Once the format is done, type active and then assign.
- Copy your Kali ISO to USB and extract it using WinRAR or 7zip.
This is the perfect method to install Kali Linux on USB using CMD (Command Prompt). I’ve been using this method every single time because there’s no need to download any software or tool. Just fire up the CM, execute these commands and you’re done.
Tip: Guide To Boot Through Kali Linux Bootable USB Pendrive
After following any of the method given above, you now need to boot through it and test if it really works or not. Users who don’t know, the steps should follow this little guide:
- Plug in your USB to USB port in laptop/computer.
- Turn off your computer and turn it on again in order to enter boot device selection menu.
- To enter boot device selection menu, press F12 key or F11.
- Select the USB and press enter.
- Wait until the computer is successfully booted.
Remember that default username in Kali Linux live is “root” and password is “toor”
Drop down your comments down below if you’re having a problem with something.