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Kali Linux

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Kali Linux is a Debian-derived Linux distribution designed for digital forensics and penetration testing It is maintained and funded by Offensive Security Ltd Mati Aharoni, Devon Kearns and Raphaël Hertzog are the core developers


  • 1 Development
  • 2 Supported platforms
  • 3 Features
  • 4 Tools
  • 5 Popular culture
  • 6 See also
  • 7 References
  • 8 External links


Kali Linux is preinstalled with over 300 penetration-testing programs, including Armitage a graphical cyber attack management tool, nmap a port scanner, Wireshark a packet analyzer, John the Ripper a password cracker, Aircrack-ng a software suite for penetration-testing wireless LANs, Burp suite and OWASP ZAP both web application security scanners23 Kali Linux can run natively when installed on a computer's hard disk, can be booted from a live CD or live USB, or it can run within a virtual machine It is a supported platform of the Metasploit Project's Metasploit Framework, a tool for developing and executing security exploits2

It was developed by Mati Aharoni and Devon Kearns of Offensive Security through the rewrite of BackTrack, their previous forensics Linux distribution based on Knoppix The third core developer Raphaël Hertzog joined them as Debian expert45

Kali Linux is based on Debian Testing Most packages Kali uses are imported from the Debian repositories6

Kali Linux is developed using a secure environment with only a small number of trusted people that are allowed to commit packages, with each package being signed by the developer Kali also has a custom-built kernel that is patched for injection This was primarily added because the development team found they needed to do a lot of wireless assessments7

Supported platformsedit

Kali Linux is distributed in 32-bit and 64-bit images for use on hosts based on the x86 instruction set and as an image for the ARM architecture for use on the BeagleBoard computer and on Samsung's ARM Chromebook8

The developers of Kali Linux aim to make Kali Linux available for ARM devices5

Kali Linux is already available for BeagleBone Black, HP Chromebook, CubieBoard 2, CuBox, CuBox-i, Raspberry Pi, EfikaMX, Odroid U2, Odroid XU, Odroid XU3, Samsung Chromebook, Utilite Pro, Galaxy Note 101, and SS8089

With the arrival of Kali NetHunter, Kali Linux is also officially available on smartphones such as the Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7, Nexus 9, Nexus 10 and the OnePlus One and some Samsung Galaxy models


Kali Linux has a dedicated project set-aside for compatibility and porting to specific Android devices, called Kali Linux NetHunter10

It is the first Open Source Android penetration testing platform for Nexus devices, created as a joint effort between the Kali community member “BinkyBear” and Offensive Security It supports Wireless 80211 frame injection, one-click MANA Evil Access Point setups, HID keyboard Teensy like attacks, as well as Bad USB MITM attacks10

BackTrack Kali's predecessor contained a mode known as forensic mode This capability was carried over to Kali via live boot This mode is very popular for many reasons such as many Kali users already have a bootable Kali USB drive or CD, and this option makes it easy to apply Kali to a forensic job There are however some changes to forensic mode over the regular operation of the system, such as forensic mode doesn't touch the hard drive or swap space and auto mounting is disabled However, it is recommended by the developers that if Kali is going to be used for real world forensics that these things be tested in that environment11


Kali Linux includes many well known security tools, including:12

  • Nmap
  • Aircrack-ng
  • Kismet
  • Wireshark
  • Metasploit Framework
  • Burp suite
  • John the Ripper
  • Social Engineering Toolkit
  • Airodump-ng
  • Maltego

Popular cultureedit

The logo of Kali Linux appears on the background in the TV series Mr Robot 2015 in episode 5 of season one The Kali Linux logo also appears again as wallpaper in scenes from episode 1, episode 9 and more prominently in the episode 6, season 2 of the same series, when it is used by two of the main characters, Angela and Darlene The operating system is also shown to be downloaded and installed at episode 10 of season 2 It appears again on Romero´s home pc, as wallpaper, through several episodes

See alsoedit

  • BackTrack
  • Security-focused operating system
  • Metasploit Project
  • Nmap
  • BackBox
  • OpenVAS
  • Kismet software
  • Aircrack-ng
  • dSploit
  • NetHunter


  1. ^ "Kali Linux 20162 Release" kaliorg 2016-08-31 Retrieved 2016-09-02 
  2. ^ a b "Kali Linux arrives as enterprise-ready version of BackTrack" The H 2013-03-13 
  3. ^ "Kali Linux Metapackages" Offensive Security Retrieved 2014-11-02 
  4. ^ "The Birth of Kali Linux" Offensive Security 2012-12-12 Retrieved 2013-03-13 
  5. ^ a b Orin, Andy 2014-03-12 "Behind the App:The Story of Kali Linux" Lifehacker Retrieved 2015-07-14 Mati Aharoni:One of our goals with Kali is to provide images of the operating system for all sorts of exotic hardware—mainly ARM based This includes everything from Raspberry Pi's to tablets, to Android TV devices, with each piece of hardware having some unique property 
  6. ^ "Kali's Relationship With Debian" Kali Linux 2013-03-11 
  7. ^ "What is Kali Linux" 
  8. ^ "BackTrack successor Kali Linux launched" SC Magazine 2013-03-13 
  9. ^ "Kali Linux ARM" 
  10. ^ a b "Kali Linux Nethunter" 
  11. ^ "Kali Linux Forensics Mode" 
  12. ^ "Kali Linux Tools Listing" Offensive Security Retrieved May 26, 2016 

External linksedit

  • Official website
  • Kali Linux at DistroWatch

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