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Kali Linux Installation on Windows

According to Offensive Security, Kali Linux is a special Debian distribution designed for various cybersecurity professions, including penetration testing, digital forensics, and malware analysis. A more detailed explanation can be found on the Offensive Security website.

Yet Another Kali Installation?

When you search the Internet, there are a lot of Kali Linux installation tutorials and blog posts. This post will focus on preparing our installation for running the operating system in a virtual environment. Our chosen environment is Oracle VBox. On a Windows machine, you need to initially download and install the latest VBox. You can download Oracle VBox from here.

Kali Linux installation for Microsoft Windows.

The default installation of VBox is straightforward. After successfully installing the software, we can start installing Kali Linux from a disk image.

Note that virtualization technologies must be enabled before installing any virtual machine on top of the host operating system. The following blog post has three ways to enable it. Enabling Virtualization in Windows 10

Installing Oracle VM VirtualBox

Oracle VM VirtualBox installation steps are shown in the following pictures. While installation for USB and networking support wizard asks for permissions; just accept all, and it is ready to go.

Installing Kali Linux

There are three different options to install Kali Linux at the Desktop installation has three options. We prefer to use the bare-metal recommended one.

  • At the Oracle, VM VirtualBox Manager select New, give a Name and choose the Type Linux Version as Debian x64, then click Next.
  • The next step is assigning memory; depending on your host system, set the memory to 2048 MB (at least).
  • The third step is how the hard disk will be provisioned. Choose “Create a virtual hard disk now”. Hard disk type becomes important if you plan to use this machine with a different virtualization platform. VMDK is compatible with VMware, but there are conversion options among different hard disk file types. Keep it VDI.
  • Choose storage type as “Dynamically Allocated” and give it 20 or 40 GB space. If you plan to use your Kali Linux for multimedia or downloading, allocate more space for storage. And done.

The step before the installation is to configure the Settings. Default Display, Network, and Shared Folder settings need to be customized. There are a couple of options to set, but we will set vital ones for the best performance.

  1. General Tab, set Shared Clipboard “Bidirectional”, Drag’n’Drop “Bidirectional”
  2. System Tab, set Boot Order to “Optical, Hard Disk and Network”, set Processor to “2”
  3. Display Tab, increase Video Memory to at least 64 MB, if your display has a lower resolution, keep the Scale Factor at 100% and select 3D Acceleration.
  4. Storage Tab, choose CD/DVD drive from the IDE controller and choose kali-linux iso file by clicking and following GUI, click Live CD/DVD.
  5. Network Tab, there are a couple of options. The safest one is to keep it as NAT. If you want your virtual machine to connect to your router, you can set it to a Bridged Adapter. We keep it as NAT. A detailed explanation is on the virtualbox manual page.
  6. Additionally, you can set Shared Folders between host and guest. And customize other options as well.
Final customization of the virtual machine on the Oracle VM VirtualBox Manager.

Finally, we start the virtual machine and install Kali Linux. At the installation screen of Kali Linux, select “Graphical install” (if you are experienced in Linux installation, you can go with the Install option). Default home key in VBox right Ctrl. If you are stuck in the guest machine, press the right Ctrl. Kali Linux installation is monotonous. Successively set your language and location, and installation begins.

When network configuration is done, then set the “Hostname”, “Domain name”, “user information & password”, and “time zone”

Kali prepares the disk with a partman. Since our installation is for home use and we will not use this operating system for production, choose the “Guided – use entire disk” and “All files in one partition” options. Installation of the base system is the last step in our installation. Don’t forget to keep it up-to-date.

Emre Caglar Hosgor