Kali Linux is a good first operating system for beginners if you’re thinking of starting a cybersecurity career. The software contains many tools that can be used for ethical hacking and penetration testing.
The best way to learn Kali Linux is to install it on VMware, as it is one of the best platforms to do so. You wouldn’t have to worry about damaging the host OS if you installed a feature incorrectly in the virtual environment. Moreover, you may want to take a look at the best open source VMWare alternatives if you are down on resources.
How To Install Kali Linux on VMware
In this installation guide, we will provide you with all the information you need to know about installing Kali in VMware’s virtual environment.
In order to install Kali Linux on VMware, the following requirements must be met:
- There should be at least 10 GB of free space on the disk
- Architecture: i386 or amd64
- 512MB of RAM is a minimum requirement
- Iso image for Kali Linux
Step 1: Download Kali Linux’s ISO File
You must download the Kali Linux image from the Kali Linux website before you start installing Kali Linux in VMware. Also, make sure you have turned on Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling before installing Kali Linux on.
Note: To avoid downloading the wrong version, make sure to download the ISO file according to your system architecture (32-bit or 64-bit).
Step 2: Create a New Virtual Machine
- In order to create a virtual machine on VMware, you need to download the ISO file first. In VMware, you can create a new virtual machine by clicking the Create a New Virtual Machine button.
- Next, click Browse to provide the Kali Linux ISO once the next window appears. Once you have downloaded the file, navigate to the folder where it is located and select Next.
- However, VMware might display the following error if it does not detect the operating system automatically:
- Please ignore the warning by pressing Next if this is also the case with your installation.
- Now, you will then be able to choose your Guest operating system. As a guest, you must select Linux. As Kali is a Debian-derived Linux distribution, select the latest version of Debian from the Version dropdown.
- Give the virtual machine a name; this can be anything you want. The virtual machine can also be relocated or left in its current location. Thereafter, click on the Next button.
- You can choose any name you wish for your virtual machine; the name won’t be fixed. The virtual machine location can also be changed or left unchanged. Click Next.
- If you want to enhance the performance of the virtual disk, check the option Split virtual disk into multiple files. Click the Next button.
- As a final step, review the settings in the last dialog box and make any adjustments necessary to the hardware settings. Your virtual machine will be created as soon as everything is in order.
Step 3: Install the Operating System
- The next step is to install Kali Linux on the newly created virtual machine. By selecting Play virtual machine, you can start the newly created virtual machine. After this, Kali Linux will be booted into VMware.
- After selecting the Graphical Install option, you will see the installation options for Kali Linux. You can navigate the screen by using the arrow keys.
- The operating system will be installed in English by default. You may change the language by selecting it in the language selection menu. Click Continue after selecting the language you want to select.
- Your system’s geographic location will be displayed on the next screen. Use the arrow keys to choose your native keyboard layout; American English is the default.
- As soon as this is done, the installation of the OS should begin, leading to a dialog box that asks for network configuration information.
- Providing a machine name and selecting Continue will lead you to the Network Configuration box, where you will enter your system’s hostname.
- You will need to enter your system’s domain name. Next, enter a username (the user will not have superuser access).
- Your previously entered user name would need to be entered again on the next screen. You will use your username’s password to log in to your system after installation.
- You are now ready to partition your disk. Choose the default partitioning option (Guided – use the entire disk) and click Continue.
- You can partition a disk using SDA or VMware Virtual disks. A partitioning scheme will be offered to you by the installation wizard. Please select the All files in one partition (recommended for new users) option.
- Now, your disk partitions will be summarized once you have selected the relevant options. Finish partitioning by selecting Finish Partitioning. To move forward, click Continue on each screen.
- The changes will be confirmed if you select Yes. It takes a little while for the actual installation to begin once you select all the parameters.
- Here you can choose additional software if you wish. Once you have clicked Continue, you will be taken to the next step.
- Select /dev/sda (boot loader device) to install the GRUB boot loader.
- Virtual machine restart is required after installation is complete. After starting a virtual machine, the GRUB bootloader will be displayed. You will need your username and password to sign in to Kali GNU/Linux. Kali Linux will now appear on your computer’s desktop.
Step 4: Install VMware Tools on Kali Linux VM
In the pop-up menu that appears once the virtual machine starts, VMware Tools for Linux will be offered to you. If you install these, your virtual machine will be able to use advanced features. You can select Remind Me Later if you do not want to install them.
It can be a bit challenging when you’re not familiar with how to go about the installation process. It’s safe to say that using the steps outlined above; you’ll be in good hands. We hope that Kali Linux can be installed on a virtual machine using the detailed procedure here to help you.