Create a Bootable Kali Linux USB Drive (2019)

Create a Bootable Kali Linux USB Drive (2019)

I thought I’d write a quick update guide on installing Kali Linux from USB as I’m hoping to encourage more friends to install an instance and start playing.

This guide assumes you’re using a Windows computer to prepare the bootable USB drive and you already have a 4GB drive (or greater) ready to format and use.


Download the ISO image from Kali:

Download the Rufus utility for creating a bootable USB drive from an ISO (or download from my site here)

Prepare the Drive

Firstly, plugin a USB drive and confirm the drive letter for it.

If you have difficulty because its partitioned and so has multiple letters (or not letter), go to Disk Management (by pressing the Windows key and typing Computer Management), delete all the partitions on it, create a new partition and assign a letter to it.

Deploy the ISO

Now launch the Rufus utility:

  • Select the USB drive from the device list
  • Press Select and browse to the ISO you downloaded from the Kali website
  • You may be prompted with a warning message:

  • You can click Yes to download the files
  • You might get a warning about installing in hybrid mode:

    I would recommend leaving using DD Image mode as this can prevent the dreaded “Failed to Detect and Mount CD-ROM” message when using the USB drive to install Kali to another PC
  • Leave the other options as default and press start

You should see something like this:

This will take a while so get yourself a cup of tea  😀


Bob McKay

About Bob McKay

Bob McKay works at Perfect Image, is a father, programmer and a self confessed techie-geek type.

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