View Full Version : Best laptops for a dedicated Kali setup?

2018-02-23, 03:24
Up to this point I've been using Kali on either VMs or a USB Live distro. I'm looking to purchase a laptop for a dedicated install, but have found it difficult to find information on what are actually good compatible laptops for Kali currently.

I don't have a ton of restrictions. Main things I want are

1) Highly compatible/Least issues to setup
2) Cheap is good
3) More USB ports is better

2018-02-23, 10:35
Up to this point I've been using Kali on either VMs or a USB Live distro. I'm looking to purchase a laptop for a dedicated install, but have found it difficult to find information on what are actually good compatible laptops for Kali currently.

I don't have a ton of restrictions. Main things I want are

1) Highly compatible/Least issues to setup
2) Cheap is good
3) More USB ports is better

I have kali 2018.1 working on a ACER. Everyrhing runs like a dream.

2018-02-23, 13:02
Would it be possible to get a model number? Does it work with your built in wifi, or only USB? I've noticed some of the built in wifi adapters are very spotty running Kali Live off the USB so I end up having to waste a USB slot for wifi to keep a decent connection.

2018-02-23, 17:28
If using VM, use whatever. VM can be snapshotted and reverted in case something goes wrong.

The reason to use live or install:
- GPU cracking
- Bluetooth stuff
- Use built-in wifi card

If you choose to install, I'd recommend to stay away from laptop with dual gpu (Intel/Nvidia) and avoid latest CPU generation. Too recent hardware and it won't be supported. You can always check debian wiki for specific laptops, they'll tell you what works and what doesn't.

2018-02-24, 03:27
Acer es 1531 workes with internal wifi. 2 usb 2.0 ,1 usb3.0

2018-02-26, 17:21
Hello Everybody!

I'm new around here and I would like to get some advice.

I will buy a laptop and I was interested in the Dell Inspiron 15 (7560)
Since it already comes with Ubuntu I think it would work with Kali...but you never know!

So I would like to get some info and I greatly appreciate any info you can give me about it.


7* Gen Intel® Core™ i7-7500U 2.7 GHz
Ubuntu Linux 16.04 (pre-installed)
16GB, DDR4, 2400MHz
SSD de 128 GB
NVIDIA® GeForce® 940MX de 4GB, GDDR5
Dell Wireless™ 802.11ac + Bluetooth 4.0

So, would it be fully compatible with Kali or does it have issues?

Thank you all for your attention!

2018-02-26, 19:20
4dr14n4, there is no way to know other than you looking up to find other people who have the exact same laptop as well as looking in the debian wiki that I mentioned.

2018-02-28, 19:34
It really depends on what you like. I prefer small, light, and expandable. Have had Hp, Dell, and Toshibas in the past but mainly Acers now. For real work I prefer a desktop with removable drives and one OS per drive.

OK but for mobile I like an 11"-12" screen with 1366x768 resolution. Mine only have one USB 3.0 port so carry a powered 3.0 hub.

Currently have two: a 2016 Model R11 with 4-core N3700 (Braswall), 8GB ram, and a big SSD. It can run with an i7 Desktop and has extras like an RJ-45 jack. It has no problem with Kali.

The other one is a current Spin1 "loss leader" that can be found for under $200. 2-core N3350 (Apollo Lake), 4GB ram, 32GB SSD and has been fighting me at every turn. The bloatware loadout did not leave enough disk space for Windows 10-64 (10-32 would have been a lot better choice) to update without extreme measures and a mini SD card formatted NTFS.

Decided some time ago that it would be better off with Linux. Having used Kali a lot when working started there. Locked up on boot. As did Mint, Centos, Fedora, & Ubuntu. Turning UEFI on and off had no effect. Adding boot files to UEFI store did not help. Refind could display menu but locked up after. Finally found a distro, Manjaro, that would boot.

But still came back to Kali. Something was fixed in 2018-W09 that works. 2018-1 and 2018-W08 do not. Still need to erase the UEFI store but now works. See bug 4558.

And the moral is I'd avoid a laptop/notebook with an Apollo Lake processor (see the Intel Ark for a list) at least until W09 makes it into production.

user name 1000
2018-03-07, 23:11
Are there bad laptops for Kali to run on?

To the best of my knowledge, you can install Kali on any laptop that meets the minimum specs. The more powerful the processor, the better. If you're planning on cracking hashes, a really strong graphics card is good to have.

2018-03-09, 06:45
Dell Inspiron (https://pc4u.org/best-laptop-under-500-dollars/) 15 5000 would be a great and cheap laptop that would be awesome for you

2018-03-09, 14:57
That Dell with an i5 seems a bit of overkill.

Personally have always preferred multiple machines and drives to dual boot and the current rash of small notebooks and "2in1"s with ventless designs and often 4GB of ram but only a 32GB non-upgradable SDDs that ship with Win 10-64 and lots of bloatware makes for a device fails updates & newbies cannot fix that makes for a lot of interesting.opportunities in returns and factory refurbished devices.

2018-05-16, 14:15
I am new to the Kali world, but not to linux in general.

I recently setup a dedicated box for Kali using a x240 Thinkpad I picked up on Amazon for about $250. It has an ssd, rj-45, 2x usb, sd and sim slots. Everything worked on first install with no problems. It runs great and I am thinking of ordering another just to keep on hand. Also, these are really sturdy little laptops and the battery lasts almost 8 hours (depending on what I happen to be doing).

2018-05-28, 16:09
If you are cutting off the second point you may want to buy the XOTIC Sager NP9778......(It is a beast)
But if you are considering all three points you may want to buy the Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575G-76YK.....(It is a powerful computer)

Long the oriental dragon
2018-06-28, 02:16
I bought a second hand old laptop,lenovo k27 with a CPU of i7 2620 model.
It works fine, and since the laptop is cheap, I may dispose it once my crime actions was traced :D

Well, I'm just trolling :D

2018-07-03, 00:34
I just got a PineBook, kali took right of with no problem. I only have $130.00 in it new.

2018-07-17, 00:48
well, I found a nice lenovo thinkpad T420 cheep. I put kali on it and it runs great, now I have two good machines to use.
Thank you all for your time and effort.
it is going to be nice going down the road and hacking, if I done run in to something!!!!!HA Ha ha ha

2018-08-07, 17:10
Dell Inspiron 15 and Acer laptop will work like a charm. I have a dell and Acer laptop both and I am using kali on both.

2018-10-08, 00:10
Lenovo ThinkPad T420 is said to be a good pentester ... what do you guys think of it with kali ?

2018-10-08, 05:36
You might want to make sure to have 3 usb slots, maybe a half decent video card for hash cracking, and a decent cpu, of course if your asking what kind of laptop you should get then say what your intention is with kali for the most part.

2018-11-11, 23:53
I just got a PineBook, kali took right of with no problem. I only have $130.00 in it new.

Hi BlueDog,

I just got my Pinebook. What ISO did you use? I'm hoping to create a live-USB with p (https://docs.kali.org/?p=4902)ersistent storage, so the data collected is saved across reboots

2018-11-13, 00:16
I know this is not what you asked but it should help...
Avoid: MSI GS63VR as it is a newer model and the dual video card setup (like Mister_X (https://forums.kali.org/member.php?50639-Mister_X) suggested, he's right avoid the dual setup) will give you fits, I use it as a VM setup because it's not user friendly getting the dual cards to work and cuda to work. I had gotten it working but wasn't satisfied with the performance of the workaround and decided to use it as VM.

If it helps I'm probably going to pickup a Thinkpad without an intel hd video card as they seem to have great reviews for Kali and also the Dell Inspiron i5577 got some great scores for Kali.

2018-11-15, 20:52
Intel video card is probably best as support is often in the kernel already. And released a year or 2 ago is better

2018-12-05, 02:05
I got a Dell Latitude E4310, Kali works great with the built-in WIFI adapter.

2018-12-07, 18:39
I'm using Asus vivobook s550cm so far I haven't found any issue.

2018-12-11, 11:17
I'm using MSI GP62MVR 7RF Leopard Pro (7700HQ, Gpu 1060), built-in WIFI adapter works in monitor mode

2018-12-12, 03:07
I am using Acer Aspire 5, 15.6″ Full HD, 8th Generation, everything works fine on my end.

2018-12-14, 00:10
Using MSI GV62 a gaming laptop with 8th gen processor, no problem so far.

2019-01-02, 08:25
My first exposure to Kali (and Linux in general) happened about a year ago when I began running on a virtual machine on my laptop. In no time at all I discovered that Kali was both the coolest and most confusing system I had ever seen. It was (and is) a steep learning curve but once I'd had my first taste, I became determined to learn everything I could about pentesting, exploits, forensics, GNU and all things Debian/Ubuntu. I won't even try to deny it, I'm pretty thoroughly hooked.

I'm far from being able to say that I'm proficient, but I'm determined and know that while I do get stumped quite often, there's so many incredible tutorials, forums and resources I have no doubt that I'll figure it out and lean what I need to learn. It's hard work but also incredibly empowering. So much so in fact, that I've decided to take the leap and say GoodBye to the control freak Big Brother I never wanted. No more Virtual Machine, divided resources or even dual boot for that matter. Kind of like ending a bad relationship with a gold digger who watches every thing you do. Best just to end it I think and kick her to the curb.

Felt great for the 20 minutes I was confident I'd just be able to walk away, no problem at all. I've got a Dell inspiron 17 5748, and as luck would have it, my computer just happens to be one of the few Dell's not supported by Ubuntu. It seems like the models before and after mine are on the Canonical list, but just not the particular one I have.

What I'm hoping is that there's someone here on this forum who's kung-fu is greater than my own, that can tell me what I could expect if I went ahead with the install with an unsupported kernel? Can I expect to have a lot of issues? I'm guessing the built in WiFi card will be an issue (I can live with that). Can I expect a constant stream of ***? issues I'd have to figure out how to cope with? Basically what I want to know is, considering my less than extensive background, would installing Kali/Debian be something worth doing? Or is Bill Gates going to remain my significant other for the foreseeable future?

Whatever the answer, thanks for taken the time to offer some advice.