How to Create Live USB Persistence of Kali Linux?

Hello Friends, In this article, I’m going to show you how to Boot and Create Live USB Persistence with the latest version of Kali Linux 2018.4

This can be an extremely useful enhancement, and enables you to retain documents, collected testing results, configurations, etc., when running Kali Linux “Live” from the USB drive, even across different systems. The persistent data is stored in its own partition on the USB drive,

1. Write Kali Linux ISO to USB

Step 1: Firstly, download the latest version of Kali Linux 2018.4, which will have the latest security updates and tools.

Step 2: To write the ISO to your USB drive download any tool like Refus, Universal USB Installer or UNetbootin etc. In this article, I am using Refus.

Step 3: Insert your USB drive (Minimum 8GB) and Run Booting tool like Refus.

Note: Make sure, your USB drive has no important data, otherwise you can lose your data. All data on the USB drive will be destroyed.

Step 4: Select Kali Linux 2018.4 ISO file (you downloaded).

Step 5: Click on the START button.

Step 6: Now, a prompt will popped up, click Ok.

Write in ISO Image mode
Warning: All data on device will be destroyed

2. Resize USB Partition

Your Kali Linux ISO has been written to your USB drive. Now, we can begin setting up partitions to work with Kali Live Persistence.

Now, You have to configure partitions with the partition manager of your choice, but in this article, I am going to use AOMEI Partition Wizard.

Step 1: Insert your Booted USB drive and select it.

Step 2: Now, click on the Create Partition option.

Step 3: Resize the Partition to 5GB – 6GB and click OK button.

Step 4: Now, select newly created partition and click on Apply button.

Step 5: New message popped up, click Yes,

Step 6: Now click on Proceed button.

Note: Make sure that your Partition Label name must be persistence. It’s important that you spell this correctly.

3. Boot into Kali Live USB

Step 1: Once your USB partitioning is complete, restart your system and boot from USB. (To open BIOS menus on your system, search on Google and find your BIOS menu key. For me, this is Fn+F12).

Step 2: In the Kali boot menu, select LIVE USB PERSISTENCE (check kali.org/prst) and press Enter.

4. Mount Persistence Partition

Once Kali Linux has booted, we can use fdisk to view the disk devices and partitions.

Step 1: Open a terminal and run:

$ fdisk -l

You will see several entries for partitions and devices. Look for your USB drive device name.

Device     Boot    Start       End   Sectors   Size Id Type
/dev/sdb1           2048   8390655   8388608     4G  c W95 FAT32 (LBA)
/dev/sdb2        8390656  30463999  22073344  10.5G 83 Linux

In the above example, we can see the USB drive device name is sdb2. This device name may be different on your system. Make sure you have the right one before continuing.

I’m assuming that your persistence partition device name is sdb2.Now, run the following commands.

IMPORTANT: You must enter below commands exactly and make sure that you choose the correct device (yours may not be sdb2), otherwise persistence will not work.

$ mkdir -p /mnt/my_usb

$ mount /dev/sdb2 /mnt/my_usb

$ echo “/ union” > /mnt/my_usb/persistence.conf

$ umount /dev/sdb2

We’re done! Now, Restart the system, boot from USB, and from now on always select LIVE USB PERSISTENCE (check kali.org/prst).

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