Forum Thread: Installing Kali on a Dual Partition USB

Hey there,

I have been looking for a couple of days now but can't reach a solution to my problem. (Just for the record, i am a complete noob when it comes to Linux based systems.)

I have a 32GB Kingston DataTraveler USB and I want to do the following:
-1 Partition to be used as data storage (for kali and windows)
-1 Partition to boot kali linux
-I want to give Kali the size it needs, and the rest be put in the storage partition.

Available Tools:
-WIndows 10
-Parted Magic USB
-4GB empty USB

How can I achieve this?
Thank you for your time and help.

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9 Responses

I am not sure why you want to use two different partitions for the USB. It would likely be easier for you to install Kali to the USB and then just additionally use the USB to hold files. Linux Live USB (LiLi) will let you make a bootable and persistent USB and also hide the files so that they don't litter the USB with the OS's files. After LiLi installs everything, just use your USB as your normally would for data storage.

I didnt know something like that was possible, do you happen to have a link to a tutorial or something that does so?

Edit: After taking a quick peek on their website, it seems like this LiLi installs Live Linux not a full installation if i am not mistaken.

I want to perform a full kali installation not run a live version.

LiLi is super user friendly. Here is the user guide for it. Basically just:

  1. download the Kali .iso
  2. download LiLi and install it.
  3. Plug in USB
  4. Run LiLi
  5. At the top of LiLi's menu, select the USB you want to install Kali on (Make sure you get this one right, if you mistakenly install it to your computer's C: drive, you are going to mess up your computer).
  6. Through the second LiLi step, select Kali's .iso that you downloaded earlier. It will check it against its own database to see if it matches any type of known linux. I think the new kali .iso is too new to be in the database, so it will likely fail. You can proceed even though it failed, or you can go into Kali's options and force it to treat the iso as an older version of Kali.
  7. If it registers the .iso, it will allow you to make a persistent installation of Kali. It isn't necessary, but it will allow you to save files between boots.
  8. Click "Format the USB key in FAT32" to format the key if you haven't done so already. You will lose all the files on the key if you click this. (I recommend doing this though to avoid problems).
  9. Click "Hide created files" to hide the bootable files that LiLi will make.
  10. Click "Enable launching linux live in windows" for a neat option to make a portable VM that lets you load Kali in windows. It isn't necessary, but it is pretty useful.

Then press the lightning icon and do it! After it's done, it will rename the USB "LinuxLiveUSB". You can then plug that USB into your computer and boot from it.

My question here is.
Will this grant me a USB with a Kali Linux Live USB or a Kali Linux installed USB?

It will give you a live USB of Kali Linux that you can boot into and run Kali Linux on your computer. It will also give you 4 gigs of persistence so you can save your files and stuff (although it may be best to not do this since Kali tends to be insecure). From the USB you can also install Kali on other computers.

Yeah, as i mentioned in my first reply, that is not what i am trying to do.
I do not want to run a Live Kali USB, I want an installed version.

Thanks a lot for your help and effort so far though :)

Okay, so here's one way you might be able to do that. This is totally not a good idea because this is a great way to accidentally screw up your windows system. Do you have a laptop or a desktop? Hopefully a desktop because the easiest way to protect everything will be to remove the hard drive from your computer. Here's how to maybe do this:

  1. follow the above steps to make a Kali live USB with your 4 gig USB.
  2. Turn your computer off.
  3. Unplug your computer's hard drive (or back it up). This way, if things don't go well, you don't lose everything on your computer.
  4. Plug the Kali USB into your computer.
  5. Boot from the Kali USB
  6. Plug the 32 gig USB in.
  7. Install Kali to the USB just like you would a hard drive.
  8. Make sure that on your USB you have a root partition ("/"), a swap partition, and then another partition for storage (probably formatted as FAT32, make sure you don't use this partition in your Kali installation).
  9. Make sure you install GRUB to /dev/sda (or whatever your 32gig USB comes up as, it might be /dev/sdb). Not /dev/sda1 or anything like that.

That should get you what you need. The problem you might run into is that USBs aren't great for this kind of thing. I still would recommend using a persistent live USB install over this method. It is easier to make, back up, manage, and replace in case something goes wrong. Hope this helps.

Yeah it seems like its getting quite complicated.

a quick question about LiLi:

If i use the LiLi method to install a Live persistent Kali on the usb, and then hide the files, the files i store on the usb (when used as a normal usb under windows for example) will they be accessible from the kali? and will i be able to save from kali to the usb and access it from windows?

You definitely won't be able to access the files saved to the Kali persistence file while you are booted into windows. While booted into Kali, I don't think you can access the files saved on the USB. If you partition the USB first and install Kali to the first partition, you might be able to access the files in the second partition in both windows and kali. For what you are looking for, it might be easiest to actually install Kali to your hard drive.

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