Kali Linux Commands Cheat Sheet [Free PDF Download]

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Kali Linux is a popular Linux distribution and widely used for penetration testing of software and ethical hacking. It has an astronomically higher amount of commands and tools for various purposes. A Kali Linux cheat sheet can be handy for quickly accessing these commands and finding the most useful ones.

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What is Kali Linux?

Kali Linux is a Debian-based Linux distro developed by Offensive Security for penetration testing, advanced forensics and security auditing etc. It has highly customizable tools and commands that include network analyzer, password cracking tools, wireless network scanners, vulnerability scanners and so on. In a word, Kali Linux is the default OS for cybersecurity professionals.

Kali Linux Commands Cheat Sheet

Kali Linux commands cheat sheet contains many types of commands for Information Gathering, Vulnerability Analysis, and many more. Here is a list of frequently used commands of kali Linux that can be often useful for kali Linux users.

Kali Linux Commands for Information Gathering

Kali Linux has the most extensive collection of information gathering tools and commands. These are useful for gathering information about a target system and networks. The following list has some most used tools and commands of this type.

Command Description
ACE-voip Detect and analyze voice-over IP traffic
Amap Identify open ports and services on a remote system
APT2 Automatic penetration testing and regenerating reports
arp-scan Discover hosts on a network
Automater Automatic OSINT gathering
bing-ip2hosts Enumerate hostnames from Bing search result
braa Detect and analyze broadcast radio signals
CaseFile Create and manage threat intelligence reports
CDPSnarf Extract CDP information from a network
copy-router-config Backing up router configurations or transferring configurations to a new router
DMitry Gather target network information including port scanning and WHOIS lookups
dnmap Identify hosts and services on a network
dnsenum Gather information about DNS records including subdomains
dnsmap Identify active DNS servers and associated hostnames
DNSRecon DNS reconnaissance tool to gather information about servers, zone transfer and IP addresses
dnstracer Trace DNS queries to identify problems and misconfigurations
dnswalk Check common DNS misconfiguration
DotDotPwn Exploit directory traversal vulnerabilities
enum4linux Gather information from Windows and Samba systems including shares, users and passwords
enumIAX Gather information from IAX-based VoIP systems
EyeWitness Generate screenshots of web applications
Faraday Manage and collaborate on vulnerability scans and security assessment
Fierce Identify non-contiguous IP space and map network infrastructure
Firewalk Determine specific traffic blocking by firewall and by analyzing TTl values
fragroute/fragrouter Intercept and modify network traffic at IP fragmentation level
Ghost Phisher Security testing for phishing attacks
GoLismero Web security testing tool
goofile Search specific file types on a target domain
ident-user-enum Identify user accounts on systems that use the Ident protocol
InSpy LinkedIn reconnaissance tool to gather information about employees, companies and job postings
InTrace Trace the route of TCP packets through a network
iSMTP Test the security of SMYP servers
lbd Identify load balancers and web application firewalls
Maltego Teeth Identify connections and relationships between entities
masscan A fast port scanner used for vulnerability assessment
Metagoofil Gather information and extract metadata from public documents
Miranda Tool for exploiting UPnP devices
nbtscan-unixwiz Scan NetBIOS nameservers to gather information about connected devices
Nikto Web server scanner
ntop Network traffic monitoring and analysis
OSRFramework Intelligence gathering framework used for data mining
p0f Passive network traffic analysis for identifying the operating systems and applications used on networked devices
Parsero Identify input validation-related vulnerabilities of web applications
SET Tool for performing social engineering attacks, password attacks etc.
SMBMap Enumerate and scan SMB shares
smtp-user-enum Enumerate usernames on a target SMTP server
snmp-check Enumerate and check the security of SNMP devices
SPARTA Graphical interface for network infrastructure penetration testing
sslcaudit Audit SSl/Tls certificates on a web server
SSLsplit Intercept and decrypt SSL/TLS traffic
sslstrip Tool for performing man-in-the-middle attacks on SSL/TLS encrypted connections
SSLyze Test SSL/TLS servers and clients
Sublist3r Enumerate subdomains of a target domain using search engines
THC-IPV6 Attack and test IPv6 networks
theHarvester Gather information on a target domain from various public sources
TLSSLed Evaluate the security of SSL/TLS connections
twofi Find potential usernames and passwords from Twitter
Unicornscan A fast and powerful network scanning tool
URLCrazy Generate and test domain typos and variations
Wireshark Network protocol analyzer for capturing and analyzing network traffic
WOL-E Tool for Wake-On-LAN attacks and network discovery
Xplico Extract application data from network traffic

Kali Linux Commands for Vulnerability Analysis

Vulnerability analysis tools and commands in Kali Linux help identify the vulnerability in systems and networks, test the strength of passwords, and simulate attacks to determine potential weaknesses. Here is a list of popular tools and commands that are frequently used for vulnerability analysis.

Command Description
BBQSQL A blind SQL injection and exploitation tool
BED A network protocol fuzzing tool
cisco-global-exploiter Exploit vulnerabilities in Cisco devices
cisco-ocs Scan and exploit Cisco devices
cisco-torch Test and scan the security of Cisco devices
copy-router-config Back up and restore Cisco router configurations
Doona Test the security of network devices and protocols
DotDotPwn Exploit directory traversal vulnerabilities
HexorBase A database management and exploitation tool
jSQL Injection A SQL injection exploitation tool
Lynis A security auditing and hardening tool for Linux and Unix-based systems
Nmap Network exploration and security auditing tool
ohrwurm A local root exploitation tool
openvas A vulnerability scanner and management tool
Oscanner Scan Oracle databases for vulnerabilities
Powerfuzzer A web application fuzzing and discovery tool
sfuzz A protocol fuzzer and vulnerability scanner
SidGuesser Identify valid user accounts in Windows domains
SIPArmyKnife Test the security of VoIP systems
sqlmap A SQL injection exploitation tool
Sqlninja A SQL server injection and takeover tool
sqlsus Identify and exploit SQL injection vulnerabilities
tnscmd10g Test and exploit Oracle TNS Listener vulnerabilities
unix-privesc-check Identify privilege escalation vulnerabilities in Unix-based systems
Yersinia Network protocol analyzer and attack tool for testing network security

Kali Linux Commands for Wireless Attacks

Different techniques such as sniffing, spoofing, and cracking of wireless encryption protocols can be used for wireless attacks. There are a lot of commands and tools in Kali Linux for applying these techniques. The following list contains the most useful ones.

Command Description
Airbase-ng Configure and attack wireless access points
Aircrack-ng Audit and test wireless network
Airdecap-ng and Airdecloak-ng Decrypt and deobfuscate captured wireless traffic
Aireplay-ng Inject traffic to wireless networks to test their security
airgraph-ng Generate graphs from wireless network data
Airmon-ng Enable and Disable monitor mode on wireless interfaces
Airodump-ng Capture wireless traffic and analyze it
airodump-ng-oui-update Update the OUI databases used by airodump-ng
Airolib-ng Manage and crack password hashes for WPA and WPA2
Airserv-ng Run a wireless access point on a Linux system
Airtun-ng Create encrypted tunnels over wireless networks
Asleap Crack MS-CHAPv1 and MS-CHAPv2 authentication protocols
Besside-ng Capture and crack WEP and WPA-encrypted wireless traffic
Bluelog Scan and log Bluetooth devices
BlueMaho Discover and attack Bluetooth devices
Bluepot Simulate Bluetooth honeypots to detect and track attackers
BlueRanger Control Bluetooth devices remotely
Bluesnarfer Exploit Bluetooth vulnerabilities and gain unauthorized access to devices
Bully Brute-forcing WPS pins to gain access to wireless networks
coWPAtty Crack pre-shared keys for WPA-PSK networks
crackle Crack encrypted Bluetooth traffic
eapmd5pass Crack MD5 hashes of EAP passwords
Easside-ng Crack WEP and WPA-encrypted wireless traffic
Fern Wifi Cracker  Audit and crack wireless networks
FreeRADIUS-WPE Exploit weak credentials in the FreeRADIUS server
Ghost Phisher Create phishing attacks on wireless networks
GISKismet Map and analyze wireless networks using GPS data
Gqrx A receiver for exploring wireless signals
gr-scan scan and decode various radio signals
hostapd-wpe Test and exploit the WPE feature in Hostpad
ivstools Convert and manipulate IVs for WEP cracking
kalibrate-rtl Calibrate the frequency offset of RTL-SDR dongles
KillerBee Explore and exploit ZigBee and IEEE 802.15.4 networks
Kismet Detect and analyze wireless networks
makeivs-ng Generate and inject fake IVs for WEP cracking
mdk3 Attack wireless networks by flooding them with de-authentication, disassociation, and other packets
mfcuk Crack Mifare Classic RFID cards
mfoc Crack Mifare Classic RFID cards
mfterm Interact with RFID cards
Multimon-NG Decode various radio signals
Packetforge-ng Create and inject custom packets into wireless networks
PixieWPS Exploit the WPS design flaw to recover WPA/WPA2 passwords
Pyrit Perform advanced WPA/WPA2 password cracking using GPU power
Reaver A tool for brute-forcing WPS
redfang A Bluetooth scanner and vulnerability assessment tool
RTLSDR Scanner A radio scanner for spectrum analysis and monitoring
Spooftooph A tool for Bluetooth device spoofing and cloning
Tkiptun-ng WPA encryption key recovery using TKIP vulnerabilities
Wesside-ng Automated wireless network hacking for WEP, WPA and WPA2 encryption
Wifi Honey Perform honey spot attacks on wireless networks
wifiphisher Steal credentials of wireless network
Wifitap Create virtual wireless access points and monitor network traffic
Wifite Audit and attack the automated wireless network
wpaclean Filter and clean WPA/WPA2 handshake capture file

Kali Linux Forensics Tools

There are a lot of specially designed tools and commands for digital forensics investigations pre-installed in Kali Linux. These allow forensic analysts to acquire, analyze, and preserve digital forensic evidence quite efficiently. Here is a brief list of these types of tools and commands.

Command Description
Binwalk Analyze and extract firmware images
bulk-extractor Extract artifacts from binary files
Capstone A multi-platform, multi-architecture disassembly framework
chntpw Reset passwords on Windows systems
Cuckoo An automated malware analysis system
dc3dd A tool for imaging and wiping hard drives
ddrescue Rescuing data from damaged disks
DFF A forensic framework for analyzing digital evidence
diStorm3 A disassembler library for x86/AMD64
Dumpzilla Analyze Mozilla browser history
extundelete Recover deleted files from ext3/ext4 partitions
Foremost Extract files from disk images
Galleta Analyze browser cookies
Guymager Create forensic images
iPhone Backup Analyzer Analyze iPhone backups.
p0f A tool for passive OS fingerprinting and network analysis
pdf-parser A tool for analyzing PDF files
pdfid Analyze and detect malicious PDF files
pdgmail Analyze Gmail artifacts
peepdf Analyze and explore PDF files
RegRipper Analyze Windows registry hives
Volatility Analyze memory dumps

Kali Linux Exploitation Tools

You can employ the exploitation tools of Kali Linux to develop and execute a wide range of exploits, from simple command injection attacks to complex remote code execution exploits. The following list contains most used exploitation tools of Kali Linux.

Command Description
Armitage A graphical cyber attack management tool
Backdoor Factory Add backdoors to binaries
BeEF Penetration testing focuses on browser-based attacks
Commix A command injection exploitation tool
crackle Break Bluetooth Smart encryption
exploitdb A database of known exploits and vulnerable software
jboss-autopwn Exploit vulnerabilities in JBoss servers
MSFPC Create Metasploit payloads
RouterSploit Test vulnerabilities in routers and other embedded devices
ShellNoob Generate shellcode and convert shellcode to assembly

Kali Linux Hardware Hacking Tools

The hardware hacking tools and commands are useful to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in various hardware devices. The list below contains a few of those.

Command Description
android-sdk A software development kit for developing Android applications
Arduino An open-source electronics platform for creating interactive projects
dex2jar Convert Android DEX files to Java JAR files
Sakis3G Connect to 3G mobile networks
smali An assembler/disassembler for Android’s dex format

Reverse Engineering in Kali Linux

In Kali Linux, there are several powerful tools and commands available for reverse engineering tasks. You can use these to disassemble, decompile, and analyze binaries. Here is a short list of a few of those.

Command Description
apktool Reverse engineer and modify Android APK files
diStorm3 A disassembler library used for binary analysis
edb-debugger A cross-platform debugger for x86, ARM, MIPS, and PowerPC executables
jad Analyze and reverse engineer Java bytecode
javasnoop Intercept and analyze Java method calls
JD-GUI Decompile and analyze Java bytecode
OllyDbg A 32-bit assembler-level analyzing debugger
Valgrind Debug and profile Linux programs
YARA Match patterns and identify malware and other suspicious files

Web Applications in Kali Linux

There are various tasks including identifying web vulnerabilities, misconfiguration, and security issues in web applications. Kali Linux is well-equipped to handle all of these. You can frequently use the following commands and tools to handle different issues related to web applications.

Command Description
apache-users Find usernames on an Apache web server
Arachni A feature-rich web application security scanner
BlindElephant Identify the web application’s version number
Burp Suite Web application testing framework
CutyCapt Capture website screenshots
DAVTest Test the security of WebDAV servers
deblaze Discover hidden files and directories on a web server
DIRB A tool used for web content discovery
DirBuster A multi-threaded web application scanner
fimap Automate web application attacks and vulnerability scanning
FunkLoad A web functional testing and load testing tool
Gobuster Brute forcing directories and files on web servers
Grabber Detect security vulnerabilities of web applications
hURL A tool used for web application testing and discovery
jboss-autopwn Exploit vulnerable JBoss application servers
joomscan Identify vulnerabilities in Joomla! CMS
PadBuster Test Padding Oracle vulnerabilities in web applications
Paros A web application testing proxy used to intercept and analyze web traffic
Parsero A tool used for web application fingerprinting and directory discovery
plecost A WordPress vulnerability scanner
Powerfuzzer A highly automated web application vulnerability scanner
ProxyStrike Attack web applications through proxies
Recon-ng A web reconnaissance framework
Skipfish A web application security scanner used for reconnaissance and discovery
ua-tester Test user-agent strings in web applications
Uniscan Security scanner used for finding vulnerabilities
w3af A framework used for web application security testing
WebScarab A Java-based web application testing proxy used for intercepting and analyzing web traffic
Webshag A multi-threaded, multi-platform web application vulnerability scanner
WebSlayer Find vulnerabilities in web applications
WebSploit A web application security testing framework
Wfuzz A web application fuzzer used for brute forcing directories and files on web servers
WhatWeb Fingerprint web servers and identify  vulnerabilities
WPScan A WordPress vulnerability scanner
XSSer Find and exploit XSS vulnerabilities

Stress Testing in Kali Linux

Stress testing is crucial and depicts the resilience of a system against any cyber-attacks. A few commands and tools of Kali Linux related to stress testing are listed below.

Command Description
DHCPig Flood DHCP servers with requests, causing them to crash or become unavailable
iaxflood Flood SIP servers with requests, causing them to crash or become unavailable
Inundator Flood a network with random packets, causing network congestion and slowdowns
inviteflood Flood SIP servers with INVITE requests, causing them to crash or become unavailable
ipv6-toolkit Collection of tools for testing and exploiting IPv6 networks
rtpflood Flood VoIP servers with RTP packets, causing them to crash or become unavailable
SlowHTTPTest Test the vulnerability of web servers to Slow HTTP
t50 Generate network traffic and test the performance of network devices under heavy loads
Termineter Test the security of Smart Grid devices and protocols
THC-SSL-DOS Flood SSL servers with SSL handshake requests, causing them to crash or become unavailable

Sniffing & Spoofing in Kali Linux

Sniffing and spoofing are two common techniques to intercept and manipulate network traffic. Kali Linux offers a variety of commands and tools for sniffing and spoofing detection. Look over some of the commonly used sniffing and spoofing commands and tools listed below.

Command Description
SIPp Test and benchmark SIP-based VoIP systems
rtpbreak Detect, reconstruct, and analyze RTP sessions
SIPVicious Audit SIP-based VoIP systems
rtpmixsound Mix audio into RTP streams
bettercap A Swiss Army knife for network attacks and monitoring, including sniffing, spoofing, and MITM attacks
DNSChef A DNS proxy that can be used to forge DNS responses and redirect traffic to malicious sites
fiked A fake IKE daemon used for launching MITM attacks against IKEv1-encrypted connections
hamster-sidejack Perform session hijacking attacks against web applications
HexInject Craft and inject packets into a network
iSMTP Test the security of SMTP servers by sending a large number of emails
isr-evilgrade Exploit software vulnerabilities and perform automatic updates of malicious software
mitmproxy A SSL-capable intercepting proxy used for intercepting, modifying, and replaying traffic between clients and servers
ohrwurm Generate payloads and test the detection capabilities of antivirus software
protos-sip Test the security of SIP-based VoIP systems
rebind Perform DNS rebinding attacks against web applications
responder Steal NTLMv1/v2 hashes and perform LLMNR/NBT-NS poisoning
rtpinsertsound Insert audio into RTP streams
sctpscan Perform SCTP network scanning and fingerprinting
SIPArmyKnife A tool used for testing the security of SIP-based VoIP systems
SniffJoke Manipulate network traffic in real-time
VoIPHopper Detect and exploit VoIP security vulnerabilities
xspy Monitor and analyze X11 traffic
zaproxy Test the security of web applications by scanning

Kali Linux Reporting Tools

It is essential to generate an accurate report of penetration testing and provide it to clients and stakeholders for mutual understanding about the security risk of a system. Kali Linux has tools like Dradis, MagicTree etc. for managing, visualizing and reporting results of penetration testing.

Command Description
CaseFile Create diagrams and charts to aid in the organization and visualization of data during investigations
cherrytree A hierarchical note-taking application that allows the creation and organization of notes and code snippets
CutyCapt Capture screenshots of web pages from the command line
dos2unix Convert DOS-style line endings to Unix-style line endings in text files
Dradis A collaboration and reporting platform for security testing professionals
MagicTree Visualize and analyze data from different sources, such as file systems, network traffic, and databases
Nipper-ng A tool used for auditing network device security configurations
pipal A password analyzer and cracking tool used to identify weak passwords
RDPY Perform remote desktop protocol operations, such as screen capture and input injection

Password Attacks in Kali Linux

Different types of password attacks are common for hackers to gain unauthorized access to systems or networks. Using tools and commands of Kali Linux, professionals can test security and vulnerabilities related to passwords.

Command Description
BruteSpray Automate password spraying attacks against multiple hosts simultaneously
CeWL Generate custom wordlists for password cracking and other security assessments
chntpw Reset passwords on Windows systems by modifying the Windows registry
CmosPwd Recover CMOS passwords on Windows systems
creddump Extract password hashes and other credentials from Windows systems
crowbar Brute-force attacks against remote authentication services
crunch Generate custom wordlists for password cracking and other security assessments
findmyhash Identify the hash algorithm used to encrypt password hashes
gpp-decrypt Decrypt Group Policy Preferences (GPP) passwords on Windows systems
hash-identifier Identify the type of hash used to encrypt password hashes
Hashcat A tool used for advanced password cracking and recovery
HexorBase A tool used for database management and exploitation
THC-Hydra Brute-force attacks against remote authentication services
John the Ripper A tool used for password cracking and recovery
Johnny A graphical user interface for John the Ripper password-cracking tool
keimpx Exploit vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows systems
Maskprocessor Generate custom wordlists based on specified criteria
Ncrack Brute-force attacks against remote authentication services
oclgausscrack Advanced password cracking and recovery on systems with OpenCL-compatible hardware
ophcrack Password cracking and recovery on Windows systems
PACK Advanced password cracking and recovery
patator Brute-force attacks against multiple protocols and services
phrasendrescher Generate custom wordlists based on natural language patterns
polenum  Retrieve password policy information from Windows systems
RainbowCrack Advanced password cracking and recovery using rainbow tables
SecLists A collection of various security-related wordlists for password cracking and other security assessments
SQLdict Generate custom wordlists based on SQL queries
Statsprocessor Generate custom wordlists based on a statistical analysis of existing passwords
THC-pptp-bruter Brute-force attacks against PPTP VPNs
TrueCrack A tool used for advanced password cracking and recovery
wordlists Collection of various wordlists for password cracking

Maintaining Access in Kali Linux

A list of useful Kali Linux tools and commands for bypassing security measures and maintaining access to a system is below.

Command Description
CryptCat Create encrypted and authenticated connections between two hosts
Cymothoa Inject shellcode into a running process in order to gain remote access
dbd A backdoor daemon that allows remote access to a system via a network connection
dns2tcp A tool used to tunnel TCP traffic over DNS protocols
HTTPTunnel A tool used to tunnel traffic over HTTP protocols
Intersect Generate payloads for exploitation of vulnerabilities
Nishang Create and execute PowerShell scripts for penetration testing
PowerSploit Collection of PowerShell scripts for penetration testing and other security assessments
pwnat Bypass NAT firewalls and establish direct connections between two hosts
RidEnum Enumerate user accounts and groups on Windows systems
sbd Create a secure backdoor connection between two hosts
shellter Bypass antivirus software and other security mechanisms
U3-Pwn Exploit security vulnerabilities in U3 USB smart drives
Webshells Collection of scripts and tools used for remote access and exploitation of web servers
Weevely A web shell is used to gain remote access to web servers and execute commands
Winexe Remotely execute commands on Windows systems from a Linux or Unix host

Conclusion

The Kali Linux commands are useful for testing the security of systems and networks and identifying vulnerabilities by attackers. I believe the compact list may become useful for professionals to recall perfect commands and employ proper tools whenever necessary. Please feel free to comment below if you find the list helpful or have any suggestions regarding it. Visit linuxsimply for the most useful articles and cheat sheets.

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Md Zahidul Islam Laku

Hey, I'm Zahidul Islam Laku currently working as a Linux Content Developer Executive at SOFTEKO. I completed my graduation from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET). I write articles on a variety of tech topics including Linux. Learning and writing on Linux is nothing but fun as it gives me more power on my machine. What can be more efficient than interacting with the Operating System without Graphical User Interface! Read Full Bio

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