Instant Kali Linux Paperback – 25 Oct 2013
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About the Author
Abhinav Singh is a young Information Security specialist from India. He has a keen interest in the field of hacking and network security and has adopted it as his full-time profession. He is also the author of Metasploit Penetration Testing Cookbook, Packt Publishing. He is an active contributor to the SecurityXploded community.
Abhinav's works have been quoted in several security and technology magazines and portals.
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Top Customer Reviews
You couldn't seriously consider this to be anything more than a brief taster and if you have any interest in penetration testing you will need to purchase a different book to get any serious idea of how things work. If you don't have any interest, why would you bother buying a book in the first place?
It's a waste of the trees that had to be chopped down to make the paper that it contains but, looking in the bright side, as it contains so few pages it probably won't seriously contribute to the green concerns over deforestation.
If you have to pay £5 or less for this then it is worth considering if you can't be bothered to do some research online but otherwise save your money - I wish I had!
The main areas that is covered in this book are:
Installing Kali Linux or using a Virtual Machine
Understanding the memory layout, where things reside within the operating system
Gathering and Sniffing of Data
Vulnerability assessment tools
Web app penetration
Password brute forcing
Wireless Encryption hacking
Working with Forensics tools
The book is essentially a basic 'how to' guide on how to get started with Kali. It's very entry level and is the kind of book you expect to coax people in, have a go with it and then go off on their own to learn more independently.
When I picked up the book I played it dumb and pretended I had no idea what I was doing with Kali and pretended I had no idea what Kali was or even it's predecessor 'BackTrack'. It was a good sight to see when I turned to the first page and instantly I was created with a very simple 'What is Kali?' and the author processed to explain exactly what Kali was; the fact it was a Linux based operating system with a collection of open source penetration testing tools. So right from the first page I knew what Kali was and what is actually inside Kali.
I then needed to know how to get Kali Linux on my netbook so I can begin to indulge on this 'Pentesting' or so-its-called. On the second page is where I found exactly what I was looking for.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Instant Kali Linux gives its readers a quick introduction to some of the tools that are shipped with Kali Linux, but unfortunately that is all you get – an introduction. The book (I read the PDF) has only 68 pages, 49 of which have actual content. The rest is just blank pages, introduction to the author and the reviewers of the book and of course suggestions for other books published by Packt.
I think, writing a quick introduction to Kali is a very good idea, but in this book the word quick rather means short – too short for my taste. If the book had about 130 page or at least 100, there could have been some additional information in it which I personally missed. But before I talking about what I didn’t like, let me explain what the book has to offer and who should read it.
Instant Kali Linux is ruffly devided into four categories, installing Kali Linux, a quick introduction to some of the most important tools, a little more information about the top 5 features/tools of Kali and two pages of suggestions for realtes sites, articles, tutorials, blogs and communities.
The first part includes a short description of the operating system and how to install it either as dualboot or in virtualbox. While I think it’s good to explain how the installation process works (there might be people who are into security but haven’t touched Linux yet), I would have made a few different decisions about what should be in the book and what not. Since the book is very short, a picture of the Virtualbox “Create VM” dialog could have been easily swapped with more important information – let’s say for example a note like “Be careful, resizing your system drive could result in data loss”. This is the kind of information I would have chosen.
Anyway, on to the actual topic of the book – the tools and features of Kali Linux. Even though I have already worked with Kali quite a lot I still didn’t know some of the tools. The collection of tools described is divided into topics like vulnerability assessment tools, webapp penetration, breaking passwords, frameworks, and so on.
The choice of tools shown is good, but a short list of tools integrated in Kali for the same, or a similar, purpose would have been a great addition at the end of each topic. The tools where only briefly explained, including a short example of how to run it. While I can understand that explaining every tool in detail is out of the books scope, listing some sources for additional information would have been a good way to point readers in the right direction.
The same goes for the top five features in Kali. Due to the complexity of tools like Burp Suite or Metasploit, this part had more content on each tool. I would have expected a more detailed explanation of the top five, but the additional content turned out to be pictures and yet another example on how to start a tool. The thing that irritated me the most, was that running exploits was not one of the features listed for Metasploit. It was however part of the example on how to run msf.
So who should read this book?
As much as I would like to recommend this book to anyone, I really can’t as long as you don’t borrow a copy from a friend. The problem is that even though the idea of a quick introduction to Kali Linux is good, this book just feels unfinished to me. Kali has more than 300 tools for penetration testing on board, and this book only covers 30 of them. And by covers, I mean shows you where they are located in the menu. I think the book has some potential to be a good source for starters, but there are some things that have to change before I can recommend it.
- List additional sources of information at the end of each tool, as well as already installed alternative programs to the same or a similar goal
- Add valuable information for newcomers, e.g. “Be careful when resizing your harddrive”
- Get rid of spelling mistakes in code examples (namp instead of nmap, Ifconfig with capital i, etc.)
- Fix mistakes contextual mistakes (contact me if you need a list)
Since I was asked, the price for the Kindle version (at the time of writing) is 9,26$. Paperback is 20,69$. If it was about 3,00$ it would be ok.
In Amazon stars I give it two stars, mainly because of the price.
If you are in the Security field do not bother with this book. You will find more information on the Kali page.
Pros: Fast, easy and basic.
Cons: The topic starts off well but ends abruptly.