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Thread: BT3 Slackware | BT4 Debian?

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  1. #1
    Just burned his ISO nka389's Avatar
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    Question BT3 Slackware | BT4 Debian?

    At the top of this page it says that if you are new to Linux and want to become proficient with BackTrack you should first acquaint yourself with Slackware Linux because BackTrack is based on Slackware.

    However, as far as I know BackTrack 4 will be based upon Debian Linux. By the time I learn to use Linux in general, BackTrack 4 will probably be out (I'm guessing mid-summer 2009), so my question is - should I be learning to use Debian Linux now instead of Slackware Linux if I want a smoother transition to BackTrack 4 in the future? How much difference is there between Debian and Slackware?

    Also, a separate question is what does it mean that BackTrack is "based" off a certain other Linux distribution? I understand that different distribution are all based on GNU/Linux, but bring their own touches to the overall OS. Is BackTrack just a slimmed down and IT-Security optimised version of another Linux OS (Slackware or Debian, whichever it may be)?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Archangel-Amael's Avatar
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    In one word yes.

    If you learn the basics of linux it is pretty universal. As such a lot of things will transfer among the distros. As you stated there are quirks amongst the different flavors.

    If you learn debian then you are on the right track for bt4

    BT is a pentesters "tool kit" that contains hundreds of tools for the art.
    As such it is optimized to be used as such and not for office applications and watching pr0n.

    See also
    To be successful here you should read all of the following.
    ForumRules
    ForumFAQ
    If you are new to Back|Track
    Back|Track Wiki
    Failure to do so will probably get your threads deleted or worse.

  3. #3
    Moderator KMDave's Avatar
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    Basically it doesn't matter which distribution you are learning on. The difference for instance between Slackware and Debian/Ubuntu is the way you install additional software. But you won't miss anything crucial if you go with either one.

    I'd suggest you to use Debian instead of Slackware since you will find that BT4 and Debian are nearly the same under the hood. But as for learning command line usage and so on it doesn't make a difference which Linux you use usually.

    And a good way you are going there If you have any questions go ahead and send me a PM if you want to.
    Tiocfaidh ár lá

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    Backtrack is now ubuntu (and thus debian) based. As it has been said before, you can learn linux using any distro, ubuntu being one of the easiest ones. If you really wanna delve into linux, you might wanna try gentoo or linux from scratch, but I recommend you try out an easier distro first.
    Backtrack is basically Kubuntu + custom kernel and tweaked and tuned ( using linux-live.org scripts for live distro)

  5. #5
    Super Moderator Archangel-Amael's Avatar
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    Gentoo is a good distro indeed. I am setting up a gentoo vm from a stage 3 tarball right now. LFS lots of pain but it is a good experience.
    To be successful here you should read all of the following.
    ForumRules
    ForumFAQ
    If you are new to Back|Track
    Back|Track Wiki
    Failure to do so will probably get your threads deleted or worse.

  6. #6
    Member imported_blackfoot's Avatar
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    Default ubuntu

    I suggest that you use ubuntu as a framework because it is the current base OS for bt and because it is relatively safe environment with the potential for automatic updating and good wifi support. It has a wide support framework for beginners.

    Whilst it is true that it is based on debian there are some differences.

    I suggest that you use the gnome desktop because it has superior networking control and access.

    I suggest that you ignore gentoo. It is not the easiest nor would it beneficial to drive against such a steep learning curve.

    Choose an editor such as emacs or vi and learn to use that first, then learn how linux starts after bios initiation. Such work will give a grasp of linux internals. You might then progress to consider whether you will seek to become proficient in using the programs which others have created or if you wish to program yourself.

    Have phun!
    Lux sit

  7. #7
    Just burned his ISO nka389's Avatar
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    I am a little bit overwhelmed and lost, and I need some guidance, please.

    What would be the best place to start to learn Linux? Ubuntu 8.10 or Debian 5.0? Will installing BackTrack 3 on HDD and trying to configure it be any good? It doesn't seem like a good option to me, because BackTrack seems to be quite different and somewhat more complex.

    Also, I got Ubuntu 8.10 installed, but a lot of the hardware on my laptop is not supported in the 2.6.27-11 Linux kernel. However, I have found a website where a guy posted a tutorial on getting everything to work, but he is using Debian Lenny and 2.6.29 Linux kernel! Thus, as far as I understand, what I need is to upgrade my kernel to 2.6.29, but I can't get how to do it... Could someone please give some advice or links to help me with that? Is it even possible to upgrade to 2.6.29 Linux on Ubuntu? Is it possible on BackTrack 3?

    Thanks very much for all your help so far!

  8. #8
    Member imported_blackfoot's Avatar
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    Default here

    If your ultimate goal is to use bt then we can help from here. Otherwise any general linux forum will be more suitable.

    How to learn Linux? Install ubuntu and buy a linux book!

    You installed ubuntu it appears and have some trouble with hardware. State your troubles here and I/we will try to assist.

    More particularly ubuntu has an excellent automatic update system. This feature makes it useful for beginners. It can upgrade the kernel too.

    Let me/us know if you need help with that.

    Join the ubuntu forum also.

    Upgrading the kernel on backtrack should be considered with caution because some kernel builds will not include the additional hooks which some programs need to run. If you are a beginner I do not suggest that you upgrade the bt kernel.
    Lux sit

  9. #9
    Just burned his ISO nka389's Avatar
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    Thanks for you reply!

    Yes, my ultimate aim is to use BackTrack, as I'm pretty satisfied with using the Mac OS X for general purposes.

    So far, I went through 4 online courses and read the courses on linux.org, so I think I have at least a good idea of how Linux (and actually computers in general) work. I think I know how Linux starts, BIOS - MBR - Boot Loader GRUB/LILO - Unpacking the Linux kernel - Start the X Server - Start Windows Manager Gnome/KDE. I also know the basic commands and some more or less advanced ones which don't seem to be used very often. I've also decided to go with the VI editor, I've tried emacs, but didn't touch pico. Is vi a good choice in your opinion?

    I also got a book on Ubuntu which I'm almost done with and I'm guessing the Slackware books are useless now that BackTrack is moving to Debian.

    My main interest in using Linux/BackTrack is networking and pentesting, rather than looking for a replacement OS for Windows or Mac.

    Are you sure Ubuntu is a better place to start than Debian 5.0? I want to stick with one distribution and I'd prefer it has a somewhat steeper learning curve but would allow me to do anything I want. If I mess things up, I can always just reinstall, since I'm using my old laptop for Linux testing anyway, so I don't have any valuable data on it or anything.

    I think it's best to forget about BackTrack for a bit, although I do like to get into it and see how things work there as opposed to Ubuntu. But it seems it's just way too complex for me right now.

    The trouble I'm having with Ubuntu is that even after I've installed all the updates available, the kernel version only went up to 2.6.27-11, rather than 2.6.29! Most of the hardware is working as intended, except my Intel GM45 X4500HD is not working, neither are my Fn+Brightness Control keys (although Fn+Volume Control is working!?!) and my wifi card is recognised but won't connect to the internet =/

    I'm trying to run ubuntu on Sony Vaio sr19xn and I found a very good guide to get everything to work, but the guy is using Debian and 2.6.29 kernel. Although the hardware isn't bothering me too much, I'd like to get everything working before I go on to do other stuff with Linux.

    Also, do you think it would be beneficial to try and reproduce the BackTrack arsenal on Ubuntu/Debian tool by tool to learn how every tool works? Will all the tools included in BackTrack work on Ubuntu?

    Sorry for such a long post, but I'd really appreciate if you could answer at least some of my questions I really am trying to learn

  10. #10
    Member imported_blackfoot's Avatar
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    Default intermediate

    In many respects you are moving away from being a beginner and perhaps more intermediate since you have already covered so much ground.

    I think Debian is fine in view of your Sony guide and you will find the transition from any guides on ubuntu to Debian quite smooth as ubuntu is built on top of the Debian base. The concept behind ubuntu is to make a number of tasks easier for early users and automate it so that many things work-out-of-the-box.

    I guess the observation about a kernel variant is caused by small delays in moving up to distribution and making sure that nothing in a kernel revision breaks earlier scripts.

    So go with Debian. It is a standard in Linux...a number of things are developed/adopted at a slower reassuringly stable) pace!

    Vi is fine. I use both vi and emacs but only because emacs is used for considerable programming efforts.

    Load Debian, get back with wifi details and it will be the basis for assistance along with the GM45.

    The missing keyboard function is an x-window thing probably due to the need to select an extended keyboard in the xorg.conf or similar. (Not experienced in that).

    Yes, absolutely a good idea to compile tools. However, I do not think it wise to attempt to do that with every one...merely a select few.

    WBR
    Lux sit

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