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Thread: Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

  1. #1
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    Default Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

    What, if any are the negative points (aside from the loss of speed) of using visualization software, namely Virtualbox, instead of doing a native install or a Persistent USB install?
    From the operational standpoint, what sort of attacks would a pen tester not be able to perform that he could with a native install?
    I am aware that there is the limitation of needing a USB wireless adapter in order to utilize packet injection and those sorts of wireless attacks, but short of that? what other limitations or hurdles will using virtual box place on my machine?
    Last edited by Archangel-Amael; 03-15-2010 at 11:06 PM.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Archangel-Amael's Avatar
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    Default Re: Backtrack and Virtualbox

    You should really try out the different methods available and see what works for you.
    Besides the USB wireless, there is the need to boot a host OS. This with the VM product and the guest will eat up memory and cpu cycles by themselves.
    These are just a few major "problems" that kind of jump off the top of my head right now.

    Oh and do try to be a bit more descriptive with your thread titles. It will help get you more viewers/possible answers.

  3. #3
    Junior Member roybatty's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

    I'd add that virtualbox itself is sometimes a pain to upgrade/reinstall with latest and greatest kernels.
    I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.

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    Junior Member skidmarq's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

    Since I've seen some CONS, one PRO is that it allows you to easily setup a non-routed test network with as many VMs loaded that your machine can handle. It's also always convenient to take a snapshot before doing anything intrusive that might cause issues with the install and then revert back when needed.

    A lot of times when testing new exploits, I'll perform the attack without ever having packets leave my laptop

  5. #5
    My life is this forum thorin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

    It depends what type of work you're doing. Personally I believe that virtualization simply adds another layer of abstraction that is ultimately going to cause you problems (though perhaps extremely minor) or lead you to false results in one manner or another. Why would you want a network bridge driver etc introducing latency and mangling packets further?

    If you're just using a VM (or whatever) to start learning BT then probably no big deal, but if you plan to do full on Penetration Testing etc then you may want to consider a real install, etc.
    I'm a compulsive post editor, you might wanna wait until my post has been online for 5-10 mins before quoting it as it will likely change.

    I know I seem harsh in some of my replies. SORRY! But if you're doing something illegal or posting something that seems to be obvious BS I'm going to call you on it.

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    Member xX_Spiidey_Xx's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

    I agree with both skidmarq and thorin on this one. If all you're doing is learning the ins-and-outs of lightweight pentesting different OSes, and don't have computers to spare, then VMs are the way to roll. If you're into more in-depth pentesting, bruteforcing, etc. then you'll want the dedicated RAM and CPU cycles that you'll get from a hard drive install.
    thou shalt treat all computers as thou wouldst treat thyself, for thou art the creator of thine own problems.

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    Default Re: Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

    Im using Virtual Box. I had a hard time using VM for some reason with my laptop. VM wouldnt recognize my alfa. Soon as my alienware gets here i will use that as a dedicated laptop for Backtrack. But as of now im on Virtual Box and i will never use VM. I think that VM is for more advance users and Virtual Box are for noobs like me ..
    Sony LapTop Windows 7 - Backtrack ISO with Sun VirtualBox - ALFA AWUS036H USB 500MW

  8. #8
    Member xX_Spiidey_Xx's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pro's and Con's of using Virtualization products with BT.

    Soon as my alienware gets here i will use that as a dedicated laptop for Backtrack.
    I am so sad for that poor, poor Alienware lappy.

    VMWare and VirtualBox do the same thing, essentially. When we refer to a VM, we're shortening the term Virtual Machine, not referencing VMWare specifically.

    I think that VM is for more advance users and Virtual Box are for noobs like me
    As stated previously, VMWare and VirtualBox are pretty much the same. The major difference (as far as I see it) is that VMWare is commercial, whereas VirtualBox is community (free). In my professional opinion, hard disk installs are more for advanced users than they are for noobs. Reason being is that hdd installs get broken by noob actions. Live boots don't: restart and you're back up and running. Current virtualization technologies allow noobs to simulate a hard disk install; but their saving grace is the "snapshot" feature. If you break it, you can revert. Not so with a hdd install.

    As has been stated many times by myself and others, BackTrack is a professional security auditing distribution. There are many rungs on the ladder to becoming a professional ethical hacker, and many more to climb after reaching what had originally seemed to be the pinnacle. VMs are a great starting point for anybody new to the scene, and can provide almost as much of a frustrating experience as a 'real' hard disk install, which will allow you to learn from your mistakes and carry on from there. Where I'm going with this, is that in my opinion, only professionals who will be needing to use the full power of their computers *should* perform a hdd install.

    I presently use BackTrack in VirtualBox for many tasks that I can't be bothered to reboot for, especially troubleshooting for, and recreating faults posted here by other users. When I'm performing any other heavy duty task, like running dictionary/bruteforce/rainbow table attacks, I prefer to reboot and run BT with the support of my dual cores, 4 gigs of DDR3 and Nvidia chipset.
    Last edited by xX_Spiidey_Xx; 03-17-2010 at 06:20 AM.
    thou shalt treat all computers as thou wouldst treat thyself, for thou art the creator of thine own problems.

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