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Thread: How to use Back|Track!

  1. #1

    Default How to use Back|Track!

    OK, this is the end to all of the repeated questions that this forum gets clogged with because new users are too lazy to search the forums or experiment a little.

    So, Back|Track is the latest (and soon to be greatest when it's finished!) linux liveCD distribution. A linux liveCD is a special type of linux that runs directly from the CD. First you need to download the ISO file from the website. This is a direct, byte by byte copy of the CD. You will then have to burn this ISO file to a CD as an 'image'. You will need some CD burning software that supports the burning of images (Nero e.g.)

    Once you have correctly burnt the ISO image to the CD, you can now put it into a machine and reboot it. Assuming that the BIOS boots off of the CD drive before the Hard Drive (HDD), it will start booting into Back|Track Linux! Great!

    So Linux is booting! Now what? You wait until a screen like the following appears:

    :: Backtrack 3.0 :: :: Beta Edition::


    login: root
    password: toor

    *** When finished, hit Ctrl+Alt+Delete and
    wait until the computer reboots ***
    slax login:_

    Now this is important! Read the f**king screen! To login you must enter the username of root and the password of toor. Simple really. You read the screen and you got your answer.

    So what next. You could simply use the linux liveCD from the shell, the 'command prompt thingy' that you have access to right now. Try typing some basic linux commands and see that you have a full linux operating system (OS) at your disposal. I know of penetration testers that only use the shell prompt, but for most that is not enough. Next you want to start the KDE desktop.

    Type the following:

    Which should result in the following:
    Trying to autoconfigure Xwindow system, please wait...
    creating /etc/X11/xorg.conf...
    all done. Run startx now.

    Great, you've now configured your Xwindows system for your display.


    Now Back|Track starts KDE. The full desktop environment.

    You could also start fluxbox by typing:

    That is for another time, tip: right click!

    So you entered startx and you started the KDE desktop. You are now presented with a desktop with the normal options, the 'K' menu button (bottom left) and other shortcuts on the taskbar. Explore! Click on things and have a look around. This is probably the best thing you can do right now, explore. Don't be afraid of breaking the OS as it runs off of a CD, it's read only! You cannot write to the CD, therefore you cannot change or break anything on it.

    Now you are going to need to start your network interfaces. That depends on what kind of network cards you have. Lets start with wired ethernet cards. If you have a Dynamic Host Control Protocol (DHCP) server that automatically assigns network addresses (Internet Protocol (IP) addresses) this is easy. You need to start the DHCP client:

    This will start DHCP discovery on all cards that support it. To run dhcp on only a specified interface, in this case the first ethernet card (eth0):
    dhcpcd eth0

    Now type:

    You should get the interface details of all active cards, including your local loopback card (google it!)

    In fact, on that subject, Google is your friend. Remember that scene in 'The Matrix' when Neo and Trinity rescue Morpheus? Neo asks Trinity if she can fly a helicopter, she flickers her eyes for a few seconds and says "I can now". That is what google is to you. If you do not know something, google it. For anything specific to Back|Track, Auditor or Whax then you should search this forum. It is full of knowledgeable people who are willing to help anyone who has shown the effort to try and learn things for themselves.

    Now comes the section that will save this forum from complete collapse!

    Configuring your Back|Track.

    So you've seen the screenshot on the website and you're wondering what the system monitor program is? Bring up a bash prompt, the second icon on the taskbar that looks like a command prompt, and type:

    This starts a system monitor. You can move it around the screen so it suits you, but remember that the CD is read only, what changes you make during your session are only active for that session. When you restart, you will need to start the program again.

    What next? Another cool little tool is yakuake. What the f**k is that I hear you ask? It is a little tool that gives you quick access to the bash prompt. From a bash prompt type:

    Now press F12 to open and close a drop down bash prompt.

    As for the 'security tools' that appear on this distribution, that is beyond this thread. This is to stop the unending questions about the basics of the distro.

    More follows.

  2. #2

    Default Continued...

    To install Back|Track to your HDD.

    Make sure that you have some free space on your HDD, I would probably say that at a minimum you will need 5Gb's for the install partition (to allow you to save capture files and the like) and 2 times however much RAM you have for a swap partition. So that's two partitions you need.

    Boot your machine with the Back|Track CD, logon and start the KDE desktop.

    So the first thing we need to do is make a primary partition and put a linux file system on it.

    So we fire up “qtparted” from the Back|Track menu, under “Misc”.

    Highlight the entry in the left hand pane and right click – “Make a new partition table”.

    On the newly created partition in the right hand pane, right click and choose to “Create”.

    Create a Primary Partition, Ext2 format with a size of your choice. Click OK.

    Create a further Primary Partition, Linux-Swap format with at least twice your RAM size. Click OK.

    SAVE YOUR CHANGES!!!! Allow QTParted to create the partitions and close the program.

    With the disk ready to use we now need to put Back|Track on the file system. In order to do this we need to mount the virtual disk so we can copy the files to it.

    So we make a mount point for the disk:
    mkdir /mnt/hda1

    Then mount the partition:
    mount /dev/hda1 /mnt/hda1

    Then we copy all the system files to the new partition. This is easily done with the 'Back|Track Installer', under 'System' in the 'K' menu

    If you remembered to mount your drive, the installer should auto-populate the required fields. It should read –

    Source (Back Track CD) /boot
    Install Back Track to /mnt/hda1
    Write MBR to /dev/hda

    I would recommend that instead of a LiveCD install you perform a full install as that will copy an uncompressed linux OS to your machine. This will make it quicker. The Installer may seem to hang at 11%, this is because it is copying lots of data to the HDD. Give it a minute and it should continue.

    Once it has finished, close the installer and shutdown. Remove the CD and restart.

    This will method will only allow you to boot into Back|Track install. If you want to dual boot a machine with either two different linux distro's or Windows and Back|Track, then you should search through the forum as I do not have time to write that right now.

    What next?

    If you do not like the command line logon and want the KDE desktop to start automatically. Open a bash prompt and type:
    nano /etc/inittab

    change the following line:




    If you want leetmode to start automatically. From the bash prompt type:

    cd /root/.kde/Autostart

    ln -s /usr/bin/leetmode leetmode

    That will create a link to leetmode in your autostart directory.

    To autostart YaKuake, which will give you a terminal (bash) window at the press of the F12 button.

    cd /root/.kde/Autostart

    ln -s /opt/kde/bin/yakuake yakuake

    Now when you restart the KDE, just press F12 to start a bash prompt.

    If you want to stop your CDROM from ejecting on reboots and shutdowns, you need to alter the shutdown script. From the bash prompt, type:

    cd /etc/rc.d

    nano rc.6

    Find the following relevant piece of code and alter it to look like the following

    # eject cdrom devices
    . ./usr/lib/liblinuxlive
    #echo "Ejecting all CDROMs..."
    #list_cdrom_devices | while read DEVICE; do
    # cdrecord dev=$DEVICE -eject >/dev/null 2>/dev/null
    # can't use eject because it's not working with our kernel
    # eject -s $DEVICE >/dev/null 2>/dev/null
    #echo "========================================"
    #echo "It's safe to switch the computer off now"
    #echo -ne "Press Enter to $command "
    #read junk

    I also placed a shortcut to Konqueror on my shortcut panel menu (the bottom left shortcut icons).

    I did this by right clicking on any of the shortcut icons,
    Panel Menu, Add to Panel, Application, Internet, Web Browser (Konqueror)

    You will now see a new shortcut next to the /pentest shortcut, this will start Konqueror.

    Hopefully this thread will be made sticky and will answer a lot of questions before they are asked.

    If I have made any errors in my thread, please post a reply and correct me, I'm only human afterall!


    Explore and play with Back|Track.
    Use the seach function in the forum.
    Use Google.
    At least try to find the answer before you ask a question.



    To change the logon screen from:

    User: root
    Pass: toor

    Edit the /etc/issue file.

    Thanks to Darthn for this.

  3. #3
    Just burned his ISO
    Join Date
    Mar 2006


    Very good tutorial for starters.. I learned a few things.

  4. #4


    thanks, hopefully it will help others too.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006


    *Hails the usefulness of this thread*
    Useful HowTo Threads <-- Why do people think I'm joking when I link this?

  6. #6
    Just burned his ISO
    Join Date
    Mar 2006


    Hmm, I didn't know I had to type "xconf" before typing "startx". I've always typed straigh up "startx".
    Now, a friend of mine was using BackTrack and he is a new linux users, so once he got into that screen, he type "gui" and it worked.

    Anyway, nice little tutorial.

  7. #7


    yeah, there are more answers than what I've given here. gui will practically do the same as startx, guifast will start fluxbox.

    the reason I said to use xconf before startx is that I am trying to prevent any added problem with display drivers etc, by configuring it first. I just type startx too and that works for me, but won't for all.

    I just want the noobies to read this before posting the same question for the millionth time!


  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2010


    You're kidding, right? Or just optimistic. Good write up.
    Quote Originally Posted by xatar
    OK, this is the end to all of the repeated questions that this forum gets clogged with because new users are too lazy to search the forums or experiment a little.

  9. #9


    blindly optimistic I suppose.

    "Please, please, please read this before posting any questions" xatar pleads with all the newbies.

  10. #10
    Just burned his ISO
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    Thanx Man I really got a good benefit outa this post of urs, I whish u good luck, & hope to hear more from u soon.

    Note: I was really waxed with the nano editor !!! its the first time I use it.

    Best Regards

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