Kali Linux 2020.1 OS Released – Download Now

Kali Linux 2020.1
Kali Linux 2020.1

The offensive security team have released Kali Linux 2020.1 OS Version.

It is the first release of the year 2020, with Kali Linux 2020.1 and it’s available for immediate download.

Kali Linux is a Debian-derived Linux distribution operating system designed for Digital Forensics and Penetration Testing.

The following updates with 2020.1 release:

  • Non-Root by default
  • Kali single installer image
  • Kali NetHunter Rootless
  • Improvements to theme & kali-undercover
  • New tools


Throughout the history of Kali (and its predecessors BackTrack, WHAX, and Whoppix).

Default credentials have been root/toor. This is no more.

The Kali Linux 2020.1 are no longer using the superuser account, root, as default in Kali 2020.1. The default user account is now a standard, unprivileged, user.

For more of the reasons behind this switch, please see the blog post. As you can imagine, this is a very large change, with years of history behind it. As a result, if you notice any issues with this, please do let us know on the bug tracker.

root/toor is dead. Long live kali/kali.


Kali Single Installer Image

The team took a good hard look at the usage of Kali, what images are actually downloaded, how they are put to use, and so on. With this information in hand and decided to completely restructure and simplify the images release. Going forward, we will have an installer image, a live image, and a network installer image.

These changes should allow for easier selection of the right image for you to download, while increasing flexibility on installation and further reducing download sizes.

Our Installer Image

  • This is what we recommend for most users that want to install Kali on their system
  • Doesn’t require a network connection (aka offline install) for the default package selection
    Able to select desktop environment to install (Previously there was a separate image for each DE: XFCE, GNOME, KDE, etc.)
  • Able to select tools to install at install time
  • Can’t be used to boot a live system. This is just an installer image.
  • Filename: kali-linux-2020.1-installer-<amd64|i386>.iso

At install time, you may select the tools included with Kali (or none at all)! This gives you more control over what you what. We understand that Kali comes with more tools than some people use, or they have their own select tools they use. Now they can install Kali without any metapackages, giving them a bare Kali installation, so they can individually select what tools they want (rather than groups).

The default image contains the kali-desktop-xfce and kali-tools-default packages, allowing for an offline installation of Kali (as it always has been). Selecting any non-default tools will require a network connection.

Note: “Kali Live” is not included in this image. If you wish to use live mode, you’ll need the live image.

Kali Linux 2020 software selection

Kali Linux Live Image

Its primary use is to be able to run Kali, without installing it
But it also contains an installer, behaving like the “Network Install Image” described above



“Kali Live” hasn’t been forgotten about – it’s just moved to its own image. This allows you to try Kali without installing it and is perfect for running off a USB stick. You can install from this image, however, it will require a network connection (this is why we suggest the stand-alone install image for most users).


The developer team not much changing in kali-undercover. So carrying on from Kali 2019.4 release, Kali-undercover now starts to feel even more like Windows.

New Packages

Kali Linux is a rolling distribution, so it gets updates as soon as they are available, rather than waiting for “the next release”. So since the last release, we have the normal tool upgrades as well as a few new tools added, such as: cloud-enum, emailharvester, phpggc, sherlock, splinter.

We have a few new (kali-community-wallpapers) and old (kali-legacy-wallpapers) wallpapers to offer up if you want to customize or are feeling a little a little nostalgic.

Kali Linux 2020 Dark Theme
Kali Linux 2020 Dark Theme

Python 2 supported tools removed

Python 2 has reached “end of life” on the 1st of January 2020. It means, the team removing tools that depend on Python 2. Why? Because they are no longer being maintained, they are not receiving updates, and they need replacing. The pentesting landscape is a dynamic field that is forever changing.

Download Kali Linux 2020.1

For latest Kali release version, you can find the download links for ISO’s and Torrents on the Kali Downloads page along with links to the Offensive Security virtual machine and ARM images, which have also been updated to 2020.1

If you already have a Kali installation you’re happy with, you can easily upgrade in place as follow.​

How to upgrade?

root@kali:~# apt update && apt -y full-upgrade

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