What’s New in Kali Linux 2021.3 Release?

Kali Linux 2021.3
Kali Linux 2021.3

Kali Linux 2021.3 Release (OpenSSL, Kali-Tools, Kali Live VM Support, Kali NetHunter Smartwatch)

Kali Linux is a Debian-derived Linux distribution designed for digital forensics and penetration testing. Previously it was released with Gitleaks and Airgeddon

Change Logs

  • OpenSSL – Wide compatibility by default – Keep reading for what that means
  • New Kali-Tools site – Following the footsteps of Kali-Docs, Kali-Tools has had a complete refresh
  • Better VM support in the Live image session – Copy and paste and drag & drop from your machine into a Kali VM by default
  • New tools – From adversary emulation, to subdomain takeover to Wi-Fi attacks
  • Kali NetHunter smartwatch – first of its kind, for TicHunter Pro
  • KDE 5.21 – Plasma desktop received a version bump

New Tools in Kali

It wouldn’t be a Kali release if there weren’t any new tools added! A quick run down of what’s been added (to the network repositories):

  • Berate_ap – Orchestrating MANA rogue Wi-Fi Access Points
  • CALDERA – Scalable automated adversary emulation platform
  • EAPHammer – Targeted evil twin attacks against WPA2-Enterprise Wi-Fi networks
  • HostHunter – Recon tool for discovering hostnames using OSINT techniques
  • RouterKeygenPC – Generate default WPA/WEP Wi-Fi keys
  • Subjack – Subdomain takeover
  • WPA_Sycophant – Evil client portion of EAP relay attack

Desktop and Theme Updates

There are also some changes in the desktop space:

  • Improved GTK3 theme for Xfce’s notifications and logout-dialog
  • Redesigned GTK2 theme for a better fit of older programs
  • Improved Kali-Dark and Kali-Light syntax-highlighting themes for GNOME and Xfce
Kali Linux 2021.3

Kali ARM Updates

  • All images should finally resize the file-system on the first boot.
  • We now re-generate the default snakeoil cert, which fixes a couple of tools that were failing to run previously.
  • Images default to iptables-legacy and ip6tables-legacy for iptables support.
  • We now set a default locale of en_US.UTF-8 on all images, you can, of course, change this to your preferred locale.
  • The Kali user on ARM images is now in all of the same groups as base images by default, and uses zsh for the default shell. You can change your default shell by using the kali-tweaks tool which also comes pre-installed.
  • Raspberry Pi images can now use a wpa_supplicant.conf file on the /boot partition.
  • Raspberry Pi images now come with kalipi-config, and kalipi-tft-config pre-installed.
  • Pinebook Pro’s kernel has been updated to 5.14, and you now get messages on the LCD screen as it’s booting, instead of a blinking cursor until X starts.


Existing Installs: If you already have an existing Kali Linux installation, remember you can always do a quick update:

└─$ echo "deb http://http.kali.org/kali kali-rolling main non-free contrib" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list
└─$ sudo apt update && sudo apt -y full-upgrade

└─$ [ -f /var/run/reboot-required ] && sudo reboot -f

You should now be on Kali Linux 2021.3. We can do a quick check by doing:

└─$ grep VERSION /etc/os-release

└─$ uname -v

1 SMP Debian 5.10.46-4kali1 (2021-08-09)

└─$ uname -r

NOTE: The output of uname -r may be different depending on the system architecture.

Download Kali Linux 2021.3

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