Top 5 Penetration Testing Distribution based on Linux

If you are in search of good penetration testing operating system, then you are at right place because in this article I am going to introduce you with Top 5 penetration testing distribution based on Linux. First of all I want to tell you something about penetration testing, it is that process in which an individual/professional can evaluate the security of a computer system  or network by applying the attacks.

Top 5 Penetration Testing Distribution based on Linux

These professionals have legal rights to do this task as their purpose is only to examine the network security instead of doing any harm. Most of you have heard the name of Backtrack, it is one of the most popular penetration testing distro from last 4 years.

But here I am going to tell you rest four penetration testing distro which i found very useful during my experiments. Backtrack is very successful penetration testing distro because it has all the tools which is mostly required by a Professional and it makes a revolutionary change in the field of penetration testing.

According to me right judgement of the penetration testing distro is based on the tools available in it. No matter, what the distrowatch rank said about them. It depends on the user how much they get from these distros. Don’t go with name just evaluate the features and tools available in the distro.

List of Top 5 Penetration Testing Distro’s

  1. Backtrack
  2. Backbox
  3. Blackbuntu
  4. Knoppix (Security Tool Distribution)
  5. NST (Network Security Toolkit)



Backtrack is most popular among professionals as well as learner. This distro has the ultimate collection of Penetration testing tools. It is based on debian Linux based distribution and primarily aimed at digital forensics and penetration testing. The tools in this distribution are subdivided into modules, each module has different types of tool, but some of them have common like nmap. I have listed the modules available in backtrack in below given points :-

  • Information Gathering
  • Vulnerability assessment
  • Exploitation tools
  • Privilege Escalation
  • Maintaining access
  • Reverse Engineering
  • RFID tools
  • Stress Testing
  • Forensics
  • Reporting tools

Backtrack is available in two Desktop flavor i.e. KDE and GNOME. I will recommend you to use GNOME because it is lighter than KDE environment. The latest version of this distro is Backtrack 5R3.

Download Backtrack 5R3 from here 

>> BackBox

Backbox is a second most popular distribution for penetration testing and security assessment. It is based on Ubuntu Linux-based distribution which has set of tools required for ethical hacking and security testing. It is designed to be fast and easy to use, which includes its own software repository for downloading the required packages. Like Backtrack it is also divided into modules which helps you to choose the right tool for performing  your task. But then also it is not as powerful as Backtrack because  stress testing tools are still missing from this.

Download BackBox from here

>> Blackbuntu

Blackbuntu is developed by a small team  from Thailand, India, Turkey, USA., U.K., Canada, Ireland, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, Syria, Russia. It is also a very powerful environment for penetration testing based on Ubuntu. It is designed for security training  students for learning the Ethical Hacking and Information Security.

Download Blackbuntu from here

>> Knoppix (Security Tool Distribution) 

Knoppix STD (security tool distribution) is a live Linux distro which is used to penetrate the network for ethical purpose. It is designed by a community whose prime motto is to manage the security instead of hacking. This distribution consists of most used open source tools which helps you to perform security assessments on the network. It is specially designed to aid the network administrators and security professionals.

Download Knoppix STD from here

>> NST (Network Security Toolkit)

The network security toolkit is also a live distribution based on Fedora. Similarly like other distro it is designed for security assessment of a computer system or network. The main intent  of developing this distro is to provide the network security administrator with a set of open source tools to penetrate the network for managing the best security of the network. Top 125 security tools are included in this toolkit provided by INSECURE.ORG. 

Download NST from here

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