I'm trying to install a dual boot with Kali-Linux 2.0 on my Macbook Pro (mid July 2016) running MacOS Sierra 10.12

I format my usb key to exFat and a guid partition. Then with the dd command I burn the kali-linux iso to the drive by getting the disk identifier with the diskutil list command.

To succeed to boot to the usb drive, I have to boot without plug it and hold down the option key, then I can plug the usb drive and click to EFI boot.

When I'm here, I have the Kali-Linux menu (Sometimes I just get a black freezing screen) the kali-linux menu is very small in the top-left corner.

So I try to use the graphical install and it freeze everything I try. I tried to go to my usb drive and modify the syslinux.cfg file to change "vesamenu.c32" to "menu.c32" but when I do that I can't get the kali-linux menu anymore.

Someone succeeded to install a dual boot on a MacBook Pro Sierra 10.12 and Kali-LInux 2.0 ? How can I do that ?

Thanks for your attention.

  • 1
    I have exactly the same issue
    – Emech
    Oct 17, 2016 at 21:47
  • 1
    I thought I was the only one...
    – CJ Dana
    Oct 25, 2016 at 8:09
  • I'm still looking for a solution if any
    – M. Ozn
    Nov 15, 2016 at 10:52

1 Answer 1


I have managed to get Kali Linux running from USB with persistence, on a Macbook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2015) with macOS Sierra.

Here's my guide explaining the process I used. I've tried to make it easy to follow, whilst still being as detailed as possible.

Part 1: Preparing the USB

Note: if you don't want persistence, just create 1 partition and finish the guide at part 3.

  1. Open disk utility (Finder > Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility).
  2. Select your USB device.
  3. Choose erase.
  4. Name: Untitled | Format: Mac OS Extended (Journaled) | Scheme: GUID Partition Map.
  5. Click done.
  6. Select your newly formatted USB device.
  7. Choose partition.
  8. Click the "+" symbol at the bottom of the window.
  9. Name (left partition): Persistence | Name (right partition): Kali Linux.
  10. Format (both partitions): MS-DOS (FAT).
  11. Click apply.
  12. Click partition.

After this process, your partitions (Kali Linux and Persistence) may have renamed themselves to "K L" and "P" respectively. If this does happen, simply rename them, and follow the rest of this guide.

Part 2: Installation

  1. Download your ISO of choice (I have tested this with Kali Linux full).
  2. Drag the ISO file to your desktop.
  3. Rename to "boot.iso".
  4. Download the following EFI files: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/49525238/efi.zip
  5. Extract the "efi.zip" file to desktop.
  6. Drag "boot.iso" to efi > boot.
  7. You should now have the following files contained within efi > boot: boot.efi, boot.iso, bootX64.efi, enterprise.cfg.
  8. Copy the efi folder to the root of the Kali Linux partition on the USB drive.

Part 3: Booting Kali Linux

  1. Restart your machine.
  2. Hold the option key (alt) as soon as you hear the chime.
  3. Follow the onscreen options (for me I press the "1" key twice, and then it boots).
  4. After a few minutes, you should be prompted to enter login details.
  5. Username: root | Password: toor

Part 4: Persistence

  1. Open up GParted (you can find this by clicking the bottom icon in the task bar to the left, then you should see a search function - search GParted).
  2. Once GParted is open, click the dropdown menu to the right and select the bottom option. If you only have one USB inserted, it should be /dev/sdb.
  3. Select the partition with the label "Peristence".
  4. Click partition at the top.
  5. After this (choose unmount if the option is available) choose format to and then choose ext3.
  6. Click edit at the top.
  7. Choose Apply All Operations.
  8. Apply.
  9. Select the newly formatted partition.
  10. Click partition at the top.
  11. Click label.
  12. Label "Persistence".
  13. Choose Apply All Operations.
  14. Apply.

Part 5: Reboot

  1. Restart your machine (as in step 3).
  2. Change your desktop background to a solid colour (grey for example).
  3. Restart you machine again.
  4. If your desktop background is the colour you changed it to, you now have persistent storage.

Hopefully this helps anyone having issues.

  • Don't you know how to make it works on a dual boot please ?
    – M. Ozn
    Nov 18, 2016 at 16:15
  • Shouldn't there be something to actually put Kali on the stick between Part 2 and Part 3?
    – nohillside
    Dec 17, 2016 at 8:46
  • @patrix, you asked "Shouldn't there be something to actually put Kali on the stick between Part 2 and Part 3?" and there should be a step 8 under Part 2 that says to Copy the efi folder to the root of the Kali Linux partition on the USB drive., so I added it. Dec 17, 2016 at 9:48
  • I tried this with Debian, but it is not working because of the setup being different. Do you know about other workaround?.
    – muammar
    Dec 18, 2016 at 1:14
  • Link for refi files is dead, can you give more information about these files, or simply update the link. thanks Dec 12, 2018 at 22:32

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