Install BackBox

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Hard Disk Installation

Make sure that your computer is set to boot from the cd drive.

  1. Insert the BackBox disc into your CD drive.
  2. Start or restart your computer.
  3. Select "Try BackBox without installing"
  4. Click "Install BackBox Linux". The "Language" screen appears.
  5. Select your desired language and click "Forward"
  6. Select the location closest to your location and click "Forward".
  7. Select where do you want to put BackBox and click "Forward".
  8. Enter the requested information, and click "Forward". The "Ready to install" window appears.
  9. Verify that the language, layout, location, and personal information are correct and click "Install". The installation wizard begins.
  10. When the installation wizard finishes, the "Installation complete" window appears.
  11. Click "Restart now" to restart your computer. BackBox is now installed!

USB Persistent Installation

It is possible to have BackBox on a USB drive (AKA USB Stick or Thumb drive or Flash drive) or USB hard disk drive with persistent mode. This means that you can boot from a USB drive and keep customisations such as keyboard layout, numlock, preferences, additional packages saved on the drive. This can be done using linux or windows. You will need a USB drive of 2 GB or more.

BackBox / Precise Pangolin

BackBox/Precise Pangolin onwards provide USB Startup Disk Creator system tool. It uses the usb-creator to create USB bootable startup disk on USB drive. You may also start the application from the terminal with:

$ gksudo usb-creator-gtk

Then choose the desired BackBox .iso image, the usb device you want to use, erase the disk and set the degree of persistence (the slider) you need. Note that the maximum space that can be allocated for persistence is limited to 4GB (maximum file size on a FAT32 filesystem is 4GB). This limit can be overcome and is explained later on. If you do want a larger degree of persistence, set persistence to 128mb for now and continue. Hit Make Startup Disk and wait till it finishes. You are now in possession of a USB drive that can be used to run/install BackBox on most computers. Persistence gives you the freedom to save changes, in the form of settings or files etc, during the live session and the changes are available the next time you boot via the usb drive.

Old Ubuntu / Windows / Other

UNetbootin automates this task by providing a GUI to create a bootable BackBox Live USB drive from an ISO file, and can be run from both an installed Windows or Linux system, or from a liveCD.

  1. Plug in your USB Drive and format the USB drive to FAT32.
  2. Start UNetbootin and select diskimage.
  3. Select your USB drive and click “OK” for creating a bootable BackBox USB drive.
  4. Go to and download one of the files (,, or corresponding to the amount of persistent space you want (make sure the size of the persistent disk image is smaller than the free space you have on your USB drive).
  5. Extract the file "" from the zip file to your USB drive.


To make the persistence larger (> 4GB), while still on your normal BackBox Installation, mount the pendrive if it is not mounted already. View the files in the FAT32 partition of the pendrive. You will now be able to see a file called casper-rw. It will be the same size as the value set on the slider. Delete this file. Open gparted:

$ gksudo gparted

Select the live usb. There will be a single partition only. Resize it so that you can have two partitions. You only need the current partition to be as large as it is already. You can safely move the resizing slider all the way to the left until there is just enough breathing space between the slider and the end of the first partition (coloured block). Make the newly created free space an ext4 or ext3 or ext2 partition and label it "casper-rw" without the double quotes. Hit apply changes. So now you have two partitions, the fat32 partition and the ext4 partition called casper-rw. This partition can be of any size and will be responsible for saving your data between boots. You can now boot using the usb drive and any changes you make will remain.

Installing on a Mac (data loss)

  1. Before performing any work is recommended you make a backup of the data estimate.
  2. Bring the disks respectively Snow Leopard operating system and BackBox.
  3. Download the following applications: rEFfit (which will allow us to run the dualboot), MacFUSE and ntfs-3g (which allow writing to NTFS partitions), all of which are free software.
  4. Insert the DVD of Snow Leopard and press the "Alt" key to start the macbook from cd and select the CD of Snow Leopard.
  5. Now use Disk Utility to create partitions to install the operating systems. The partition for Snow must be formatted in HFS + Journaled, other partitions can also leave the space.
  6. Proceed with the installation of Snow Leopard, and once finished installing rEFIt and MacFUSE and ntfs-3g.
  7. Insert the CD with BackBox and press the "Alt" key and proceed to the distribution. Now completed the installation procedure to restart the macbook will have a nice dual boot chart where you can choose which OS to boot at startup.

The only problem you may have with BackBox is the sound.

If you have problems with sound, resolves as follows:

$ sudo apt-get install build-essential ncurses-dev gettext libasound2-dev xmlto
$ sudo apt-get install linux-headers-$(uname -r) libncursesw5-dev

Otherwise if you have not installed you can install alsa backport module.

Installing on a Mac with Boot Camp (don't loose data)

  1. Download the i386 version of BackBox and burn a CD.
  2. Start Boot Camp (Applications > Utilities > Boot Camp).
  3. Boot Camp Assistant helps you create a new partition for BackBox on an internal disk.
  4. Please choose the partition size for BackBox (minimum 2 GB) and Click "Partition".
  5. When the partition has been created, insert the BackBox CD and restart your Mac.
  6. During system startup, hold down the "Alt" key on the keyboard.
  7. Select boot from CD
  8. Now backbox will start in the live version, when the system is started click "Install Linux backbox"
  9. Now select the preferred language of the system and select the Boot Camp partition!
  10. When the installation wizard finishes, the "Installation complete" window appears.
  11. Click "Restart now" to restart your computer. BackBox is now installed!
  12. During system startup, hold down the "Alt" key on your keyboard to select the operating system that you prefer to start!

Virtualize BackBox on Mac OS X, Windows or Linux

  1. Start the virtualization program (VMware Fusion/Workstation, VirtualBox, ecc) and begin the installation of a new machine.
  2. Select the ISO to install previously downloaded from the official website of BackBox (We recommend the 32 bit version).
  3. Selected as a feature of the OS: Ubuntu 32bit or 64 bit depending on which version you downloaded.
  4. After installation start the terminal and enter the following command line (if you don't know kernel version enter the command "uname -a")

For Kernel v.3.2 or previous versions

$ sudo apt-get install linux-headers-generic -y 
$ sudo apt-get install build-essential -y

For Kernel v.3.5

$ sudo apt-get install linux-headers-generic-lts-quantal -y 
$ sudo apt-get instal build-essential -y

For Kernel v.3.8

$ sudo apt-get install linux-headers-generic-lts-raring -y 
$ sudo apt-get install build-essential -y
  1. Now you can install the virtual utility necessary for a proper virtualization system.
  2. Reboot the virtual machine.
  3. Installation is finished!