Kali Linux isn’t your everyday operating system for the average person. It is a Linux distribution for advanced penetration testing, network security, digital forensics, and ethical hacking. Certain tools that are available in the installation require the use of Kali Linux USB WiFi compatible adapters.
In order to perform wireless penetration tests the network adapter must be able to support monitor mode and must be able to perform packet injections. Many of your standard WiFi adapters do not support this functionality and there is a limited amount of Kali Linux USB WiFi compatible adapters that will actually work.
WHAT CHIPSETS ARE COMPATIBLE WITH KALI LINUX USB WIFI COMPATIBLE ADAPTERS?
Different WiFi adapters have different chipsets. Through testing it has been confirmed that the most stable chipsets to use with Kali Linux are:
- Ralink RT3070
- Atheros AR9271
- Ralink RT3572
- Realtek RTL8187L
It is recommended to use Kali Linux USB WiFi compatible adapters that support 802.11 ac and backward compatibility with 802.11 b/g/n since they offer stronger signals and a greater coverage area.
IT IS RECOMMENDED TO USE THE 802.11ac STANDARD
There is a big difference between 802.11A, 802.11B, 802.11G, 802.11N, and 802.11AC. Depending on which Kali Linux USB WiFi compatible adapters you plan on using you will see a difference in functionality, speed, and range.
You will find a list below of popular USB WiFi adapters that are compatible with Kali Linux. Keep in mind that the Realtek RTL8187L chipset adapters only support 802.11G which are considered outdated. You will want to keep the antenna size in mind as well. The better the antenna, the better the signal strength will be.
RALINK RT3070 CHIPSET ADAPTERS
RALINK RT3572 CHIPSET ADAPTERS
ATHEROS AR9271 CHIPSET ADAPTERS
REALTEK RTL8187L CHIPSET ADAPTERS
Before you select your WiFi adapter you’ll want to make sure it is compatible with your operating system as well. For example, the Alfa AWUS036H is only Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7 compatible. However, there is a way to bypass this if you want to learn how to install ALFA AWUS036H on Windows 10.
Alfa adapters are more dominant than the other brands.
If you are just learning then sometimes it is best to go with the cheapest dongle for testing purposes.
If you have any feedback regarding our Kali Linux USB WiFi compatible adapters list then feel free to let us know in the comments section below.