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Install Backtrack 3 on USB

Here are some pretty easy steps to install Backtrack 3 to your USB drive.

Go to Offensive-Security and get the Backtrack 3 Beta USB rar file, about 946 MB in size.

I got on my Windows XP machine and used WinRAR to uncompress to a folder on my machine.

Copy the BT and BOOT folders to your thumb drive.

If you are on a Windows machine, go into the /boot folder and run bootinst.bat, if you are running Linux or OSX run This will set your thumb drive to be bootable.

I am running BT3 on my Dell E1705 laptop with Compiz running. In the grub, it says that this is experimental, but I have not seen any errors as of yet.


06/02/2008 - Posted by | Linux, Security | ,


  1. thanks great help fore me 😉

    Comment by HDD Multimedia Players | 12/02/2008 | Reply

  2. If you want to save changes, check out for real step-by-step info

    Comment by abitaz | 29/02/2008 | Reply

  3. I get an error when I try to run this command on OS X:

    [adam@adamMB /Volumes/OCZ4GB/boot]$ ./
    egrep: /proc/mounts: No such file or directory
    egrep: /proc/mounts: No such file or directory
    egrep: /proc/mounts: No such file or directory
    Can’t find device to install to.
    Make sure you run this script from a mounted device.

    Comment by adam | 09/04/2008 | Reply

  4. it’s does not work. the run box display window cannot find bootinst.bat please type the name corectly..why???

    Comment by areif | 27/08/2008 | Reply

  5. Try to do it as root

    Comment by omg | 02/09/2008 | Reply

  6. i got message when to run file bootinst.bat
    access is denied.
    you are starting Slax installer from a read-only-media,this will not work.
    ……….press any key to exit
    so what kind of USB should I have to use ? or did i make something wrong?

    Comment by dunn | 23/09/2008 | Reply

  7. Hi, Installed as shown. Would run from livecd but now after setting up usb drive (2gb sandisk) on a laptop and desktop it will get to “Using /etc/random-seed to initialize /dev/urandom” and it will hang. Normaly when I dont see a screen on my hp dv6700 laptop I just hit the power button and it comes up, so I tried that when it locks up and it just goes into shutdown mode going thru all the steps and finally power off. Any ideas? Is it trying to write to an area on my usb drive that isnt there or ?

    Thanks, Dan.

    Comment by Dan V | 24/09/2008 | Reply

  8. It worked, thanks

    Comment by Colorz | 08/10/2008 | Reply

  9. My usb stick is fornatted to FAT32, will I need to change this to something else (such as ext?) to install BT3 on it?

    Comment by crossalchemist | 18/11/2008 | Reply

    • You know, it’s been so long since I installed it that I believe I did reformat my usb.

      Comment by Matthew | 06/12/2008 | Reply

  10. Thanks a lot. Great job………:-)


    Comment by Shubhamoy | 01/04/2009 | Reply

  11. hello when i extract the .iso (with peazip, it’s a free zip-unzipper) and extract’s 3 folders: boot, BT3, [BOOT]
    should i delete [BOOT]?

    plz give me the command to run the script

    i’m noob on linux!!!

    Comment by jim | 04/05/2009 | Reply

  12. when i go to boot from ( usb-zip) it says that it can’t find the disk or something like that

    Comment by jim | 04/05/2009 | Reply

  13. accessing physical drive access is denied… why?

    Comment by Dan | 09/08/2009 | Reply

    • Run as root!
      type su then your password

      Comment by Storfchimp | 08/09/2009 | Reply

  14. hello . when i boot from USB in a widoos bootable labtop it starts to boot from usb but it reaches to a point says . “error. thats shouldnt happen please press ctrl+alt+dlt to reboot”

    im new in this field and i cant understand why this error happens .

    Comment by spawn | 01/09/2009 | Reply

  15. hi the instruktion here is very god.
    i found a install instruktion too.
    look at this site:
    i hope you like this.


    Comment by Michaele334 | 07/09/2009 | Reply

  16. when booting to does nothing just goes back to exactly the same boot screen of (Booth with KDE , GNOme ….etc)

    Comment by Mal3abna | 11/09/2009 | Reply


    when I Boot it doesn’t boot just takes me to the boot screen of (Booth with KDE , GNOme ….etc)

    Comment by Mal3abna2 | 11/09/2009 | Reply

  18. hey guys this instructions is way outdated now.
    there is a usb version on the same site plus dont touch the beta they have a final release for version 3 and pre release for version 4.

    if you still have problems google unetbootin-windows-323 or live usb creator. i prefer live usb as it designed to handle backtrack 3

    Comment by pcguy sean | 18/09/2009 | Reply

  19. Wow, I followed two much more complex sets of instruction, neither of which worked and both of which required hours of additional downloading to get a linux environment set up to do fdisk and such, before I tried this. Worked perfectly, thanks. Now if only BT3 worked xD

    Comment by flasher702 | 02/01/2010 | Reply

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