Following on from Why are Kali questions hated so much? and Why I closed the "Why is Kali so hard" question, and in the spirit of making things better, let's do something about the tag excerpt; here's the current one:

This tag should be used if your question involves Kali Linux, a Linux distribution based on Debian. Question regarding Kali Linux should not be related to specific setup (installing specific driver, modifying sources.list...) but oriented toward usage of Kali Linux tools. Kali is often used for security testing and comes with a huge set of tools for that. It is not a general-purpose Linux desktop distribution.

There's nothing false about that excerpt, but that might be the only thing a person might see before posting a Kali question. Should we give them some helpful advice up-front?

Possibilities include:

  • higher expectations for technical detail
  • demonstration of Linux expertise
  • an exhortation to look at the Kali-Linux tag wiki, which could spell this all out in more detail
  • etc.
  • 2
    Is there nothing false in it? Installing a specific driver sounds like an appropriate question to me. Commented Apr 13, 2019 at 19:55
  • 2
    My thought is to throw the whole excerpt out and replace it with some sort of warning. People who get to the tag already know what it is; we should provide site-specific guidance.
    – Jeff Schaller Mod
    Commented Apr 13, 2019 at 20:16
  • 11
    By all means improve the tag excerpt, but keep in mind that at least 99% of askers won't see it or have any idea that they should be looking for it. Tag excerpts are pretty discreet. Commented Apr 13, 2019 at 22:54
  • I tried years ago to imrpove the tag definition, I tend to think people don't care about definition and won't read it 99% of the time
    – Kiwy
    Commented Apr 15, 2019 at 9:50
  • While I agree most new users won't see the Tag excerpt, I think we should update it and make it as relevant and helpful as possible. Then point it out to them if/when they are negative about downvotes and edit requests. Just because one won't read the EULA does not mean they are exempt. Same rule.
    – 0xSheepdog
    Commented Apr 15, 2019 at 17:10
  • I agree that any new excerpt should contain a warning about req'd advanced skill-set, with links to Should I Use Kali? and maybe WIKSH as warnings.
    – 0xSheepdog
    Commented Apr 15, 2019 at 17:12

3 Answers 3


We are barking up the wrong tree. We can put whatever we want in the excerpt and the wiki, and it won't make any difference to any but a vanishingly small proportion of askers. What we should do is ask SE for a tag warning, a la this warning implemented in Ask Ubuntu. I think the feature is still buggy (IIRC if you post the question right after adding the tag, the warning is ineffective), but this has a much higher chance of being seen compared to excerpts and wikis.

  • I haven't encountered these before; do they take the place of an existing excerpt? The link doesn't show one, yet the tag appears to have had one since before the warning arrived. It seems to me that we could have both a good excerpt and a warning. The warning doesn't prevent submission of a question, correct?
    – Jeff Schaller Mod
    Commented Apr 18, 2019 at 12:15
  • 2
    @Jeff no, the warning is separate from the excerpt and wiki. The warning has to be dismissed manually before the question can be posted, but the warning is scripted, so there's a brief window where you can add the tag and immediately post it without the warning has had a chance to show. We can have both a good excerpt and a warning, but a warning has a better chance of being seen.
    – muru
    Commented Apr 18, 2019 at 12:29

Q&As about Kali Linux, a Linux distribution based on Debian that is specifically intended for use by security specialists, not as a general-purpose operating system. Please read the information for Kali Linux questions and answers that is linked-to in the corner of this box.

Kali Linux is a security-related Linux-based operating system, derived from Debian Linux.

Its default out-of-the-box installation includes many professional tools for security analysis and penetration testing of computer systems and networks, and conversely does not include things that one would expect in a general-purpose operating system for desktop and server machines.

When asking questions, please ensure that you are not mis-using Kali Linux as entirely the wrong tool for the job that you want to do.

The developers of Kali Linux themselves state that

Kali is a Linux distribution specifically geared towards professional penetration testers and security specialists, and given its unique nature, it is not a recommended distribution if you’re unfamiliar with Linux or are looking for a general-purpose Linux desktop distribution for development, web design, gaming, etc.

When answering, please remember that Kali Linux is on-topic here, and that question closure reasons are the same as for any other question: too broad, unclear, et cetera.

For further explanations of why Kali Linux might not be the tool for the job, see the several answers to "Why is Kali Linux so hard to set up? Why won't people help me?" on Meta.

Related links

  • 5
    I like that top blurb, it's solid.
    – 0xSheepdog
    Commented Apr 16, 2019 at 14:17

Evidently there's a surplus of interest in Kali Linux. Perhaps it would make more sense to:

  1. Get rid of the Kali tag.

  2. Have a new stack exchange be created just for Kali Linux questions, where the bulk of such questions would actually be appropriate.

  • 2
    Without judgement on the idea itself, I think this Question is the wrong place to place it. Voting here won't have any influence on whether a new site is created or not. I believe the right place for that is Area 51. This sentiment is in the direction that I'd like to go with this Question, which is: within the Stack Exchange system, what can we do to better guide Kali questions?
    – Jeff Schaller Mod
    Commented Apr 26, 2019 at 14:32
  • I had to go look; it was 3+ years ago that we agreed to accept Kali questions. unix.meta.stackexchange.com/q/3602/117549
    – Jeff Schaller Mod
    Commented Apr 26, 2019 at 15:08

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