Parrot Security on WSL 2 🦜

Setting up WSL 2, and upgrade Debian to Parrot OS.

Installing on WSL2

Note: This option only works in Windows 10, where our final set up will include a GUI and CLI for Parrot OS by upgrading a Debian WSL app.


Follow this tutorial via Microsoft Docs


Running Windows 10, updated to version 2004 Build 19041 or higher. 64-bit Machine (for Kernel Update)

Install WSL

Open PowerShell as Admin and run:

dism.exe /online /enable-feature /featurename:VirtualMachinePlatform /all /norestart

Restart your machine and complete WSL install

Update to WSL 2

Open PowerShell as Admin

wsl --set-default-version 2

If you see

WSL 2 requires an update to its kernel component. For information please visit

Download and install the MSI x64 Linux Kernel.

Install Debian

  1. Open the Microsoft Store and select Debian distro
  2. Get and install the application
  3. Create a unix user account (ex. parrot) and password
  4. Ensure that Debian is running on WSL 2


wsl --list --verbose
wsl --set-version <distribution name> <versionNumber>

Success! You now have WSL2 and Debian installed :)

Debian -> Parrot

Let’s get to the fun stuff! In your CLI, copy and paste to get the

curl -o
chmod a+x
sudo ./

Select 1. Install Core Only

Why: This will get the correct sources.list for the parrot repositories.

I highly recommend this option!

Issue: apt-get update works, but parrot-upgrade returns 404 archives/packages not found

Previous: /etc/apt/sources.list (from debian base image)

New: /etc/apt/sources.list.d/* (for parrot-upgrade)

$ cat debian.list
$ cat parrot.list
deb rolling main contrib non-free
#deb-src rolling main contrib non-free
deb rolling-security main contrib non-free
#deb-src rolling-security main contrib non-free

You may use ANY mirror, but I the rolling release was the only successful endpoint for upgrading.

Hash and Key Verification

Note: before you continue you must ensure you have the parrot-security key ring.

See Hash and Key Verification

When you enter root you should see the parrot CLI styling parrot-neofetch

To Upgrade

sudo su

This will install all dependencies for the OS, and important packages, but no security tools, or GUI.

Installing a GUI

apt-get install parrot-interface parrot-interface-full parrot-tools-full

Installing Security Tools

apt -y --allow-downgrades install parrot-interface parrot-interface-full parrot-tools-full

Before you continue

The GUI & RDP protocol can be extremely slow, and I have since switched to a live USB option.

See Live Encrypted Persistance USB

I prefer to utilize my hardware and save files across on my drive. However, this is a great proof of concept to allow you to have a GUI on Debian based WSL 2 linux distributions (like Kali Linux).

To Access the GUI

As of now, we should have a WSL 2 instance with all of the bells and whistles. So, to access this machine, we will use the onboard application, Remote Desktop Connection.


This will create an access port on your Local Area Network through the WSL network adapter. Allows you to connect to an operating system. Note: You can only remote into a single WSL machine at a time (b/c they share an IP address)

apt-get install xrdp

I created a bash file ( with

/etc/init.d/xrdp start
ip addr output

Side Note: I recommend Windows Terminal (Preview) for WSL2


Highlighted is the WSL LAN IP Address you are looking for. Enter this into the RDC program and click Connect.


Once you enter the creds into the XRDP Server, you may now access the Parrot GUI. And it works just like Kali Linux!!

parrot desktop