IT Security is hard. You have to keep hacking away.

Bring Your Own Laptop

Bring your own Laptop


For some of our events you only need RDP software on your laptop (and an RJ45 connector).  Details here.

But if you want to run a copy of Kali on your own laptop (for better performance and future learning) then follow the instructions below:

1.)  You must bring a laptop with VMware Player (or Fusion) installed.

2.)  Your laptop must have an RJ45 network jack.

3.)  You should download a copy of our KaliRat VM.   Or arrive 30 minutes early to copy one from USB.

4.)  You must configure KaliRat VM on VMware Player to connect to you RJ45 network adapter.

>>>>Download latest version of KaliRat2 VM in zip format from our Dropbox here.  (1.3GB)

>>>>>Download latest version of KaliRat17b VM in zip format from our Dropbox here.  (2.3GB)


For some of our events you will be asked to bring your own laptop – Windows or Mac –  which you will use to attack our simulated target network.  To do that you need to install VMware Player software, which is free.  Then download our KaliRat Linux VM to give you all the hacker tools you need.  (No worms or viruses or any danger to your own machine.)

All your attacks will be from the Kali VM running on VMware Player from your laptop towards the target company’s routers, servers and workstations.

1.)  Where do I get VMware Player?

You can download the 32- or 64-bit version of VMware Player for free here:|PLAYER-605|product_downloads

VMware Workstation is just as good, or better then VMware Player.  If  you have that, you’re all set. Or you can get a 30-day trial of VMware Workstation for free.  But VMware Player is good enough, and it has no expiry date.

Other virtualization software (like Virtualbox) might work.  Or it might not.  I don’t trust it personally, but if you can get our Special Kali-Linux VM going, and configure your network connectors properly without support, then you might be OK.  Or you can download VMware Player for free from the link above.

Can I use my Mac instead?

Sure.  Just install the free 30-day trial of VMware Fusion.  Or buy a copy for $100.  Download the free version from here:

We’ll provide the same Kali VM that we provide the Windows users.

2.)  How do I set up an RJ45 network adapter?

Your laptop must join the network through a standard Ethernet RJ45 wired connector.  Wireless is not reliable and secure enough in a concentrated hacking environment.  Larger laptops all have one.  But for Ultrabooks or Macs with no RJ45 port, a USB-to-Ethernet 10/100 connector costs under $15 on  (Thunderbolt to Ethernet is $35 at  We might have a spare one available at the event, but don’t count on it.

3.)  What is a Kali VM?

Get our tuned up KaliRat VM from here:

We’ll also have some copies on thumb drives at the event – but for that be sure to arrive a half-hour early because it can take 30 minutes to copy and unzip!

Kali is a special version of Linux which is managed by a company called Offensive Security.  They take Debian Linux and add all sorts of hacker tools – including a very well known and elaborate tool called Metasploit.  It is used by tens of thousands of IT pros around the world, and considered perfectly safe: it will not introduce worms, viruses or malware on its own.  Nor will we be doing that in our sessions.

Can I bring my own Kali?

Sure.  But it won’t work.  🙂  We’ve changed a few files in Kali so it’s tuned to meet the exact requirements for this event.  Nothing very noticeable, but enough that off-the-shelf Kali won’t always work.

I’m confused by the VMware download site.

I know.  Pretty sure they did it on purpose.  In 2015, the basic version of VMware Workstation was renamed VMware Workstation Player.  It costs $150.  But you might want the free VMware Player.  Why the rename?  I speculate that VMware Player might not be free forever.  But it is for now (Jan/18), so use the link above to get the free version of VMware Player.

4.)  How do I configure the RJ45 network adapter?

Non-technical people:  come early and we’ll help you configure the networking on your laptop.

Technical people:  follow instructions below.

In VMware Player 6 use menu:  Player / Manage / Virtual Machine Settings. 

a – Highlight the *second* network adapter, which must be Bridged.  This is the default and rarely needs to be changed.

b – On the right side of the panel, click “Configure Adapters”.  Make sure *only* your wired adapter is checked.  This is not the default and almost always needs to be changed.

To test, plug your laptop into a home router’s RJ45 port.  Then run your Kali VM  and log in.  (Username: root / Password: toor).  In a terminal window in Kali, ping your home router’s IP address by typing:  ping   <– your home router’s IP address may be different!
If the ping responds (0% packet loss), then you’re good to go!  If there is an error (Host Unreachable, for instance), then check the steps above carefully.

Open Events

Open Events are open to anyone who wants to improve their IT Security skills, meet others, and have fun!  We get great feedback from sys admins, network admins, web programmers, and IT-Sec consultants and practitioners - of all skill levels.


Corporate/Department Events are for groups who want to have a fun and challenging team-building event.  There's no better, faster, or more effective way to build IT Security skills, than to put the team into a competitive environment.  We can do this on- or off-site.  Great pricing if we combine your team event with others.

Student Events

Student Events started at Algonquin College in June 2012.  Since then, we've done similar events at McGill University for Electrical, Computer and Software engineering students, Carleton U "Learn to Win" program, and La Cité Collégiale.  If you are interested in having an event at your school then let us know.

Groups & Associations

Group and Association Events can be an exciting and engaging addition to your calendar.  A hands-on, fun-filled and challenging activity that your members will really look forward to.  They'll improve their IT Security skills, and earn CPE and other professional credits.