1. Introduction

In this short tutorial, we'll show how to enable Bluetooth on Kali Linux. We'll go through the commons steps for setting up the Bluetooth and cover different situations and possible issues:

  • check if you have all core system packages in place
  • assure that your Bluetooth device is not blocked
  • install Blueman package
  • check service status and start it if it's not already started
  • potential issues and solutions:

2. Check if you have all core system packages in place

If you installed the basic/core version of Kali Linux, it's good practice to do do the update and upgrade after the installation, so that you have a complete package list. For that purpose use the following commands:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

If these commands results say that everything is up to date and you're sure that you didn't do any updates on your new system, check the contents of the /etc/apt/sources.list fille. For this purpose, you can use any text editor, for example, nano:

sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list
In my case, I downloaded and installed a rolling release and I didn't have any repositories configured. The contents of my sources.list file was as follows:
# deb cdrom:[Debian GNU/Linux 2019.4 _Kali-rolling_ - Official Snapshot am>
#deb cdrom:[Debian GNU/Linux 2019.4 _Kali-rolling_ - Official Snapshot amd>
# This system was installed using small removable media
# (e.g. netinst, live or single CD). The matching "deb cdrom"
# entries were disabled at the end of the installation process.
# For information about how to configure apt package sources,
# see the sources.list(5) manual.
So, I didn't have any network repositories here and I added the following in the end of this file:
deb http://http.kali.org/kali kali-rolling main non-free contrib
After I did this, I executed update&upgrade again, waited for a half an hour and in the end I actually had all things in place.
And, now, let's see how to add and configure Bluetooth UI and connect our Bluetooth device.

3. Be sure that your Bluetooth device is not blocked

Sometimes, it happens that the Bluetooth device itself is blocked/disabled. This could happen due to software or hardware reasons. To check the device status, use the rfkill list command:
sudo rfkill list
What you should see as an output of this command is a list of all wireless devices of your machine:
0: ideapad_wlan: Wireless LAN
        Soft blocked: no
        Hard blocked: no
1: ideapad_bluetooth: Bluetooth
        Soft blocked: no
        Hard blocked: no
2: hci0: Bluetooth
        Soft blocked: no
        Hard blocked: no
3: phy0: Wireless LAN
        Soft blocked: no
        Hard blocked: no

Assure that the Bluetooth device you're trying to use for the connection is not blocked. In case that it's blocked, use the following command to unblock it:

sudo rfkill unblock bluetooth

For a more detailed tutorial on rfkill tool, check out this tutorial.

3. Assure that Bluetooth service is started

If your Bluetooth device was blocked/disabled, it's a chance that the Bluetooth service is not started on your machine, so start it using:

sudo service bluetooth start

4. Install blueman package

Blueman is a Bluetooth manager with great UI that uses blueZ in the background. It will help you to easily manage your Bluetooth devices. If you don't have it already, install it using

sudo apt-get install blueman

In this step, I had the issue with package versions saying:

libc6-dev : Breaks : libgcc-9-dev (< but 9.2.1-19 is to be installed

If you have the same situation, check out this tutorial that shows how to solve this in a few steps.
After all of this goes fine, you'll see the Bluetooth icon next to the clock and you'll be able to connect and use your Bluetooth devices.

5. Conclusion

In this tutorial, we showed how to enable Bluetooth on Kali Linux and troubleshoot the issues.