When is the best moment to try solve your first black box machine?

Hi guys, I’m currently a HTB Academy student and I trying to finish my learning path. But further I want to move on it to HackTheBox main platform and begin to solve some machines.
Nevertheless I know that my first machines I’ll need walktroughs or tutorials to solve it these, however I want to know, what I need (number of solved machines) to start solve my first machine without walkthroughs or tutorials? What are your recommendations for this?

there’s no real answer, will depend a lot on the machine and whether what is needed to exploit it is something you are aware exists.

My advice is to not worry about it. If you exploit your first machine with no walkthroughs or tutorials don’t think that means you are some hacking savant, and it it takes you 100 machines before you complete your first one without any help, it doesn’t mean you suck.

Ask yourself what your goals are. Are you here to have fun? Then have fun! Don’t let whether you did or didn’t need to use a walktrhough get in the way of that. Are you here to learn? Then focus on learning! who cares if you used a walktrhrough or not, or even if you got the flags, what does it matter, so long as you learned. Are you here for some other reason? Then make that reason your focus, and only care about how your time here affects that goal. Don’t worry about things like machine ratings and how long something took you, and anything else that doesn’t directly impact whatever your goals are.

Just start hacking, don’t let any bullshit emotions hold you back. Whatever your goals are, the act of doing is going to get you to them the fastest.

I think a good way to get started is doing the “Starting Point” machines. Those are basically guided boxes with walktroughs and they ask you questions to make sure you understand all steps. Read through the walkthrough and recreate the steps. After going through all of them you should have the tools to do the easy lab machines.

Note: Starting Point uses a different VPN config file, so connect to that and click on the connect button at the top right before spawning the boxs.

Other than that…maybe just try the easy boxes in the lab and see how far you get? Take good notes and build a sort of game plan for all machines (check X,Y,Z for enum, try A,B,C for exploitation, privesc).