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You've probably noticed that you need to type several commands to
boot your OS. There's a solution to that - GRUB provides a menu
interface (*note Menu interface::) from which you can select an item
(using arrow keys) that will do everything to boot an OS.
To enable the menu, you need a configuration file, `menu.lst' under
the boot directory. We'll analyze an example file.
The file first contains some general settings, the menu interface
related options. You can put these commands (*note Menu-specific
commands::) before any of the items (starting with `title' (*note
# Sample boot menu configuration file
As you may have guessed, these lines are comments. Lines starting
with a hash character (`#'), and blank lines, are ignored by GRUB.
# By default, boot the first entry.
The first entry (here, counting starts with number zero, not one!)
will be the default choice.
# Boot automatically after 30 secs.
As the comment says, GRUB will boot automatically in 30 seconds,
unless interrupted with a keypress.
# Fallback to the second entry.
If, for any reason, the default entry doesn't work, fall back to the
second one (this is rarely used, for obvious reasons).
Note that the complete descriptions of these commands, which are menu
interface specific, can be found in *Note Menu-specific commands::.
Other descriptions can be found in *Note Commands::.
Now, on to the actual OS definitions. You will see that each entry
begins with a special command, `title' (*note title::), and the action
is described after it. Note that there is no command `boot' (*note
boot::) at the end of each item. That is because GRUB automatically
executes `boot' if it loads other commands successfully.
The argument for the command `title' is used to display a short
title/description of the entry in the menu. Since `title' displays the
argument as is, you can write basically anything there.
# For booting GNU/Hurd
kernel /boot/gnumach.gz root=hd0s1
This boots GNU/Hurd from the first hard disk.
# For booting GNU/Linux
kernel (hd1,0)/vmlinuz root=/dev/hdb1
This boots GNU/Linux, but from the second hard disk.
# For booting Mach (getting kernel from floppy)
title Utah Mach4 multiboot
pause Insert the diskette now^G!!
kernel (fd0)/boot/kernel root=hd0s3
This boots Mach with a kernel on a floppy, but the root filesystem at
hd0s3. It also contains a `pause' line (*note pause::), which will
cause GRUB to display a prompt and delay, before actually executing the
rest of the commands and booting.
# For booting FreeBSD
This item will boot FreeBSD kernel loaded from the `a' partition of
the third PC slice of the first hard disk.
# For booting OS/2
# chainload OS/2 bootloader from the first sector
# This is similar to "chainload", but loads a specific file
This will boot OS/2, using a chain-loader (*note Chain-loading::).
# For booting Windows NT or Windows95
title Windows NT / Windows 95 boot menu
# For loading DOS if Windows NT is installed
# chainload /bootsect.dos
The same as the above, but for Windows.
# For installing GRUB into the hard disk
title Install GRUB into the hard disk
This will just (re)install GRUB onto the hard disk.
# Change the colors.
title Change the colors
color light-green/brown blink-red/blue
In the last entry, the command `color' is used (*note color::), to
change the menu colors (try it!). This command is somewhat special,
because it can be used both in the command-line and in the menu. GRUB
has several such commands, see *Note General commands::.
We hope that you now understand how to use the basic features of
GRUB. To learn more about GRUB, see the following chapters.
Created Mon Nov 8 17:42:47 2004 on tillpc with info_to_html version 0.9.6.