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Monday, November 8, 2010

Show the Grub Loader Menu by default

     One of the things I wanted this blog to be about was a sort of online Archive of all of the Tips, Tricks and Ideas that I've come to find useful in one convenient location. If they've helped me, maybe they can help someone else as well.

     Since I began using Linux and Ubuntu I've really liked the Grub Boot Loader and how good it is at handling Multiple Operating system installs. I like it so much that I've come to want it as part of my startup procedure whether I have Multiple operating systems installed or not.

     So without further adieu here is How To force Grub to display on Boot up when Only One Operating System is installed.

     To do this you need to edit your Grub options file. This is found in Ubuntu under:


     To Edit the file you must run Gedit as Root. Open a Terminal window and enter:

     sudo gedit /etc/default/grub

     Enter your password and the Grub option file will appear in your Gedit Editor.

     Below is my Grub options file. The Line highlighted in RED is the key here. When Grub_Hidden_Timeout=0 is Commented Out by starting the line with a # symbol, the Grub Boot Loader menu is forced to be displayed whether you have multiple Operating Systems installed or not. If the Grub_Hidden_Timeout=0 line does not have # symbol at the start, it is not displayed. It's that simple.

# If you change this file, run 'update-grub' afterwards to update
# /boot/grub/grub.cfg.

GRUB_DISTRIBUTOR=`lsb_release -i -s 2> /dev/null || echo Debian`

# Uncomment to disable graphical terminal (grub-pc only)
# The resolution used on graphical terminal
# note that you can use only modes which your graphic card supports via VBE
# you can see them in real GRUB with the command `vbeinfo'
# Uncomment if you don't want GRUB to pass "root=UUID=xxx" parameter to Linux
# Uncomment to disable generation of recovery mode menu entries
# Uncomment to get a beep at grub start
#GRUB_INIT_TUNE="480 440 1"

     The only thing remaining to do is Update the Grub config file to "Apply" the changes. You do that by entering the following at the Terminal command line.

    sudo update-grub

     Whenever you make a change to this file you need to run sudo update-grub in order for the changes to take effect.

     That's it. Reboot your machine and the Grub Boot Loader menu should now display. I've just grown to prefer this menu being Displayed over the years whether Multiple Operating Systems are installed or not. Personal preference. You may feel the same. Give it a try and see.

1 comment:

  1. I have tried this, but did not work for me, any ideas? I seem to be stuck in some sort of recovery mode. When I boot it always ends up opening a white terminal window in the top left hand corner.

    I am using Ubuntu 11.04, this was updated from 10.10