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GNU GRUB manual

This is the documentation of GNU GRUB, the GRand Unified Bootloader, a
flexible and powerful boot loader program for a wide range of

   This edition documents version 2.02.

   This manual is for GNU GRUB (version 2.02, 31 July 2020).

   Copyright (C)
1999,2000,2001,2002,2004,2006,2008,2009,2010,2011,2012,2013 Free
Software Foundation, Inc.

     Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this
     document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License,
     Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software
     Foundation; with no Invariant Sections.

* Menu:

* Introduction::                Capturing the spirit of GRUB
* Naming convention::           Names of your drives in GRUB
* OS-specific notes about grub tools::
                                Some notes about OS-specific behaviour of GRUB
* Installation::                Installing GRUB on your drive
* Booting::                     How to boot different operating systems
* Configuration::               Writing your own configuration file
* Theme file format::           Format of GRUB theme files
* Network::                     Downloading OS images from a network
* Serial terminal::             Using GRUB via a serial line
* Vendor power-on keys::        Changing GRUB behaviour on vendor power-on keys
* Images::                      GRUB image files
* Core image size limitation::  GRUB image files size limitations
* Filesystem::                  Filesystem syntax and semantics
* Interface::                   The menu and the command-line
* Environment::                 GRUB environment variables
* Commands::                    The list of available builtin commands
* Internationalisation::        Topics relating to language support
* Security::                    Authentication, authorisation, and signatures
* Platform limitations::        The list of platform-specific limitations
* Platform-specific operations:: Platform-specific operations
* Supported kernels::           The list of supported kernels
* Troubleshooting::             Error messages produced by GRUB
* Invoking grub-install::       How to use the GRUB installer
* Invoking grub-mkconfig::      Generate a GRUB configuration file
* Invoking grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2::
                                Generate GRUB password hashes
* Invoking grub-mkrelpath::     Make system path relative to its root
* Invoking grub-mkrescue::      Make a GRUB rescue image
* Invoking grub-mount::         Mount a file system using GRUB
* Invoking grub-probe::         Probe device information for GRUB
* Invoking grub-script-check::  Check GRUB script file for syntax errors
* Obtaining and Building GRUB:: How to obtain and build GRUB
* Reporting bugs::              Where you should send a bug report
* Future::                      Some future plans on GRUB
* Copying This Manual::         Copying This Manual
* Index::

File:,  Node: Introduction,  Next: Naming convention,  Prev: Top,  Up: Top

1 Introduction to GRUB

* Menu:

* Overview::                    What exactly GRUB is and how to use it
* History::                     From maggot to house fly
* Changes from GRUB Legacy::    Differences from previous versions
* Features::                    GRUB features
* Role of a boot loader::       The role of a boot loader

File:,  Node: Overview,  Next: History,  Up: Introduction

1.1 Overview

Briefly, a "boot loader" is the first software program that runs when a
computer starts.  It is responsible for loading and transferring control
to an operating system "kernel" software (such as Linux or GNU Mach).
The kernel, in turn, initializes the rest of the operating system (e.g.
a GNU system).

   GNU GRUB is a very powerful boot loader, which can load a wide
variety of free operating systems, as well as proprietary operating
systems with chain-loading(1) (*note Overview-Footnote-1::).  GRUB is
designed to address the complexity of booting a personal computer; both
the program and this manual are tightly bound to that computer platform,
although porting to other platforms may be addressed in the future.

   One of the important features in GRUB is flexibility; GRUB
understands filesystems and kernel executable formats, so you can load
an arbitrary operating system the way you like, without recording the
physical position of your kernel on the disk.  Thus you can load the
kernel just by specifying its file name and the drive and partition
where the kernel resides.

   When booting with GRUB, you can use either a command-line interface
(*note Command-line interface::), or a menu interface (*note Menu
interface::).  Using the command-line interface, you type the drive
specification and file name of the kernel manually.  In the menu
interface, you just select an OS using the arrow keys.  The menu is
based on a configuration file which you prepare beforehand (*note
Configuration::).  While in the menu, you can switch to the command-line
mode, and vice-versa.  You can even edit menu entries before using them.

   In the following chapters, you will learn how to specify a drive, a
partition, and a file name (*note Naming convention::) to GRUB, how to
install GRUB on your drive (*note Installation::), and how to boot your
OSes (*note Booting::), step by step.

File:,  Node: History,  Next: Changes from GRUB Legacy,  Prev: Overview,  Up: Introduction

1.2 History of GRUB

GRUB originated in 1995 when Erich Boleyn was trying to boot the GNU
Hurd with the University of Utah's Mach 4 microkernel (now known as GNU
Mach).  Erich and Brian Ford designed the Multiboot Specification (*note
Multiboot Specification: (multiboot)Top.), because they were determined
not to add to the large number of mutually-incompatible PC boot methods.

   Erich then began modifying the FreeBSD boot loader so that it would
understand Multiboot.  He soon realized that it would be a lot easier to
write his own boot loader from scratch than to keep working on the
FreeBSD boot loader, and so GRUB was born.

   Erich added many features to GRUB, but other priorities prevented him
from keeping up with the demands of its quickly-expanding user base.  In
1999, Gordon Matzigkeit and Yoshinori K. Okuji adopted GRUB as an
official GNU package, and opened its development by making the latest
sources available via anonymous CVS. *Note Obtaining and Building
GRUB::, for more information.

   Over the next few years, GRUB was extended to meet many needs, but it
quickly became clear that its design was not keeping up with the
extensions being made to it, and we reached the point where it was very
difficult to make any further changes without breaking existing
features.  Around 2002, Yoshinori K. Okuji started work on PUPA
(Preliminary Universal Programming Architecture for GNU GRUB), aiming to
rewrite the core of GRUB to make it cleaner, safer, more robust, and
more powerful.  PUPA was eventually renamed to GRUB 2, and the original
version of GRUB was renamed to GRUB Legacy.  Small amounts of
maintenance continued to be done on GRUB Legacy, but the last release
(0.97) was made in 2005 and at the time of writing it seems unlikely
that there will be another.

   By around 2007, GNU/Linux distributions started to use GRUB 2 to
limited extents, and by the end of 2009 multiple major distributions
were installing it by default.

File:,  Node: Changes from GRUB Legacy,  Next: Features,  Prev: History,  Up: Introduction

1.3 Differences from previous versions

GRUB 2 is a rewrite of GRUB (*note History::), although it shares many
characteristics with the previous version, now known as GRUB Legacy.
Users of GRUB Legacy may need some guidance to find their way around
this new version.

   * The configuration file has a new name ('grub.cfg' rather than
     'menu.lst' or 'grub.conf'), new syntax (*note Configuration::) and
     many new commands (*note Commands::).  Configuration cannot be
     copied over directly, although most GRUB Legacy users should not
     find the syntax too surprising.

   * 'grub.cfg' is typically automatically generated by 'grub-mkconfig'
     (*note Simple configuration::).  This makes it easier to handle
     versioned kernel upgrades.

   * Partition numbers in GRUB device names now start at 1, not 0 (*note
     Naming convention::).

   * The configuration file is now written in something closer to a full
     scripting language: variables, conditionals, and loops are

   * A small amount of persistent storage is available across reboots,
     using the 'save_env' and 'load_env' commands in GRUB and the
     'grub-editenv' utility.  This is not available in all
     configurations (*note Environment block::).

   * GRUB 2 has more reliable ways to find its own files and those of
     target kernels on multiple-disk systems, and has commands (*note
     search::) to find devices using file system labels or Universally
     Unique Identifiers (UUIDs).

   * GRUB 2 is available for several other types of system in addition
     to the PC BIOS systems supported by GRUB Legacy: PC EFI, PC
     coreboot, PowerPC, SPARC, and MIPS Lemote Yeeloong are all

   * Many more file systems are supported, including but not limited to
     ext4, HFS+, and NTFS.

   * GRUB 2 can read files directly from LVM and RAID devices.

   * A graphical terminal and a graphical menu system are available.

   * GRUB 2's interface can be translated, including menu entry names.

   * The image files (*note Images::) that make up GRUB have been
     reorganised; Stage 1, Stage 1.5, and Stage 2 are no more.

   * GRUB 2 puts many facilities in dynamically loaded modules, allowing
     the core image to be smaller, and allowing the core image to be
     built in more flexible ways.

File:,  Node: Features,  Next: Role of a boot loader,  Prev: Changes from GRUB Legacy,  Up: Introduction

1.4 GRUB features

The primary requirement for GRUB is that it be compliant with the
"Multiboot Specification", which is described in *note Multiboot
Specification: (multiboot)Top.

   The other goals, listed in approximate order of importance, are:

   * Basic functions must be straightforward for end-users.

   * Rich functionality to support kernel experts and designers.

   * Backward compatibility for booting FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, and
     Linux.  Proprietary kernels (such as DOS, Windows NT, and OS/2) are
     supported via a chain-loading function.

   Except for specific compatibility modes (chain-loading and the Linux
"piggyback" format), all kernels will be started in much the same state
as in the Multiboot Specification.  Only kernels loaded at 1 megabyte or
above are presently supported.  Any attempt to load below that boundary
will simply result in immediate failure and an error message reporting
the problem.

   In addition to the requirements above, GRUB has the following
features (note that the Multiboot Specification doesn't require all the
features that GRUB supports):

Recognize multiple executable formats
     Support many of the "a.out" variants plus "ELF". Symbol tables are
     also loaded.

Support non-Multiboot kernels
     Support many of the various free 32-bit kernels that lack Multiboot
     compliance (primarily FreeBSD, NetBSD(1) (*note
     Features-Footnote-1::), OpenBSD, and Linux).  Chain-loading of
     other boot loaders is also supported.

Load multiples modules
     Fully support the Multiboot feature of loading multiple modules.

Load a configuration file
     Support a human-readable text configuration file with preset boot
     commands.  You can also load another configuration file dynamically
     and embed a preset configuration file in a GRUB image file.  The
     list of commands (*note Commands::) are a superset of those
     supported on the command-line.  An example configuration file is
     provided in *note Configuration::.

Provide a menu interface
     A menu interface listing preset boot commands, with a programmable
     timeout, is available.  There is no fixed limit on the number of
     boot entries, and the current implementation has space for several

Have a flexible command-line interface
     A fairly flexible command-line interface, accessible from the menu,
     is available to edit any preset commands, or write a new boot
     command set from scratch.  If no configuration file is present,
     GRUB drops to the command-line.

     The list of commands (*note Commands::) are a subset of those
     supported for configuration files.  Editing commands closely
     resembles the Bash command-line (*note Bash: (features)Command Line
     Editing.), with <TAB>-completion of commands, devices, partitions,
     and files in a directory depending on context.

Support multiple filesystem types
     Support multiple filesystem types transparently, plus a useful
     explicit blocklist notation.  The currently supported filesystem
     types are "Amiga Fast FileSystem (AFFS)", "AtheOS fs", "BeFS",
     "BtrFS" (including raid0, raid1, raid10, gzip and lzo), "cpio"
     (little- and big-endian bin, odc and newc variants), "Linux
     ext2/ext3/ext4", "DOS FAT12/FAT16/FAT32", "exFAT", "HFS", "HFS+",
     "ISO9660" (including Joliet, Rock-ridge and multi-chunk files),
     "JFS", "Minix fs" (versions 1, 2 and 3), "nilfs2", "NTFS"
     (including compression), "ReiserFS", "ROMFS", "Amiga Smart
     FileSystem (SFS)", "Squash4", "tar", "UDF", "BSD UFS/UFS2", "XFS",
     and "ZFS" (including lzjb, gzip, zle, mirror, stripe, raidz1/2/3
     and encryption in AES-CCM and AES-GCM). *Note Filesystem::, for
     more information.

Support automatic decompression
     Can decompress files which were compressed by 'gzip' or 'xz'(2)
     (*note Features-Footnote-2::).  This function is both automatic and
     transparent to the user (i.e.  all functions operate upon the
     uncompressed contents of the specified files).  This greatly
     reduces a file size and loading time, a particularly great benefit
     for floppies.(3)  (*note Features-Footnote-3::)

     It is conceivable that some kernel modules should be loaded in a
     compressed state, so a different module-loading command can be
     specified to avoid uncompressing the modules.

Access data on any installed device
     Support reading data from any or all floppies or hard disk(s)
     recognized by the BIOS, independent of the setting of the root

Be independent of drive geometry translations
     Unlike many other boot loaders, GRUB makes the particular drive
     translation irrelevant.  A drive installed and running with one
     translation may be converted to another translation without any
     adverse effects or changes in GRUB's configuration.

Detect all installed RAM
     GRUB can generally find all the installed RAM on a PC-compatible
     machine.  It uses an advanced BIOS query technique for finding all
     memory regions.  As described on the Multiboot Specification (*note
     Multiboot Specification: (multiboot)Top.), not all kernels make use
     of this information, but GRUB provides it for those who do.

Support Logical Block Address mode
     In traditional disk calls (called "CHS mode"), there is a geometry
     translation problem, that is, the BIOS cannot access over 1024
     cylinders, so the accessible space is limited to at least 508 MB
     and to at most 8GB. GRUB can't universally solve this problem, as
     there is no standard interface used in all machines.  However,
     several newer machines have the new interface, Logical Block
     Address ("LBA") mode.  GRUB automatically detects if LBA mode is
     available and uses it if available.  In LBA mode, GRUB can access
     the entire disk.

Support network booting
     GRUB is basically a disk-based boot loader but also has network
     support.  You can load OS images from a network by using the "TFTP"

Support remote terminals
     To support computers with no console, GRUB provides remote terminal
     support, so that you can control GRUB from a remote host.  Only
     serial terminal support is implemented at the moment.

File:,  Node: Role of a boot loader,  Prev: Features,  Up: Introduction

1.5 The role of a boot loader

The following is a quotation from Gordon Matzigkeit, a GRUB fanatic:

     Some people like to acknowledge both the operating system and
     kernel when they talk about their computers, so they might say they
     use "GNU/Linux" or "GNU/Hurd".  Other people seem to think that the
     kernel is the most important part of the system, so they like to
     call their GNU operating systems "Linux systems."

     I, personally, believe that this is a grave injustice, because the
     _boot loader_ is the most important software of all.  I used to
     refer to the above systems as either "LILO"(1) (*note Role of a
     boot loader-Footnote-1::) or "GRUB" systems.

     Unfortunately, nobody ever understood what I was talking about; now
     I just use the word "GNU" as a pseudonym for GRUB.

     So, if you ever hear people talking about their alleged "GNU"
     systems, remember that they are actually paying homage to the best
     boot loader around... GRUB!

   We, the GRUB maintainers, do not (usually) encourage Gordon's level
of fanaticism, but it helps to remember that boot loaders deserve
recognition.  We hope that you enjoy using GNU GRUB as much as we did
writing it.

File:,  Node: Naming convention,  Next: OS-specific notes about grub tools,  Prev: Introduction,  Up: Top

2 Naming convention

The device syntax used in GRUB is a wee bit different from what you may
have seen before in your operating system(s), and you need to know it so
that you can specify a drive/partition.

   Look at the following examples and explanations:


   First of all, GRUB requires that the device name be enclosed with '('
and ')'.  The 'fd' part means that it is a floppy disk.  The number '0'
is the drive number, which is counted from _zero_.  This expression
means that GRUB will use the whole floppy disk.


   Here, 'hd' means it is a hard disk drive.  The first integer '0'
indicates the drive number, that is, the first hard disk, the string
'msdos' indicates the partition scheme, while the second integer, '2',
indicates the partition number (or the PC slice number in the BSD
terminology).  The partition numbers are counted from _one_, not from
zero (as was the case in previous versions of GRUB). This expression
means the second partition of the first hard disk drive.  In this case,
GRUB uses one partition of the disk, instead of the whole disk.


   This specifies the first "extended partition" of the first hard disk
drive.  Note that the partition numbers for extended partitions are
counted from '5', regardless of the actual number of primary partitions
on your hard disk.


   This means the BSD 'a' partition on first PC slice number of the
second hard disk.

   Of course, to actually access the disks or partitions with GRUB, you
need to use the device specification in a command, like 'set root=(fd0)'
or 'parttool (hd0,msdos3) hidden-'.  To help you find out which number
specifies a partition you want, the GRUB command-line (*note
Command-line interface::) options have argument completion.  This means
that, for example, you only need to type

     set root=(

   followed by a <TAB>, and GRUB will display the list of drives,
partitions, or file names.  So it should be quite easy to determine the
name of your target partition, even with minimal knowledge of the

   Note that GRUB does _not_ distinguish IDE from SCSI - it simply
counts the drive numbers from zero, regardless of their type.  Normally,
any IDE drive number is less than any SCSI drive number, although that
is not true if you change the boot sequence by swapping IDE and SCSI
drives in your BIOS.

   Now the question is, how to specify a file?  Again, consider an


   This specifies the file named 'vmlinuz', found on the first partition
of the first hard disk drive.  Note that the argument completion works
with file names, too.

   That was easy, admit it.  Now read the next chapter, to find out how
to actually install GRUB on your drive.

File:,  Node: OS-specific notes about grub tools,  Next: Installation,  Prev: Naming convention,  Up: Top

3 OS-specific notes about grub tools

On OS which have device nodes similar to Unix-like OS GRUB tools use the
OS name.  E.g.  for GNU/Linux:

     # grub-install /dev/sda

   On AROS we use another syntax.  For volumes:

     //:<volume name>



   For disks we use syntax:
     //:<driver name>/unit/flags


     # grub-install //:ata.device/0/0

   On Windows we use UNC path.  For volumes it's typically

     \\?\<drive letter>:



   For disks it's



     # grub-install \\?\PhysicalDrive0

   Beware that you may need to further escape the backslashes depending
on your shell.

   When compiled with cygwin support then cygwin drive names are
automatically when needed.  E.g.

     # grub-install /dev/sda

File:,  Node: Installation,  Next: Booting,  Prev: OS-specific notes about grub tools,  Up: Top

4 Installation

In order to install GRUB as your boot loader, you need to first install
the GRUB system and utilities under your UNIX-like operating system
(*note Obtaining and Building GRUB::).  You can do this either from the
source tarball, or as a package for your OS.

   After you have done that, you need to install the boot loader on a
drive (floppy or hard disk) by using the utility 'grub-install' (*note
Invoking grub-install::) on a UNIX-like OS.

   GRUB comes with boot images, which are normally put in the directory
'/usr/lib/grub/<cpu>-<platform>' (for BIOS-based machines
'/usr/lib/grub/i386-pc').  Hereafter, the directory where GRUB images
are initially placed (normally '/usr/lib/grub/<cpu>-<platform>') will be
called the "image directory", and the directory where the boot loader
needs to find them (usually '/boot') will be called the "boot

* Menu:

* Installing GRUB using grub-install::
* Making a GRUB bootable CD-ROM::
* Device map::
* BIOS installation::

File:,  Node: Installing GRUB using grub-install,  Next: Making a GRUB bootable CD-ROM,  Up: Installation

4.1 Installing GRUB using grub-install

For information on where GRUB should be installed on PC BIOS platforms,
*note BIOS installation::.

   In order to install GRUB under a UNIX-like OS (such as GNU), invoke
the program 'grub-install' (*note Invoking grub-install::) as the
superuser ("root").

   The usage is basically very simple.  You only need to specify one
argument to the program, namely, where to install the boot loader.  The
argument has to be either a device file (like '/dev/hda').  For example,
under Linux the following will install GRUB into the MBR of the first
IDE disk:

     # grub-install /dev/sda

   Likewise, under GNU/Hurd, this has the same effect:

     # grub-install /dev/hd0

   But all the above examples assume that GRUB should put images under
the '/boot' directory.  If you want GRUB to put images under a directory
other than '/boot', you need to specify the option '--boot-directory'.
The typical usage is that you create a GRUB boot floppy with a
filesystem.  Here is an example:

     # mke2fs /dev/fd0
     # mount -t ext2 /dev/fd0 /mnt
     # mkdir /mnt/boot
     # grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/boot /dev/fd0
     # umount /mnt

   Some BIOSes have a bug of exposing the first partition of a USB drive
as a floppy instead of exposing the USB drive as a hard disk (they call
it "USB-FDD" boot).  In such cases, you need to install like this:

     # losetup /dev/loop0 /dev/sdb1
     # mount /dev/loop0 /mnt/usb
     # grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/usb/bugbios --force --allow-floppy /dev/loop0

   This install doesn't conflict with standard install as long as they
are in separate directories.

   Note that 'grub-install' is actually just a shell script and the real
task is done by other tools such as 'grub-mkimage'.  Therefore, you may
run those commands directly to install GRUB, without using
'grub-install'.  Don't do that, however, unless you are very familiar
with the internals of GRUB. Installing a boot loader on a running OS may
be extremely dangerous.

   On EFI systems for fixed disk install you have to mount EFI System
Partition.  If you mount it at '/boot/efi' then you don't need any
special arguments:

     # grub-install

   Otherwise you need to specify where your EFI System partition is

     # grub-install --efi-directory=/mnt/efi

   For removable installs you have to use '--removable' and specify both
'--boot-directory' and '--efi-directory':

     # grub-install --efi-directory=/mnt/usb --boot-directory=/mnt/usb/boot --removable

File:,  Node: Making a GRUB bootable CD-ROM,  Next: Device map,  Prev: Installing GRUB using grub-install,  Up: Installation

4.2 Making a GRUB bootable CD-ROM

GRUB supports the "no emulation mode" in the El Torito specification(1)
(*note Making a GRUB bootable CD-ROM-Footnote-1::).  This means that you
can use the whole CD-ROM from GRUB and you don't have to make a floppy
or hard disk image file, which can cause compatibility problems.

   For booting from a CD-ROM, GRUB uses a special image called
'cdboot.img', which is concatenated with 'core.img'.  The 'core.img'
used for this should be built with at least the 'iso9660' and 'biosdisk'
modules.  Your bootable CD-ROM will usually also need to include a
configuration file 'grub.cfg' and some other GRUB modules.

   To make a simple generic GRUB rescue CD, you can use the
'grub-mkrescue' program (*note Invoking grub-mkrescue::):

     $ grub-mkrescue -o grub.iso

   You will often need to include other files in your image.  To do
this, first make a top directory for the bootable image, say, 'iso':

     $ mkdir iso

   Make a directory for GRUB:

     $ mkdir -p iso/boot/grub

   If desired, make the config file 'grub.cfg' under 'iso/boot/grub'
(*note Configuration::), and copy any files and directories for the disc
to the directory 'iso/'.

   Finally, make the image:

     $ grub-mkrescue -o grub.iso iso

   This produces a file named 'grub.iso', which then can be burned into
a CD (or a DVD), or written to a USB mass storage device.

   The root device will be set up appropriately on entering your
'grub.cfg' configuration file, so you can refer to file names on the CD
without needing to use an explicit device name.  This makes it easier to
produce rescue images that will work on both optical drives and USB mass
storage devices.

File:,  Node: Device map,  Next: BIOS installation,  Prev: Making a GRUB bootable CD-ROM,  Up: Installation

4.3 The map between BIOS drives and OS devices

If the device map file exists, the GRUB utilities ('grub-probe', etc.)
read it to map BIOS drives to OS devices.  This file consists of lines
like this:


   DEVICE is a drive specified in the GRUB syntax (*note Device
syntax::), and FILE is an OS file, which is normally a device file.

   Historically, the device map file was used because GRUB device names
had to be used in the configuration file, and they were derived from
BIOS drive numbers.  The map between BIOS drives and OS devices cannot
always be guessed correctly: for example, GRUB will get the order wrong
if you exchange the boot sequence between IDE and SCSI in your BIOS.

   Unfortunately, even OS device names are not always stable.  Modern
versions of the Linux kernel may probe drives in a different order from
boot to boot, and the prefix ('/dev/hd*' versus '/dev/sd*') may change
depending on the driver subsystem in use.  As a result, the device map
file required frequent editing on some systems.

   GRUB avoids this problem nowadays by using UUIDs or file system
labels when generating 'grub.cfg', and we advise that you do the same
for any custom menu entries you write.  If the device map file does not
exist, then the GRUB utilities will assume a temporary device map on the
fly.  This is often good enough, particularly in the common case of
single-disk systems.

   However, the device map file is not entirely obsolete yet, and it is
used for overriding when current environment is different from the one
on boot.  Most common case is if you use a partition or logical volume
as a disk for virtual machine.  You can put any comments in the file if
needed, as the GRUB utilities assume that a line is just a comment if
the first character is '#'.

File:,  Node: BIOS installation,  Prev: Device map,  Up: Installation

4.4 BIOS installation


The partition table format traditionally used on PC BIOS platforms is
called the Master Boot Record (MBR) format; this is the format that
allows up to four primary partitions and additional logical partitions.
With this partition table format, there are two ways to install GRUB: it
can be embedded in the area between the MBR and the first partition
(called by various names, such as the "boot track", "MBR gap", or
"embedding area", and which is usually at least 31 KiB), or the core
image can be installed in a file system and a list of the blocks that
make it up can be stored in the first sector of that partition.

   Each of these has different problems.  There is no way to reserve
space in the embedding area with complete safety, and some proprietary
software is known to use it to make it difficult for users to work
around licensing restrictions; and systems are sometimes partitioned
without leaving enough space before the first partition.  On the other
hand, installing to a filesystem means that GRUB is vulnerable to its
blocks being moved around by filesystem features such as tail packing,
or even by aggressive fsck implementations, so this approach is quite
fragile; and this approach can only be used if the '/boot' filesystem is
on the same disk that the BIOS boots from, so that GRUB does not have to
rely on guessing BIOS drive numbers.

   The GRUB development team generally recommends embedding GRUB before
the first partition, unless you have special requirements.  You must
ensure that the first partition starts at least 31 KiB (63 sectors) from
the start of the disk; on modern disks, it is often a performance
advantage to align partitions on larger boundaries anyway, so the first
partition might start 1 MiB from the start of the disk.


Some newer systems use the GUID Partition Table (GPT) format.  This was
specified as part of the Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI), but it can
also be used on BIOS platforms if system software supports it; for
example, GRUB and GNU/Linux can be used in this configuration.  With
this format, it is possible to reserve a whole partition for GRUB,
called the BIOS Boot Partition.  GRUB can then be embedded into that
partition without the risk of being overwritten by other software and
without being contained in a filesystem which might move its blocks

   When creating a BIOS Boot Partition on a GPT system, you should make
sure that it is at least 31 KiB in size.  (GPT-formatted disks are not
usually particularly small, so we recommend that you make it larger than
the bare minimum, such as 1 MiB, to allow plenty of room for growth.)
You must also make sure that it has the proper partition type.  Using
GNU Parted, you can set this using a command such as the following:

     # parted /dev/DISK set PARTITION-NUMBER bios_grub on

   If you are using gdisk, set the partition type to '0xEF02'.  With
partitioning programs that require setting the GUID directly, it should
be '21686148-6449-6e6f-744e656564454649'.

   *Caution:* Be very careful which partition you select!  When GRUB
finds a BIOS Boot Partition during installation, it will automatically
overwrite part of it.  Make sure that the partition does not contain any
other data.

File:,  Node: Booting,  Next: Configuration,  Prev: Installation,  Up: Top

5 Booting

GRUB can load Multiboot-compliant kernels in a consistent way, but for
some free operating systems you need to use some OS-specific magic.

* Menu:

* General boot methods::        How to boot OSes with GRUB generally
* Loopback booting::            Notes on booting from loopbacks
* OS-specific notes::           Notes on some operating systems

File:,  Node: General boot methods,  Next: Loopback booting,  Up: Booting

5.1 How to boot operating systems

GRUB has two distinct boot methods.  One of the two is to load an
operating system directly, and the other is to chain-load another boot
loader which then will load an operating system actually.  Generally
speaking, the former is more desirable, because you don't need to
install or maintain other boot loaders and GRUB is flexible enough to
load an operating system from an arbitrary disk/partition.  However, the
latter is sometimes required, since GRUB doesn't support all the
existing operating systems natively.

* Menu:

* Loading an operating system directly::
* Chain-loading::

File:,  Node: Loading an operating system directly,  Next: Chain-loading,  Up: General boot methods

5.1.1 How to boot an OS directly with GRUB

Multiboot (*note Multiboot Specification: (multiboot)Top.) is the native
format supported by GRUB. For the sake of convenience, there is also
support for Linux, FreeBSD, NetBSD and OpenBSD. If you want to boot
other operating systems, you will have to chain-load them (*note

   FIXME: this section is incomplete.

  1. Run the command 'boot' (*note boot::).

   However, DOS and Windows have some deficiencies, so you might have to
use more complicated instructions.  *Note DOS/Windows::, for more

File:,  Node: Chain-loading,  Prev: Loading an operating system directly,  Up: General boot methods

5.1.2 Chain-loading an OS

Operating systems that do not support Multiboot and do not have specific
support in GRUB (specific support is available for Linux, FreeBSD,
NetBSD and OpenBSD) must be chain-loaded, which involves loading another
boot loader and jumping to it in real mode.

   The 'chainloader' command (*note chainloader::) is used to set this
up.  It is normally also necessary to load some GRUB modules and set the
appropriate root device.  Putting this together, we get something like
this, for a Windows system on the first partition of the first hard

menuentry "Windows" {
	insmod chain
	insmod ntfs
	set root=(hd0,1)
	chainloader +1

   On systems with multiple hard disks, an additional workaround may be
required.  *Note DOS/Windows::.

   Chain-loading is only supported on PC BIOS and EFI platforms.

File:,  Node: Loopback booting,  Next: OS-specific notes,  Prev: General boot methods,  Up: Booting

5.2 Loopback booting

GRUB is able to read from an image (be it one of CD or HDD) stored on
any of its accessible storages (refer to *note loopback:: command).
However the OS itself should be able to find its root.  This usually
involves running a userspace program running before the real root is
discovered.  This is achieved by GRUB loading a specially made small
image and passing it as ramdisk to the kernel.  This is achieved by
commands 'kfreebsd_module', 'knetbsd_module_elf', 'kopenbsd_ramdisk',
'initrd' (*note initrd::), 'initrd16' (*note initrd::),
'multiboot_module', 'multiboot2_module' or 'xnu_ramdisk' depending on
the loader.  Note that for knetbsd the image must be put inside
miniroot.kmod and the whole miniroot.kmod has to be loaded.  In kopenbsd
payload this is disabled by default.  Aditionally behaviour of initial
ramdisk depends on command line options.  Several distributors provide
the image for this purpose or it's integrated in their standard ramdisk
and activated by special option.  Consult your kernel and distribution
manual for more details.  Other loaders like appleloader, chainloader
(BIOS, EFI, coreboot), freedos, ntldr and plan9 provide no possibility
of loading initial ramdisk and as far as author is aware the payloads in
question don't support either initial ramdisk or discovering loopback
boot in other way and as such not bootable this way.  Please consider
alternative boot methods like copying all files from the image to actual
partition.  Consult your OS documentation for more details

File:,  Node: OS-specific notes,  Prev: Loopback booting,  Up: Booting

5.3 Some caveats on OS-specific issues

Here, we describe some caveats on several operating systems.

* Menu:

* GNU/Hurd::
* GNU/Linux::
* NetBSD::
* DOS/Windows::

File:,  Node: GNU/Hurd,  Next: GNU/Linux,  Up: OS-specific notes

5.3.1 GNU/Hurd

Since GNU/Hurd is Multiboot-compliant, it is easy to boot it; there is
nothing special about it.  But do not forget that you have to specify a
root partition to the kernel.

  1. Set GRUB's root device to the same drive as GNU/Hurd's.  The
     command 'search --set=root --file /boot/gnumach.gz' or similar may
     help you (*note search::).

  2. Load the kernel and the modules, like this:

          grub> multiboot /boot/gnumach.gz root=device:hd0s1
          grub> module  /hurd/ext2fs.static ext2fs --readonly \
                             --multiboot-command-line='${kernel-command-line}' \
                             --host-priv-port='${host-port}' \
                             --device-master-port='${device-port}' \
                             --exec-server-task='${exec-task}' -T typed '${root}' \
                             '$(task-create)' '$(task-resume)'
          grub> module /lib/ exec /hurd/exec '$(exec-task=task-create)'

  3. Finally, run the command 'boot' (*note boot::).

File:,  Node: GNU/Linux,  Next: NetBSD,  Prev: GNU/Hurd,  Up: OS-specific notes

5.3.2 GNU/Linux

It is relatively easy to boot GNU/Linux from GRUB, because it somewhat
resembles to boot a Multiboot-compliant OS.

  1. Set GRUB's root device to the same drive as GNU/Linux's.  The
     command 'search --set=root --file /vmlinuz' or similar may help you
     (*note search::).

  2. Load the kernel using the command 'linux' (*note linux::):

          grub> linux /vmlinuz root=/dev/sda1

     If you need to specify some kernel parameters, just append them to
     the command.  For example, to set 'acpi' to 'off', do this:

          grub> linux /vmlinuz root=/dev/sda1 acpi=off

     See the documentation in the Linux source tree for complete
     information on the available options.

     With 'linux' GRUB uses 32-bit protocol.  Some BIOS services like
     APM or EDD aren't available with this protocol.  In this case you
     need to use 'linux16'

          grub> linux16 /vmlinuz root=/dev/sda1 acpi=off

  3. If you use an initrd, execute the command 'initrd' (*note initrd::)
     after 'linux':

          grub> initrd /initrd

     If you used 'linux16' you need to use 'initrd16':

          grub> initrd16 /initrd

  4. Finally, run the command 'boot' (*note boot::).

   *Caution:* If you use an initrd and specify the 'mem=' option to the
kernel to let it use less than actual memory size, you will also have to
specify the same memory size to GRUB. To let GRUB know the size, run the
command 'uppermem' _before_ loading the kernel.  *Note uppermem::, for
more information.

File:,  Node: NetBSD,  Next: DOS/Windows,  Prev: GNU/Linux,  Up: OS-specific notes

5.3.3 NetBSD

Booting a NetBSD kernel from GRUB is also relatively easy: first set
GRUB's root device, then load the kernel and the modules, and finally
run 'boot'.

  1. Set GRUB's root device to the partition holding the NetBSD root
     file system.  For a disk with a NetBSD disk label, this is usually
     the first partition (a:).  In that case, and assuming that the
     partition is on the first hard disk, set GRUB's root device as

          grub> insmod part_bsd
          grub> set root=(hd0,netbsd1)

     For a disk with a GUID Partition Table (GPT), and assuming that the
     NetBSD root partition is the third GPT partition, do this:

          grub> insmod part_gpt
          grub> set root=(hd0,gpt3)

  2. Load the kernel using the command 'knetbsd':

          grub> knetbsd /netbsd

     Various options may be given to 'knetbsd'.  These options are, for
     the most part, the same as in the NetBSD boot loader.  For
     instance, to boot the system in single-user mode and with verbose
     messages, do this:

          grub> knetbsd /netbsd -s -v

  3. If needed, load kernel modules with the command
     'knetbsd_module_elf'.  A typical example is the module for the root
     file system:

          grub> knetbsd_module_elf /stand/amd64/6.0/modules/ffs/ffs.kmod

  4. Finally, run the command 'boot' (*note boot::).

File:,  Node: DOS/Windows,  Prev: NetBSD,  Up: OS-specific notes

5.3.4 DOS/Windows

GRUB cannot boot DOS or Windows directly, so you must chain-load them
(*note Chain-loading::).  However, their boot loaders have some critical
deficiencies, so it may not work to just chain-load them.  To overcome
the problems, GRUB provides you with two helper functions.

   If you have installed DOS (or Windows) on a non-first hard disk, you
have to use the disk swapping technique, because that OS cannot boot
from any disks but the first one.  The workaround used in GRUB is the
command 'drivemap' (*note drivemap::), like this:

     drivemap -s (hd0) (hd1)

   This performs a "virtual" swap between your first and second hard

   *Caution:* This is effective only if DOS (or Windows) uses BIOS to
access the swapped disks.  If that OS uses a special driver for the
disks, this probably won't work.

   Another problem arises if you installed more than one set of
DOS/Windows onto one disk, because they could be confused if there are
more than one primary partitions for DOS/Windows.  Certainly you should
avoid doing this, but there is a solution if you do want to do so.  Use
the partition hiding/unhiding technique.

   If GRUB "hides" a DOS (or Windows) partition (*note parttool::), DOS
(or Windows) will ignore the partition.  If GRUB "unhides" a DOS (or
Windows) partition, DOS (or Windows) will detect the partition.  Thus,
if you have installed DOS (or Windows) on the first and the second
partition of the first hard disk, and you want to boot the copy on the
first partition, do the following:

     parttool (hd0,1) hidden-
     parttool (hd0,2) hidden+
     set root=(hd0,1)
     chainloader +1
     parttool ${root} boot+

File:,  Node: Configuration,  Next: Theme file format,  Prev: Booting,  Up: Top

6 Writing your own configuration file

GRUB is configured using 'grub.cfg', usually located under '/boot/grub'.
This file is quite flexible, but most users will not need to write the
whole thing by hand.

* Menu:

* Simple configuration::        Recommended for most users
* Shell-like scripting::        For power users and developers
* Multi-boot manual config::    For non-standard multi-OS scenarios
* Embedded configuration::      Embedding a configuration file into GRUB

File:,  Node: Simple configuration,  Next: Shell-like scripting,  Up: Configuration

6.1 Simple configuration handling

The program 'grub-mkconfig' (*note Invoking grub-mkconfig::) generates
'grub.cfg' files suitable for most cases.  It is suitable for use when
upgrading a distribution, and will discover available kernels and
attempt to generate menu entries for them.

   'grub-mkconfig' does have some limitations.  While adding extra
custom menu entries to the end of the list can be done by editing
'/etc/grub.d/40_custom' or creating '/boot/grub/custom.cfg', changing
the order of menu entries or changing their titles may require making
complex changes to shell scripts stored in '/etc/grub.d/'.  This may be
improved in the future.  In the meantime, those who feel that it would
be easier to write 'grub.cfg' directly are encouraged to do so (*note
Booting::, and *note Shell-like scripting::), and to disable any system
provided by their distribution to automatically run 'grub-mkconfig'.

   The file '/etc/default/grub' controls the operation of
'grub-mkconfig'.  It is sourced by a shell script, and so must be valid
POSIX shell input; normally, it will just be a sequence of 'KEY=value'
lines, but if the value contains spaces or other special characters then
it must be quoted.  For example:

     GRUB_TERMINAL_INPUT="console serial"

   Valid keys in '/etc/default/grub' are as follows:

     The default menu entry.  This may be a number, in which case it
     identifies the Nth entry in the generated menu counted from zero,
     or the title of a menu entry, or the special string 'saved'.  Using
     the id may be useful if you want to set a menu entry as the default
     even though there may be a variable number of entries before it.

     For example, if you have:

     menuentry 'Example GNU/Linux distribution' --class gnu-linux --id example-gnu-linux {

     then you can make this the default using:


     Previously it was documented the way to use entry title.  While
     this still works it's not recommended since titles often contain
     unstable device names and may be translated

     If you set this to 'saved', then the default menu entry will be
     that saved by 'GRUB_SAVEDEFAULT' or 'grub-set-default'.  This
     relies on the environment block, which may not be available in all
     situations (*note Environment block::).

     The default is '0'.

     If this option is set to 'true', then, when an entry is selected,
     save it as a new default entry for use by future runs of GRUB. This
     is only useful if 'GRUB_DEFAULT=saved'; it is a separate option
     because 'GRUB_DEFAULT=saved' is useful without this option, in
     conjunction with 'grub-set-default'.  Unset by default.  This
     option relies on the environment block, which may not be available
     in all situations (*note Environment block::).

     Boot the default entry this many seconds after the menu is
     displayed, unless a key is pressed.  The default is '5'.  Set to
     '0' to boot immediately without displaying the menu, or to '-1' to
     wait indefinitely.

     If 'GRUB_TIMEOUT_STYLE' is set to 'countdown' or 'hidden', the
     timeout is instead counted before the menu is displayed.

     If this option is unset or set to 'menu', then GRUB will display
     the menu and then wait for the timeout set by 'GRUB_TIMEOUT' to
     expire before booting the default entry.  Pressing a key interrupts
     the timeout.

     If this option is set to 'countdown' or 'hidden', then, before
     displaying the menu, GRUB will wait for the timeout set by
     'GRUB_TIMEOUT' to expire.  If <ESC> is pressed during that time, it
     will display the menu and wait for input.  If a hotkey associated
     with a menu entry is pressed, it will boot the associated menu
     entry immediately.  If the timeout expires before either of these
     happens, it will boot the default entry.  In the 'countdown' case,
     it will show a one-line indication of the remaining time.

     Variants of the corresponding variables without the '_BUTTON'
     suffix, used to support vendor-specific power buttons.  *Note
     Vendor power-on keys::.

     Set by distributors of GRUB to their identifying name.  This is
     used to generate more informative menu entry titles.

     Select the terminal input device.  You may select multiple devices
     here, separated by spaces.

     Valid terminal input names depend on the platform, but may include
     'console' (native platform console), 'serial' (serial terminal),
     'serial_<port>' (serial terminal with explicit port selection),
     'at_keyboard' (PC AT keyboard), or 'usb_keyboard' (USB keyboard
     using the HID Boot Protocol, for cases where the firmware does not
     handle this).

     The default is to use the platform's native terminal input.

     Select the terminal output device.  You may select multiple devices
     here, separated by spaces.

     Valid terminal output names depend on the platform, but may include
     'console' (native platform console), 'serial' (serial terminal),
     'serial_<port>' (serial terminal with explicit port selection),
     'gfxterm' (graphics-mode output), 'vga_text' (VGA text output),
     'mda_text' (MDA text output), 'morse' (Morse-coding using system
     beeper) or 'spkmodem' (simple data protocol using system speaker).

     'spkmodem' is useful when no serial port is available.  Connect the
     output of sending system (where GRUB is running) to line-in of
     receiving system (usually developer machine).  On receiving system
     compile 'spkmodem-recv' from 'util/spkmodem-recv.c' and run:

          parecord --channels=1 --rate=48000 --format=s16le | ./spkmodem-recv

     The default is to use the platform's native terminal output.

     If this option is set, it overrides both 'GRUB_TERMINAL_INPUT' and
     'GRUB_TERMINAL_OUTPUT' to the same value.

     A command to configure the serial port when using the serial
     console.  *Note serial::.  Defaults to 'serial'.

     Command-line arguments to add to menu entries for the Linux kernel.

     Unless 'GRUB_DISABLE_RECOVERY' is set to 'true', two menu entries
     will be generated for each Linux kernel: one default entry and one
     entry for recovery mode.  This option lists command-line arguments
     to add only to the default menu entry, after those listed in


     As 'GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX', but for GNU Mach.

     The values of these options are passed to Xen hypervisor Xen menu
     entries, for all respectively normal entries.

     The values of these options replace the values of
     Xen menu entries.

     Normally, 'grub-mkconfig' will generate menu entries that use
     universally-unique identifiers (UUIDs) to identify the root
     filesystem to the Linux kernel, using a 'root=UUID=...' kernel
     parameter.  This is usually more reliable, but in some cases it may
     not be appropriate.  To disable the use of UUIDs, set this option
     to 'true'.

     If this option is set to 'true', disable the generation of recovery
     mode menu entries.

     If graphical video support is required, either because the
     'gfxterm' graphical terminal is in use or because
     'GRUB_GFXPAYLOAD_LINUX' is set, then 'grub-mkconfig' will normally
     load all available GRUB video drivers and use the one most
     appropriate for your hardware.  If you need to override this for
     some reason, then you can set this option.

     After 'grub-install' has been run, the available video drivers are
     listed in '/boot/grub/video.lst'.

     Set the resolution used on the 'gfxterm' graphical terminal.  Note
     that you can only use modes which your graphics card supports via
     VESA BIOS Extensions (VBE), so for example native LCD panel
     resolutions may not be available.  The default is 'auto', which
     tries to select a preferred resolution.  *Note gfxmode::.

     Set a background image for use with the 'gfxterm' graphical
     terminal.  The value of this option must be a file readable by GRUB
     at boot time, and it must end with '.png', '.tga', '.jpg', or
     '.jpeg'.  The image will be scaled if necessary to fit the screen.

     Set a theme for use with the 'gfxterm' graphical terminal.

     Set to 'text' to force the Linux kernel to boot in normal text
     mode, 'keep' to preserve the graphics mode set using
     'GRUB_GFXMODE', 'WIDTHxHEIGHT'['xDEPTH'] to set a particular
     graphics mode, or a sequence of these separated by commas or
     semicolons to try several modes in sequence.  *Note gfxpayload::.

     Depending on your kernel, your distribution, your graphics card,
     and the phase of the moon, note that using this option may cause
     GNU/Linux to suffer from various display problems, particularly
     during the early part of the boot sequence.  If you have problems,
     set this option to 'text' and GRUB will tell Linux to boot in
     normal text mode.

     Normally, 'grub-mkconfig' will try to use the external 'os-prober'
     program, if installed, to discover other operating systems
     installed on the same system and generate appropriate menu entries
     for them.  Set this option to 'true' to disable this.

     List of space-separated FS UUIDs of filesystems to be ignored from
     os-prober output.  For efi chainloaders it's <UUID>@<EFI FILE>

     Normally, 'grub-mkconfig' will generate top level menu entry for
     the kernel with highest version number and put all other found
     kernels or alternative menu entries for recovery mode in submenu.
     For entries returned by 'os-prober' first entry will be put on top
     level and all others in submenu.  If this option is set to 'y',
     flat menu with all entries on top level will be generated instead.
     Changing this option will require changing existing values of
     'GRUB_DEFAULT', 'fallback' (*note fallback::) and 'default' (*note
     default::) environment variables as well as saved default entry
     using 'grub-set-default' and value used with 'grub-reboot'.

     If set to 'y', 'grub-mkconfig' and 'grub-install' will check for
     encrypted disks and generate additional commands needed to access
     them during boot.  Note that in this case unattended boot is not
     possible because GRUB will wait for passphrase to unlock encrypted

     Play a tune on the speaker when GRUB starts.  This is particularly
     useful for users unable to see the screen.  The value of this
     option is passed directly to *note play::.

     If this option is set, GRUB will issue a *note badram:: command to
     filter out specified regions of RAM.

     This option may be set to a list of GRUB module names separated by
     spaces.  Each module will be loaded as early as possible, at the
     start of 'grub.cfg'.

     If this option is set, it overrides the default recordfail setting.
     A setting of -1 causes GRUB to wait for user input indefinitely.
     However, a false positive in the recordfail mechanism may occur if
     power is lost during boot before boot success is recorded in
     userspace.  The default setting is 30, which causes GRUB to wait
     for user input for thirty seconds before continuing.  This default
     allows interactive users the opportunity to switch to a different,
     working kernel, while avoiding a false positive causing the boot to
     block indefinitely on headless and appliance systems where access
     to a console is restricted or limited.

     This option is only effective when GRUB was configured with the
     '--enable-quick-boot' option.

     This option sets the English text of the string that will be
     displayed in parentheses to indicate that a boot option is provided
     to help users recover a broken system.  The default is "recovery

     This option forces the root disk entry to be the specified PARTUUID
     instead of whatever would be used instead.  This is useful when you
     control the partitioning of the disk but cannot guarantee what the
     actual hardware will be, for example in virtual machine images.
     Setting this option to '12345678-01' will produce:

     Then set to 'true', this option prevents an initrd to be used at
     boot time, regardless of whether one is detected or not.
     'grub-mkconfig' will therefore not generate any initrd lines.

   The following options are still accepted for compatibility with
existing configurations, but have better replacements:

     Wait this many seconds before displaying the menu.  If <ESC> is
     pressed during that time, display the menu and wait for input
     according to 'GRUB_TIMEOUT'.  If a hotkey associated with a menu
     entry is pressed, boot the associated menu entry immediately.  If
     the timeout expires before either of these happens, display the
     menu for the number of seconds specified in 'GRUB_TIMEOUT' before
     booting the default entry.

     If you set 'GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT', you should also set
     'GRUB_TIMEOUT=0' so that the menu is not displayed at all unless
     <ESC> is pressed.

     This option is unset by default, and is deprecated in favour of the
     less confusing 'GRUB_TIMEOUT_STYLE=countdown' or

     In conjunction with 'GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT', set this to 'true' to
     suppress the verbose countdown while waiting for a key to be
     pressed before displaying the menu.

     This option is unset by default, and is deprecated in favour of the
     less confusing 'GRUB_TIMEOUT_STYLE=countdown'.

     Variant of 'GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT', used to support vendor-specific
     power buttons.  *Note Vendor power-on keys::.

     This option is unset by default, and is deprecated in favour of the
     less confusing 'GRUB_TIMEOUT_STYLE=countdown' or

   For more detailed customisation of 'grub-mkconfig''s output, you may
edit the scripts in '/etc/grub.d' directly.  '/etc/grub.d/40_custom' is
particularly useful for adding entire custom menu entries; simply type
the menu entries you want to add at the end of that file, making sure to
leave at least the first two lines intact.

File:,  Node: Shell-like scripting,  Next: Multi-boot manual config,  Prev: Simple configuration,  Up: Configuration

6.2 Writing full configuration files directly

'grub.cfg' is written in GRUB's built-in scripting language, which has a
syntax quite similar to that of GNU Bash and other Bourne shell


A "word" is a sequence of characters considered as a single unit by
GRUB. Words are separated by "metacharacters", which are the following
plus space, tab, and newline:

     { } | & $ ; < >

   Quoting may be used to include metacharacters in words; see below.

Reserved words

Reserved words have a special meaning to GRUB. The following words are
recognised as reserved when unquoted and either the first word of a
simple command or the third word of a 'for' command:

     ! [[ ]] { }
     case do done elif else esac fi for function
     if in menuentry select then time until while

   Not all of these reserved words have a useful purpose yet; some are
reserved for future expansion.


Quoting is used to remove the special meaning of certain characters or
words.  It can be used to treat metacharacters as part of a word, to
prevent reserved words from being recognised as such, and to prevent
variable expansion.

   There are three quoting mechanisms: the escape character, single
quotes, and double quotes.

   A non-quoted backslash (\) is the "escape character".  It preserves
the literal value of the next character that follows, with the exception
of newline.

   Enclosing characters in single quotes preserves the literal value of
each character within the quotes.  A single quote may not occur between
single quotes, even when preceded by a backslash.

   Enclosing characters in double quotes preserves the literal value of
all characters within the quotes, with the exception of '$' and '\'.
The '$' character retains its special meaning within double quotes.  The
backslash retains its special meaning only when followed by one of the
following characters: '$', '"', '\', or newline.  A backslash-newline
pair is treated as a line continuation (that is, it is removed from the
input stream and effectively ignored(1) (*note Shell-like
scripting-Footnote-1::)).  A double quote may be quoted within double
quotes by preceding it with a backslash.

Variable expansion

The '$' character introduces variable expansion.  The variable name to
be expanded may be enclosed in braces, which are optional but serve to
protect the variable to be expanded from characters immediately
following it which could be interpreted as part of the name.

   Normal variable names begin with an alphabetic character, followed by
zero or more alphanumeric characters.  These names refer to entries in
the GRUB environment (*note Environment::).

   Positional variable names consist of one or more digits.  They
represent parameters passed to function calls, with '$1' representing
the first parameter, and so on.

   The special variable name '?' expands to the exit status of the most
recently executed command.  When positional variable names are active,
other special variable names '@', '*' and '#' are defined and they
expand to all positional parameters with necessary quoting, positional
parameters without any quoting, and positional parameter count


A word beginning with '#' causes that word and all remaining characters
on that line to be ignored.

Simple commands

A "simple command" is a sequence of words separated by spaces or tabs
and terminated by a semicolon or a newline.  The first word specifies
the command to be executed.  The remaining words are passed as arguments
to the invoked command.

   The return value of a simple command is its exit status.  If the
reserved word '!' precedes the command, then the return value is instead
the logical negation of the command's exit status.

Compound commands

A "compound command" is one of the following:

for NAME in WORD ...; do LIST; done
     The list of words following 'in' is expanded, generating a list of
     items.  The variable NAME is set to each element of this list in
     turn, and LIST is executed each time.  The return value is the exit
     status of the last command that executes.  If the expansion of the
     items following 'in' results in an empty list, no commands are
     executed, and the return status is 0.

if LIST; then LIST; [elif LIST; then LIST;] ... [else LIST;] fi
     The 'if' LIST is executed.  If its exit status is zero, the 'then'
     LIST is executed.  Otherwise, each 'elif' LIST is executed in turn,
     and if its exit status is zero, the corresponding 'then' LIST is
     executed and the command completes.  Otherwise, the 'else' LIST is
     executed, if present.  The exit status is the exit status of the
     last command executed, or zero if no condition tested true.

while COND; do LIST; done
until COND; do LIST; done
     The 'while' command continuously executes the 'do' LIST as long as
     the last command in COND returns an exit status of zero.  The
     'until' command is identical to the 'while' command, except that
     the test is negated; the 'do' LIST is executed as long as the last
     command in COND returns a non-zero exit status.  The exit status of
     the 'while' and 'until' commands is the exit status of the last
     'do' LIST command executed, or zero if none was executed.

function NAME { COMMAND; ... }
     This defines a function named NAME.  The "body" of the function is
     the list of commands within braces, each of which must be
     terminated with a semicolon or a newline.  This list of commands
     will be executed whenever NAME is specified as the name of a simple
     command.  Function definitions do not affect the exit status in
     '$?'.  When executed, the exit status of a function is the exit
     status of the last command executed in the body.

menuentry TITLE ['--class=class' ...] ['--users=users'] ['--unrestricted'] ['--hotkey=key'] ['--id=id'] { COMMAND; ... }
     *Note menuentry::.

Built-in Commands

Some built-in commands are also provided by GRUB script to help script
writers perform actions that are otherwise not possible.  For example,
these include commands to jump out of a loop without fully completing
it, etc.

break ['n']
     Exit from within a 'for', 'while', or 'until' loop.  If 'n' is
     specified, break 'n' levels.  'n' must be greater than or equal to
     1.  If 'n' is greater than the number of enclosing loops, all
     enclosing loops are exited.  The return value is 0 unless 'n' is
     not greater than or equal to 1.

continue ['n']
     Resume the next iteration of the enclosing 'for', 'while' or
     'until' loop.  If 'n' is specified, resume at the 'n'th enclosing
     loop.  'n' must be greater than or equal to 1.  If 'n' is greater
     than the number of enclosing loops, the last enclosing loop (the
     "top-level" loop) is resumed.  The return value is 0 unless 'n' is
     not greater than or equal to 1.

return ['n']
     Causes a function to exit with the return value specified by 'n'.
     If 'n' is omitted, the return status is that of the last command
     executed in the function body.  If used outside a function the
     return status is false.

setparams ['arg'] ...
     Replace positional parameters starting with '$1' with arguments to

shift ['n']
     The positional parameters from 'n'+1 ... are renamed to '$1'....
     Parameters represented by the numbers '$#' down to '$#'-'n'+1 are
     unset.  'n' must be a non-negative number less than or equal to
     '$#'.  If 'n' is 0, no parameters are changed.  If 'n' is not
     given, it is assumed to be 1.  If 'n' is greater than '$#', the
     positional parameters are not changed.  The return status is
     greater than zero if 'n' is greater than '$#' or less than zero;
     otherwise 0.

File:,  Node: Multi-boot manual config,  Next: Embedded configuration,  Prev: Shell-like scripting,  Up: Configuration

6.3 Multi-boot manual config

Currently autogenerating config files for multi-boot environments
depends on os-prober and has several shortcomings.  While fixing it is
scheduled for the next release, meanwhile you can make use of the power
of GRUB syntax and do it yourself.  A possible configuration is detailed
here, feel free to adjust to your needs.

   First create a separate GRUB partition, big enough to hold GRUB. Some
of the following entries show how to load OS installer images from this
same partition, for that you obviously need to make the partition large
enough to hold those images as well.  Mount this partition on/mnt/boot
and disable GRUB in all OSes and manually install self-compiled latest
GRUB with:

   'grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/boot /dev/sda'

   In all the OSes install GRUB tools but disable installing GRUB in
bootsector, so you'll have menu.lst and grub.cfg available for use.
Also disable os-prober use by setting:


   in /etc/default/grub

   Then write a grub.cfg (/mnt/boot/grub/grub.cfg):

     menuentry "OS using grub2" {
        insmod xfs
        search --set=root --label OS1 --hint hd0,msdos8
        configfile /boot/grub/grub.cfg

     menuentry "OS using grub2-legacy" {
        insmod ext2
        search --set=root --label OS2 --hint hd0,msdos6
        legacy_configfile /boot/grub/menu.lst

     menuentry "Windows XP" {
        insmod ntfs
        search --set=root --label WINDOWS_XP --hint hd0,msdos1
        ntldr /ntldr

     menuentry "Windows 7" {
        insmod ntfs
        search --set=root --label WINDOWS_7 --hint hd0,msdos2
        ntldr /bootmgr

     menuentry "FreeBSD" {
               insmod zfs
               search --set=root --label freepool --hint hd0,msdos7
               kfreebsd /freebsd@/boot/kernel/kernel
               kfreebsd_module_elf /freebsd@/boot/kernel/opensolaris.ko
               kfreebsd_module_elf /freebsd@/boot/kernel/zfs.ko
               kfreebsd_module /freebsd@/boot/zfs/zpool.cache type=/boot/zfs/zpool.cache
               set kFreeBSD.vfs.root.mountfrom=zfs:freepool/freebsd
               set kFreeBSD.hw.psm.synaptics_support=1

     menuentry "experimental GRUB" {
               search --set=root --label GRUB --hint hd0,msdos5
               multiboot /experimental/grub/i386-pc/core.img

     menuentry "Fedora 16 installer" {
               search --set=root --label GRUB --hint hd0,msdos5
               linux /fedora/vmlinuz lang=en_US keymap=sg resolution=1280x800
               initrd /fedora/initrd.img

     menuentry "Fedora rawhide installer" {
               search --set=root --label GRUB --hint hd0,msdos5
               linux /fedora/vmlinuz repo= lang=en_US keymap=sg resolution=1280x800
               initrd /fedora/initrd.img

     menuentry "Debian sid installer" {
               search --set=root --label GRUB --hint hd0,msdos5
               linux /debian/dists/sid/main/installer-amd64/current/images/hd-media/vmlinuz
               initrd /debian/dists/sid/main/installer-amd64/current/images/hd-media/initrd.gz

   * Argument to search after -label is FS LABEL. You can also use UUIDs
     with -fs-uuid UUID instead of -label LABEL. You could also use
     direct 'root=hd0,msdosX' but this is not recommended due to device
     name instability.

File:,  Node: Embedded configuration,  Prev: Multi-boot manual config,  Up: Configuration

6.4 Embedding a configuration file into GRUB

GRUB supports embedding a configuration file directly into the core
image, so that it is loaded before entering normal mode.  This is
useful, for example, when it is not straightforward to find the real
configuration file, or when you need to debug problems with loading that
file.  'grub-install' uses this feature when it is not using BIOS disk
functions or when installing to a different disk from the one containing
'/boot/grub', in which case it needs to use the 'search' command (*note
search::) to find '/boot/grub'.

   To embed a configuration file, use the '-c' option to 'grub-mkimage'.
The file is copied into the core image, so it may reside anywhere on the
file system, and may be removed after running 'grub-mkimage'.

   After the embedded configuration file (if any) is executed, GRUB will
load the 'normal' module (*note normal::), which will then read the real
configuration file from '$prefix/grub.cfg'.  By this point, the 'root'
variable will also have been set to the root device name.  For example,
'prefix' might be set to '(hd0,1)/boot/grub', and 'root' might be set to
'hd0,1'.  Thus, in most cases, the embedded configuration file only
needs to set the 'prefix' and 'root' variables, and then drop through to
GRUB's normal processing.  A typical example of this might look like

     search.fs_uuid 01234567-89ab-cdef-0123-456789abcdef root
     set prefix=($root)/boot/grub

   (The 'search_fs_uuid' module must be included in the core image for
this example to work.)

   In more complex cases, it may be useful to read other configuration
files directly from the embedded configuration file.  This allows such
things as reading files not called 'grub.cfg', or reading files from a
directory other than that where GRUB's loadable modules are installed.
To do this, include the 'configfile' and 'normal' modules in the core
image, and embed a configuration file that uses the 'configfile' command
to load another file.  The following example of this also requires the
'echo', 'search_label', and 'test' modules to be included in the core

     search.fs_label grub root
     if [ -e /boot/grub/example/test1.cfg ]; then
         set prefix=($root)/boot/grub
         configfile /boot/grub/example/test1.cfg
         if [ -e /boot/grub/example/test2.cfg ]; then
             set prefix=($root)/boot/grub
             configfile /boot/grub/example/test2.cfg
             echo "Could not find an example configuration file!"

   The embedded configuration file may not contain menu entries
directly, but may only read them from elsewhere using 'configfile'.

File:,  Node: Theme file format,  Next: Network,  Prev: Configuration,  Up: Top

7 Theme file format

7.1 Introduction

The GRUB graphical menu supports themes that can customize the layout
and appearance of the GRUB boot menu.  The theme is configured through a
plain text file that specifies the layout of the various GUI components
(including the boot menu, timeout progress bar, and text messages) as
well as the appearance using colors, fonts, and images.  Example is
available in docs/example_theme.txt

7.2 Theme Elements

7.2.1 Colors

Colors can be specified in several ways:

   * HTML-style "#RRGGBB" or "#RGB" format, where *R*, *G*, and *B* are
     hexadecimal digits (e.g., "#8899FF")
   * as comma-separated decimal RGB values (e.g., "128, 128, 255")
   * with "SVG 1.0 color names" (e.g., "cornflowerblue") which must be
     specified in lowercase.

7.2.2 Fonts

The fonts GRUB uses "PFF2 font format" bitmap fonts.  Fonts are
specified with full font names.  Currently there is no provision for a
preference list of fonts, or deriving one font from another.  Fonts are
loaded with the "loadfont" command in GRUB (*note loadfont::).  To see
the list of loaded fonts, execute the "lsfonts" command (*note
lsfonts::).  If there are too many fonts to fit on screen, do "set
pager=1" before executing "lsfonts".

7.2.3 Progress Bar

Figure 7.1

Figure 7.2

Progress bars are used to display the remaining time before GRUB boots
the default menu entry.  To create a progress bar that will display the
remaining time before automatic boot, simply create a "progress_bar"
component with the id "__timeout__".  This indicates to GRUB that the
progress bar should be updated as time passes, and it should be made
invisible if the countdown to automatic boot is interrupted by the user.

   Progress bars may optionally have text displayed on them.  This text
is controlled by variable "text" which contains a printf template with
the only argument %d is the number of seconds remaining.  Additionally
replaced with standard and translated templates.

7.2.4 Circular Progress Indicator

The circular progress indicator functions similarly to the progress bar.
When given an id of "__timeout__", GRUB updates the circular progress
indicator's value to indicate the time remaining.  For the circular
progress indicator, there are two images used to render it: the *center*
image, and the *tick* image.  The center image is rendered in the center
of the component, while the tick image is used to render each mark along
the circumference of the indicator.

7.2.5 Labels

Text labels can be placed on the boot screen.  The font, color, and
horizontal alignment can be specified for labels.  If a label is given
the id "__timeout__", then the "text" property for that label is also
updated with a message informing the user of the number of seconds
remaining until automatic boot.  This is useful in case you want the
text displayed somewhere else instead of directly on the progress bar.

7.2.6 Boot Menu

The boot menu where GRUB displays the menu entries from the "grub.cfg"
file.  It is a list of items, where each item has a title and an
optional icon.  The icon is selected based on the *classes* specified
for the menu entry.  If there is a PNG file named "myclass.png" in the
"grub/themes/icons" directory, it will be displayed for items which have
the class *myclass*.  The boot menu can be customized in several ways,
such as the font and color used for the menu entry title, and by
specifying styled boxes for the menu itself and for the selected item

7.2.7 Styled Boxes

One of the most important features for customizing the layout is the use
of *styled boxes*.  A styled box is composed of 9 rectangular (and
potentially empty) regions, which are used to seamlessly draw the styled
box on screen:

Northwest (nw)         North (n)              Northeast (ne)
West (w)               Center (c)             East (e)
Southwest (sw)         South (s)              Southeast (se)

   To support any size of box on screen, the center slice and the slices
for the top, bottom, and sides are all scaled to the correct size for
the component on screen, using the following rules:

  1. The edge slices (north, south, east, and west) are scaled in the
     direction of the edge they are adjacent to.  For instance, the west
     slice is scaled vertically.
  2. The corner slices (northwest, northeast, southeast, and southwest)
     are not scaled.
  3. The center slice is scaled to fill the remaining space in the

   As an example of how an image might be sliced up, consider the styled
box used for a terminal view.

Figure 7.3

7.2.8 Creating Styled Box Images

The Inkscape_ scalable vector graphics editor is a very useful tool for
creating styled box images.  One process that works well for slicing a
drawing into the necessary image slices is:

  1. Create or open the drawing you'd like use.
  2. Create a new layer on the top of the layer stack.  Make it visible.
     Select this layer as the current layer.
  3. Draw 9 rectangles on your drawing where you'd like the slices to
     be.  Clear the fill option, and set the stroke to 1 pixel wide
     solid stroke.  The corners of the slices must meet precisely; if it
     is off by a single pixel, it will probably be evident when the
     styled box is rendered in the GRUB menu.  You should probably go to
     File | Document Properties | Grids and enable a grid or create a
     guide (click on one of the rulers next to the drawing and drag over
     the drawing; release the mouse button to place the guide) to help
     place the rectangles precisely.
  4. Right click on the center slice rectangle and choose Object
     Properties.  Change the "Id" to "slice_c" and click Set.  Repeat
     this for the remaining 8 rectangles, giving them Id values of
     "slice_n", "slice_ne", "slice_e", and so on according to the
  5. Save the drawing.
  6. Select all the slice rectangles.  With the slice layer selected,
     you can simply press Ctrl+A to select all rectangles.  The status
     bar should indicate that 9 rectangles are selected.
  7. Click the layer hide icon for the slice layer in the layer palette.
     The rectangles will remain selected, even though they are hidden.
  8. Choose File | Export Bitmap and check the *Batch export 9 selected
     objects* box.  Make sure that *Hide all except selected* is
     unchecked.  click *Export*.  This will create PNG files in the same
     directory as the drawing, named after the slices.  These can now be
     used for a styled box in a GRUB theme.

7.3 Theme File Manual

The theme file is a plain text file.  Lines that begin with "#" are
ignored and considered comments.  (Note: This may not be the case if the
previous line ended where a value was expected.)

   The theme file contains two types of statements:
  1. Global properties.
  2. Component construction.

7.3.1 Global Properties

7.3.2 Format

Global properties are specified with the simple format:
   * name1: value1
   * name2: "value which may contain spaces"
   * name3: #88F

   In this example, name3 is assigned a color value.

7.3.3 Global Property List

title-text             Specifies the text to display at the top
                       center of the screen as a title.
title-font             Defines the font used for the title
                       message at the top of the screen.
title-color            Defines the color of the title message.
message-font           Currently unused.  Left for backward
message-color          Currently unused.  Left for backward
message-bg-color       Currently unused.  Left for backward
desktop-image          Specifies the image to use as the
                       background.  It will be scaled to fit the
                       screen size or proportionally scaled
                       depending on the scale method.
desktop-image-scale-methodSpecifies the scaling method for the
                       *desktop-image*.  Options are "stretch",
                       "crop", "padding", "fitwidth",
                       "fitheight".  "stretch" for fitting the
                       screen size.  Otherwise it is
                       proportional scaling of a part of
                       *desktop-image* to the part of the
                       screen.  "crop" part of the
                       *desktop-image* will be proportionally
                       scaled to fit the screen sizes.
                       "padding" the entire *desktop-image* will
                       be contained on the screen.  "fitwidth"
                       for fitting the *desktop-image*'s width
                       with screen width.  "fitheight" for
                       fitting the *desktop-image*'s height with
                       the screen height.  Default is "stretch".
desktop-image-h-align  Specifies the horizontal alignment of the
                       *desktop-image* if
                       *desktop-image-scale-method* isn't equeal
                       to "stretch".  Options are "left",
                       "center", "right".  Default is "center".
desktop-image-v-align  Specifies the vertical alignment of the
                       *desktop-image* if
                       *desktop-image-scale-method* isn't equeal
                       to "stretch".  Options are "top",
                       "center", "bottom".  Default is "center".
desktop-color          Specifies the color for the background if
                       *desktop-image* is not specified.
terminal-box           Specifies the file name pattern for the
                       styled box slices used for the command
                       line terminal window.  For example,
                       "terminal-box: terminal_*.png" will use
                       the images "terminal_c.png" as the center
                       area, "terminal_n.png" as the north (top)
                       edge, "terminal_nw.png" as the northwest
                       (upper left) corner, and so on.  If the
                       image for any slice is not found, it will
                       simply be left empty.
terminal-border        Specifies the border width of the
                       terminal window.
terminal-left          Specifies the left coordinate of the
                       terminal window.
terminal-top           Specifies the top coordinate of the
                       terminal window.
terminal-width         Specifies the width of the terminal
terminal-height        Specifies the height of the terminal

7.3.4 Component Construction

Greater customizability comes is provided by components.  A tree of
components forms the user interface.  *Containers* are components that
can contain other components, and there is always a single root
component which is an instance of a *canvas* container.

   Components are created in the theme file by prefixing the type of
component with a '+' sign:

   ' + label { text="GRUB" font="aqui 11" color="#8FF" } '

   properties of a component are specified as "name = value" (whitespace
surrounding tokens is optional and is ignored) where *value* may be:
   * a single word (e.g., "align = center", "color = #FF8080"),
   * a quoted string (e.g., "text = "Hello, World!""), or
   * a tuple (e.g., "preferred_size = (120, 80)").

7.3.5 Component List

The following is a list of the components and the properties they

   * label A label displays a line of text.

     id             Set to "__timeout__" to display the time elapsed
                    to an automatical boot of the default entry.
     text           The text to display.  If "id" is set to
                    "__timeout__" and no "text" property is set then
                    the amount of seconds will be shown.  If set to
                    "@KEYMAP_SHORT@", "@KEYMAP_MIDDLE@" or
                    "@KEYMAP_LONG@" then predefined hotkey
                    information will be shown.
     font           The font to use for text display.
     color          The color of the text.
     align          The horizontal alignment of the text within the
                    component.  Options are "left", "center" and
     visible        Set to "false" to hide the label.

   * image A component that displays an image.  The image is scaled to
     fit the component.


     file           The full path to the image file to load.

   * progress_bar Displays a horizontally oriented progress bar.  It can
     be rendered using simple solid filled rectangles, or using a pair
     of pixmap styled boxes.


     id             Set to "__timeout__" to display the time elapsed
                    to an automatical boot of the default entry.
     fg_color       The foreground color for plain solid color
     bg_color       The background color for plain solid color
     border_color   The border color for plain solid color
     text_color     The text color.
     bar_style      The styled box specification for the frame of
                    the progress bar.  Example:
                    "progress_frame_*.png" If the value is equal to
                    "highlight_style" then no styled boxes will be
     highlight_styleThe styled box specification for the highlighted
                    region of the progress bar.  This box will be
                    used to paint just the highlighted region of the
                    bar, and will be increased in size as the bar
                    nears completion.  Example: "progress_hl_*.png".
                    If the value is equal to "bar_style" then no
                    styled boxes will be shown.
     highlight_overlayIf this option is set to "true" then the
                    highlight box side slices (every slice except
                    the center slice) will overlay the frame box
                    side slices.  And the center slice of the
                    highlight box can move all the way (from top to
                    bottom), being drawn on the center slice of the
                    frame box.  That way we can make a progress bar
                    with round-shaped edges so there won't be a free
                    space from the highlight to the frame in top and
                    bottom scrollbar positions.  Default is "false".
     font           The font to use for progress bar.
     text           The text to display on the progress bar.  If the
                    progress bar's ID is set to "__timeout__" and
                    the value of this property is set to
                    "@TIMEOUT_NOTIFICATION_MIDDLE@" or
                    "@TIMEOUT_NOTIFICATION_LONG@", then GRUB will
                    update this property with an informative message
                    as the timeout approaches.

   * circular_progress Displays a circular progress indicator.  The
     appearance of this component is determined by two images: the
     *center* image and the *tick* image.  The center image is generally
     larger and will be drawn in the center of the component.  Around
     the circumference of a circle within the component, the tick image
     will be drawn a certain number of times, depending on the
     properties of the component.


     id                     Set to "__timeout__" to display the time
                            elapsed to an automatical boot of the
                            default entry.
     center_bitmap          The file name of the image to draw in the
                            center of the component.
     tick_bitmap            The file name of the image to draw for
                            the tick marks.
     num_ticks              The number of ticks that make up a full
     ticks_disappear        Boolean value indicating whether tick
                            marks should progressively appear, or
                            progressively disappear as *value*
                            approaches *end*.  Specify "true" or
                            "false".  Default is "false".
     start_angle            The position of the first tick mark to
                            appear or disappear.  Measured in
                            "parrots", 1 "parrot" = 1 / 256 of the
                            full circle.  Use values "xxx deg" or
                            "xxx \xc2\xb0" to set the angle in

   * boot_menu Displays the GRUB boot menu.  It allows selecting items
     and executing them.


     item_font                     The font to use for the menu item
     selected_item_font            The font to use for the selected
                                   menu item, or "inherit" (the
                                   default) to use "item_font" for
                                   the selected menu item as well.
     item_color                    The color to use for the menu item
     selected_item_color           The color to use for the selected
                                   menu item, or "inherit" (the
                                   default) to use "item_color" for
                                   the selected menu item as well.
     icon_width                    The width of menu item icons.
                                   Icons are scaled to the specified
     icon_height                   The height of menu item icons.
     item_height                   The height of each menu item in
     item_padding                  The amount of space in pixels to
                                   leave on each side of the menu
                                   item contents.
     item_icon_space               The space between an item's icon
                                   and the title text, in pixels.
     item_spacing                  The amount of space to leave
                                   between menu items, in pixels.
     menu_pixmap_style             The image file pattern for the
                                   menu frame styled box.  Example:
                                   "menu_*.png" (this will use images
                                   such as "menu_c.png",
                                   "menu_w.png", 'menu_nw.png", etc.)
     item_pixmap_style             The image file pattern for the
                                   item styled box.
     selected_item_pixmap_style    The image file pattern for the
                                   selected item highlight styled
     scrollbar                     Boolean value indicating whether
                                   the scroll bar should be drawn if
                                   the frame and thumb styled boxes
                                   are configured.
     scrollbar_frame               The image file pattern for the
                                   entire scroll bar.  Example:
     scrollbar_thumb               The image file pattern for the
                                   scroll bar thumb (the part of the
                                   scroll bar that moves as scrolling
                                   occurs).  Example:
     scrollbar_thumb_overlay       If this option is set to "true"
                                   then the scrollbar thumb side
                                   slices (every slice except the
                                   center slice) will overlay the
                                   scrollbar frame side slices.  And
                                   the center slice of the
                                   scrollbar_thumb can move all the
                                   way (from top to bottom), being
                                   drawn on the center slice of the
                                   scrollbar frame.  That way we can
                                   make a scrollbar with round-shaped
                                   edges so there won't be a free
                                   space from the thumb to the frame
                                   in top and bottom scrollbar
                                   positions.  Default is "false".
     scrollbar_slice               The menu frame styled box's slice
                                   in which the scrollbar will be
                                   drawn.  Possible values are
                                   "west", "center", "east"
                                   (default).  "west" - the scrollbar
                                   will be drawn in the west slice
                                   (right-aligned).  "east" - the
                                   scrollbar will be drawn in the
                                   east slice (left-aligned).
                                   "center" - the scrollbar will be
                                   drawn in the center slice.  Note:
                                   in case of "center" slice: a) If
                                   the scrollbar should be drawn then
                                   boot menu entry's width is
                                   decreased by the scrollbar's width
                                   and the scrollbar is drawn at the
                                   right side of the center slice.
                                   b) If the scrollbar won't be drawn
                                   then the boot menu entry's width
                                   is the width of the center slice.
                                   c) We don't necessary need the
                                   menu pixmap box to display the
     scrollbar_left_pad            The left scrollbar padding in
                                   pixels.  Unused if
                                   "scrollbar_slice" is "west".
     scrollbar_right_pad           The right scrollbar padding in
                                   pixels.  Unused if
                                   "scrollbar_slice" is "east".
     scrollbar_top_pad             The top scrollbar padding in
     scrollbar_bottom_pad          The bottom scrollbar padding in
     visible                       Set to "false" to hide the boot

   * canvas Canvas is a container that allows manual placement of
     components within it.  It does not alter the positions of its child
     components.  It assigns all child components their preferred sizes.

   * hbox The *hbox* container lays out its children from left to right,
     giving each one its preferred width.  The height of each child is
     set to the maximum of the preferred heights of all children.

   * vbox The *vbox* container lays out its children from top to bottom,
     giving each one its preferred height.  The width of each child is
     set to the maximum of the preferred widths of all children.

7.3.6 Common properties

The following properties are supported by all components:
     The distance from the left border of container to left border of
     the object in either of three formats:
     x              Value in pixels
     p%             Percentage
     p%+x           mixture of both
     The distance from the left border of container to left border of
     the object in same format.
     The width of object in same format.
     The height of object in same format.
     The identifier for the component.  This can be any arbitrary
     string.  The ID can be used by scripts to refer to various
     components in the GUI component tree.  Currently, there is one
     special ID value that GRUB recognizes:

     "__timeout__"  Component with this ID will be updated by GRUB
                    and will indicate time elapsed to an automatical
                    boot of the default entry.  Affected components:
                    "label", "circular_progress", "progress_bar".

File:,  Node: Network,  Next: Serial terminal,  Prev: Theme file format,  Up: Top

8 Booting GRUB from the network

The following instructions don't work for *-emu, i386-qemu,
i386-coreboot, i386-multiboot, mips_loongson, mips-arc and

   To generate a netbootable directory, run:

     grub-mknetdir --net-directory=/srv/tftp --subdir=/boot/grub -d /usr/lib/grub/<platform>

   E.g.  for i386-pc:

     grub-mknetdir --net-directory=/srv/tftp --subdir=/boot/grub -d /usr/lib/grub/i386-pc

   Then follow instructions printed out by grub-mknetdir on configuring
your DHCP server.

   After GRUB has started, files on the TFTP server will be accessible
via the '(tftp)' device.

   The server IP address can be controlled by changing the '(tftp)'
device name to '(tftp,SERVER-IP)'.  Note that this should be changed
both in the prefix and in any references to the device name in the
configuration file.

   GRUB provides several environment variables which may be used to
inspect or change the behaviour of the PXE device.  In the following
description <INTERFACE> is placeholder for the name of network interface
(platform dependent):

     The network interface's IP address.  Read-only.

     The network interface's MAC address.  Read-only.

     The client host name provided by DHCP. Read-only.

     The client domain name provided by DHCP. Read-only.

     The path to the client's root disk provided by DHCP. Read-only.

     The path to additional DHCP vendor extensions provided by DHCP.

     The boot file name provided by DHCP. Read-only.

     The name of the DHCP server responsible for these boot parameters.

     The IP address of the next (usually, TFTP) server provided by DHCP.

     Initially set to name of network interface that was used to load
     grub.  Read-write, although setting it affects only interpretation
     of 'net_default_ip' and 'net_default_mac'

     The IP address of default interface.  Read-only.  This is alias for
     the 'net_${net_default_interface}_ip'.

     The default interface's MAC address.  Read-only.  This is alias for
     the 'net_${net_default_interface}_mac'.

     The default server used by network drives (*note Device syntax::).
     Read-write, although setting this is only useful before opening a
     network device.

File:,  Node: Serial terminal,  Next: Vendor power-on keys,  Prev: Network,  Up: Top

9 Using GRUB via a serial line

This chapter describes how to use the serial terminal support in GRUB.

   If you have many computers or computers with no display/keyboard, it
could be very useful to control the computers through serial
communications.  To connect one computer with another via a serial line,
you need to prepare a null-modem (cross) serial cable, and you may need
to have multiport serial boards, if your computer doesn't have extra
serial ports.  In addition, a terminal emulator is also required, such
as minicom.  Refer to a manual of your operating system, for more

   As for GRUB, the instruction to set up a serial terminal is quite
simple.  Here is an example:

     grub> serial --unit=0 --speed=9600
     grub> terminal_input serial; terminal_output serial

   The command 'serial' initializes the serial unit 0 with the speed
9600bps.  The serial unit 0 is usually called 'COM1', so, if you want to
use COM2, you must specify '--unit=1' instead.  This command accepts
many other options, so please refer to *note serial::, for more details.

   The commands 'terminal_input' (*note terminal_input::) and
'terminal_output' (*note terminal_output::) choose which type of
terminal you want to use.  In the case above, the terminal will be a
serial terminal, but you can also pass 'console' to the command, as
'terminal_input serial console'.  In this case, a terminal in which you
press any key will be selected as a GRUB terminal.  In the example
above, note that you need to put both commands on the same command line,
as you will lose the ability to type commands on the console after the
first command.

   However, note that GRUB assumes that your terminal emulator is
compatible with VT100 by default.  This is true for most terminal
emulators nowadays, but you should pass the option '--dumb' to the
command if your terminal emulator is not VT100-compatible or implements
few VT100 escape sequences.  If you specify this option then GRUB
provides you with an alternative menu interface, because the normal menu
requires several fancy features of your terminal.

File:,  Node: Vendor power-on keys,  Next: Images,  Prev: Serial terminal,  Up: Top

10 Using GRUB with vendor power-on keys

Some laptop vendors provide an additional power-on button which boots
another OS. GRUB supports such buttons with the 'GRUB_TIMEOUT_BUTTON',
'GRUB_BUTTON_CMOS_ADDRESS' variables in default/grub (*note Simple
and 'GRUB_DEFAULT_BUTTON' are used instead of the corresponding
variables without the '_BUTTON' suffix when powered on using the special
button.  'GRUB_BUTTON_CMOS_ADDRESS' is vendor-specific and partially
model-specific.  Values known to the GRUB team are:

<Dell XPS M1330M>
<Dell XPS M1530>
<Dell Latitude E4300>
<Asus EeePC 1005PE>
     84:1 (unconfirmed)
<LENOVO ThinkPad T410s (2912W1C)>

   To take full advantage of this function, install GRUB into the MBR
(*note Installing GRUB using grub-install::).

   If you have a laptop which has a similar feature and not in the above
list could you figure your address and contribute?  To discover the
address do the following:
   * boot normally
   *      sudo modprobe nvram
          sudo cat /dev/nvram | xxd > normal_button.txt
   * boot using vendor button
   *      sudo modprobe nvram
          sudo cat /dev/nvram | xxd > normal_vendor.txt

   Then compare these text files and find where a bit was toggled.  E.g.
in case of Dell XPS it was:
     byte 0x47: 20 --> 28
   It's a bit number 3 as seen from following table:
0              01
1              02
2              04
3              08
4              10
5              20
6              40
7              80

   0x47 is decimal 71.  Linux nvram implementation cuts first 14 bytes
of CMOS. So the real byte address in CMOS is 71+14=85 So complete
address is 85:3

File:,  Node: Images,  Next: Core image size limitation,  Prev: Vendor power-on keys,  Up: Top

11 GRUB image files

GRUB consists of several images: a variety of bootstrap images for
starting GRUB in various ways, a kernel image, and a set of modules
which are combined with the kernel image to form a core image.  Here is
a short overview of them.

     On PC BIOS systems, this image is the first part of GRUB to start.
     It is written to a master boot record (MBR) or to the boot sector
     of a partition.  Because a PC boot sector is 512 bytes, the size of
     this image is exactly 512 bytes.

     The sole function of 'boot.img' is to read the first sector of the
     core image from a local disk and jump to it.  Because of the size
     restriction, 'boot.img' cannot understand any file system
     structure, so 'grub-install' hardcodes the location of the first
     sector of the core image into 'boot.img' when installing GRUB.

     This image is used as the first sector of the core image when
     booting from a hard disk.  It reads the rest of the core image into
     memory and starts the kernel.  Since file system handling is not
     yet available, it encodes the location of the core image using a
     block list format.

     This image is used as the first sector of the core image when
     booting from a CD-ROM drive.  It performs a similar function to

     This image is used as the start of the core image when booting from
     the network using PXE. *Note Network::.

     This image may be placed at the start of the core image in order to
     make GRUB look enough like a Linux kernel that it can be booted by
     LILO using an 'image=' section.

     This image contains GRUB's basic run-time facilities: frameworks
     for device and file handling, environment variables, the rescue
     mode command-line parser, and so on.  It is rarely used directly,
     but is built into all core images.

     This is the core image of GRUB. It is built dynamically from the
     kernel image and an arbitrary list of modules by the 'grub-mkimage'
     program.  Usually, it contains enough modules to access
     '/boot/grub', and loads everything else (including menu handling,
     the ability to load target operating systems, and so on) from the
     file system at run-time.  The modular design allows the core image
     to be kept small, since the areas of disk where it must be
     installed are often as small as 32KB.

     *Note BIOS installation::, for details on where the core image can
     be installed on PC systems.

     Everything else in GRUB resides in dynamically loadable modules.
     These are often loaded automatically, or built into the core image
     if they are essential, but may also be loaded manually using the
     'insmod' command (*note insmod::).

For GRUB Legacy users

GRUB 2 has a different design from GRUB Legacy, and so correspondences
with the images it used cannot be exact.  Nevertheless, GRUB Legacy
users often ask questions in the terms they are familiar with, and so
here is a brief guide to how GRUB 2's images relate to that.

     Stage 1 from GRUB Legacy was very similar to 'boot.img' in GRUB 2,
     and they serve the same function.

     In GRUB Legacy, Stage 1.5's function was to include enough
     filesystem code to allow the much larger Stage 2 to be read from an
     ordinary filesystem.  In this respect, its function was similar to
     'core.img' in GRUB 2.  However, 'core.img' is much more capable
     than Stage 1.5 was; since it offers a rescue shell, it is sometimes
     possible to recover manually in the event that it is unable to load
     any other modules, for example if partition numbers have changed.
     'core.img' is built in a more flexible way, allowing GRUB 2 to
     support reading modules from advanced disk types such as LVM and

     GRUB Legacy could run with only Stage 1 and Stage 2 in some limited
     configurations, while GRUB 2 requires 'core.img' and cannot work
     without it.

     GRUB 2 has no single Stage 2 image.  Instead, it loads modules from
     '/boot/grub' at run-time.

     In GRUB 2, images for booting from CD-ROM drives are now
     constructed using 'cdboot.img' and 'core.img', making sure that the
     core image contains the 'iso9660' module.  It is usually best to
     use the 'grub-mkrescue' program for this.

     There is as yet no equivalent for 'nbgrub' in GRUB 2; it was used
     by Etherboot and some other network boot loaders.

     In GRUB 2, images for PXE network booting are now constructed using
     'pxeboot.img' and 'core.img', making sure that the core image
     contains the 'pxe' and 'pxecmd' modules.  *Note Network::.

File:,  Node: Core image size limitation,  Next: Filesystem,  Prev: Images,  Up: Top

12 Core image size limitation

Heavily limited platforms:
   * i386-pc (normal and PXE): the core image size (compressed) is
     limited by 458240 bytes.  kernel.img (.text + .data + .bss,
     uncompressed) is limited by 392704 bytes.  module size
     (uncompressed) + kernel.img (.text + .data, uncompressed) is
     limited by the size of contiguous chunk at 1M address.
   * sparc64-ieee1275: kernel.img (.text + .data + .bss) + modules +
     256K (stack) + 2M (heap) is limited by space available at 0x4400.
     On most platforms it's just 3 or 4M since ieee1275 maps only so
   * i386-ieee1275: kernel.img (.text + .data + .bss) + modules is
     limited by memory available at 0x10000, at most 596K

   Lightly limited platforms:

   * *-xen: limited only by adress space and RAM size.
   * i386-qemu: kernel.img (.text + .data + .bss) is limited by 392704
     bytes.  (core.img would be limited by ROM size but it's unlimited
     on qemu
   * All EFI platforms: limited by contiguous RAM size and possibly
     firmware bugs
   * Coreboot and multiboot.  kernel.img (.text + .data + .bss) is
     limited by 392704 bytes.  module size is limited by the size of
     contiguous chunk at 1M address.
   * mipsel-loongson (ELF), mips(el)-qemu_mips (ELF): if uncompressed:
     kernel.img (.text + .data) + modules is limited by the space from
     80200000 forward if compressed: kernel.img (.text + .data,
     uncompressed) + modules (uncompressed) + (modules + kernel.img
     (.text + .data)) (compressed) + decompressor is limited by the
     space from 80200000 forward
   * mipsel-loongson (Flash), mips(el)-qemu_mips (Flash): kernel.img
     (.text + .data) + modules is limited by the space from 80200000
     forward core.img (final) is limited by flash size (512K on yeeloong
     and fulooong)
   * mips-arc: if uncompressed: kernel.img (.text + .data) is limited by
     the space from 8bd00000 forward modules + dummy decompressor is
     limited by the space from 8bd00000 backward if compressed:
     kernel.img (.text + .data, uncompressed) is limited by the space
     from 8bd00000 forward modules (uncompressed) + (modules +
     kernel.img (.text + .data)) (compressed, aligned to 1M) + 1M
     (decompressor + scratch space) is limited by the space from
     8bd00000 backward
   * powerpc-ieee1275: kernel.img (.text + .data + .bss) + modules is
     limited by space available at 0x200000

File:,  Node: Filesystem,  Next: Interface,  Prev: Core image size limitation,  Up: Top

13 Filesystem syntax and semantics

GRUB uses a special syntax for specifying disk drives which can be
accessed by BIOS. Because of BIOS limitations, GRUB cannot distinguish
between IDE, ESDI, SCSI, or others.  You must know yourself which BIOS
device is equivalent to which OS device.  Normally, that will be clear
if you see the files in a device or use the command 'search' (*note

* Menu:

* Device syntax::               How to specify devices
* File name syntax::            How to specify files
* Block list syntax::           How to specify block lists

File:,  Node: Device syntax,  Next: File name syntax,  Up: Filesystem

13.1 How to specify devices

The device syntax is like this:


   '[]' means the parameter is optional.  DEVICE depends on the disk
driver in use.  BIOS and EFI disks use either 'fd' or 'hd' followed by a
digit, like 'fd0', or 'cd'.  AHCI, PATA (ata), crypto, USB use the name
of driver followed by a number.  Memdisk and host are limited to one
disk and so it's refered just by driver name.  RAID (md), ofdisk
(ieee1275 and nand), LVM (lvm), LDM, virtio (vdsk) and arcdisk (arc) use
intrinsic name of disk prefixed by driver name.  Additionally just
"nand" refers to the disk aliased as "nand".  Conflicts are solved by
suffixing a number if necessarry.  Commas need to be escaped.  Loopback
uses whatever name specified to 'loopback' command.  Hostdisk uses names
specified in as long as it's of the form [fhc]d[0-9]* or
hostdisk/<OS DEVICE>.  For crypto and RAID (md) additionally you can use
the syntax <driver name>uuid/<uuid>.  For LVM additionally you can use
the syntax lvmid/<volume-group-uuid>/<volume-uuid>.


   PART-NUM represents the partition number of DEVICE, starting from
one.  PARTNAME is optional but is recommended since disk may have
several top-level partmaps.  Specifying third and later component you
can access to subpartitions.

   The syntax '(hd0)' represents using the entire disk (or the MBR when
installing GRUB), while the syntax '(hd0,1)' represents using the first
partition of the disk (or the boot sector of the partition when
installing GRUB).


   If you enabled the network support, the special drives
'(PROTOCOL[,SERVER])' are also available.  Supported protocols are
'http' and 'tftp'.  If SERVER is omitted, value of environment variable
'net_default_server' is used.  Before using the network drive, you must
initialize the network.  *Note Network::, for more information.

   If you boot GRUB from a CD-ROM, '(cd)' is available.  *Note Making a
GRUB bootable CD-ROM::, for details.

File:,  Node: File name syntax,  Next: Block list syntax,  Prev: Device syntax,  Up: Filesystem

13.2 How to specify files

There are two ways to specify files, by "absolute file name" and by
"block list".

   An absolute file name resembles a Unix absolute file name, using '/'
for the directory separator (not '\' as in DOS). One example is
'(hd0,1)/boot/grub/grub.cfg'.  This means the file '/boot/grub/grub.cfg'
in the first partition of the first hard disk.  If you omit the device
name in an absolute file name, GRUB uses GRUB's "root device"
implicitly.  So if you set the root device to, say, '(hd1,1)' by the
command 'set root=(hd1,1)' (*note set::), then '/boot/kernel' is the
same as '(hd1,1)/boot/kernel'.

   On ZFS filesystem the first path component must be
VOLUME'@'[SNAPSHOT].  So '/rootvol@snap-129/boot/grub/grub.cfg' refers
to file '/boot/grub/grub.cfg' in snapshot of volume 'rootvol' with name
'snap-129'.  Trailing '@' after volume name is mandatory even if
snapshot name is omitted.

File:,  Node: Block list syntax,  Prev: File name syntax,  Up: Filesystem

13.3 How to specify block lists

A block list is used for specifying a file that doesn't appear in the
filesystem, like a chainloader.  The syntax is
'[OFFSET]+LENGTH[,[OFFSET]+LENGTH]...'.  Here is an example:


   This represents that GRUB should read blocks 0 through 99, block 200,
and blocks 300 through 599.  If you omit an offset, then GRUB assumes
the offset is zero.

   Like the file name syntax (*note File name syntax::), if a blocklist
does not contain a device name, then GRUB uses GRUB's "root device".  So
'(hd0,2)+1' is the same as '+1' when the root device is '(hd0,2)'.

File:,  Node: Interface,  Next: Environment,  Prev: Filesystem,  Up: Top

14 GRUB's user interface

GRUB has both a simple menu interface for choosing preset entries from a
configuration file, and a highly flexible command-line for performing
any desired combination of boot commands.

   GRUB looks for its configuration file as soon as it is loaded.  If
one is found, then the full menu interface is activated using whatever
entries were found in the file.  If you choose the "command-line" menu
option, or if the configuration file was not found, then GRUB drops to
the command-line interface.

* Menu:

* Command-line interface::      The flexible command-line interface
* Menu interface::              The simple menu interface
* Menu entry editor::           Editing a menu entry

File:,  Node: Command-line interface,  Next: Menu interface,  Up: Interface

14.1 The flexible command-line interface

The command-line interface provides a prompt and after it an editable
text area much like a command-line in Unix or DOS. Each command is
immediately executed after it is entered(1) (*note Command-line
interface-Footnote-1::).  The commands (*note Command-line and menu
entry commands::) are a subset of those available in the configuration
file, used with exactly the same syntax.

   Cursor movement and editing of the text on the line can be done via a
subset of the functions available in the Bash shell:

<PC right key>
     Move forward one character.

<PC left key>
     Move back one character.

     Move to the start of the line.

     Move the the end of the line.

     Delete the character underneath the cursor.

     Delete the character to the left of the cursor.

     Kill the text from the current cursor position to the end of the

     Kill backward from the cursor to the beginning of the line.

     Yank the killed text back into the buffer at the cursor.

<PC up key>
     Move up through the history list.

<PC down key>
     Move down through the history list.

   When typing commands interactively, if the cursor is within or before
the first word in the command-line, pressing the <TAB> key (or <C-i>)
will display a listing of the available commands, and if the cursor is
after the first word, the '<TAB>' will provide a completion listing of
disks, partitions, and file names depending on the context.  Note that
to obtain a list of drives, one must open a parenthesis, as 'root ('.

   Note that you cannot use the completion functionality in the TFTP
filesystem.  This is because TFTP doesn't support file name listing for
the security.

File:,  Node: Menu interface,  Next: Menu entry editor,  Prev: Command-line interface,  Up: Interface

14.2 The simple menu interface

The menu interface is quite easy to use.  Its commands are both
reasonably intuitive and described on screen.

   Basically, the menu interface provides a list of "boot entries" to
the user to choose from.  Use the arrow keys to select the entry of
choice, then press <RET> to run it.  An optional timeout is available to
boot the default entry (the first one if not set), which is aborted by
pressing any key.

   Commands are available to enter a bare command-line by pressing <c>
(which operates exactly like the non-config-file version of GRUB, but
allows one to return to the menu if desired by pressing <ESC>) or to
edit any of the "boot entries" by pressing <e>.

   If you protect the menu interface with a password (*note Security::),
all you can do is choose an entry by pressing <RET>, or press <p> to
enter the password.

File:,  Node: Menu entry editor,  Prev: Menu interface,  Up: Interface

14.3 Editing a menu entry

The menu entry editor looks much like the main menu interface, but the
lines in the menu are individual commands in the selected entry instead
of entry names.

   If an <ESC> is pressed in the editor, it aborts all the changes made
to the configuration entry and returns to the main menu interface.

   Each line in the menu entry can be edited freely, and you can add new
lines by pressing <RET> at the end of a line.  To boot the edited entry,
press <Ctrl-x>.

   Although GRUB unfortunately does not support "undo", you can do
almost the same thing by just returning to the main menu using <ESC>.

File:,  Node: Environment,  Next: Commands,  Prev: Interface,  Up: Top

15 GRUB environment variables

GRUB supports environment variables which are rather like those offered
by all Unix-like systems.  Environment variables have a name, which is
unique and is usually a short identifier, and a value, which is an
arbitrary string of characters.  They may be set (*note set::), unset
(*note unset::), or looked up (*note Shell-like scripting::) by name.

   A number of environment variables have special meanings to various
parts of GRUB. Others may be used freely in GRUB configuration files.

* Menu:

* Special environment variables::
* Environment block::

File:,  Node: Special environment variables,  Next: Environment block,  Up: Environment

15.1 Special environment variables

These variables have special meaning to GRUB.

* Menu:

* biosnum::
* check_signatures::
* chosen::
* cmdpath::
* color_highlight::
* color_normal::
* config_directory::
* config_file::
* debug::
* default::
* fallback::
* gfxmode::
* gfxpayload::
* gfxterm_font::
* grub_cpu::
* grub_platform::
* icondir::
* lang::
* locale_dir::
* menu_color_highlight::
* menu_color_normal::
* net_<INTERFACE>_boot_file::
* net_<INTERFACE>_dhcp_server_name::
* net_<INTERFACE>_domain::
* net_<INTERFACE>_extensionspath::
* net_<INTERFACE>_hostname::
* net_<INTERFACE>_ip::
* net_<INTERFACE>_mac::
* net_<INTERFACE>_next_server::
* net_<INTERFACE>_rootpath::
* net_default_interface::
* net_default_ip::
* net_default_mac::
* net_default_server::
* pager::
* prefix::
* pxe_blksize::
* pxe_default_gateway::
* pxe_default_server::
* root::
* superusers::
* theme::
* timeout::
* timeout_style::

File:,  Node: biosnum,  Next: check_signatures,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.1 biosnum

When chain-loading another boot loader (*note Chain-loading::), GRUB may
need to know what BIOS drive number corresponds to the root device
(*note root::) so that it can set up registers properly.  If the BIOSNUM
variable is set, it overrides GRUB's own means of guessing this.

   For an alternative approach which also changes BIOS drive mappings
for the chain-loaded system, *note drivemap::.

File:,  Node: check_signatures,  Next: chosen,  Prev: biosnum,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.2 check_signatures

This variable controls whether GRUB enforces digital signature
validation on loaded files.  *Note Using digital signatures::.

File:,  Node: chosen,  Next: cmdpath,  Prev: check_signatures,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.3 chosen

When executing a menu entry, GRUB sets the CHOSEN variable to the title
of the entry being executed.

   If the menu entry is in one or more submenus, then CHOSEN is set to
the titles of each of the submenus starting from the top level followed
by the title of the menu entry itself, separated by '>'.

File:,  Node: cmdpath,  Next: color_highlight,  Prev: chosen,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.4 cmdpath

The location from which 'core.img' was loaded as an absolute directory
name (*note File name syntax::).  This is set by GRUB at startup based
on information returned by platform firmware.  Not every platform
provides this information and some may return only device without path

File:,  Node: color_highlight,  Next: color_normal,  Prev: cmdpath,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.5 color_highlight

This variable contains the "highlight" foreground and background
terminal colors, separated by a slash ('/').  Setting this variable
changes those colors.  For the available color names, *note

   The default is 'black/light-gray'.

File:,  Node: color_normal,  Next: config_directory,  Prev: color_highlight,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.6 color_normal

This variable contains the "normal" foreground and background terminal
colors, separated by a slash ('/').  Setting this variable changes those
colors.  Each color must be a name from the following list:

   * black
   * blue
   * green
   * cyan
   * red
   * magenta
   * brown
   * light-gray
   * dark-gray
   * light-blue
   * light-green
   * light-cyan
   * light-red
   * light-magenta
   * yellow
   * white

   The default is 'light-gray/black'.

   The color support support varies from terminal to terminal.

   'morse' has no color support at all.

   'mda_text' color support is limited to highlighting by black/white

   'console' on ARC, EMU and IEEE1275, 'serial_*' and 'spkmodem' are
governed by terminfo and support only 8 colors if in modes 'vt100-color'
(default for console on emu), 'arc' (default for console on ARC),
'ieee1275' (default for console on IEEE1275).  When in mode 'vt100' then
the color support is limited to highlighting by black/white reversal.
When in mode 'dumb' there is no color support.

   When console supports no colors this setting is ignored.  When
console supports 8 colors, then the colors from the second half of the
previous list are mapped to the matching colors of first half.

   'console' on EFI and BIOS and 'vga_text' support all 16 colors.

   'gfxterm' supports all 16 colors and would be theoretically
extendable to support whole rgb24 palette but currently there is no
compelling reason to go beyond the current 16 colors.

File:,  Node: config_directory,  Next: config_file,  Prev: color_normal,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.7 config_directory

This variable is automatically set by GRUB to the directory part of
current configuration file name (*note config_file::).

File:,  Node: config_file,  Next: debug,  Prev: config_directory,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.8 config_file

This variable is automatically set by GRUB to the name of configuration
file that is being processed by commands 'configfile' (*note
configfile::) or 'normal' (*note normal::).  It is restored to the
previous value when command completes.

File:,  Node: debug,  Next: default,  Prev: config_file,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.9 debug

This variable may be set to enable debugging output from various
components of GRUB. The value is a list of debug facility names
separated by whitespace or ',', or 'all' to enable all available
debugging output.  The facility names are the first argument to
grub_dprintf.  Consult source for more details.

File:,  Node: default,  Next: fallback,  Prev: debug,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.10 default

If this variable is set, it identifies a menu entry that should be
selected by default, possibly after a timeout (*note timeout::).  The
entry may be identified by number (starting from 0 at each level of the
hierarchy), by title, or by id.

   For example, if you have:

menuentry 'Example GNU/Linux distribution' --class gnu-linux --id example-gnu-linux {

   then you can make this the default using:


   If the entry is in a submenu, then it must be identified using the
number, title, or id of each of the submenus starting from the top
level, followed by the number, title, or id of the menu entry itself,
with each element separated by '>'.  For example, take the following
menu structure:

     GNU/Hurd --id gnu-hurd
       Standard Boot --id=gnu-hurd-std
       Rescue shell --id=gnu-hurd-rescue
     Other platforms --id=other
       Minix --id=minix
         Version 3.4.0 --id=minix-3.4.0
         Version 3.3.0 --id=minix-3.3.0
       GRUB Invaders --id=grub-invaders

   The more recent release of Minix would then be identified as 'Other
platforms>Minix>Version 3.4.0', or as '1>0>0', or as

   This variable is often set by 'GRUB_DEFAULT' (*note Simple
configuration::), 'grub-set-default', or 'grub-reboot'.

File:,  Node: fallback,  Next: gfxmode,  Prev: default,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.11 fallback

If this variable is set, it identifies a menu entry that should be
selected if the default menu entry fails to boot.  Entries are
identified in the same way as for 'default' (*note default::).

File:,  Node: gfxmode,  Next: gfxpayload,  Prev: fallback,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.12 gfxmode

If this variable is set, it sets the resolution used on the 'gfxterm'
graphical terminal.  Note that you can only use modes which your
graphics card supports via VESA BIOS Extensions (VBE), so for example
native LCD panel resolutions may not be available.  The default is
'auto', which selects a platform-specific default that should look
reasonable.  Supported modes can be listed by 'videoinfo' command in

   The resolution may be specified as a sequence of one or more modes,
separated by commas (',') or semicolons (';'); each will be tried in
turn until one is found.  Each mode should be either 'auto',

File:,  Node: gfxpayload,  Next: gfxterm_font,  Prev: gfxmode,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.13 gfxpayload

If this variable is set, it controls the video mode in which the Linux
kernel starts up, replacing the 'vga=' boot option (*note linux::).  It
may be set to 'text' to force the Linux kernel to boot in normal text
mode, 'keep' to preserve the graphics mode set using 'gfxmode', or any
of the permitted values for 'gfxmode' to set a particular graphics mode
(*note gfxmode::).

   Depending on your kernel, your distribution, your graphics card, and
the phase of the moon, note that using this option may cause GNU/Linux
to suffer from various display problems, particularly during the early
part of the boot sequence.  If you have problems, set this variable to
'text' and GRUB will tell Linux to boot in normal text mode.

   The default is platform-specific.  On platforms with a native text
mode (such as PC BIOS platforms), the default is 'text'.  Otherwise the
default may be 'auto' or a specific video mode.

   This variable is often set by 'GRUB_GFXPAYLOAD_LINUX' (*note Simple

File:,  Node: gfxterm_font,  Next: grub_cpu,  Prev: gfxpayload,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.14 gfxterm_font

If this variable is set, it names a font to use for text on the
'gfxterm' graphical terminal.  Otherwise, 'gfxterm' may use any
available font.

File:,  Node: grub_cpu,  Next: grub_platform,  Prev: gfxterm_font,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.15 grub_cpu

In normal mode (*note normal::), GRUB sets the 'grub_cpu' variable to
the CPU type for which GRUB was built (e.g.  'i386' or 'powerpc').

File:,  Node: grub_platform,  Next: icondir,  Prev: grub_cpu,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.16 grub_platform

In normal mode (*note normal::), GRUB sets the 'grub_platform' variable
to the platform for which GRUB was built (e.g.  'pc' or 'efi').

File:,  Node: icondir,  Next: lang,  Prev: grub_platform,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.17 icondir

If this variable is set, it names a directory in which the GRUB
graphical menu should look for icons after looking in the theme's
'icons' directory.  *Note Theme file format::.

File:,  Node: lang,  Next: locale_dir,  Prev: icondir,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.18 lang

If this variable is set, it names the language code that the 'gettext'
command (*note gettext::) uses to translate strings.  For example,
French would be named as 'fr', and Simplified Chinese as 'zh_CN'.

   'grub-mkconfig' (*note Simple configuration::) will try to set a
reasonable default for this variable based on the system locale.

File:,  Node: locale_dir,  Next: menu_color_highlight,  Prev: lang,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.19 locale_dir

If this variable is set, it names the directory where translation files
may be found (*note gettext::), usually '/boot/grub/locale'.  Otherwise,
internationalization is disabled.

   'grub-mkconfig' (*note Simple configuration::) will set a reasonable
default for this variable if internationalization is needed and any
translation files are available.

File:,  Node: menu_color_highlight,  Next: menu_color_normal,  Prev: locale_dir,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.20 menu_color_highlight

This variable contains the foreground and background colors to be used
for the highlighted menu entry, separated by a slash ('/').  Setting
this variable changes those colors.  For the available color names,
*note color_normal::.

   The default is the value of 'color_highlight' (*note

File:,  Node: menu_color_normal,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_boot_file,  Prev: menu_color_highlight,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.21 menu_color_normal

This variable contains the foreground and background colors to be used
for non-highlighted menu entries, separated by a slash ('/').  Setting
this variable changes those colors.  For the available color names,
*note color_normal::.

   The default is the value of 'color_normal' (*note color_normal::).

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_boot_file,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_dhcp_server_name,  Prev: menu_color_normal,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.22 net_<INTERFACE>_boot_file

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_dhcp_server_name,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_domain,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_boot_file,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.23 net_<INTERFACE>_dhcp_server_name

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_domain,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_extensionspath,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_dhcp_server_name,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.24 net_<INTERFACE>_domain

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_extensionspath,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_hostname,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_domain,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.25 net_<INTERFACE>_extensionspath

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_hostname,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_ip,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_extensionspath,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.26 net_<INTERFACE>_hostname

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_ip,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_mac,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_hostname,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.27 net_<INTERFACE>_ip

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_mac,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_next_server,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_ip,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.28 net_<INTERFACE>_mac

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_next_server,  Next: net_<INTERFACE>_rootpath,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_mac,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.29 net_<INTERFACE>_next_server

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_<INTERFACE>_rootpath,  Next: net_default_interface,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_next_server,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.30 net_<INTERFACE>_rootpath

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_default_interface,  Next: net_default_ip,  Prev: net_<INTERFACE>_rootpath,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.31 net_default_interface

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_default_ip,  Next: net_default_mac,  Prev: net_default_interface,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.32 net_default_ip

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_default_mac,  Next: net_default_server,  Prev: net_default_ip,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.33 net_default_mac

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: net_default_server,  Next: pager,  Prev: net_default_mac,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.34 net_default_server

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: pager,  Next: prefix,  Prev: net_default_server,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.35 pager

If set to '1', pause output after each screenful and wait for keyboard
input.  The default is not to pause output.

File:,  Node: prefix,  Next: pxe_blksize,  Prev: pager,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.36 prefix

The location of the '/boot/grub' directory as an absolute file name
(*note File name syntax::).  This is normally set by GRUB at startup
based on information provided by 'grub-install'.  GRUB modules are
dynamically loaded from this directory, so it must be set correctly in
order for many parts of GRUB to work.

File:,  Node: pxe_blksize,  Next: pxe_default_gateway,  Prev: prefix,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.37 pxe_blksize

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: pxe_default_gateway,  Next: pxe_default_server,  Prev: pxe_blksize,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.38 pxe_default_gateway

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: pxe_default_server,  Next: root,  Prev: pxe_default_gateway,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.39 pxe_default_server

*Note Network::.

File:,  Node: root,  Next: superusers,  Prev: pxe_default_server,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.40 root

The root device name (*note Device syntax::).  Any file names that do
not specify an explicit device name are read from this device.  The
default is normally set by GRUB at startup based on the value of
'prefix' (*note prefix::).

   For example, if GRUB was installed to the first partition of the
first hard disk, then 'prefix' might be set to '(hd0,msdos1)/boot/grub'
and 'root' to 'hd0,msdos1'.

File:,  Node: superusers,  Next: theme,  Prev: root,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.41 superusers

This variable may be set to a list of superuser names to enable
authentication support.  *Note Security::.

File:,  Node: theme,  Next: timeout,  Prev: superusers,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.42 theme

This variable may be set to a directory containing a GRUB graphical menu
theme.  *Note Theme file format::.

   This variable is often set by 'GRUB_THEME' (*note Simple

File:,  Node: timeout,  Next: timeout_style,  Prev: theme,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.43 timeout

If this variable is set, it specifies the time in seconds to wait for
keyboard input before booting the default menu entry.  A timeout of '0'
means to boot the default entry immediately without displaying the menu;
a timeout of '-1' (or unset) means to wait indefinitely.

   If 'timeout_style' (*note timeout_style::) is set to 'countdown' or
'hidden', the timeout is instead counted before the menu is displayed.

   This variable is often set by 'GRUB_TIMEOUT' (*note Simple

File:,  Node: timeout_style,  Prev: timeout,  Up: Special environment variables

15.1.44 timeout_style

This variable may be set to 'menu', 'countdown', or 'hidden' to control
the way in which the timeout (*note timeout::) interacts with displaying
the menu.  See the documentation of 'GRUB_TIMEOUT_STYLE' (*note Simple
configuration::) for details.

File:,  Node: Environment block,  Prev: Special environment variables,  Up: Environment

15.2 The GRUB environment block

It is often useful to be able to remember a small amount of information
from one boot to the next.  For example, you might want to set the
default menu entry based on what was selected the last time.  GRUB
deliberately does not implement support for writing files in order to
minimise the possibility of the boot loader being responsible for file
system corruption, so a GRUB configuration file cannot just create a
file in the ordinary way.  However, GRUB provides an "environment block"
which can be used to save a small amount of state.

   The environment block is a preallocated 1024-byte file, which
normally lives in '/boot/grub/grubenv' (although you should not assume
this).  At boot time, the 'load_env' command (*note load_env::) loads
environment variables from it, and the 'save_env' (*note save_env::)
command saves environment variables to it.  From a running system, the
'grub-editenv' utility can be used to edit the environment block.

   For safety reasons, this storage is only available when installed on
a plain disk (no LVM or RAID), using a non-checksumming filesystem (no
ZFS), and using BIOS or EFI functions (no ATA, USB or IEEE1275).

   'grub-mkconfig' uses this facility to implement 'GRUB_SAVEDEFAULT'
(*note Simple configuration::).

File:,  Node: Commands,  Next: Internationalisation,  Prev: Environment,  Up: Top

16 The list of available commands

In this chapter, we list all commands that are available in GRUB.

   Commands belong to different groups.  A few can only be used in the
global section of the configuration file (or "menu"); most of them can
be entered on the command-line and can be used either anywhere in the
menu or specifically in the menu entries.

   In rescue mode, only the 'insmod' (*note insmod::), 'ls' (*note
ls::), 'set' (*note set::), and 'unset' (*note unset::) commands are
normally available.  If you end up in rescue mode and do not know what
to do, then *note GRUB only offers a rescue shell::.

* Menu:

* Menu-specific commands::
* General commands::
* Command-line and menu entry commands::
* Networking commands::

File:,  Node: Menu-specific commands,  Next: General commands,  Up: Commands

16.1 The list of commands for the menu only

The semantics used in parsing the configuration file are the following:

   * The files _must_ be in plain-text format.

   * '#' at the beginning of a line in a configuration file means it is
     only a comment.

   * Options are separated by spaces.

   * All numbers can be either decimal or hexadecimal.  A hexadecimal
     number must be preceded by '0x', and is case-insensitive.

   These commands can only be used in the menu:

* Menu:

* menuentry::                   Start a menu entry
* submenu::                     Group menu entries

File:,  Node: menuentry,  Next: submenu,  Up: Menu-specific commands

16.1.1 menuentry

 -- Command: menuentry TITLE ['--class=class' ...] ['--users=users']
          ['--unrestricted'] ['--hotkey=key'] ['--id=id'] [ARG ...] {
          COMMAND; ... }
     This defines a GRUB menu entry named TITLE.  When this entry is
     selected from the menu, GRUB will set the CHOSEN environment
     variable to value of '--id' if '--id' is given, execute the list of
     commands given within braces, and if the last command in the list
     returned successfully and a kernel was loaded it will execute the
     'boot' command.

     The '--class' option may be used any number of times to group menu
     entries into classes.  Menu themes may display different classes
     using different styles.

     The '--users' option grants specific users access to specific menu
     entries.  *Note Security::.

     The '--unrestricted' option grants all users access to specific
     menu entries.  *Note Security::.

     The '--hotkey' option associates a hotkey with a menu entry.  KEY
     may be a single letter, or one of the aliases 'backspace', 'tab',
     or 'delete'.

     The '--id' may be used to associate unique identifier with a menu
     entry.  ID is string of ASCII aphanumeric characters, underscore
     and hyphen and should not start with a digit.

     All other arguments including TITLE are passed as positional
     parameters when list of commands is executed with TITLE always
     assigned to '$1'.

File:,  Node: submenu,  Prev: menuentry,  Up: Menu-specific commands

16.1.2 submenu

 -- Command: submenu TITLE ['--class=class' ...] ['--users=users']
          ['--unrestricted'] ['--hotkey=key'] ['--id=id'] { MENU ENTRIES
          ... }
     This defines a submenu.  An entry called TITLE will be added to the
     menu; when that entry is selected, a new menu will be displayed
     showing all the entries within this submenu.

     All options are the same as in the 'menuentry' command (*note

File:,  Node: General commands,  Next: Command-line and menu entry commands,  Prev: Menu-specific commands,  Up: Commands

16.2 The list of general commands

Commands usable anywhere in the menu and in the command-line.

* Menu:

* serial::                      Set up a serial device
* terminal_input::              Manage input terminals
* terminal_output::             Manage output terminals
* terminfo::                    Define terminal type

File:,  Node: serial,  Next: terminal_input,  Up: General commands

16.2.1 serial

 -- Command: serial ['--unit=unit'] ['--port=port'] ['--speed=speed']
          ['--word=word'] ['--parity=parity'] ['--stop=stop']
     Initialize a serial device.  UNIT is a number in the range 0-3
     specifying which serial port to use; default is 0, which
     corresponds to the port often called COM1.  PORT is the I/O port
     where the UART is to be found; if specified it takes precedence
     over UNIT.  SPEED is the transmission speed; default is 9600.  WORD
     and STOP are the number of data bits and stop bits.  Data bits must
     be in the range 5-8 and stop bits must be 1 or 2.  Default is 8
     data bits and one stop bit.  PARITY is one of 'no', 'odd', 'even'
     and defaults to 'no'.

     The serial port is not used as a communication channel unless the
     'terminal_input' or 'terminal_output' command is used (*note
     terminal_input::, *note terminal_output::).

     See also *note Serial terminal::.

File:,  Node: terminal_input,  Next: terminal_output,  Prev: serial,  Up: General commands

16.2.2 terminal_input

 -- Command: terminal_input ['--append'|'--remove'] [terminal1]
          [terminal2] ...
     List or select an input terminal.

     With no arguments, list the active and available input terminals.

     With '--append', add the named terminals to the list of active
     input terminals; any of these may be used to provide input to GRUB.

     With '--remove', remove the named terminals from the active list.

     With no options but a list of terminal names, make only the listed
     terminal names active.

File:,  Node: terminal_output,  Next: terminfo,  Prev: terminal_input,  Up: General commands

16.2.3 terminal_output

 -- Command: terminal_output ['--append'|'--remove'] [terminal1]
          [terminal2] ...
     List or select an output terminal.

     With no arguments, list the active and available output terminals.

     With '--append', add the named terminals to the list of active
     output terminals; all of these will receive output from GRUB.

     With '--remove', remove the named terminals from the active list.

     With no options but a list of terminal names, make only the listed
     terminal names active.

File:,  Node: terminfo,  Prev: terminal_output,  Up: General commands

16.2.4 terminfo

 -- Command: terminfo [-a|-u|-v] [term]
     Define the capabilities of your terminal by giving the name of an
     entry in the terminfo database, which should correspond roughly to
     a 'TERM' environment variable in Unix.

     The currently available terminal types are 'vt100', 'vt100-color',
     'ieee1275', and 'dumb'.  If you need other terminal types, please
     contact us to discuss the best way to include support for these in

     The '-a' ('--ascii'), '-u' ('--utf8'), and '-v' ('--visual-utf8')
     options control how non-ASCII text is displayed.  '-a' specifies an
     ASCII-only terminal; '-u' specifies logically-ordered UTF-8; and
     '-v' specifies "visually-ordered UTF-8" (in other words, arranged
     such that a terminal emulator without bidirectional text support
     will display right-to-left text in the proper order; this is not
     really proper UTF-8, but a workaround).

     If no option or terminal type is specified, the current terminal
     type is printed.

File:,  Node: Command-line and menu entry commands,  Next: Networking commands,  Prev: General commands,  Up: Commands

16.3 The list of command-line and menu entry commands

These commands are usable in the command-line and in menu entries.  If
you forget a command, you can run the command 'help' (*note help::).

* Menu:

* [::                           Check file types and compare values
* acpi::                        Load ACPI tables
* authenticate::                Check whether user is in user list
* background_color::            Set background color for active terminal
* background_image::            Load background image for active terminal
* badram::                      Filter out bad regions of RAM
* blocklist::                   Print a block list
* boot::                        Start up your operating system
* cat::                         Show the contents of a file
* chainloader::                 Chain-load another boot loader
* clear::                       Clear the screen
* cmosclean::                   Clear bit in CMOS
* cmosdump::                    Dump CMOS contents
* cmostest::                    Test bit in CMOS
* cmp::                         Compare two files
* configfile::                  Load a configuration file
* cpuid::                       Check for CPU features
* crc::                         Compute or check CRC32 checksums
* cryptomount::                 Mount a crypto device
* date::                        Display or set current date and time
* devicetree::                  Load a device tree blob
* distrust::                    Remove a pubkey from trusted keys
* drivemap::                    Map a drive to another
* echo::                        Display a line of text
* eval::                        Evaluate agruments as GRUB commands
* export::                      Export an environment variable
* false::                       Do nothing, unsuccessfully
* gettext::                     Translate a string
* gptsync::                     Fill an MBR based on GPT entries
* halt::                        Shut down your computer
* hashsum::                     Compute or check hash checksum
* help::                        Show help messages
* initrd::                      Load a Linux initrd
* initrd16::                    Load a Linux initrd (16-bit mode)
* insmod::                      Insert a module
* keystatus::                   Check key modifier status
* linux::                       Load a Linux kernel
* linux16::                     Load a Linux kernel (16-bit mode)
* list_env::                    List variables in environment block
* list_trusted::                List trusted public keys
* load_env::                    Load variables from environment block
* loadfont::                    Load font files
* loopback::                    Make a device from a filesystem image
* ls::                          List devices or files
* lsfonts::                     List loaded fonts
* lsmod::                       Show loaded modules
* md5sum::                      Compute or check MD5 hash
* module::                      Load module for multiboot kernel
* multiboot::                   Load multiboot compliant kernel
* nativedisk::                  Switch to native disk drivers
* normal::                      Enter normal mode
* normal_exit::                 Exit from normal mode
* parttool::                    Modify partition table entries
* password::                    Set a clear-text password
* password_pbkdf2::             Set a hashed password
* play::                        Play a tune
* probe::                       Retrieve device info
* pxe_unload::                  Unload the PXE environment
* read::                        Read user input
* reboot::                      Reboot your computer
* regexp::                      Test if regular expression matches string
* rmmod::                       Remove a module
* save_env::                    Save variables to environment block
* search::                      Search devices by file, label, or UUID
* sendkey::                     Emulate keystrokes
* set::                         Set an environment variable
* sha1sum::                     Compute or check SHA1 hash
* sha256sum::                   Compute or check SHA256 hash
* sha512sum::                   Compute or check SHA512 hash
* sleep::                       Wait for a specified number of seconds
* source::                      Read a configuration file in same context
* test::                        Check file types and compare values
* true::                        Do nothing, successfully
* trust::                       Add public key to list of trusted keys
* unset::                       Unset an environment variable
* uppermem::                    Set the upper memory size
* verify_detached::             Verify detached digital signature
* videoinfo::                   List available video modes
* xen_hypervisor::              Load xen hypervisor binary
* xen_linux::                   Load dom0 kernel for xen hypervisor
* xen_initrd::                  Load dom0 initrd for dom0 kernel
* xen_xsm::                     Load xen security module for xen hypervisor

File:,  Node: [,  Next: acpi,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.1 [

 -- Command: '[' expression ']'
     Alias for 'test EXPRESSION' (*note test::).

File:,  Node: acpi,  Next: authenticate,  Prev: [,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.2 acpi

 -- Command: acpi ['-1'|'-2']
          ['--oemid=id'] ['--oemtable=table'] ['--oemtablerev=rev']
          ['--oemtablecreator=creator'] ['--oemtablecreatorrev=rev']
          ['--no-ebda'] filename ...
     Modern BIOS systems normally implement the Advanced Configuration
     and Power Interface (ACPI), and define various tables that describe
     the interface between an ACPI-compliant operating system and the
     firmware.  In some cases, the tables provided by default only work
     well with certain operating systems, and it may be necessary to
     replace some of them.

     Normally, this command will replace the Root System Description
     Pointer (RSDP) in the Extended BIOS Data Area to point to the new
     tables.  If the '--no-ebda' option is used, the new tables will be
     known only to GRUB, but may be used by GRUB's EFI emulation.

File:,  Node: authenticate,  Next: background_color,  Prev: acpi,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.3 authenticate

 -- Command: authenticate [userlist]
     Check whether user is in USERLIST or listed in the value of
     variable 'superusers'.  See *note superusers:: for valid user list
     format.  If 'superusers' is empty, this command returns true.
     *Note Security::.

File:,  Node: background_color,  Next: background_image,  Prev: authenticate,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.4 background_color

 -- Command: background_color color
     Set background color for active terminal.  For valid color
     specifications see *note Colors: Theme file format.  Background
     color can be changed only when using 'gfxterm' for terminal output.

     This command sets color of empty areas without text.  Text
     background color is controlled by environment variables
     MENU_COLOR_HIGHLIGHT.  *Note Special environment variables::.

File:,  Node: background_image,  Next: badram,  Prev: background_color,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.5 background_image

 -- Command: background_image [['--mode' 'stretch'|'normal'] file]
     Load background image for active terminal from FILE.  Image is
     stretched to fill up entire screen unless option '--mode' 'normal'
     is given.  Without arguments remove currently loaded background
     image.  Background image can be changed only when using 'gfxterm'
     for terminal output.

File:,  Node: badram,  Next: blocklist,  Prev: background_image,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.6 badram

 -- Command: badram addr,mask[,addr,mask...]
     Filter out bad RAM.

   This command notifies the memory manager that specified regions of
RAM ought to be filtered out (usually, because they're damaged).  This
remains in effect after a payload kernel has been loaded by GRUB, as
long as the loaded kernel obtains its memory map from GRUB. Kernels that
support this include Linux, GNU Mach, the kernel of FreeBSD and
Multiboot kernels in general.

   Syntax is the same as provided by the Memtest86+ utility
( a list of address/mask pairs.  Given a
page-aligned address and a base address / mask pair, if all the bits of
the page-aligned address that are enabled by the mask match with the
base address, it means this page is to be filtered.  This syntax makes
it easy to represent patterns that are often result of memory damage,
due to physical distribution of memory cells.

File:,  Node: blocklist,  Next: boot,  Prev: badram,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.7 blocklist

 -- Command: blocklist file
     Print a block list (*note Block list syntax::) for FILE.

File:,  Node: boot,  Next: cat,  Prev: blocklist,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.8 boot

 -- Command: boot
     Boot the OS or chain-loader which has been loaded.  Only necessary
     if running the fully interactive command-line (it is implicit at
     the end of a menu entry).

File:,  Node: cat,  Next: chainloader,  Prev: boot,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.9 cat

 -- Command: cat ['--dos'] file
     Display the contents of the file FILE.  This command may be useful
     to remind you of your OS's root partition:

          grub> cat /etc/fstab

     If the '--dos' option is used, then carriage return / new line
     pairs will be displayed as a simple new line.  Otherwise, the
     carriage return will be displayed as a control character ('<d>') to
     make it easier to see when boot problems are caused by a file
     formatted using DOS-style line endings.

File:,  Node: chainloader,  Next: clear,  Prev: cat,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.10 chainloader

 -- Command: chainloader ['--force'] file
     Load FILE as a chain-loader.  Like any other file loaded by the
     filesystem code, it can use the blocklist notation (*note Block
     list syntax::) to grab the first sector of the current partition
     with '+1'.  If you specify the option '--force', then load FILE
     forcibly, whether it has a correct signature or not.  This is
     required when you want to load a defective boot loader, such as SCO
     UnixWare 7.1.

File:,  Node: clear,  Next: cmosclean,  Prev: chainloader,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.11 clear

 -- Command: clear
     Clear the screen.

File:,  Node: cmosclean,  Next: cmosdump,  Prev: clear,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.12 cmosclean

 -- Command: cmosclean byte:bit
     Clear value of bit in CMOS at location BYTE:BIT.  This command is
     available only on platforms that support CMOS.

File:,  Node: cmosdump,  Next: cmostest,  Prev: cmosclean,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.13 cmosdump

 -- Dump: CMOS contents
     Dump full CMOS contents as hexadecimal values.  This command is
     available only on platforms that support CMOS.

File:,  Node: cmostest,  Next: cmp,  Prev: cmosdump,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.14 cmostest

 -- Command: cmostest byte:bit
     Test value of bit in CMOS at location BYTE:BIT.  Exit status is
     zero if bit is set, non zero otherwise.  This command is available
     only on platforms that support CMOS.

File:,  Node: cmp,  Next: configfile,  Prev: cmostest,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.15 cmp

 -- Command: cmp file1 file2
     Compare the file FILE1 with the file FILE2.  If they differ in
     size, print the sizes like this:

          Differ in size: 0x1234 [foo], 0x4321 [bar]

     If the sizes are equal but the bytes at an offset differ, then
     print the bytes like this:

          Differ at the offset 777: 0xbe [foo], 0xef [bar]

     If they are completely identical, nothing will be printed.

File:,  Node: configfile,  Next: cpuid,  Prev: cmp,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.16 configfile

 -- Command: configfile file
     Load FILE as a configuration file.  If FILE defines any menu
     entries, then show a menu containing them immediately.  Any
     environment variable changes made by the commands in FILE will not
     be preserved after 'configfile' returns.

File:,  Node: cpuid,  Next: crc,  Prev: configfile,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.17 cpuid

 -- Command: cpuid [-l] [-p]
     Check for CPU features.  This command is only available on x86

     With the '-l' option, return true if the CPU supports long mode

     With the '-p' option, return true if the CPU supports Physical
     Address Extension (PAE).

     If invoked without options, this command currently behaves as if it
     had been invoked with '-l'.  This may change in the future.

File:,  Node: crc,  Next: cryptomount,  Prev: cpuid,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.18 crc

 -- Command: crc arg ...
     Alias for 'hashsum --hash crc32 arg ...'.  See command 'hashsum'
     (*note hashsum::) for full description.

File:,  Node: cryptomount,  Next: date,  Prev: crc,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.19 cryptomount

 -- Command: cryptomount device|'-u' uuid|'-a'|'-b'
     Setup access to encrypted device.  If necessary, passphrase is
     requested interactively.  Option DEVICE configures specific grub
     device (*note Naming convention::); option '-u' UUID configures
     device with specified UUID; option '-a' configures all detected
     encrypted devices; option '-b' configures all geli containers that
     have boot flag set.

     GRUB suports devices encrypted using LUKS and geli.  Note that
     necessary modules (LUKS and GELI) have to be loaded manually before
     this command can be used.

File:,  Node: date,  Next: devicetree,  Prev: cryptomount,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.20 date

 -- Command: date [[year-]month-day] [hour:minute[:second]]
     With no arguments, print the current date and time.

     Otherwise, take the current date and time, change any elements
     specified as arguments, and set the result as the new date and
     time.  For example, 'date 01-01' will set the current month and day
     to January 1, but leave the year, hour, minute, and second

File:,  Node: devicetree,  Next: distrust,  Prev: date,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.21 linux

 -- Command: devicetree file
     Load a device tree blob (.dtb) from a filesystem, for later use by
     a Linux kernel.  Does not perform merging with any device tree
     supplied by firmware, but rather replaces it completely.  *note

File:,  Node: distrust,  Next: drivemap,  Prev: devicetree,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.22 distrust

 -- Command: distrust pubkey_id
     Remove public key PUBKEY_ID from GRUB's keyring of trusted keys.
     PUBKEY_ID is the last four bytes (eight hexadecimal digits) of the
     GPG v4 key id, which is also the output of 'list_trusted' (*note
     list_trusted::).  Outside of GRUB, the key id can be obtained using
     'gpg --fingerprint').  These keys are used to validate signatures
     when environment variable 'check_signatures' is set to 'enforce'
     (*note check_signatures::), and by some invocations of
     'verify_detached' (*note verify_detached::).  *Note Using digital
     signatures::, for more information.

File:,  Node: drivemap,  Next: echo,  Prev: distrust,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.23 drivemap

 -- Command: drivemap '-l'|'-r'|['-s'] from_drive to_drive
     Without options, map the drive FROM_DRIVE to the drive TO_DRIVE.
     This is necessary when you chain-load some operating systems, such
     as DOS, if such an OS resides at a non-first drive.  For
     convenience, any partition suffix on the drive is ignored, so you
     can safely use ${root} as a drive specification.

     With the '-s' option, perform the reverse mapping as well, swapping
     the two drives.

     With the '-l' option, list the current mappings.

     With the '-r' option, reset all mappings to the default values.

     For example:

          drivemap -s (hd0) (hd1)

File:,  Node: echo,  Next: eval,  Prev: drivemap,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.24 echo

 -- Command: echo ['-n'] ['-e'] string ...
     Display the requested text and, unless the '-n' option is used, a
     trailing new line.  If there is more than one string, they are
     separated by spaces in the output.  As usual in GRUB commands,
     variables may be substituted using '${var}'.

     The '-e' option enables interpretation of backslash escapes.  The
     following sequences are recognised:


          alert (BEL)

          suppress trailing new line

          form feed

          new line

          carriage return

          horizontal tab

          vertical tab

     When interpreting backslash escapes, backslash followed by any
     other character will print that character.

File:,  Node: eval,  Next: export,  Prev: echo,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.25 eval

 -- Command: eval string ...
     Concatenate arguments together using single space as separator and
     evaluate result as sequence of GRUB commands.

File:,  Node: export,  Next: false,  Prev: eval,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.26 export

 -- Command: export envvar
     Export the environment variable ENVVAR.  Exported variables are
     visible to subsidiary configuration files loaded using

File:,  Node: false,  Next: gettext,  Prev: export,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.27 false

 -- Command: false
     Do nothing, unsuccessfully.  This is mainly useful in control
     constructs such as 'if' and 'while' (*note Shell-like scripting::).

File:,  Node: gettext,  Next: gptsync,  Prev: false,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.28 gettext

 -- Command: gettext string
     Translate STRING into the current language.

     The current language code is stored in the 'lang' variable in
     GRUB's environment (*note lang::).  Translation files in MO format
     are read from 'locale_dir' (*note locale_dir::), usually

File:,  Node: gptsync,  Next: halt,  Prev: gettext,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.29 gptsync

 -- Command: gptsync device [partition[+/-[type]]] ...
     Disks using the GUID Partition Table (GPT) also have a legacy
     Master Boot Record (MBR) partition table for compatibility with the
     BIOS and with older operating systems.  The legacy MBR can only
     represent a limited subset of GPT partition entries.

     This command populates the legacy MBR with the specified PARTITION
     entries on DEVICE.  Up to three partitions may be used.

     TYPE is an MBR partition type code; prefix with '0x' if you want to
     enter this in hexadecimal.  The separator between PARTITION and
     TYPE may be '+' to make the partition active, or '-' to make it
     inactive; only one partition may be active.  If both the separator
     and type are omitted, then the partition will be inactive.

File:,  Node: halt,  Next: hashsum,  Prev: gptsync,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.30 halt

 -- Command: halt '--no-apm'
     The command halts the computer.  If the '--no-apm' option is
     specified, no APM BIOS call is performed.  Otherwise, the computer
     is shut down using APM.

File:,  Node: hashsum,  Next: help,  Prev: halt,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.31 hashsum

 -- Command: hashsum '--hash' hash '--keep-going' '--uncompress'
          '--check' file ['--prefix' dir]|file ...
     Compute or verify file hashes.  Hash type is selected with option
     '--hash'.  Supported hashes are: 'adler32', 'crc64', 'crc32',
     'crc32rfc1510', 'crc24rfc2440', 'md4', 'md5', 'ripemd160', 'sha1',
     'sha224', 'sha256', 'sha512', 'sha384', 'tiger192', 'tiger',
     'tiger2', 'whirlpool'.  Option '--uncompress' uncompresses files
     before computing hash.

     When list of files is given, hash of each file is computed and
     printed, followed by file name, each file on a new line.

     When option '--check' is given, it points to a file that contains
     list of HASH NAME pairs in the same format as used by UNIX 'md5sum'
     command.  Option '--prefix' may be used to give directory where
     files are located.  Hash verification stops after the first
     mismatch was found unless option '--keep-going' was given.  The
     exit code '$?' is set to 0 if hash verification is successful.  If
     it fails, '$?' is set to a nonzero value.

File:,  Node: help,  Next: initrd,  Prev: hashsum,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.32 help

 -- Command: help [pattern ...]
     Display helpful information about builtin commands.  If you do not
     specify PATTERN, this command shows short descriptions of all
     available commands.

     If you specify any PATTERNS, it displays longer information about
     each of the commands whose names begin with those PATTERNS.

File:,  Node: initrd,  Next: initrd16,  Prev: help,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.33 initrd

 -- Command: initrd file
     Load an initial ramdisk for a Linux kernel image, and set the
     appropriate parameters in the Linux setup area in memory.  This may
     only be used after the 'linux' command (*note linux::) has been
     run.  See also *note GNU/Linux::.

File:,  Node: initrd16,  Next: insmod,  Prev: initrd,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.34 initrd16

 -- Command: initrd16 file
     Load an initial ramdisk for a Linux kernel image to be booted in
     16-bit mode, and set the appropriate parameters in the Linux setup
     area in memory.  This may only be used after the 'linux16' command
     (*note linux16::) has been run.  See also *note GNU/Linux::.

     This command is only available on x86 systems.

File:,  Node: insmod,  Next: keystatus,  Prev: initrd16,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.35 insmod

 -- Command: insmod module
     Insert the dynamic GRUB module called MODULE.

File:,  Node: keystatus,  Next: linux,  Prev: insmod,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.36 keystatus

 -- Command: keystatus ['--shift'] ['--ctrl'] ['--alt']
     Return true if the Shift, Control, or Alt modifier keys are held
     down, as requested by options.  This is useful in scripting, to
     allow some user control over behaviour without having to wait for a

     Checking key modifier status is only supported on some platforms.
     If invoked without any options, the 'keystatus' command returns
     true if and only if checking key modifier status is supported.

File:,  Node: linux,  Next: linux16,  Prev: keystatus,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.37 linux

 -- Command: linux file ...
     Load a Linux kernel image from FILE.  The rest of the line is
     passed verbatim as the "kernel command-line".  Any initrd must be
     reloaded after using this command (*note initrd::).

     On x86 systems, the kernel will be booted using the 32-bit boot
     protocol.  Note that this means that the 'vga=' boot option will
     not work; if you want to set a special video mode, you will need to
     use GRUB commands such as 'set gfxpayload=1024x768' or 'set
     gfxpayload=keep' (to keep the same mode as used in GRUB) instead.
     GRUB can automatically detect some uses of 'vga=' and translate
     them to appropriate settings of 'gfxpayload'.  The 'linux16'
     command (*note linux16::) avoids this restriction.

File:,  Node: linux16,  Next: list_env,  Prev: linux,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.38 linux16

 -- Command: linux16 file ...
     Load a Linux kernel image from FILE in 16-bit mode.  The rest of
     the line is passed verbatim as the "kernel command-line".  Any
     initrd must be reloaded after using this command (*note

     The kernel will be booted using the traditional 16-bit boot
     protocol.  As well as bypassing problems with 'vga=' described in
     *note linux::, this permits booting some other programs that
     implement the Linux boot protocol for the sake of convenience.

     This command is only available on x86 systems.

File:,  Node: list_env,  Next: list_trusted,  Prev: linux16,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.39 list_env

 -- Command: list_env ['--file' file]
     List all variables in the environment block file.  *Note
     Environment block::.

     The '--file' option overrides the default location of the
     environment block.

File:,  Node: list_trusted,  Next: load_env,  Prev: list_env,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.40 list_trusted

 -- Command: list_trusted
     List all public keys trusted by GRUB for validating signatures.
     The output is in GPG's v4 key fingerprint format (i.e., the output
     of 'gpg --fingerprint').  The least significant four bytes (last
     eight hexadecimal digits) can be used as an argument to 'distrust'
     (*note distrust::).  *Note Using digital signatures::, for more
     information about uses for these keys.

File:,  Node: load_env,  Next: loadfont,  Prev: list_trusted,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.41 load_env

 -- Command: load_env ['--file' file] ['--skip-sig']
          [whitelisted_variable_name] ...
     Load all variables from the environment block file into the
     environment.  *Note Environment block::.

     The '--file' option overrides the default location of the
     environment block.

     The '--skip-sig' option skips signature checking even when the
     value of environment variable 'check_signatures' is set to
     'enforce' (*note check_signatures::).

     If one or more variable names are provided as arguments, they are
     interpreted as a whitelist of variables to load from the
     environment block file.  Variables set in the file but not present
     in the whitelist are ignored.

     The '--skip-sig' option should be used with care, and should always
     be used in concert with a whitelist of acceptable variables whose
     values should be set.  Failure to employ a carefully constructed
     whitelist could result in reading a malicious value into critical
     environment variables from the file, such as setting
     'check_signatures=no', modifying 'prefix' to boot from an
     unexpected location or not at all, etc.

     When used with care, '--skip-sig' and the whitelist enable an
     administrator to configure a system to boot only signed
     configurations, but to allow the user to select from among multiple
     configurations, and to enable "one-shot" boot attempts and
     "savedefault" behavior.  *Note Using digital signatures::, for more

File:,  Node: loadfont,  Next: loopback,  Prev: load_env,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.42 loadfont

 -- Command: loadfont file ...
     Load specified font files.  Unless absolute pathname is given, FILE
     is assumed to be in directory '$prefix/fonts' with suffix '.pf2'
     appended.  *Note Fonts: Theme file format.

File:,  Node: loopback,  Next: ls,  Prev: loadfont,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.43 loopback

 -- Command: loopback ['-d'] device file
     Make the device named DEVICE correspond to the contents of the
     filesystem image in FILE.  For example:

          loopback loop0 /path/to/image
          ls (loop0)/

     With the '-d' option, delete a device previously created using this

File:,  Node: ls,  Next: lsfonts,  Prev: loopback,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.44 ls

 -- Command: ls [arg ...]
     List devices or files.

     With no arguments, print all devices known to GRUB.

     If the argument is a device name enclosed in parentheses (*note
     Device syntax::), then print the name of the filesystem of that

     If the argument is a directory given as an absolute file name
     (*note File name syntax::), then list the contents of that

File:,  Node: lsfonts,  Next: lsmod,  Prev: ls,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.45 lsfonts

 -- Command: lsfonts
     List loaded fonts.

File:,  Node: lsmod,  Next: md5sum,  Prev: lsfonts,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.46 lsmod

 -- Command: lsmod
     Show list of loaded modules.

File:,  Node: md5sum,  Next: module,  Prev: lsmod,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.47 md5sum

 -- Command: md5sum arg ...
     Alias for 'hashsum --hash md5 arg ...'.  See command 'hashsum'
     (*note hashsum::) for full description.

File:,  Node: module,  Next: multiboot,  Prev: md5sum,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.48 module

 -- Command: module [--nounzip] file [arguments]
     Load a module for multiboot kernel image.  The rest of the line is
     passed verbatim as the module command line.

File:,  Node: multiboot,  Next: nativedisk,  Prev: module,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.49 multiboot

 -- Command: multiboot [--quirk-bad-kludge]
          [--quirk-modules-after-kernel] file ...
     Load a multiboot kernel image from FILE.  The rest of the line is
     passed verbatim as the "kernel command-line".  Any module must be
     reloaded after using this command (*note module::).

     Some kernels have known problems.  You need to specify -quirk-* for
     those.  -quirk-bad-kludge is a problem seen in several products
     that they include loading kludge information with invalid data in
     ELF file.  GRUB prior to 0.97 and some custom builds prefered ELF
     information while 0.97 and GRUB 2 use kludge.  Use this option to
     ignore kludge.  Known affected systems: old Solaris, SkyOS.

     -quirk-modules-after-kernel is needed for kernels which load at
     relatively high address e.g.  16MiB mark and can't cope with
     modules stuffed between 1MiB mark and beginning of the kernel.
     Known afftected systems: VMWare.

File:,  Node: nativedisk,  Next: normal,  Prev: multiboot,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.50 nativedisk

 -- Command: nativedisk
     Switch from firmware disk drivers to native ones.  Really useful
     only on platforms where both firmware and native disk drives are
     available.  Currently i386-pc, i386-efi, i386-ieee1275 and

File:,  Node: normal,  Next: normal_exit,  Prev: nativedisk,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.51 normal

 -- Command: normal [file]
     Enter normal mode and display the GRUB menu.

     In normal mode, commands, filesystem modules, and cryptography
     modules are automatically loaded, and the full GRUB script parser
     is available.  Other modules may be explicitly loaded using
     'insmod' (*note insmod::).

     If a FILE is given, then commands will be read from that file.
     Otherwise, they will be read from '$prefix/grub.cfg' if it exists.

     'normal' may be called from within normal mode, creating a nested
     environment.  It is more usual to use 'configfile' (*note
     configfile::) for this.

File:,  Node: normal_exit,  Next: parttool,  Prev: normal,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.52 normal_exit

 -- Command: normal_exit
     Exit normal mode (*note normal::).  If this instance of normal mode
     was not nested within another one, then return to rescue mode.

File:,  Node: parttool,  Next: password,  Prev: normal_exit,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.53 parttool

 -- Command: parttool partition commands
     Make various modifications to partition table entries.

     Each COMMAND is either a boolean option, in which case it must be
     followed with '+' or '-' (with no intervening space) to enable or
     disable that option, or else it takes a value in the form

     Currently, 'parttool' is only useful on DOS partition tables (also
     known as Master Boot Record, or MBR). On these partition tables,
     the following commands are available:

     'boot' (boolean)
          When enabled, this makes the selected partition be the active
          (bootable) partition on its disk, clearing the active flag on
          all other partitions.  This command is limited to _primary_

     'type' (value)
          Change the type of an existing partition.  The value must be a
          number in the range 0-0xFF (prefix with '0x' to enter it in

     'hidden' (boolean)
          When enabled, this hides the selected partition by setting the
          "hidden" bit in its partition type code; when disabled,
          unhides the selected partition by clearing this bit.  This is
          useful only when booting DOS or Wwindows and multiple primary
          FAT partitions exist in one disk.  See also *note

File:,  Node: password,  Next: password_pbkdf2,  Prev: parttool,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.54 password

 -- Command: password user clear-password
     Define a user named USER with password CLEAR-PASSWORD.  *Note

File:,  Node: password_pbkdf2,  Next: play,  Prev: password,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.55 password_pbkdf2

 -- Command: password_pbkdf2 user hashed-password
     Define a user named USER with password hash HASHED-PASSWORD.  Use
     'grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2' (*note Invoking grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2::) to
     generate password hashes.  *Note Security::.

File:,  Node: play,  Next: probe,  Prev: password_pbkdf2,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.56 play

 -- Command: play file | tempo [pitch1 duration1] [pitch2 duration2] ...
     Plays a tune

     If the argument is a file name (*note File name syntax::), play the
     tune recorded in it.  The file format is first the tempo as an
     unsigned 32bit little-endian number, then pairs of unsigned 16bit
     little-endian numbers for pitch and duration pairs.

     If the arguments are a series of numbers, play the inline tune.

     The tempo is the base for all note durations.  60 gives a 1-second
     base, 120 gives a half-second base, etc.  Pitches are Hz.  Set
     pitch to 0 to produce a rest.

File:,  Node: probe,  Next: pxe_unload,  Prev: play,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.57 probe

 -- Command: probe ['--set' var]
          '--driver'|'--partmap'|'--fs'|'--fs-uuid'|'--label' device
     Retrieve device information.  If option '--set' is given, assign
     result to variable VAR, otherwise print information on the screen.

File:,  Node: pxe_unload,  Next: read,  Prev: probe,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.58 pxe_unload

 -- Command: pxe_unload
     Unload the PXE environment (*note Network::).

     This command is only available on PC BIOS systems.

File:,  Node: read,  Next: reboot,  Prev: pxe_unload,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.59 read

 -- Command: read [var]
     Read a line of input from the user.  If an environment variable VAR
     is given, set that environment variable to the line of input that
     was read, with no terminating newline.

File:,  Node: reboot,  Next: regexp,  Prev: read,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.60 reboot

 -- Command: reboot
     Reboot the computer.

File:,  Node: regexp,  Next: rmmod,  Prev: reboot,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.61 regexp

 -- Command: regexp ['--set' [number:]var] regexp string
     Test if regular expression REGEXP matches STRING.  Supported
     regular expressions are POSIX.2 Extended Regular Expressions.  If
     option '--set' is given, store NUMBERth matched subexpression in
     variable VAR.  Subexpressions are numbered in order of their
     opening parentheses starting from '1'.  NUMBER defaults to '1'.

File:,  Node: rmmod,  Next: save_env,  Prev: regexp,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.62 rmmod

 -- Command: rmmod module
     Remove a loaded MODULE.

File:,  Node: save_env,  Next: search,  Prev: rmmod,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.63 save_env

 -- Command: save_env ['--file' file] var ...
     Save the named variables from the environment to the environment
     block file.  *Note Environment block::.

     The '--file' option overrides the default location of the
     environment block.

     This command will operate successfully even when environment
     variable 'check_signatures' is set to 'enforce' (*note
     check_signatures::), since it writes to disk and does not alter the
     behavior of GRUB based on any contents of disk that have been read.
     It is possible to modify a digitally signed environment block file
     from within GRUB using this command, such that its signature will
     no longer be valid on subsequent boots.  Care should be taken in
     such advanced configurations to avoid rendering the system
     unbootable.  *Note Using digital signatures::, for more

File:,  Node: search,  Next: sendkey,  Prev: save_env,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.64 search

 -- Command: search ['--file'|'--label'|'--fs-uuid'] ['--set' [var]]
          ['--no-floppy'] name
     Search devices by file ('-f', '--file'), filesystem label ('-l',
     '--label'), or filesystem UUID ('-u', '--fs-uuid').

     If the '--set' option is used, the first device found is set as the
     value of environment variable VAR.  The default variable is 'root'.

     The '--no-floppy' option prevents searching floppy devices, which
     can be slow.

     The 'search.file', 'search.fs_label', and 'search.fs_uuid' commands
     are aliases for 'search --file', 'search --label', and 'search
     --fs-uuid' respectively.

File:,  Node: sendkey,  Next: set,  Prev: search,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.65 sendkey

 -- Command: sendkey
          'on'|'off']... ['no-led'] keystroke
     Insert keystrokes into the keyboard buffer when booting.  Sometimes
     an operating system or chainloaded boot loader requires particular
     keys to be pressed: for example, one might need to press a
     particular key to enter "safe mode", or when chainloading another
     boot loader one might send keystrokes to it to navigate its menu.

     You may provide up to 16 keystrokes (the length of the BIOS
     keyboard buffer).  Keystroke names may be upper-case or lower-case
     letters, digits, or taken from the following table:

     Name                          Key
     escape                        Escape
     exclam                        !
     at                            @
     numbersign                    #
     dollar                        $
     percent                       %
     caret                         ^
     ampersand                     &
     asterisk                      *
     parenleft                     (
     parenright                    )
     minus                         -
     underscore                    _
     equal                         =
     plus                          +
     backspace                     Backspace
     tab                           Tab
     bracketleft                   [
     braceleft                     {
     bracketright                  ]
     braceright                    }
     enter                         Enter
     control                       press and release Control
     semicolon                     ;
     colon                         :
     quote                         '
     doublequote                   "
     backquote                     '
     tilde                         ~
     shift                         press and release left Shift
     backslash                     \
     bar                           |
     comma                         ,
     less                          <
     period                        .
     greater                       >
     slash                         /
     question                      ?
     rshift                        press and release right Shift
     alt                           press and release Alt
     space                         space bar
     capslock                      Caps Lock
     F1                            F1
     F2                            F2
     F3                            F3
     F4                            F4
     F5                            F5
     F6                            F6
     F7                            F7
     F8                            F8
     F9                            F9
     F10                           F10
     F11                           F11
     F12                           F12
     num1                          1 (numeric keypad)
     num2                          2 (numeric keypad)
     num3                          3 (numeric keypad)
     num4                          4 (numeric keypad)
     num5                          5 (numeric keypad)
     num6                          6 (numeric keypad)
     num7                          7 (numeric keypad)
     num8                          8 (numeric keypad)
     num9                          9 (numeric keypad)
     num0                          0 (numeric keypad)
     numperiod                     .  (numeric keypad)
     numend                        End (numeric keypad)
     numdown                       Down (numeric keypad)
     numpgdown                     Page Down (numeric keypad)
     numleft                       Left (numeric keypad)
     numcenter                     5 with Num Lock inactive (numeric
     numright                      Right (numeric keypad)
     numhome                       Home (numeric keypad)
     numup                         Up (numeric keypad)
     numpgup                       Page Up (numeric keypad)
     numinsert                     Insert (numeric keypad)
     numdelete                     Delete (numeric keypad)
     numasterisk                   * (numeric keypad)
     numminus                      - (numeric keypad)
     numplus                       + (numeric keypad)
     numslash                      / (numeric keypad)
     numenter                      Enter (numeric keypad)
     delete                        Delete
     insert                        Insert
     home                          Home
     end                           End
     pgdown                        Page Down
     pgup                          Page Up
     down                          Down
     up                            Up
     left                          Left
     right                         Right

     As well as keystrokes, the 'sendkey' command takes various options
     that affect the BIOS keyboard status flags.  These options take an
     'on' or 'off' parameter, specifying that the corresponding status
     flag be set or unset; omitting the option for a given status flag
     will leave that flag at its initial state at boot.  The '--num',
     '--caps', '--scroll', and '--insert' options emulate setting the
     corresponding mode, while the '--numkey', '--capskey',
     '--scrollkey', and '--insertkey' options emulate pressing and
     holding the corresponding key.  The other status flag options are

     If the '--no-led' option is given, the status flag options will
     have no effect on keyboard LEDs.

     If the 'sendkey' command is given multiple times, then only the
     last invocation has any effect.

     Since 'sendkey' manipulates the BIOS keyboard buffer, it may cause
     hangs, reboots, or other misbehaviour on some systems.  If the
     operating system or boot loader that runs after GRUB uses its own
     keyboard driver rather than the BIOS keyboard functions, then
     'sendkey' will have no effect.

     This command is only available on PC BIOS systems.

File:,  Node: set,  Next: sha1sum,  Prev: sendkey,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.66 set

 -- Command: set [envvar=value]
     Set the environment variable ENVVAR to VALUE.  If invoked with no
     arguments, print all environment variables with their values.

File:,  Node: sha1sum,  Next: sha256sum,  Prev: set,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.67 sha1sum

 -- Command: sha1sum arg ...
     Alias for 'hashsum --hash sha1 arg ...'.  See command 'hashsum'
     (*note hashsum::) for full description.

File:,  Node: sha256sum,  Next: sha512sum,  Prev: sha1sum,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.68 sha256sum

 -- Command: sha256sum arg ...
     Alias for 'hashsum --hash sha256 arg ...'.  See command 'hashsum'
     (*note hashsum::) for full description.

File:,  Node: sha512sum,  Next: sleep,  Prev: sha256sum,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.69 sha512sum

 -- Command: sha512sum arg ...
     Alias for 'hashsum --hash sha512 arg ...'.  See command 'hashsum'
     (*note hashsum::) for full description.

File:,  Node: sleep,  Next: source,  Prev: sha512sum,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.70 sleep

 -- Command: sleep ['--verbose'] ['--interruptible'] count
     Sleep for COUNT seconds.  If option '--interruptible' is given,
     allow <ESC> to interrupt sleep.  With '--verbose' show countdown of
     remaining seconds.  Exit code is set to 0 if timeout expired and to
     1 if timeout was interrupted by <ESC>.

File:,  Node: source,  Next: test,  Prev: sleep,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.71 source

 -- Command: source file
     Read FILE as a configuration file, as if its contents had been
     incorporated directly into the sourcing file.  Unlike 'configfile'
     (*note configfile::), this executes the contents of FILE without
     changing context: any environment variable changes made by the
     commands in FILE will be preserved after 'source' returns, and the
     menu will not be shown immediately.

File:,  Node: test,  Next: true,  Prev: source,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.72 test

 -- Command: test expression
     Evaluate EXPRESSION and return zero exit status if result is true,
     non zero status otherwise.

     EXPRESSION is one of:

     STRING1 '==' STRING2
          the strings are equal
     STRING1 '!=' STRING2
          the strings are not equal
     STRING1 '<' STRING2
          STRING1 is lexicographically less than STRING2
     STRING1 '<=' STRING2
          STRING1 is lexicographically less or equal than STRING2
     STRING1 '>' STRING2
          STRING1 is lexicographically greater than STRING2
     STRING1 '>=' STRING2
          STRING1 is lexicographically greater or equal than STRING2
     INTEGER1 '-eq' INTEGER2
          INTEGER1 is equal to INTEGER2
     INTEGER1 '-ge' INTEGER2
          INTEGER1 is greater than or equal to INTEGER2
     INTEGER1 '-gt' INTEGER2
          INTEGER1 is greater than INTEGER2
     INTEGER1 '-le' INTEGER2
          INTEGER1 is less than or equal to INTEGER2
     INTEGER1 '-lt' INTEGER2
          INTEGER1 is less than INTEGER2
     INTEGER1 '-ne' INTEGER2
          INTEGER1 is not equal to INTEGER2
          INTEGER1 is greater than INTEGER2 after stripping off common
          non-numeric PREFIX.
          INTEGER1 is less than INTEGER2 after stripping off common
          non-numeric PREFIX.
     FILE1 '-nt' FILE2
          FILE1 is newer than FILE2 (modification time).  Optionally
          numeric BIAS may be directly appended to '-nt' in which case
          it is added to the first file modification time.
     FILE1 '-ot' FILE2
          FILE1 is older than FILE2 (modification time).  Optionally
          numeric BIAS may be directly appended to '-ot' in which case
          it is added to the first file modification time.
     '-d' FILE
          FILE exists and is a directory
     '-e' FILE
          FILE exists
     '-f' FILE
          FILE exists and is not a directory
     '-s' FILE
          FILE exists and has a size greater than zero
     '-n' STRING
          the length of STRING is nonzero
          STRING is equivalent to '-n STRING'
     '-z' STRING
          the length of STRING is zero
     '(' EXPRESSION ')'
          EXPRESSION is true
          EXPRESSION is false
          both EXPRESSION1 and EXPRESSION2 are true
          both EXPRESSION1 and EXPRESSION2 are true.  This syntax is not
          POSIX-compliant and is not recommended.
          either EXPRESSION1 or EXPRESSION2 is true

File:,  Node: true,  Next: trust,  Prev: test,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.73 true

 -- Command: true
     Do nothing, successfully.  This is mainly useful in control
     constructs such as 'if' and 'while' (*note Shell-like scripting::).

File:,  Node: trust,  Next: unset,  Prev: true,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.74 trust

 -- Command: trust ['--skip-sig'] pubkey_file
     Read public key from PUBKEY_FILE and add it to GRUB's internal list
     of trusted public keys.  These keys are used to validate digital
     signatures when environment variable 'check_signatures' is set to
     'enforce'.  Note that if 'check_signatures' is set to 'enforce'
     when 'trust' executes, then PUBKEY_FILE must itself be properly
     signed.  The '--skip-sig' option can be used to disable
     signature-checking when reading PUBKEY_FILE itself.  It is expected
     that '--skip-sig' is useful for testing and manual booting.  *Note
     Using digital signatures::, for more information.

File:,  Node: unset,  Next: uppermem,  Prev: trust,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.75 unset

 -- Command: unset envvar
     Unset the environment variable ENVVAR.

File:,  Node: uppermem,  Next: verify_detached,  Prev: unset,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.76 uppermem

This command is not yet implemented for GRUB 2, although it is planned.

File:,  Node: verify_detached,  Next: videoinfo,  Prev: uppermem,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.77 verify_detached

 -- Command: verify_detached ['--skip-sig'] file signature_file
     Verifies a GPG-style detached signature, where the signed file is
     FILE, and the signature itself is in file SIGNATURE_FILE.
     Optionally, a specific public key to use can be specified using
     PUBKEY_FILE.  When environment variable 'check_signatures' is set
     to 'enforce', then PUBKEY_FILE must itself be properly signed by an
     already-trusted key.  An unsigned PUBKEY_FILE can be loaded by
     specifying '--skip-sig'.  If PUBKEY_FILE is omitted, then public
     keys from GRUB's trusted keys (*note list_trusted::, *note trust::,
     and *note distrust::) are tried.

     Exit code '$?' is set to 0 if the signature validates successfully.
     If validation fails, it is set to a non-zero value.  *Note Using
     digital signatures::, for more information.

File:,  Node: videoinfo,  Next: xen_hypervisor,  Prev: verify_detached,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.78 videoinfo

 -- Command: videoinfo [[WxH]xD]
     List available video modes.  If resolution is given, show only
     matching modes.

File:,  Node: xen_hypervisor,  Next: xen_linux,  Prev: videoinfo,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.79 xen_hypervisor

 -- Command: xen_hypervisor file [arguments] ...
     Load a Xen hypervisor binary from FILE.  The rest of the line is
     passed verbatim as the "kernel command-line".  Any other binaries
     must be reloaded after using this command.

File:,  Node: xen_linux,  Next: xen_initrd,  Prev: xen_hypervisor,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.80 xen_linux

 -- Command: xen_linux file [arguments]
     Load a dom0 kernel image for xen hypervisor at the booting process
     of xen.  The rest of the line is passed verbatim as the module
     command line.

File:,  Node: xen_initrd,  Next: xen_xsm,  Prev: xen_linux,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.81 xen_initrd

 -- Command: xen_initrd file
     Load a initrd image for dom0 kernel at the booting process of xen.

File:,  Node: xen_xsm,  Prev: xen_initrd,  Up: Command-line and menu entry commands

16.3.82 xen_xsm

 -- Command: xen_xsm file
     Load a xen security module for xen hypervisor at the booting
     process of xen.  See <> for more

File:,  Node: Networking commands,  Prev: Command-line and menu entry commands,  Up: Commands

16.4 The list of networking commands

* Menu:

* net_add_addr::                Add a network address
* net_add_dns::                 Add a DNS server
* net_add_route::               Add routing entry
* net_bootp::                   Perform a bootp autoconfiguration
* net_del_addr::                Remove IP address from interface
* net_del_dns::                 Remove a DNS server
* net_del_route::               Remove a route entry
* net_get_dhcp_option::         Retrieve DHCP options
* net_ipv6_autoconf::           Perform IPv6 autoconfiguration
* net_ls_addr::                 List interfaces
* net_ls_cards::                List network cards
* net_ls_dns::                  List DNS servers
* net_ls_routes::               List routing entries
* net_nslookup::                Perform a DNS lookup

File:,  Node: net_add_addr,  Next: net_add_dns,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.1 net_add_addr

 -- Command: net_add_addr INTERFACE CARD ADDRESS
     Configure additional network INTERFACE with ADDRESS on a network
     CARD.  ADDRESS can be either IP in dotted decimal notation, or
     symbolic name which is resolved using DNS lookup.  If successful,
     this command also adds local link routing entry to the default
     subnet of ADDRESS with name INTERFACE':local' via INTERFACE.

File:,  Node: net_add_dns,  Next: net_add_route,  Prev: net_add_addr,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.2 net_add_dns

 -- Command: net_add_dns SERVER
     Resolve SERVER IP address and add to the list of DNS servers used
     during name lookup.

File:,  Node: net_add_route,  Next: net_bootp,  Prev: net_add_dns,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.3 net_add_route

 -- Command: net_add_route SHORTNAME IP[/PREFIX] [INTERFACE | 'gw'
     Add route to network with address IP as modified by PREFIX via
     either local INTERFACE or GATEWAY.  PREFIX is optional and defaults
     to 32 for IPv4 address and 128 for IPv6 address.  Route is
     identified by SHORTNAME which can be used to remove it (*note

File:,  Node: net_bootp,  Next: net_del_addr,  Prev: net_add_route,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.4 net_bootp

 -- Command: net_bootp [CARD]
     Perform configuration of CARD using DHCP protocol.  If no card name
     is specified, try to configure all existing cards.  If
     configuration was successful, interface with name CARD':dhcp' and
     configured address is added to CARD.  Additionally the following
     DHCP options are recognized and processed:

     '1 (Subnet Mask)'
          Used to calculate network local routing entry for interface
     '3 (Router)'
          Adds default route entry with the name CARD':dhcp:default' via
          gateway from DHCP option.  Note that only option with single
          route is accepted.
     '6 (Domain Name Server)'
          Adds all servers from option value to the list of servers used
          during name resolution.
     '12 (Host Name)'
          Sets environment variable 'net_'<CARD>'_dhcp_hostname' (*note
          net_<INTERFACE>_hostname::) to the value of option.
     '15 (Domain Name)'
          Sets environment variable 'net_'<CARD>'_dhcp_domain' (*note
          net_<INTERFACE>_domain::) to the value of option.
     '17 (Root Path)'
          Sets environment variable 'net_'<CARD>'_dhcp_rootpath' (*note
          net_<INTERFACE>_rootpath::) to the value of option.
     '18 (Extensions Path)'
          Sets environment variable 'net_'<CARD>'_dhcp_extensionspath'
          (*note net_<INTERFACE>_extensionspath::) to the value of

File:,  Node: net_del_addr,  Next: net_del_dns,  Prev: net_bootp,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.5 net_del_addr

 -- Command: net_del_addr INTERFACE
     Remove configured INTERFACE with associated address.

File:,  Node: net_del_dns,  Next: net_del_route,  Prev: net_del_addr,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.6 net_del_dns

 -- Command: net_del_dns ADDRESS
     Remove ADDRESS from list of servers used during name lookup.

File:,  Node: net_del_route,  Next: net_get_dhcp_option,  Prev: net_del_dns,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.7 net_del_route

 -- Command: net_del_route SHORTNAME
     Remove route entry identified by SHORTNAME.

File:,  Node: net_get_dhcp_option,  Next: net_ipv6_autoconf,  Prev: net_del_route,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.8 net_get_dhcp_option

 -- Command: net_get_dhcp_option VAR INTERFACE NUMBER TYPE
     Request DHCP option NUMBER of TYPE via INTERFACE.  TYPE can be one
     of 'string', 'number' or 'hex'.  If option is found, assign its
     value to variable VAR.  Values of types 'number' and 'hex' are
     converted to string representation.

File:,  Node: net_ipv6_autoconf,  Next: net_ls_addr,  Prev: net_get_dhcp_option,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.9 net_ipv6_autoconf

 -- Command: net_ipv6_autoconf [CARD]
     Perform IPv6 autoconfiguration by adding to the CARD interface with
     name CARD':link' and link local MAC-based address.  If no card is
     specified, perform autoconfiguration for all existing cards.

File:,  Node: net_ls_addr,  Next: net_ls_cards,  Prev: net_ipv6_autoconf,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.10 net_ls_addr

 -- Command: net_ls_addr
     List all configured interfaces with their MAC and IP addresses.

File:,  Node: net_ls_cards,  Next: net_ls_dns,  Prev: net_ls_addr,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.11 net_ls_cards

 -- Command: net_ls_cards
     List all detected network cards with their MAC address.

File:,  Node: net_ls_dns,  Next: net_ls_routes,  Prev: net_ls_cards,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.12 net_ls_dns

 -- Command: net_ls_dns
     List addresses of DNS servers used during name lookup.

File:,  Node: net_ls_routes,  Next: net_nslookup,  Prev: net_ls_dns,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.13 net_ls_routes

 -- Command: net_ls_routes
     List routing entries.

File:,  Node: net_nslookup,  Prev: net_ls_routes,  Up: Networking commands

16.4.14 net_nslookup

 -- Command: net_nslookup NAME [SERVER]
     Resolve address of NAME using DNS server SERVER.  If no server is
     given, use default list of servers.

File:,  Node: Internationalisation,  Next: Security,  Prev: Commands,  Up: Top

17 Internationalisation

17.1 Charset

GRUB uses UTF-8 internally other than in rendering where some
GRUB-specific appropriate representation is used.  All text files
(including config) are assumed to be encoded in UTF-8.

17.2 Filesystems

NTFS, JFS, UDF, HFS+, exFAT, long filenames in FAT, Joliet part of
ISO9660 are treated as UTF-16 as per specification.  AFS and BFS are
read as UTF-8, again according to specification.  BtrFS, cpio, tar,
squash4, minix, minix2, minix3, ROMFS, ReiserFS, XFS, ext2, ext3, ext4,
FAT (short names), RockRidge part of ISO9660, nilfs2, UFS1, UFS2 and ZFS
are assumed to be UTF-8.  This might be false on systems configured with
legacy charset but as long as the charset used is superset of ASCII you
should be able to access ASCII-named files.  And it's recommended to
configure your system to use UTF-8 to access the filesystem, convmv may
help with migration.  ISO9660 (plain) filenames are specified as being
ASCII or being described with unspecified escape sequences.  GRUB
assumes that the ISO9660 names are UTF-8 (since any ASCII is valid
UTF-8).  There are some old CD-ROMs which use CP437 in non-compliant
way.  You're still able to access files with names containing only ASCII
characters on such filesystems though.  You're also able to access any
file if the filesystem contains valid Joliet (UTF-16) or RockRidge
(UTF-8).  AFFS, SFS and HFS never use unicode and GRUB assumes them to
be in Latin1, Latin1 and MacRoman respectively.  GRUB handles filesystem
case-insensitivity however no attempt is performed at case conversion of
international characters so e.g.  a file named lowercase greek alpha is
treated as different from the one named as uppercase alpha.  The
filesystems in questions are NTFS (except POSIX namespace), HFS+
(configurable at mkfs time, default insensitive), SFS (configurable at
mkfs time, default insensitive), JFS (configurable at mkfs time, default
sensitive), HFS, AFFS, FAT, exFAT and ZFS (configurable on per-subvolume
basis by property "casesensitivity", default sensitive).  On ZFS
subvolumes marked as case insensitive files containing lowercase
international characters are inaccessible.  Also like all supported
filesystems except HFS+ and ZFS (configurable on per-subvolume basis by
property "normalization", default none) GRUB makes no attempt at check
of canonical equivalence so a file name u-diaresis is treated as
distinct from u+combining diaresis.  This however means that in order to
access file on HFS+ its name must be specified in normalisation form D.
On normalized ZFS subvolumes filenames out of normalisation are

17.3 Output terminal

Firmware output console "console" on ARC and IEEE1275 are limited to

   BIOS firmware console and VGA text are limited to ASCII and some

   None of above mentioned is appropriate for displaying international
and any unsupported character is replaced with question mark except
pseudographics which we attempt to approximate with ASCII.

   EFI console on the other hand nominally supports UTF-16 but actual
language coverage depends on firmware and may be very limited.

   The encoding used on serial can be chosen with 'terminfo' as either
ASCII, UTF-8 or "visual UTF-8".  Last one is against the specification
but results in correct rendering of right-to-left on some readers which
don't have own bidi implementation.

   On emu GRUB checks if charset is UTF-8 and uses it if so and uses
ASCII otherwise.

   When using gfxterm or gfxmenu GRUB itself is responsible for
rendering the text.  In this case GRUB is limited by loaded fonts.  If
fonts contain all required characters then bidirectional text, cursive
variants and combining marks other than enclosing, half (e.g.  left half
tilde or combining overline) and double ones.  Ligatures aren't
supported though.  This should cover European, Middle Eastern (if you
don't mind lack of lam-alif ligature in Arabic) and East Asian scripts.
Notable unsupported scripts are Brahmic family and derived as well as
Mongolian, Tifinagh, Korean Jamo (precomposed characters have no
problem) and tonal writing (2e5-2e9).  GRUB also ignores deprecated (as
specified in Unicode) characters (e.g.  tags).  GRUB also doesn't handle
so called "annotation characters" If you can complete either of two
lists or, better, propose a patch to improve rendering, please contact
developer team.

17.4 Input terminal

Firmware console on BIOS, IEEE1275 and ARC doesn't allow you to enter
non-ASCII characters.  EFI specification allows for such but author is
unaware of any actual implementations.  Serial input is currently
limited for latin1 (unlikely to change).  Own keyboard implementations
(at_keyboard and usb_keyboard) supports any key but work on
one-char-per-keystroke.  So no dead keys or advanced input method.  Also
there is no keymap change hotkey.  In practice it makes difficult to
enter any text using non-Latin alphabet.  Moreover all current input
consumers are limited to ASCII.

17.5 Gettext

GRUB supports being translated.  For this you need to have language *.mo
files in $prefix/locale, load gettext module and set "lang" variable.

17.6 Regexp

Regexps work on unicode characters, however no attempt at checking
cannonical equivalence has been made.  Moreover the classes like
[:alpha:] match only ASCII subset.

17.7 Other

24-hour datetime format but weekdays are translated.  GRUB always uses
the decimal number format with [0-9] as digits and .  as descimal
separator and no group separator.  IEEE1275 aliases are matched
case-insensitively except non-ASCII which is matched as binary.  Similar
behaviour is for matching OSBundleRequired.  Since IEEE1275 aliases and
OSBundleRequired don't contain any non-ASCII it should never be a
problem in practice.  Case-sensitive identifiers are matched as raw
strings, no canonical equivalence check is performed.  Case-insenstive
identifiers are matched as RAW but additionally [a-z] is equivalent to
[A-Z]. GRUB-defined identifiers use only ASCII and so should
user-defined ones.  Identifiers containing non-ASCII may work but aren't
supported.  Only the ASCII space characters (space U+0020, tab U+000b,
CR U+000d and LF U+000a) are recognised.  Other unicode space characters
aren't a valid field separator.  'test' (*note test::) tests <, >, <=,
>=, -pgt and -plt compare the strings in the lexicographical order of
unicode codepoints, replicating the behaviour of test from coreutils.
environment variables and commands are listed in the same order.

File:,  Node: Security,  Next: Platform limitations,  Prev: Internationalisation,  Up: Top

18 Security

* Menu:

* Authentication and authorisation:: Users and access control
* Using digital signatures::         Booting digitally signed code

File:,  Node: Authentication and authorisation,  Next: Using digital signatures,  Up: Security

18.1 Authentication and authorisation in GRUB

By default, the boot loader interface is accessible to anyone with
physical access to the console: anyone can select and edit any menu
entry, and anyone can get direct access to a GRUB shell prompt.  For
most systems, this is reasonable since anyone with direct physical
access has a variety of other ways to gain full access, and requiring
authentication at the boot loader level would only serve to make it
difficult to recover broken systems.

   However, in some environments, such as kiosks, it may be appropriate
to lock down the boot loader to require authentication before performing
certain operations.

   The 'password' (*note password::) and 'password_pbkdf2' (*note
password_pbkdf2::) commands can be used to define users, each of which
has an associated password.  'password' sets the password in plain text,
requiring 'grub.cfg' to be secure; 'password_pbkdf2' sets the password
hashed using the Password-Based Key Derivation Function (RFC 2898),
requiring the use of 'grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2' (*note Invoking
grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2::) to generate password hashes.

   In order to enable authentication support, the 'superusers'
environment variable must be set to a list of usernames, separated by
any of spaces, commas, semicolons, pipes, or ampersands.  Superusers are
permitted to use the GRUB command line, edit menu entries, and execute
any menu entry.  If 'superusers' is set, then use of the command line
and editing of menu entries are automatically restricted to superusers.
Setting 'superusers' to empty string effectively disables both access to
CLI and editing of menu entries.

   Other users may be allowed to execute specific menu entries by giving
a list of usernames (as above) using the '--users' option to the
'menuentry' command (*note menuentry::).  If the '--unrestricted' option
is used for a menu entry, then that entry is unrestricted.  If the
'--users' option is not used for a menu entry, then that only superusers
are able to use it.

   Putting this together, a typical 'grub.cfg' fragment might look like

     set superusers="root"
     password_pbkdf2 root grub.pbkdf2.sha512.10000.biglongstring
     password user1 insecure

     menuentry "May be run by any user" --unrestricted {
     	set root=(hd0,1)
     	linux /vmlinuz

     menuentry "Superusers only" --users "" {
     	set root=(hd0,1)
     	linux /vmlinuz single

     menuentry "May be run by user1 or a superuser" --users user1 {
     	set root=(hd0,2)
     	chainloader +1

   The 'grub-mkconfig' program does not yet have built-in support for
generating configuration files with authentication.  You can use
'/etc/grub.d/40_custom' to add simple superuser authentication, by
adding 'set superusers=' and 'password' or 'password_pbkdf2' commands.

File:,  Node: Using digital signatures,  Prev: Authentication and authorisation,  Up: Security

18.2 Using digital signatures in GRUB

GRUB's 'core.img' can optionally provide enforcement that all files
subsequently read from disk are covered by a valid digital signature.
This document does *not* cover how to ensure that your platform's
firmware (e.g., Coreboot) validates 'core.img'.

   If environment variable 'check_signatures' (*note check_signatures::)
is set to 'enforce', then every attempt by the GRUB 'core.img' to load
another file 'foo' implicitly invokes 'verify_detached foo foo.sig'
(*note verify_detached::).  'foo.sig' must contain a valid digital
signature over the contents of 'foo', which can be verified with a
public key currently trusted by GRUB (*note list_trusted::, *note
trust::, and *note distrust::).  If validation fails, then file 'foo'
cannot be opened.  This failure may halt or otherwise impact the boot

   GRUB uses GPG-style detached signatures (meaning that a file
'foo.sig' will be produced when file 'foo' is signed), and currently
supports the DSA and RSA signing algorithms.  A signing key can be
generated as follows:

     gpg --gen-key

   An individual file can be signed as follows:

     gpg --detach-sign /path/to/file

   For successful validation of all of GRUB's subcomponents and the
loaded OS kernel, they must all be signed.  One way to accomplish this
is the following (after having already produced the desired 'grub.cfg'
file, e.g., by running 'grub-mkconfig' (*note Invoking grub-mkconfig::):

     # Edit /dev/shm/passphrase.txt to contain your signing key's passphrase
     for i in `find /boot -name "*.cfg" -or -name "*.lst" -or \
       -name "*.mod" -or -name "vmlinuz*" -or -name "initrd*" -or \
       -name "grubenv"`;
       gpg --batch --detach-sign --passphrase-fd 0 $i < \
     shred /dev/shm/passphrase.txt

   See also: *note check_signatures::, *note verify_detached::, *note
trust::, *note list_trusted::, *note distrust::, *note load_env::, *note

   Note that internally signature enforcement is controlled by setting
the environment variable 'check_signatures' equal to 'enforce'.  Passing
one or more '--pubkey' options to 'grub-mkimage' implicitly defines
'check_signatures' equal to 'enforce' in 'core.img' prior to processing
any configuration files.

   Note that signature checking does *not* prevent an attacker with
(serial, physical, ...)  console access from dropping manually to the
GRUB console and executing:

     set check_signatures=no

   To prevent this, password-protection (*note Authentication and
authorisation::) is essential.  Note that even with GRUB password
protection, GRUB itself cannot prevent someone with physical access to
the machine from altering that machine's firmware (e.g., Coreboot or
BIOS) configuration to cause the machine to boot from a different
(attacker-controlled) device.  GRUB is at best only one link in a secure
boot chain.

File:,  Node: Platform limitations,  Next: Platform-specific operations,  Prev: Security,  Up: Top

19 Platform limitations

GRUB2 is designed to be portable and is actually ported across
platforms.  We try to keep all platforms at the level.  Unfortunately
some platforms are better supported than others.  This is detailed in
current and 2 following sections.

   ARC platform is unable to change datetime (firmware doesn't seem to
provide a function for it).  EMU has similar limitation.

   On EMU platform no serial port is available.

   Console charset refers only to firmware-assisted console.  gfxterm is
always Unicode (see Internationalisation section for its limitations).
Serial is configurable to UTF-8 or ASCII (see Internationalisation).  In
case of qemu and coreboot ports the refered console is vga_text.
Loongson always uses gfxterm.

   Most limited one is ASCII. CP437 provides additionally
pseudographics.  GRUB2 doesn't use any language characters from CP437 as
often CP437 is replaced by national encoding compatible only in
pseudographics.  Unicode is the most versatile charset which supports
many languages.  However the actual console may be much more limited
depending on firmware

   On BIOS network is supported only if the image is loaded through
network.  On sparc64 GRUB is unable to determine which server it was
booted from.

   Direct ATA/AHCI support allows to circumvent various firmware
limitations but isn't needed for normal operation except on baremetal

   AT keyboard support allows keyboard layout remapping and support for
keys not available through firmware.  It isn't needed for normal
operation except baremetal ports.

   Speaker allows morse and spkmodem communication.

   USB support provides benefits similar to ATA (for USB disks) or AT
(for USB keyboards).  In addition it allows USBserial.

   Chainloading refers to the ability to load another bootloader through
the same protocol

   Hints allow faster disk discovery by already knowing in advance which
is the disk in question.  On some platforms hints are correct unless you
move the disk between boots.  On other platforms it's just an educated
guess.  Note that hint failure results in just reduced performance, not
a failure

   BadRAM is the ability to mark some of the RAM as "bad".  Note: due to
protocol limitations mips-loongson (with Linux protocol) and
mips-qemu_mips can use only memory up to first hole.

   Bootlocation is ability of GRUB to automatically detect where it
boots from.  "disk" means the detection is limited to detecting the disk
with partition being discovered on install time.  "partition" means that
disk and partiton can be automatically discovered.  "file" means that
boot image file name as well as disk and partition can be discovered.
For consistency default install ignores partition and relies solely on
disk detection.  If no bootlocation discovery is available or boot and
grub-root disks are different, UUID is used instead.  On ARC if no
device to install to is specified, UUID is used instead as well.

               BIOS           Coreboot       Multiboot      Qemu
video          yes            yes            yes            yes
console        CP437          CP437          CP437          CP437
network        yes (*)        no             no             no
ATA/AHCI       yes            yes            yes            yes
AT keyboard    yes            yes            yes            yes
Speaker        yes            yes            yes            yes
USB            yes            yes            yes            yes
chainloader    local          yes            yes            no
cpuid          partial        partial        partial        partial
hints          guess          guess          guess          guess
PCI            yes            yes            yes            yes
badram         yes            yes            yes            yes
compression    always         pointless      no             no
exit           yes            no             no             no
bootlocation   disk           no             no             no

               ia32 EFI       amd64 EFI      ia32           Itanium
video          yes            yes            no             no
console        Unicode        Unicode        ASCII          Unicode
network        yes            yes            yes            yes
ATA/AHCI       yes            yes            yes            no
AT keyboard    yes            yes            yes            no
Speaker        yes            yes            yes            no
USB            yes            yes            yes            no
chainloader    local          local          no             local
cpuid          partial        partial        partial        no
hints          guess          guess          good           guess
PCI            yes            yes            yes            no
badram         yes            yes            no             yes
compression    no             no             no             no
exit           yes            yes            yes            yes
bootlocation   file           file           file,          file

               Loongson       sparc64        Powerpc        ARC
video          yes            no             yes            no
console        N/A            ASCII          ASCII          ASCII
network        no             yes (*)        yes            no
ATA/AHCI       yes            no             no             no
AT keyboard    yes            no             no             no
Speaker        no             no             no             no
USB            yes            no             no             no
chainloader    yes            no             no             no
cpuid          no             no             no             no
hints          good           good           good           no
PCI            yes            no             no             no
badram         yes (*)        no             no             no
compression    configurable   no             no             configurable
exit           no             yes            yes            yes
bootlocation   no             partition      file           file (*)

               MIPS qemu      emu            xen
video          no             yes            no
console        CP437          Unicode (*)    ASCII
network        no             yes            no
ATA/AHCI       yes            no             no
AT keyboard    yes            no             no
Speaker        no             no             no
USB            N/A            yes            no
chainloader    yes            no             yes
cpuid          no             no             yes
hints          guess          no             no
PCI            no             no             no
badram         yes (*)        no             no
compression    configurable   no             no
exit           no             yes            no
bootlocation   no             file           no

File:,  Node: Platform-specific operations,  Next: Supported kernels,  Prev: Platform limitations,  Up: Top

20 Outline

Some platforms have features which allows to implement some commands
useless or not implementable on others.

   Quick summary:

   Information retrieval:

   * mipsel-loongson: lsspd
   * mips-arc: lsdev
   * efi: lsefisystab, lssal, lsefimmap, lsefi
   * i386-pc: lsapm
   * i386-coreboot: lscoreboot, coreboot_boottime, cbmemc
   * acpi-enabled (i386-pc, i386-coreboot, i386-multiboot, *-efi):

   Workarounds for platform-specific issues:
   * i386-efi/x86_64-efi: loadbios, fakebios, fix_video
   * acpi-enabled (i386-pc, i386-coreboot, i386-multiboot, *-efi): acpi
     (override ACPI tables)
   * i386-pc: drivemap
   * i386-pc: sendkey

   Advanced operations for power users:
   * x86: iorw (direct access to I/O ports)

   * cmos (x86-*, ieee1275, mips-qemu_mips, mips-loongson): cmostest
     (used on some laptops to check for special power-on key), cmosclean
   * i386-pc: play

File:,  Node: Supported kernels,  Next: Troubleshooting,  Prev: Platform-specific operations,  Up: Top

21 Supported boot targets

X86 support is summarised in the following table.  "Yes" means that the
kernel works on the given platform, "crashes" means an early kernel
crash which we hope will be fixed by concerned kernel developers.  "no"
means GRUB doesn't load the given kernel on a given platform.
"headless" means that the kernel works but lacks console drivers (you
can still use serial or network console).  In case of "no" and "crashes"
the reason is given in footnote.
                                     BIOS             Coreboot
BIOS chainloading                    yes              no (1)
NTLDR                                yes              no (1)
Plan9                                yes              no (1)
Freedos                              yes              no (1)
FreeBSD bootloader                   yes              crashes (1)
32-bit kFreeBSD                      yes              crashes (5)
64-bit kFreeBSD                      yes              crashes (5)
32-bit kNetBSD                       yes              crashes (1)
64-bit kNetBSD                       yes              crashes
32-bit kOpenBSD                      yes              yes
64-bit kOpenBSD                      yes              yes
Multiboot                            yes              yes
Multiboot2                           yes              yes
32-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       yes              no (1)
64-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       yes              no (1)
32-bit Linux (modern protocol)       yes              yes
64-bit Linux (modern protocol)       yes              yes
32-bit XNU                           yes              ?
64-bit XNU                           yes              ?
32-bit EFI chainloader               no (2)           no (2)
64-bit EFI chainloader               no (2)           no (2)
Appleloader                          no (2)           no (2)

                                     Multiboot        Qemu
BIOS chainloading                    no (1)           no (1)
NTLDR                                no (1)           no (1)
Plan9                                no (1)           no (1)
FreeDOS                              no (1)           no (1)
FreeBSD bootloader                   crashes (1)      crashes (1)
32-bit kFreeBSD                      crashes (5)      crashes (5)
64-bit kFreeBSD                      crashes (5)      crashes (5)
32-bit kNetBSD                       crashes (1)      crashes (1)
64-bit kNetBSD                       yes              yes
32-bit kOpenBSD                      yes              yes
64-bit kOpenBSD                      yes              yes
Multiboot                            yes              yes
Multiboot2                           yes              yes
32-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       no (1)           no (1)
64-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       no (1)           no (1)
32-bit Linux (modern protocol)       yes              yes
64-bit Linux (modern protocol)       yes              yes
32-bit XNU                           ?                ?
64-bit XNU                           ?                ?
32-bit EFI chainloader               no (2)           no (2)
64-bit EFI chainloader               no (2)           no (2)
Appleloader                          no (2)           no (2)

                                     ia32 EFI         amd64 EFI
BIOS chainloading                    no (1)           no (1)
NTLDR                                no (1)           no (1)
Plan9                                no (1)           no (1)
FreeDOS                              no (1)           no (1)
FreeBSD bootloader                   crashes (1)      crashes (1)
32-bit kFreeBSD                      headless         headless
64-bit kFreeBSD                      headless         headless
32-bit kNetBSD                       crashes (1)      crashes (1)
64-bit kNetBSD                       yes              yes
32-bit kOpenBSD                      headless         headless
64-bit kOpenBSD                      headless         headless
Multiboot                            yes              yes
Multiboot2                           yes              yes
32-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       no (1)           no (1)
64-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       no (1)           no (1)
32-bit Linux (modern protocol)       yes              yes
64-bit Linux (modern protocol)       yes              yes
32-bit XNU                           yes              yes
64-bit XNU                           yes (4)          yes
32-bit EFI chainloader               yes              no (3)
64-bit EFI chainloader               no (3)           yes
Appleloader                          yes              yes

                                     ia32 IEEE1275
BIOS chainloading                    no (1)
NTLDR                                no (1)
Plan9                                no (1)
FreeDOS                              no (1)
FreeBSD bootloader                   crashes (1)
32-bit kFreeBSD                      crashes (5)
64-bit kFreeBSD                      crashes (5)
32-bit kNetBSD                       crashes (1)
64-bit kNetBSD                       ?
32-bit kOpenBSD                      ?
64-bit kOpenBSD                      ?
Multiboot                            ?
Multiboot2                           ?
32-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       no (1)
64-bit Linux (legacy protocol)       no (1)
32-bit Linux (modern protocol)       ?
64-bit Linux (modern protocol)       ?
32-bit XNU                           ?
64-bit XNU                           ?
32-bit EFI chainloader               no (2)
64-bit EFI chainloader               no (2)
Appleloader                          no (2)

  1. Requires BIOS
  2. EFI only
  3. 32-bit and 64-bit EFI have different structures and work in
     different CPU modes so it's not possible to chainload 32-bit
     bootloader on 64-bit platform and vice-versa
  4. Some modules may need to be disabled
  5. Requires ACPI

   PowerPC, IA64 and Sparc64 ports support only Linux.  MIPS port
supports Linux and multiboot2.

21.1 Boot tests

As you have seen in previous chapter the support matrix is pretty big
and some of the configurations are only rarely used.  To ensure the
quality bootchecks are available for all x86 targets except EFI
chainloader, Appleloader and XNU. All x86 platforms have bootcheck
facility except ieee1275.  Multiboot, multiboot2, BIOS chainloader,
ntldr and freebsd-bootloader boot targets are tested only with a fake
kernel images.  Only Linux is tested among the payloads using Linux

   Following variables must be defined:

GRUB_PAYLOADS_DIR      directory containing the required kernels
GRUB_CBFSTOOL          cbfstool from Coreboot package (for coreboot
                       platform only)
GRUB_COREBOOT_ROM      empty Coreboot ROM
GRUB_QEMU_OPTS         additional options to be supplied to QEMU

   Required files are:

kfreebsd_env.i386             32-bit kFreeBSD device hints
kfreebsd.i386                 32-bit FreeBSD kernel image
kfreebsd.x86_64,              same from 64-bit kFreeBSD
knetbsd.i386                  32-bit NetBSD kernel image
knetbsd.miniroot.i386         32-bit kNetBSD miniroot.kmod.
knetbsd.x86_64,               same from 64-bit kNetBSD
kopenbsd.i386                 32-bit OpenBSD kernel bsd.rd image
kopenbsd.x86_64               same from 64-bit kOpenBSD
linux.i386                    32-bit Linux
linux.x86_64                  64-bit Linux

File:,  Node: Troubleshooting,  Next: Invoking grub-install,  Prev: Supported kernels,  Up: Top

22 Error messages produced by GRUB

* Menu:

* GRUB only offers a rescue shell::

File:,  Node: GRUB only offers a rescue shell,  Up: Troubleshooting

22.1 GRUB only offers a rescue shell

GRUB's normal start-up procedure involves setting the 'prefix'
environment variable to a value set in the core image by 'grub-install',
setting the 'root' variable to match, loading the 'normal' module from
the prefix, and running the 'normal' command (*note normal::).  This
command is responsible for reading '/boot/grub/grub.cfg', running the
menu, and doing all the useful things GRUB is supposed to do.

   If, instead, you only get a rescue shell, this usually means that
GRUB failed to load the 'normal' module for some reason.  It may be
possible to work around this temporarily: for instance, if the reason
for the failure is that 'prefix' is wrong (perhaps it refers to the
wrong device, or perhaps the path to '/boot/grub' was not correctly made
relative to the device), then you can correct this and enter normal mode

     # Inspect the current prefix (and other preset variables):
     # Find out which devices are available:
     # Set to the correct value, which might be something like this:
     set prefix=(hd0,1)/grub
     set root=(hd0,1)
     insmod normal

   However, any problem that leaves you in the rescue shell probably
means that GRUB was not correctly installed.  It may be more useful to
try to reinstall it properly using 'grub-install DEVICE' (*note Invoking
grub-install::).  When doing this, there are a few things to remember:

   * Drive ordering in your operating system may not be the same as the
     boot drive ordering used by your firmware.  Do not assume that your
     first hard drive (e.g.  '/dev/sda') is the one that your firmware
     will boot from.  '' (*note Device map::) can be used to
     override this, but it is usually better to use UUIDs or file system
     labels and avoid depending on drive ordering entirely.

   * At least on BIOS systems, if you tell 'grub-install' to install
     GRUB to a partition but GRUB has already been installed in the
     master boot record, then the GRUB installation in the partition
     will be ignored.

   * If possible, it is generally best to avoid installing GRUB to a
     partition (unless it is a special partition for the use of GRUB
     alone, such as the BIOS Boot Partition used on GPT). Doing this
     means that GRUB may stop being able to read its core image due to a
     file system moving blocks around, such as while defragmenting,
     running checks, or even during normal operation.  Installing to the
     whole disk device is normally more robust.

   * Check that GRUB actually knows how to read from the device and file
     system containing '/boot/grub'.  It will not be able to read from
     encrypted devices with unsupported encryption scheme, nor from file
     systems for which support has not yet been added to GRUB.

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-install,  Next: Invoking grub-mkconfig,  Prev: Troubleshooting,  Up: Top

23 Invoking grub-install

The program 'grub-install' generates a GRUB core image using
'grub-mkimage' and installs it on your system.  You must specify the
device name on which you want to install GRUB, like this:

     grub-install INSTALL_DEVICE

   The device name INSTALL_DEVICE is an OS device name or a GRUB device

   'grub-install' accepts the following options:

     Print a summary of the command-line options and exit.

     Print the version number of GRUB and exit.

     Install GRUB images under the directory 'DIR/grub/' This option is
     useful when you want to install GRUB into a separate partition or a
     removable disk.  If this option is not specified then it defaults
     to '/boot', so

          grub-install /dev/sda

     is equivalent to

          grub-install --boot-directory=/boot/ /dev/sda

     Here is an example in which you have a separate "boot" partition
     which is mounted on '/mnt/boot':

          grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/boot /dev/sdb

     Recheck the device map, even if '/boot/grub/' already
     exists.  You should use this option whenever you add/remove a disk
     into/from your computer.

     By default on x86 BIOS systems, 'grub-install' will use some extra
     space in the bootloader embedding area for Reed-Solomon
     error-correcting codes.  This enables GRUB to still boot
     successfully if some blocks are corrupted.  The exact amount of
     protection offered is dependent on available space in the embedding
     area.  R sectors of redundancy can tolerate up to R/2 corrupted
     sectors.  This redundancy may be cumbersome if attempting to
     cryptographically validate the contents of the bootloader embedding
     area, or in more modern systems with GPT-style partition tables
     (*note BIOS installation::) where GRUB does not reside in any
     unpartitioned space outside of the MBR. Disable the Reed-Solomon
     codes with this option.

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-mkconfig,  Next: Invoking grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2,  Prev: Invoking grub-install,  Up: Top

24 Invoking grub-mkconfig

The program 'grub-mkconfig' generates a configuration file for GRUB
(*note Simple configuration::).

     grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg

   'grub-mkconfig' accepts the following options:

     Print a summary of the command-line options and exit.

     Print the version number of GRUB and exit.

'-o FILE'
     Send the generated configuration file to FILE.  The default is to
     send it to standard output.

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2,  Next: Invoking grub-mkrelpath,  Prev: Invoking grub-mkconfig,  Up: Top

25 Invoking grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2

The program 'grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2' generates password hashes for GRUB
(*note Security::).


   'grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2' accepts the following options:

     Number of iterations of the underlying pseudo-random function.
     Defaults to 10000.

     Length of the generated hash.  Defaults to 64.

     Length of the salt.  Defaults to 64.

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-mkrelpath,  Next: Invoking grub-mkrescue,  Prev: Invoking grub-mkpasswd-pbkdf2,  Up: Top

26 Invoking grub-mkrelpath

The program 'grub-mkrelpath' makes a file system path relative to the
root of its containing file system.  For instance, if '/usr' is a mount
point, then:

     $ grub-mkrelpath /usr/share/grub/unicode.pf2

   This is mainly used internally by other GRUB utilities such as
'grub-mkconfig' (*note Invoking grub-mkconfig::), but may occasionally
also be useful for debugging.

   'grub-mkrelpath' accepts the following options:

     Print a summary of the command-line options and exit.

     Print the version number of GRUB and exit.

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-mkrescue,  Next: Invoking grub-mount,  Prev: Invoking grub-mkrelpath,  Up: Top

27 Invoking grub-mkrescue

The program 'grub-mkrescue' generates a bootable GRUB rescue image
(*note Making a GRUB bootable CD-ROM::).

     grub-mkrescue -o grub.iso

   All arguments not explicitly listed as 'grub-mkrescue' options are
passed on directly to 'xorriso' in 'mkisofs' emulation mode.  Options
passed to 'xorriso' will normally be interpreted as 'mkisofs' options;
if the option '--' is used, then anything after that will be interpreted
as native 'xorriso' options.

   Non-option arguments specify additional source directories.  This is
commonly used to add extra files to the image:

     mkdir -p disk/boot/grub
     (add extra files to 'disk/boot/grub')
     grub-mkrescue -o grub.iso disk

   'grub-mkrescue' accepts the following options:

     Print a summary of the command-line options and exit.

     Print the version number of GRUB and exit.

'-o FILE'
     Save output in FILE.  This "option" is required.

     Pre-load the named GRUB modules in the image.  Multiple entries in
     MODULES should be separated by whitespace (so you will probably
     need to quote this for your shell).

     If generating images for the QEMU or Coreboot platforms, copy the
     resulting 'qemu.img' or 'coreboot.elf' files respectively to the
     DIR directory as well as including them in the image.

     Use FILE as the 'xorriso' program, rather than the built-in

     Use FILE as the 'grub-mkimage' program, rather than the built-in

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-mount,  Next: Invoking grub-probe,  Prev: Invoking grub-mkrescue,  Up: Top

28 Invoking grub-mount

The program 'grub-mount' performs a read-only mount of any file system
or file system image that GRUB understands, using GRUB's file system
drivers via FUSE. (It is only available if FUSE development files were
present when GRUB was built.)  This has a number of uses:

   * It provides a convenient way to check how GRUB will view a file
     system at boot time.  You can use normal command-line tools to
     compare that view with that of your operating system, making it
     easy to find bugs.

   * It offers true read-only mounts.  Linux does not have these for
     journalling file systems, because it will always attempt to replay
     the journal at mount time; while you can temporarily mark the block
     device read-only to avoid this, that causes the mount to fail.
     Since GRUB intentionally contains no code for writing to file
     systems, it can easily provide a guaranteed read-only mount

   * It allows you to examine any file system that GRUB understands
     without needing to load additional modules into your running
     kernel, which may be useful in constrained environments such as

   * Since it can examine file system images (contained in regular
     files) just as easily as file systems on block devices, you can use
     it to inspect any file system image that GRUB understands with only
     enough privileges to use FUSE, even if nobody has yet written a
     FUSE module specifically for that file system type.

   Using 'grub-mount' is normally as simple as:

     grub-mount /dev/sda1 /mnt

   'grub-mount' must be given one or more images and a mount point as
non-option arguments (if it is given more than one image, it will treat
them as a RAID set), and also accepts the following options:

     Print a summary of the command-line options and exit.

     Print the version number of GRUB and exit.

     Mount encrypted devices, prompting for a passphrase if necessary.

     Show debugging output for conditions matching STRING.

'-K prompt|FILE'
     Load a ZFS encryption key.  If you use 'prompt' as the argument,
     'grub-mount' will read a passphrase from the terminal; otherwise,
     it will read key material from the specified file.

     Set the GRUB root device to DEVICE.  You do not normally need to
     set this; 'grub-mount' will automatically set the root device to
     the root of the supplied file system.

     If DEVICE is just a number, then it will be treated as a partition
     number within the supplied image.  This means that, if you have an
     image of an entire disk in 'disk.img', then you can use this
     command to mount its second partition:

          grub-mount -r 2 disk.img mount-point

     Print verbose messages.

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-probe,  Next: Invoking grub-script-check,  Prev: Invoking grub-mount,  Up: Top

29 Invoking grub-probe

The program 'grub-probe' probes device information for a given path or

     grub-probe --target=fs /boot/grub
     grub-probe --target=drive --device /dev/sda1

   'grub-probe' must be given a path or device as a non-option argument,
and also accepts the following options:

     Print a summary of the command-line options and exit.

     Print the version number of GRUB and exit.

     If this option is given, then the non-option argument is a system
     device name (such as '/dev/sda1'), and 'grub-probe' will print
     information about that device.  If it is not given, then the
     non-option argument is a filesystem path (such as '/boot/grub'),
     and 'grub-probe' will print information about the device containing
     that part of the filesystem.

'-m FILE'
     Use FILE as the device map (*note Device map::) rather than the
     default, usually '/boot/grub/'.

     Print information about the given path or device as defined by
     TARGET.  The available targets and their meanings are:

          GRUB filesystem module.
          Filesystem Universally Unique Identifier (UUID).
          Filesystem label.
          GRUB device name.
          System device name.
          GRUB partition map module.
          GRUB abstraction module (e.g.  'lvm').
          Crypto device UUID.
          MBR partition type code (two hexadecimal digits).
          A string of platform search hints suitable for passing to the
          'search' command (*note search::).
          Search hints for the PC BIOS platform.
          Search hints for the IEEE1275 platform.
          Search hints for platforms where disks are addressed directly
          rather than via firmware.
          Search hints for the EFI platform.
          Search hints for the ARC platform.
          A guess at a reasonable GRUB drive name for this device, which
          may be used as a fallback if the 'search' command fails.
          System device name for the whole disk.

     Print verbose messages.

File:,  Node: Invoking grub-script-check,  Next: Obtaining and Building GRUB,  Prev: Invoking grub-probe,  Up: Top

30 Invoking grub-script-check

The program 'grub-script-check' takes a GRUB script file (*note
Shell-like scripting::) and checks it for syntax errors, similar to
commands such as 'sh -n'.  It may take a PATH as a non-option argument;
if none is supplied, it will read from standard input.

     grub-script-check /boot/grub/grub.cfg

   'grub-script-check' accepts the following options:

     Print a summary of the command-line options and exit.

     Print the version number of GRUB and exit.

     Print each line of input after reading it.

File:,  Node: Obtaining and Building GRUB,  Next: Reporting bugs,  Prev: Invoking grub-script-check,  Up: Top

Appendix A How to obtain and build GRUB

     *Caution:* GRUB requires binutils- or later because the
     GNU assembler has been changed so that it can produce real 16bits
     machine code between 2.9.1 and  See
     <>, to obtain information on how
     to get the latest version.

   GRUB is available from the GNU alpha archive site
<> or any of its mirrors.  The file will be
named grub-version.tar.gz.  The current version is 2.02, so the file you
should grab is:


   To unbundle GRUB use the instruction:

     zcat grub-2.02.tar.gz | tar xvf -

   which will create a directory called 'grub-2.02' with all the
sources.  You can look at the file 'INSTALL' for detailed instructions
on how to build and install GRUB, but you should be able to just do:

     cd grub-2.02
     make install

   Also, the latest version is available using Git.  See
<> for more

File:,  Node: Reporting bugs,  Next: Future,  Prev: Obtaining and Building GRUB,  Up: Top

Appendix B Reporting bugs

These are the guideline for how to report bugs.  Take a look at this
list below before you submit bugs:

  1. Before getting unsettled, read this manual through and through.
     Also, see the GNU GRUB FAQ

  2. Always mention the information on your GRUB. The version number and
     the configuration are quite important.  If you build it yourself,
     write the options specified to the configure script and your
     operating system, including the versions of gcc and binutils.

  3. If you have trouble with the installation, inform us of how you
     installed GRUB. Don't omit error messages, if any.  Just 'GRUB
     hangs up when it boots' is not enough.

     The information on your hardware is also essential.  These are
     especially important: the geometries and the partition tables of
     your hard disk drives and your BIOS.

  4. If GRUB cannot boot your operating system, write down _everything_
     you see on the screen.  Don't paraphrase them, like 'The foo OS
     crashes with GRUB, even though it can boot with the bar boot loader
     just fine'.  Mention the commands you executed, the messages
     printed by them, and information on your operating system including
     the version number.

  5. Explain what you wanted to do.  It is very useful to know your
     purpose and your wish, and how GRUB didn't satisfy you.

  6. If you can investigate the problem yourself, please do.  That will
     give you and us much more information on the problem.  Attaching a
     patch is even better.

     When you attach a patch, make the patch in unified diff format, and
     write ChangeLog entries.  But, even when you make a patch, don't
     forget to explain the problem, so that we can understand what your
     patch is for.

  7. Write down anything that you think might be related.  Please
     understand that we often need to reproduce the same problem you
     encountered in our environment.  So your information should be
     sufficient for us to do the same thing--Don't forget that we cannot
     see your computer directly.  If you are not sure whether to state a
     fact or leave it out, state it!  Reporting too many things is much
     better than omitting something important.

   If you follow the guideline above, submit a report to the Bug
Tracking System (
Alternatively, you can submit a report via electronic mail to
<bug-grub AT>, but we strongly recommend that you use the Bug
Tracking System, because e-mail can be passed over easily.

   Once we get your report, we will try to fix the bugs.

File:,  Node: Future,  Next: Copying This Manual,  Prev: Reporting bugs,  Up: Top

Appendix C Where GRUB will go

GRUB 2 is now quite stable and used in many production systems.  We are
currently working towards a 2.0 release.

   If you are interested in the development of GRUB 2, take a look at
the homepage (

File:,  Node: Copying This Manual,  Next: Index,  Prev: Future,  Up: Top

Appendix D Copying This Manual

* Menu:

* GNU Free Documentation License::  License for copying this manual.

File:,  Node: GNU Free Documentation License,  Up: Copying This Manual

D.1 GNU Free Documentation License

                      Version 1.2, November 2002

     Copyright (C) 2000,2001,2002 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
     51 Franklin St, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA  02110-1301, USA

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D.1.1 ADDENDUM: How to use this License for your documents

To use this License in a document you have written, include a copy of
the License in the document and put the following copyright and license
notices just after the title page:

       Copyright (C)  YEAR  YOUR NAME.
       Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document
       under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2
       or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation;
       with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover
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   If you have Invariant Sections, Front-Cover Texts and Back-Cover
Texts, replace the "with...Texts."  line with this:

         with the Invariant Sections being LIST THEIR TITLES, with
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         being LIST.

   If you have Invariant Sections without Cover Texts, or some other
combination of the three, merge those two alternatives to suit the

   If your document contains nontrivial examples of program code, we
recommend releasing these examples in parallel under your choice of free
software license, such as the GNU General Public License, to permit
their use in free software.

File:,  Node: Index,  Prev: Copying This Manual,  Up: Top


* Menu:

* [:                                     [.                     (line 6)
* acpi:                                  acpi.                  (line 6)
* authenticate:                          authenticate.          (line 6)
* background_color:                      background_color.      (line 6)
* background_image:                      background_image.      (line 6)
* badram:                                badram.                (line 6)
* blocklist:                             blocklist.             (line 6)
* boot:                                  boot.                  (line 6)
* cat:                                   cat.                   (line 6)
* chainloader:                           chainloader.           (line 6)
* clear:                                 clear.                 (line 6)
* CMOS:                                  cmosdump.              (line 6)
* cmosclean:                             cmosclean.             (line 6)
* cmostest:                              cmostest.              (line 6)
* cmp:                                   cmp.                   (line 6)
* configfile:                            configfile.            (line 6)
* cpuid:                                 cpuid.                 (line 6)
* crc:                                   crc.                   (line 6)
* cryptomount:                           cryptomount.           (line 6)
* date:                                  date.                  (line 6)
* devicetree:                            devicetree.            (line 6)
* distrust:                              distrust.              (line 6)
* drivemap:                              drivemap.              (line 6)
* echo:                                  echo.                  (line 6)
* eval:                                  eval.                  (line 6)
* export:                                export.                (line 6)
* false:                                 false.                 (line 6)
* FDL, GNU Free Documentation License:   GNU Free Documentation License.
                                                                (line 6)
* gettext:                               gettext.               (line 6)
* gptsync:                               gptsync.               (line 6)
* halt:                                  halt.                  (line 6)
* hashsum:                               hashsum.               (line 6)
* help:                                  help.                  (line 6)
* initrd:                                initrd.                (line 6)
* initrd16:                              initrd16.              (line 6)
* insmod:                                insmod.                (line 6)
* keystatus:                             keystatus.             (line 6)
* linux:                                 linux.                 (line 6)
* linux16:                               linux16.               (line 6)
* list_env:                              list_env.              (line 6)
* list_trusted:                          list_trusted.          (line 6)
* loadfont:                              loadfont.              (line 6)
* load_env:                              load_env.              (line 6)
* loopback:                              loopback.              (line 6)
* ls:                                    ls.                    (line 6)
* lsfonts:                               lsfonts.               (line 6)
* lsmod:                                 lsmod.                 (line 6)
* md5sum:                                md5sum.                (line 6)
* menuentry:                             menuentry.             (line 6)
* module:                                module.                (line 6)
* multiboot:                             multiboot.             (line 6)
* nativedisk:                            nativedisk.            (line 6)
* net_add_addr:                          net_add_addr.          (line 6)
* net_add_dns:                           net_add_dns.           (line 6)
* net_add_route:                         net_add_route.         (line 6)
* net_bootp:                             net_bootp.             (line 6)
* net_del_addr:                          net_del_addr.          (line 6)
* net_del_dns:                           net_del_dns.           (line 6)
* net_del_route:                         net_del_route.         (line 6)
* net_get_dhcp_option:                   net_get_dhcp_option.   (line 6)
* net_ipv6_autoconf:                     net_ipv6_autoconf.     (line 6)
* net_ls_addr:                           net_ls_addr.           (line 6)
* net_ls_cards:                          net_ls_cards.          (line 6)
* net_ls_dns:                            net_ls_dns.            (line 6)
* net_ls_routes:                         net_ls_routes.         (line 6)
* net_nslookup:                          net_nslookup.          (line 6)
* normal:                                normal.                (line 6)
* normal_exit:                           normal_exit.           (line 6)
* parttool:                              parttool.              (line 6)
* password:                              password.              (line 6)
* password_pbkdf2:                       password_pbkdf2.       (line 6)
* play:                                  play.                  (line 6)
* probe:                                 probe.                 (line 6)
* pxe_unload:                            pxe_unload.            (line 6)
* read:                                  read.                  (line 6)
* reboot:                                reboot.                (line 6)
* regexp:                                regexp.                (line 6)
* rmmod:                                 rmmod.                 (line 6)
* save_env:                              save_env.              (line 6)
* search:                                search.                (line 6)
* sendkey:                               sendkey.               (line 6)
* serial:                                serial.                (line 6)
* set:                                   set.                   (line 6)
* sha1sum:                               sha1sum.               (line 6)
* sha256sum:                             sha256sum.             (line 6)
* sha512sum:                             sha512sum.             (line 6)
* sleep:                                 sleep.                 (line 6)
* source:                                source.                (line 6)
* submenu:                               submenu.               (line 6)
* terminal_input:                        terminal_input.        (line 6)
* terminal_output:                       terminal_output.       (line 6)
* terminfo:                              terminfo.              (line 6)
* test:                                  test.                  (line 6)
* true:                                  true.                  (line 6)
* trust:                                 trust.                 (line 6)
* unset:                                 unset.                 (line 6)
* verify_detached:                       verify_detached.       (line 6)
* videoinfo:                             videoinfo.             (line 6)
* xen_hypervisor:                        xen_hypervisor.        (line 6)
* xen_initrd:                            xen_initrd.            (line 6)
* xen_linux:                             xen_linux.             (line 6)
* xen_xsm:                               xen_xsm.               (line 6)

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