Grub config file editing

Tim ignored_mailbox at
Sun Feb 19 05:54:26 UTC 2006

Jeff Vian:
>>> It does not "remember" your previous selection.  It does *always* boot
>>> the kernel marked as default unless you make some other selection from
>>> the menu.

>> It is possible to configure GRUB to work the way you argue against.
>> That can be useful for people with multi-boot systems who want to be
>> able simply reboot the current OS.

Jeff Vian:
> OK, so you *CAN* make it do that.

Well, you were rather directly, very assertively, and not totally
correctly, disputing a prior poster:

John Summerfied
>>>> However, it does not write[1] to those filesystems, and I think that 
>>>> fairly sensible.
>>>> [1] grub does write something to disk somewhere, it's able to "remember" 
>>>> what your previous selection was, and it's able to mark a partition 
>>>> active (for the DOS family of operating systems).

He correctly said it was *able* to do so, you said it couldn't do so
(i.e. it doesn't remember, and it always boots the default kernel).

If you'd said it doesn't normally do that, I'd have agreed with you, but
your prior reply was rather misleading.  Anybody who might have wanted
to do what I'd described, might well have took what you said at face
value, and not looked any further to see if it could have been done.

> It certainly is not the default behavior and requires modification of
> every stanza in grub.conf to achieve what you describe as well as
> changing the default line.  That is not easy for most, nor intuitive
> at all, and most would not consider making those changes without a
> tutorial or a clearly documented procedure and reason.

It's not difficult to do.  And unless you never prune out all your prior
kernels (which is bad management), it's not a lot of work.  The manual
isn't too bad describing this, and I certainly would read a manual for
something if I was considering customising my PC to do something.  And I
do think it *is* intuitive that a reboot actually reboots your PC using
the same system that you were already using, in certain circumstances
(e.g. multiboot systems, or systems used by other people - where they'd
expect a reboot to allow them to carry on doing what they were doing
before, and not have to worry about anything special that you might have
done before they started using the PC).

> I wonder how many people on this list actually knew that was possible
> before you posted the procedure here?

Not sure you really want an answer to that on a list which may well have
a huge number of participants...

Don't send private replies to my address, the mailbox is ignored.
I read messages from the public lists.

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