GraphicalGrubConfig

Summary

Ubuntu should include a graphical tool for editing GRUB's configuration.

Rationale

There is at least one support request per week that regards how to configure the boot loader. For many users, this task isn't easy. It requires the user to learn how GRUB menu's configuration is generated.

A solution to this problem would be to provide, in the default install, a graphical utility for editing GRUB's configuration.

Use Cases

  • Bob wants to make Windows the default operating system. He uses the utility to drag Windows to the first entry position.
  • Pedro wants the GRUB menu to appear when he boots his system. He opens the utility, and unchecks the Hide Menu option (or checks the Show Menu option).
  • John wants to change the length of the countdown. He opens the utility, and increases it.

Scope

This specification would affect 'ubuntu-desktop' to include the graphical tool. There's already a utility available for this, grubconf but it's abandoned and its author recommends GST.

Design

Currently, I see two possible designs for handling the magic kernel list:

  • Parse menu.lst commented variables, and let 'update-grub' do the work.
  • Replace 'update-grub'.

Implementation

To be discussed.

Outstanding Issues

None right now.

BoF agenda and discussion

This would be really important, since a lot of users have a dual- or multi-boot system. Most new users tend to leave Windows installed and more experienced users tend to have more than one Linux system installed. This also means that a significant portion of Ubuntu users are exposed to the dull, black and white GRUB menu, so using a splash image by default would make sense.

Nowadays we have two interesting packages in the repositories: grub-splashimages and kubuntu-grub-splashimages

Both contain a lot of splashimages, but no tool to easily use them. So users not only need to manually edit /boot/grub/menu.lst, they also need to find out first which lines to enter, since menu.lst doesn't have a placeholder for splashimages.

Another reason for such a tool is that the time GRUB waits for a selection can also only be changed by editing /boot/grub/menu.lst.

As far as splashimages are concerned, there already exists such a GUI-tool for usplash (http://blogs.ubuntu-nl.org/dennis/2006/09/13/more-fun-with-usplash/) but it's not in the repos yet.

--Sokraates


I have a python GUI tool here: http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=295524

It would surely need some polish but feel free to use any parts of it, should you want to.

--Jimmy


I also have a GUI Grub editor, based on zenity, here: http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=228104 It is written as a BASH script, and does most common Grub config things.

--Tomosaur


There's another tool available: StartUp Manager -- AzraelNightwalker 2007-10-12 13:35:55


Even I wrote one! Smile :) https://code.launchpad.net/grubmenu --OhadLutzky

Suggestions

Please, include the option that Ubuntu does not put all of the kernel list in the grub.lst (kernel-2.6.11-1. kernel-2.6.11-2, etc.). Simply putting "last kernel", "last kernel in recovery mode" and the previous last kernel (if something fails in last kernel) should be enough. I think that it's annoying that we could have a list of 20 kernels: you "never" select the oldest kernel. Xan.


CategorySpec

GraphicalGrubConfig (last edited 2010-10-20 16:16:12 by d-u-thibault)