Edit boot screen

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Edit boot screen

Postby bengtb » 2006-06-04 00:17

I am new in this forum and rather new to Linux.
Today I installed Debian 3.1 and it went without a hitch :D Great work on the new installer :D.
I have had a Debian distro (7CD:s), collecting dust for two years because I did not know how to properly install it. There were always something that would not work, and I do not know enough to correct it :evil:

Now, I am dual-booting Debian 3.1 :D with Windows XP and I need to edit the rather boring boot screen at start-up. It is a text based, DOS-like environment, and I would like to change the menu, (the order of the OS and the timeout), how do I do that?

Previously I had SUSE 10.1 installed and the GRUB-loader had a nice graphical boot menu, can I get that in the Debian 3.1 GRUB?
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Postby nayoo » 2006-06-04 07:53

Ok, I will post my experience of making Dual-Boot system here.

There are many ways of making multi-boots or dual-boot systems. It is just a matter of your choice and convenience. For me, I followed this http://www.aboutdebian.com/dualboot.htm.

My method which I am going to describe here is all from that site. You can also go and take a look there. This method has been tested with my system and a friend of mine's. It worked. I'm now using a dual-boot system.

Making a dual-boot system
  1. Install your XP first. If XP has been installed, then make a new clean partition for Linux. (10G is more than enough.)
  2. Insert your Debian installer CD, start installation
    aboutdebian.com dualboot.htm wrote:Single Hard-Drive Setup

    On the partition list screen arrow down to the line that contains the words "FREE SPACE" which will be unpartitioned space on your primary (IDE1) drive (which also contains the Windows partition) and press Enter.

    On the "How to use this free space" screen select Automatically partition the free space and press Enter. (This will create both the root and swap partitions.)

    When asked for a partitioning scheme use the default All files in one partition scheme by pressing Enter.

    Back on the partition list screen you should see that you have a "#1 Primary" partition formatted as FAT or NTFS which will be your Windows partition, a "#2 Primary" partition which is the root partition for your Debian installation, and a logical swap partition (#5).

    If you plan on using NTLDR arrow the highlight bar to the #1 Primary partition (your Windows partition) and press Enter. Look at the Bootable flag setting. If it's not set to on, press Enter to change it to on.

    Select Done setting up the partition and press Enter to return to the parition list screen.

    Arrow down to Finish partitioning and write changes to disk selection and press Enter and answer Yes at the confirmation screen.

    The partitions will be created and the base packages will be installed. Then you will be asked if you want to "Install the GRUB boot loader to the master boot record".

  3. Chose "NO" to install GRUB boot loader to the master boot record.
  4. There are two methods of doing "Boot Manager Screen" (1) Using Grub (Linux Boot Loader) (2) Using NTLDR
  5. This method uses NTLDR so you need to install a software in your XP. This software is called "bootpart" and can be obtained for free of charge from here. http://www.winimage.com/bootpart.htm
  6. Download and install "bootpart" in your Widnows XP. Open your DOS shell.
  7. C:\>cd\bootpart
  8. And type "bootpart"
  9. Enter this bootpart command "bootpart 1 bootsect.lnx Debian Linux"
  10. type in "bootpart list"
    aboutdebian.com dualboot.htm wrote:which basically just displays the selections that are contained in the BOOT.INI file and you should see the "Debian Linux" selection listed.

    IMPORTANT: Do NOT delete the bootpart folder on your Windows C: drive. It contains the "bootsect.lnx" file that NTLDR calls.

    Now just reboot your system and "Debian Linux" should be listed with your Windows selection(s) on the boot menu.

As for the final step (after you have completed all 10 steps described above), Select the Debian from your newly configured Boot Manager screen (WinXP + Debian up down menu), and put the Debian No.1 installation CD and continue.

All the methods described above are from AboutDebian.com and credits should go to them. I just used the method and shared with you. However, this method indeed worked for me.

May be, anyone who has done dual-boot would also share their method here.

Good Luck!
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Postby utrrrongeeb » 2006-06-04 10:03

I had Windows on hda2, the way it had come from the Dell plant. Another hd was put in, partitioned in Windows, and then Debian was installed onto hdb1. GRUB went to the MBR. After that, in Gnome I went to Applications-System-Boot, and changed the default OS and the timeout. Now, by default it boots to GRUB on hdb1, but GRUB goes to Windows after 5 seconds.
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Postby Lou » 2006-06-04 17:43

bengtb wrote:
"I would like to change the menu, (the order of the OS and the timeout), how do I do that? "

# nano /boot/grub/menu.lst

for the timeout edit this section, and write the amount of seconds you want it to delay when booting:

## timeout sec
# Set a timeout, in SEC seconds, before automatically booting the default entry
# (normally the first entry defined).
timeout 5

it comes with 5 seconds by default, i got it on zero, 'cause all i got is debian on my box.

For the order of the OS, put zero for Debian if you want GRUB to list it first up on the boot menu.

## default num
# Set the default entry to the entry number NUM. Numbering starts from 0, and
# the entry number 0 is the default if the command is not used.
# You can specify 'saved' instead of a number. In this case, the default entry
# is the entry saved with the command 'savedefault'.
default 0

"Previously I had SUSE 10.1 installed and the GRUB-loader had a nice graphical boot menu, can I get that in the Debian 3.1 GRUB?"

No idea, the default GRUB graphical boot menu (blue and white) is too fancy for me and i'm always saving on resources, so i erased the stanza that starts with:

# Pretty colours

so it shows the menu in plain white.

I know, i'm radical, man :)
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