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Can GRUB ever get the boot? + boot menu for common maintenance tasks



Hi there,

[A first short intro is mandatory, so people do not assume I´m a total newbie: from the early 1990s to the late 90s I was an IBM OS/2 zealot. With Linux, I started back in ´99/2000 with Caldera OpenLinux, before it was engulfed by SCO. Then I had a brief love affair with SuSE 8.x / 9.0, then I got attracted by LindowsOS, then disilussioned with KDE, jumped ship to Sun JDS Linux. When Sun dropped its linux distro I got really mad and jumped to Blag, a Fedora derivative, at the time based on FC6.]

That gets me to today when I have settled on Fedora 10 / 11.

QUESTION: what stops Fedora / RedHat from "giving the boot" to GRUB?.

I mean... I´ve run into GRUB annoyances several times over the years. In private, most people whom I speak to hate it. It could be more user friendly, but isn´t. In the case of a system which dual-boots Linux and Windows, if you erase the Linux partition (say, to install a new Linux version or resize partitions), you lose the ability to use Grub to load Windows! -because it can no longer find the kernel and panics- hillarious for a boot manager to depend on a given OS files).

Also, I think two common operations which were quite simple in OS/2 are user-hostile in Linux, and that could be improved with a little boot menu option. Those are: 1) reset graphics adapter to VGA mode (640x480x16/256) or Vesa framebuffer drivers, and 2) boot to a command line as root (yes, I know about editing the boot line in GRUB and typing "single" at the end for single user mode.

I think Linux could use some inspiration to the way IBM OS/2 did things. Basically upon boot, you had a few seconds (4-5 seconds after boot started) to press Ctrl-Alt-F1, if you did, a menu would come up, of which the two main options were:

1. Boot to command line
2. Reset video mode to VGA (so you could later fiddle with drivers, but from a functional GUI).

Any hope of ever getting this kind of functionality in Linux used by mainstream distro?.

Thoughts? Comments? Expletives? <VBG>
FC


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