An Introduction to GRUB2 Configuration for your Linux Machine


When researching my article from last month, An introduction to the Linux boot and startup process, I became interested in learning more about GRUB2. This article provides a quick introduction to configuring GRUB2, which I will mostly refer to as GRUB for simplicity.


GRUB stands for GRand Unified Bootloader. Its function is to take over from BIOS at boot time, load itself, load the Linux kernel into memory, and then turn over execution to the kernel. Once the kernel takes over, GRUB has done its job and it is no longer needed.

GRUB supports multiple Linux kernels and allows the user to select between them at boot time using a menu. I have found this to be a very useful tool because there have been many instances that I have encountered problems with an application or system service that fails with a particular kernel version. Many times, booting to an older kernel can circumvent issues such as these. By default, three kernels are kept–the newest and two previous–when yum or dnfare used to perform upgrades.