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Jun 15, 2009

Design of GRUB loader

GNU GRUB ("GRUB" for short) is a boot loader package from the GNU Project. GRUB is the reference implementation of the Multiboot Specification, which allows a user to have several different operating systems on their computer at once, and to choose which one to run when the computer starts. GRUB can be used to select from different kernel images available on a particular operating system's partitions, as well as to pass boot-time parameters to such kernels.

GRUB is dynamically configurable; it loads its configuration at start up, allowing boot-time changes such as selecting different kernels or initial RAM disks. To this end, GRUB provides a simple, bash-like, command line interface which lets users write new boot sequences.

GRUB is highly portable. It supports multiple executable formats, and is geometry translation independent; while Multiboot compliant, it supports non-multiboot operating systems such as Microsoft Windows and OS/2 via a chain loading function. GRUB supports all commonly used Unix file systems as well as VFAT and NTFS as used by Windows, and supports Logical Block Address (LBA) mode. GRUB allows users to view the contents of files on any supported file system.



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