Editing the GRUB ~ HowTo

This is about customizing the grub menu which appears at the bootup. The things in this menu contains in a file called ‘menu.lst’ and its located in ‘/boot/grub’ dir. Its not difficult to edit this but bit risky if you don’t do it correctly. So for your safe its better to backup this ‘menu.lst’ file first. Then fire up your terminal/konsole, get root privileges and type,




Now you see ‘menu.lst’ through the terminal/konsole in edit mode. It looks very complex at the very first moment. But if you take a further look, you ll notice that most of the things are just comments. This HowTo explains only 4 useful edits.


  1. Changing The Default Timeout

Fined out the following phrase, then all you have to do is to assign the time for your choice in seconds. At the moment its default value is 10 seconds


Changing The Default Timeout

Changing The Default Timeout

 2.Changing The Titles

This means you can change the titles which appear at the startup. To do this scroll down the menu until you fined “##End Default Options##”,

Changing The Titles

Changing The Titles

Here you can find all the titles/names of Linux and non-Linux operating systems. You can just edit them! Mm.. Well.. I have edit “windows XP as windows sucksp”. Sorry windows folks..  My bad!




    3. Removing Items

There are things that are not useful for some users. Things like ‘recovery mode, memtest and windows divider (if you have windows)’. Erase the titles and their belongings with no fear. But its better if you can leave them by only commenting.

Removing Items

Removing Items


4. Setting up the default OS

This option is at the very top of the file,

 Setting up the default OS

Setting up the default OS

In menu.lst, each ‘title/entry’ has a number starting from 0. So count down the titles from 0 utile you fined the OS which you want to set as the default. Then give the relevant value. Please note that if you have changed any titles into comments, leave them without counting.

            If you are done with editing, finally press Ctrl+x to exit. Then it ll ask to save any changes you made. Reboot the system to check. Then if something goes wrong remember to replace the menu.lst with the file you backup early. You can use a live CD for that. Feel free to experiment further. Happy computing!


One Response to “Editing the GRUB ~ HowTo”

  1. sadeepa Says:


    Thanks for the update. We hard a hard time recovering a lost ubuntu installation and wish we have found this article a week ago. However thanks for the informative article. I starred it on google reader and shared it with others !

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