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I'm total new to Linux / Grub but not new to changing configurations. I play much with configs and i like to try out many things and what is possible. So I will try now Linux.

I have now different Linux / Windows on my Laptop and want to try if its possible to boot different OS based on the pressed key.


Grub is invisible (or just shown as a logo, so i know that i can now press a key)

Start Laptop -> POST -> Grub starts -> F1 pressed -> Grub GUI becomes visible

Start Laptop -> POST -> Grub starts -> F2 pressed -> Ubuntu starts

Start Laptop -> POST -> Grub starts -> F3 pressed -> something else starts

Start Laptop -> POST -> Grub starts -> nothing pressed -> Windows starts

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i installed ubuntu, the result: grub starts automatically, after a short time, ubuntu starts. That isnt what i asked for :P – user1447930 Nov 5 '13 at 17:08
Read the answer to this question:… ( on a dual boot machine however grub should theoretically already be visible ) – thom Nov 5 '13 at 17:10
Grub is showing already but what i want is: if nothing is pressed: windows starts automatically (without showing up grub), if F2 is pressed Ubuntu should boot and if i press F1 i want grub to show up – user1447930 Nov 5 '13 at 17:16
boot windows default: – thom Nov 5 '13 at 17:24

What you want can't be done. What will capture your F1, F2 key press and direct the computer to the specific action?

The first thing that loads is the BIOS (or UEFI). This cannot do what you want.

The second thing that loads is GRUB. This can do part of what you want but not the way you want it.

The third thing that loads is Ubuntu or Windows based on your inaction / action.

To do what you want with GRUB. You have to change the default settings:

Make Windows the default boot. Follow How do I set the grub timeout and the grub default boot entry? to change the default=0 to the number corresponding to the Windows entry in the GRUB list. Note the first item (Ubuntu) is 0, the second item is 1, etc.

Hide GRUB by default. Follow How to hide grub2 menu? so that GRUB does not show up if you don't press anything.

Progress so far:

When you press nothing, GRUB won't show and after the set timeout period Windows will boot.

When you press and hold Shift GRUB menu will pop up and you will be able to choose Ubuntu or any of the other options in GRUB including Windows.

Hope this helps

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So its not possible to configure GRUB like the POST so its possible to to hit a key while grub is loaded/loading to start a specified OS and if no key is pressed another specified OS will be loaded? – user1447930 Nov 5 '13 at 18:29

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