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Is there a way to exit the splash screen during boot and view the verbose boot without rebooting?

For future viewers sake: this is for GRUB2 on Ubuntu.

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migrated from Dec 14 '11 at 20:18

This question came from our site for users of Linux, FreeBSD and other Un*x-like operating systems.

up vote 8 down vote accepted

If you use grub2 then the following should do the trick for every installed kernel on every boot:

  • make a backup copy of /etc/default/grub
  • Open up /etc/default/grub as root
  • Change the line GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash" to GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="" (if there is more than only quiet and splash between the quotes, keep it!)
  • save the changes
  • run sudo update-grub
  • reboot

This way this change will even be permanent after a kernel update. Also this is the only way that works in grub2 since boot/grub/menu.lst was in grub1 and is not used anymore in grub2.

More about configuring grub2 in ubuntu:

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If there is anything else except the words quiet splash it should be kept. So, just delete quiet splash. – laugh Mar 4 at 8:23
Of course you are right. I have edited your comment right into the answer. – NobbZ Mar 7 at 14:18

On bootup, press F2.

Now, you'll have the verbose feedback mode.

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Doing this only shows the verbose text once. You will have to do it on every reboot. – MaxMackie Dec 14 '11 at 20:10
@MaxMackie however, if you only need it once, then it's great. Also has the advantage that you don't have to edit your GRUB. Messing with a bootloader like that is a little hairy sometimes, even if you know what you're doing. – James Dec 14 '11 at 20:13
At what point? Like just before the splash screen? – stuartc Dec 15 '11 at 6:28
@stuartc At any point during bootup, before the display manager starts. – James Dec 15 '11 at 14:36

This works only for grub versions prior than grub2!

Open /boot/grub/menu.lst. You'll see a block like this:

title xxx
root (hd0,0)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.22-14-generic root=UUID=xxxx ro quiet splash
initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.22-14-generic

Change it to:

title xxx
root (hd0,0)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.22-14-generic root=UUID=xxxx ro
initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.22-14-generic

Note that the kernel version numbers in your case may be different. Save the file and the splash screen should be replaced with a verbose boot from now on.

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I had a poke around, I'm afraid Ubuntu is using GRUB2 in recent versions, and menu.lst has been replaced by grub.cfg which is autogenerated by a pile of scripts.. :/ – stuartc Dec 14 '11 at 20:20

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