GRUB_DEFAULT default (not a typo)

Basil Chupin blchupin at
Mon Apr 8 10:37:43 UTC 2013

On 07/04/13 20:19, Tom H wrote:
> On Sat Apr 6 09:24, Basil Chupin wrote:
>> On 05/04/13 03:56, Tom H wrote:
>>> On Thu, Apr 4, 2013 at 11:46 AM, Kevin O'Gorman <kogorman at> wrote:
>>>> I've been following another discussion, "Changing grub default boot order"
>>>> and took a look at /etc/default/grub, where the line
>>>> GRUB_DEFAULT=saved
>>>> appeared. I don't think I put that there, but I could not swear to it. I
>>>> seem to recall that this setting used to cause GRUB to remember the last
>>>> entry used and to use it again by default. That is not happening on my
>>>> machine, a fresh Xubuntu install of 12.04.
>>>> Instead, GRUB always defaults to entry 0, and I have to change it to entry 5
>>>> because entry 0 is bogus, GRUB having picked up some historical artifacts
>>>> and put them in the menu.
>>>> This seems weird. Should it work? Should it even be allowed? It has
>>>> persisted through several kernel upgrades, so it has not caused great
>>>> mischief....
>>> AFAIK Ubuntu's default is "GRUB_DEFAULT=0" (it's upstreams's default).
>>> "GRUB_DEFAULT=saved" is useful/functional if you've used
>>> "grub-set-default" or "grub-reboot" to set the default grub entry or
>>> if you've set "GRUB_SAVEDEFAULT=true" (which is unset by default and
>>> which you need to set in order for grub ro re-use the last menuentry
>>> choice).
>> I have never, ever, fiddled with these settings and yet I can see that
>> GRUB_DEFAULT is set to "saved" and not to some numeric value (except
>> where I have now set it in 2 places to the value of "2" to boot into the
>> second OS installed on my system). But this doesn't mean that you are
>> not correct when you state that "0" is the default setting 'upstream'.
> The Ubuntu default is "GRUB_DEFAULT=0" whether you claim to have
> "fiddled" with "/etc/default/grub" or not. You say that you have more
> than one distro installed. Is one of them Fedora (its default's
> "GRUB_DEFAULT=saved")?
> "/etc/default/grub" is created by the grub-pc postinst script. It's
> copied from "/usr/share/grub/default/grub" (installed by grub2-common)
> and GRUB_DEFAULT isn't changed from "GRUB_DEFAULT=0" in
> "/usr/share/grub/default/grub".

I have reread what I wrote and have to say that one should not change 
one's wording halfway thru a response or at least one should read what 
one wrote before sending the message especially when one has a ver 
painful and throbbing abscessed tooth :-( .

The Ubuntu install does show default=0, and I don't, as yet, have Fedora 

I don't know what caused the default=save to show up in 
/etc/default/grub. But it didn't affect anything.


Using openSUSE 12.3 x86_64 KDE 4.10.2 & kernel 3.8.6-1 on a system with-
AMD FX 8-core 3.6/4.2GHz processor
16GB PC14900/1866MHz Quad Channel Corsair "Vengeance" RAM
Gigabyte AMD3+ m/board; Gigabyte nVidia GTX550Ti 1GB DDR5 GPU

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