How to set Windows as Default OS in Grub
By on August 24th, 2009

Some of us, or rather most of us dual boot windows and Linux. Bot the operating systems are equally important to me unless you are a Linux fanatic. Windows is as much my development platform as Linux. Now, most of us using Linux also use the Grub boot loader.

Grub

Grub

An installation of Linux after windows, places Linux on the top of the grub list and Windows at the end. That also initializes with Linux in selection and our workstation boots into Linux if allowed automatically.

To change this and put Windows as the default as well as the first OS in the list, use the steps below.

  1. Boot into Linux, that is where you will get the file to edit the boot menu for Grub.
  2. Open up the terminal, enter gksudo gedit /boot/grub/menu.lst This brings up the grub file in Gedit, the text editor.
  3. Look for the lines :
    title        Microsoft Windows XP
    root        (hd0,2)
    makeactive
    chainloader    +1

    without a ‘#’ comment at the line beginning.

  4. Bring it above the lines for booting into Linux. That should look something like kernel/ vmlinuz****Version** root=**** .
  5. You are all set. Save the file, reboot.

Your windows should be on top of the grub, and the selected OS as well. Alternatively, you can set the default selection to 1, in the same file or use SUM to change these settings. I will write about SUM in a future post.

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Author: Chinmoy Kanjilal Google Profile for Chinmoy Kanjilal
Chinmoy Kanjilal is a FOSS enthusiast and evangelist. He is passionate about Android. Security exploits turn him on and he loves to tinker with computer networks. He rants occasionally at Techarraz.com. You can connect with him on Twitter @ckandroid.

Chinmoy Kanjilal has written and can be contacted at chinmoy@techie-buzz.com.
  • http://m.com Marc

    why would you want to set windows as default, but anyway it is handy if you install linux on a noobs PC

  • http://www.techarraz.com chinmoy

    Ya, for that reason, and if you are primarily a windows user and use Linux for specific purpose, like development.

  • hoang

    “Open up the terminal, enter gksudo gedit /boot/grub/menu.lst ”
    when i openned it, i see nothing. i have ubuntu 10.04 64bit please help! thanks

 
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