Let's customize the boot sequence with Start-Up Manager!

Well, this is a really unespected beauty I found around the net. My problem was simple: I use Ubuntu Feisty but wanted to have a KDE session too just in case of GNOME crashes, so, I installed Kubuntu Desktop. After that, I had a wonderful (Not so much as GNOME) KDE session customized a-la Ubuntu, but my Boot screen also turned to the Kubuntu one, showing Kubuntu blue logo and so on…. now, I don’ dislike that, but I love GNOME and I want a damned UBUNTU boot screen, not the Kubuntu one, since I’ll use only sporadically KDE…

You’ll say: Who cares? Not so few people. A lot of you may have installed Xubuntu Desktop and so on to try others DE, but what about the boot screen? Well…. ta-daaaan! I found this fantastic tool, Startup Manage, which strangely is not in the repositoryes! I relly think it should be installed in Ubuntu and Kubuntu by DEFAULT!!! Download it from here. Pay attention! It is not a zip file but a deb file, so, just rename it and delete the .zip final part. I just found out that my domain only support downloading of common archive files and not, say, .deb or .rpm… well, we’ll not cry for that, will we? ;P

It is a fantastic administrative graphical application with which you’ll be able not only to set the Booting screen but also a GRUB background and many other options! It is the ultimate paradise of Boot UP customizatioN!!! 😀 Let’s have now a look at the real program.

Boot Options:

Boot Options

This has a great number of fantastic features. Ever get annoyed by the fact that after a few seconds Ubuntu auto logs in? Want some more time to choose which OSes you want to run? Hey, you can do whatever you need here. And most important, you can choose which OS you want to boot by default! For example, you may prefer to boot by default Windows XP (What a bad choice but that’s your business) and not Linux but installing Ubuntu it will automatically become the first choice! So, after 10 seconds, if you are distracted it will boot… with this option the problem is radically solved! And also, supposing you’ve got a large number of Kernel choices, you can also choose which one you want to run first! It is not so obvious that the last installed Kernel should be the better choice for you, right?

And for the nerds or for any booting troubleshooting need, you can also choose not to display the Ubuntu boot up screen but to show the textual interface: this way you can see what Ubuntu is doing during boot-up! I used it to solve my network problems. That way I could see that Ubuntu was having problems starting network interfaces :) Isn’t that wonderfull?



Yes, you can also change the aspect of the selection screen, for real! Look at the screenshot: now you can have a colorful GRUB just like the one of Linspire / Freespire, Suse, Sabayon, ELive and all of this others fancy distros :) Don’t know if it is important for you but it kinda changed my day 😀 even the color of the Text can be changed, that’s incredible!

And most important of all for my personal problem… ta-daaaan! In Usplash Theme you can change the Stating Up image sequence! yes, and if you already some images installed, like the Ubuntu, Xubuntu and Kubuntu ones, you can simply switch between each other with a pop-up menù! Simpler than this…. Download new usplash themes from gnome-look.org and have fun! 😀



Personally I don’t use this but you can even set a password at the GRUB stage, so that your PC will become really secure and unaccessible even in recovery mode! Great feature.



This is another incredible feature I was really looking for. You know, upgrading from one Ubuntu version to another or simply updating you distro will soon cause you to have several Kernels at startup. Soon there will be an endless Kernel list and if you’ve got a Windows partition, it will be hardly visible at the end of the damned list. Ok, having a pair of Kernels to choose at startup could be useful but, hey, now I had more than 6!! That’s too much indeed 😛

So in this page you can limit the number of displayed Kernels!! Really great and you can also set the options to display a memtest and recovery session as well! They’re turned on by default in any Ubuntu and I really recommend you not to turn them on. If you should have any problem booting the normal session, don’t you want to have a recovery one?

But that’s not enough… you can even create a recovery floppy disk!! Great :)


I have to say that all of this options can also be setted editing the file /boot/grub/menu.lst manually but… that’s really dangerous and complicated… specially if you try to change the default operating system… you could damage this file. And it is not the easiest thing in the world to edit. So, why loosing time and risking your boot sequence health? Just use Startup Manager and all of your troubles will be solved :)

AAAAAARGH! I love this tool :)


  1. broken link guy!! (i’m Dan,please do not censure me)

  2. Thanks you for the information. I fixed it, you’ll have to download a fake .zip file and rename it deleting the .zip ending part. Aruba’s problem :(

  3. looks like it’s in the repos now :)

  4. Very well, I’m glad about it :)
    This is an old guide but it still can be followed even if you download the tool from the repos 😉

  5. can this prog fix the error when trying to boot from ubuntu install cd? (bios clock not connected, kernel panic…)

  6. Sorry i don’t think so..

Leave a Reply