Customizing The Grub System Bootloader

This howto will describe how you can change the background image/color, make a new background/splash image from your existing image, rename the menu, reorder the position of menu items, add extra boot arguments to the kernel, change the default menu item, change the default timeout before the system loads the default menu item, add another operating system to the menu.

Applicable to Centos Versions:

  • Centos 5.x
  • Centos 6.x


Explanation of requirements.

  1. Working Centos install
  2. Root access to the system in question

Doing the Work

Basic description of what will be done and what is expected.

  1. The location of the Grub bootloader conf and menu.1st:
  2. Custom spash image:
  3. Copying the newly created image to the proper location so Grub can find it:
  4. Removing rhgb and quiet from the kernel line and adding vga= to set the terminal color depth and resolution:
  5. Other boot time options and their descriptions can be found here:
  6. Renaming your menu items:
  7. Changing the foreground and background colors:
  8. Change the timeout (the waiting time before default=n is processed):
  9. Adding another operating system to the menu:

Troubleshooting / How To Test

Explanation troubleshooting basics and expectations.

  1. Reboot the system to verify you’ve made the correct changes:
  2. Look over this howto again to make sure you haven’t missed anything and make sure you haven’t inadvertently commented out a line in your grub.conf:

Common Problems & Fixes

For tips with troubleshooting or finding other Centos resources:

More Information

Any additional information or notes.


We test this stuff on our own machines, really we do. But you may run into problems, if you do, come to #centoshelp on

Added Reading