Provided by: lilo_23.2-2_amd64 bug


       lilo - install boot loader


       Main function:

        /sbin/lilo - install boot loader

       Auxiliary uses:

        /sbin/lilo -A - activate/show active partition
        /sbin/lilo -E - edit header or update a bitmap file
        /sbin/lilo -I - inquire path name of current kernel
        /sbin/lilo -M - write a Master Boot Loader on a device
        /sbin/lilo -q - query map
        /sbin/lilo -R - set default command line for next reboot
        /sbin/lilo -T - tell more about specified topic
        /sbin/lilo {-u|-U} - uninstall LILO boot loader


       lilo installs a boot loader that will be activated the next time you boot your system. The
       default configuration file /etc/lilo.conf (see 'man lilo.conf') will contain most options,
       but  many,  including those which override the configuration file, may be specified on the
       command line.

       -A master-device [ N ]
              Used with a single argument, inquire of active partition on  device  master-device;
              e.g., /dev/hda.  With N==0, deactivate all partitions on the device.  With N in the
              range  [1..n],  activate  the  specified  partition  and  deactivate  all   others.
              Normally,  only  primary  partitions  [1..4]  may be activated, but if the Extended
              Master Boot Loader is present on the Master Boot Record of the device (see  the  -M
              option),  any partition may be made active.  Whether the actual OS in the partition
              will boot from an extended partition depends on  the  characteristics  of  the  OS.
              LILO boot records for Linux may be booted from an extended partition.

       -b bootdev
              Specify  the  boot  device;  i.e.,  where  the  boot loader will be installed.  "-b
              /dev/hda" specifies the Master Boot Record;  "-b  /dev/sdb5"  specifies  the  first
              extended partition on the second SCSI disk.

       -B bitmap-file
              Specify  a  bitmap  file  for the boot-time graphics screen, preferably one already
              pre-processed with the 'lilo -E' command.

       -c     Enable map compaction. This will merge read requests from adjacent sectors.  Speeds
              up the booting (especially from floppy).

       -C config-file
              lilo  Specify  an  alternate  pathname  for  the  configuration  file.  This option
              overrides the use of the default configuration file, /etc/lilo.conf.

       -d delay
              Specifies the delay time in tenths of a second (20 = 2  sec)  before  automatically
              booting  the  first  image.  Gives you time to interrupt the automatic boot process
              with Shift, Alt, Ctrl, ScrollLock, or CapsLock.  If interrupted, the `boot:' prompt
              is  displayed.   This  switch  is  overridden  by  the  appearance of prompt in the
              configuration file.

       -D label
              Use the kernel with the given label, instead of the first one in the list,  as  the
              default kernel to boot.

       -E filename.ext
              If  .ext  is  .bmp,  then  take the file to be a bitmap graphic file for use in the
              "bitmap=" configuration file directive.  Enter an interactive editor to  create  or
              update  the color/placement information in the bitmap file LILO header.  (see 'bmp-
              colors', 'bmp-table', and 'bmp-timer' on the man page for 'lilo.conf(5)'.)

              If .ext is .dat, then take the file to be  a  configuration  file  which  specifies
              bitmap graphic parameters, which are transferred into the LILO header in the bitmap
              file of the same name.

              When a .bmp file is modified using a graphics editor (e.g., GIMP), the LILO  header
              will  be  lost.   It  can be restored using the .dat file, which is used as a text-
              based backup for the LILO header information.

       -f disk-tab
              Specify disk geometry parameter file. (The default is /etc/disktab.)

       -F     Override boot sector check for filesystems (e.g., swap, XFS, ...)  which  might  be
              destroyed  by  the  installation of the LILO boot sector on the first sector of the
              partition.  These filesystems use the first sector as a superblock.

              Compare with "-P ignore", which bypasses certain partition table checks.

       -g     Generate cylinder/head/sector (geometric) disk addresses.  Limited to cylinders  up
              to 1023.  Forces compatibility with older versions of LILO.

       -H     Override fatal halt when a RAID array does not have all disks active.

       -i boot-loader
              Specify a file to be used as the new boot loader. (The default is /boot/boot.b.)

       -I label [D|a|i|k|r|R]
              label  is  taken  to  be  the name of an image specified in the configuration file.
              This command will print the path name of the corresponding  kernel  file,  keytable
              file, initial ramdisk file, root specification, or "append=" string ("i", "k", "r",
              "R", or "a" option).  The "D" option ignores the label parameter,  and  prints  the
              default "image=" label, or first "image=" label if no default image is specified.

       -l     Generate 24-bit linear sector addresses instead of cylinder/head/sector addresses.

       -L     Generate  32-bit Logical Block Addresses instead of cylinder/head/sector addresses,
              allowing access to all partitions on disks with more than 1024 cylinders.

       -m map-file
              Use specified map file instead of the default.

       -M master-device [mbr|ext]
              Install a Master Boot Record on the device specified  as  master-device,  selecting
              the  Standard or Extended Master Boot Loader per the option.  The primary partition
              table on master-device is undisturbed.  If no valid Volume-ID  (serial  number)  is
              present,  then  generate  one  and  write  it to the MBR.  If mbr is specified, the
              Standard Master Boot Loader will search partitions 1-4 for an active flag, and boot
              the  flagged partition.  Only one active flag is allowed.  If ext is specified, the
              search for an active partition will  include  extended  partitions  as  well.   The
              presence of the Extended Master Boot Loader on the Master Boot Record (MBR = sector
              0) of a disk affects the operation of the -A option.

       -p     Require interactive entry of all passwords specified as  ""  in  the  configuration

       -P {fix|ignore|<global-option>}
              Fix  or  ignore  `corrupt' partition tables, i.e., partition tables with linear and
              cylinder/head/sector addresses that do not correspond.  Always try -P ignore first,
              as  -P fix will re-write the partition table, possibly destroying all partitions on
              the disk.

              -P ignore is also used to bypass the partition  table  check  for  partition  types
              within  the  partition  table which might not allow the installation of a LILO boot
              sector.  Compare with the "-F" flag, which overrides the check of the  actual  boot

              -P  <global-option> allows the passing of any global option which may appear in the
              global section (top) of the configuration file (/etc/lilo.conf).  For instance,  -P
              nowarn  will  pass  the  "nowarn"  option,  just as though "nowarn" appeared in the
              configuration file (same as the "-w" switch).  Similarly, -P timeout=50 will add or
              override  the  "timeout=" line in the configuration file.  Note that the general -P
              switch actually duplicates a number of command line option switches.   However,  it
              is not strictly the same as some switches whick cause an override of other options;
              e.g., "-g" (-P geometric), "-L" (-P lba32).

       -q     List the currently mapped files.  lilo maintains  a  file,  by  default  /boot/map,
              containing  the  name and location of the kernel(s) to boot.  This option will list
              the names therein.  Use with -v for more detailed information about  the  installed
              boot loader.

       -r root-directory
              Before  doing  anything  else, do a chroot to the indicated directory. The new root
              directory must contain a /dev directory, and may need a  /boot  directory.  It  may
              also need an /etc/lilo.conf file.

       -R command line
              This option sets the default command for the boot loader the next time it executes.
              The boot loader will then erase this line: this  is  a  once-only  command.  It  is
              typically  used in reboot scripts, just before calling `shutdown -r'.  Used without
              any arguments, it will cancel a lock-ed or fallback command line.

       -s save-file
              When lilo writes a new boot sector, it preserves the former contents of the  sector
              in  a  file,  named  by  default  /boot/boot.NNNN,  where  NNNN  is the hexadecimal
              representation of the major and minor device numbers of the  drive/partition.  This
              option  specifies  the  backup  save  file  in  one of three ways: a save directory
              (default is '/boot') using  the  default  filename  'boot.NNNN'  in  the  specified
              directory;  a  pathname  template  to  which  '.NNNN' is appended (default would be
              '/boot/boot'); or the full pathname of the file, which  must  include  the  correct
              '.NNNN'  suffix.  When  used  with  the  -u  option, the full file pathname must be

       -S save-file
              Normally, lilo will not overwrite an existing boot sector save file.  This  options
              says  that  overwriting  is to be forced. As with -s, the specification may be of a
              save directory, pathname template, or full pathname  (which  includes  the  '.NNNN'

       -t     Test only. Do not really write a new boot sector or map file.  Use together with -v
              to find out what lilo is about to do.

       -T option
              Print out system information, some of it extracted from the system bios.   This  is
              more convenient than booting the LILO diagnostic floppy on problem systems.  option
              may be any one of the following:

                 help  - print a list of available diagnostics
                 ChRul - list the partition types subject to
                 EBDA  - list Extended BIOS Data Area information
                 geom=<drive> list drive geometry for bios drive;
                         e.g., geom=0x80
                 geom  - list drive geometry for all drives
                 table=<drive> list the primary partition table;
                         e.g., table=/dev/sda
                 video - list graphic modes available to boot

       -u [device-name]
              Uninstall lilo by copying the saved boot sector back.  The '-s' and  '-C'  switches
              may  be  used  with  this  option.   The  device-name is optional.  A time-stamp is

       -U [device-name]
              Idem, but do not check the time-stamp.

       -v     Increase verbosity. Giving one to five -v options will make lilo more  verbose,  or
              use, -v n (n=1..5) to set verbosity level 'n'.

       -V     Print version number.

       -w     Used  as -w or -w-, suppress warning messages.  Used as -w+, override nowarn in the
              configuration file, and show warning messages.

       -x option
              For RAID installations only.  The option may be any of  the  keywords  none,  auto,
              mbr,  mbr-only,  or  a  comma  separated list of additional boot devices (no spaces
              allowed in the list).

       -X     Reserved for LILO internal use.  May produce different output  for  different  LILO
              versions.  The  line  beginning "CFLAGS=" will contain the compiler options used to
              generate this version of LILO.

       -z     When used with the  `-M'  switch,  clears  the  Volume-ID.   Usually  used  in  the
              following sequence to generate a new Volume-ID:
                   lilo -z -M /dev/hda
                   lilo -M /dev/hda

       -Z option
              Tells  the  boot installer whether special precautions need to be taken because the
              BIOS fails to pass the correct device code in DL (-Z0). Or  may  specify  that  the
              BIOS  always  gets DL right (-Z1). Corresponds to, and overrides, the configuration
              file option 'bios-passes-dl='.

       The above command line options correspond to the key words in the  config  file  indicated

              -b bootdev       boot=bootdev
              -B file.bmp      bitmap=file.bmp
              -c               compact
              -d dsec          delay=dsec
              -D label         default=label
              -i boot-loader   install=boot-loader
              -f file          disktab=file
              -g               geometric
              -l               linear
              -L               lba32
              -m mapfile       map=mapfile
              -P fix           fix-table
              -P ignore        ignore-table
              -s file          backup=file
              -S file          force-backup=file
              -v [N]           verbose=N
              -w               nowarn
              -x option        raid-extra-boot=option
              -Z option        bios-passes-dl=option


       The options described here may be specified at boot time on the command line when a kernel
       image is booted.  These options are processed by LILO, and are removed  from  the  command
       line before it is passed to the kernel, unless otherwise noted.

       lock   Locks the command line, as though 'lock' had been specified in 'lilo.conf.'

              Specifies  the  maximum  memory  in  the  system in bytes, kilobytes, megabytes, or
              gigabytes.  This option is not removed from the command line, and is always  passed
              to the kernel.

       nobd   Suppresses  the  BIOS  data  check.   This option is reserved for use with non-IBM-
              compliant BIOS's which hang with the lines:

                   BIOS data check

              Allows overriding the default video mode upon kernel startup.


       The boot process takes place in two stages.  The first stage loader is  a  single  sector,
       and  is  loaded by the BIOS or by the loader in the MBR.  It loads the multi-sector second
       stage loader, but is very space limited.  When the first stage  loader  gets  control,  it
       types  the  letter "L"; when it is ready to transfer control to the second stage loader it
       types the letter "I".  If any error occurs, like a disk read error,  it  will  put  out  a
       hexadecimal  error  code,  and then it will re-try the operation.  All hex error codes are
       BIOS return values, except for the lilo-generated 40, 99 and 9A.  A partial list of  error
       codes follows:

              00  no error
              01  invalid disk command
              02  address mark not found
              03  disk write-protected
              04  sector not found
              06  floppy disk removed
              08  DMA overrun
              0A  bad sector flag
              0B  bad track flag
              20  controller failure
              40  seek failure (BIOS)
              40  cylinder>1023 (LILO)
              99  invalid second stage index sector (LILO)
              9A  no second stage loader signature (LILO)
              AA  drive not ready
              FF  sense operation failed

       Error  code  40  is  generated  by  the BIOS, or by LILO during the conversion of a linear
       (24-bit) disk address to a geometric (C:H:S) address.   On  older  systems  which  do  not
       support  lba32  (32-bit)  addressing,  this error may also be generated.  Errors 99 and 9A
       usually mean the map file (-m or map=) is not readable, likely because LILO was not re-run
       after  some  system  change, or there is a geometry mis-match between what LILO used (lilo
       -v3 to display) and what is actually being used by the BIOS (one of  the  lilo  diagnostic
       disks, available in the source distribution, may be needed to diagnose this problem).

       When  the  second  stage  loader  has received control from the first stage, it prints the
       letter "L", and when it has initialized itself, including verifying the "Descriptor Table"
       - the list of kernels/others to boot - it will print the letter "O", to form the full word
       "LILO", in uppercase.

       All second stage loader error messages are English text, and try to pinpoint, more or less
       successfully, the point of failure.


       lilo is known to have problems with the reiserfs introduced with the 2.2.x kernels, unless
       the file system is mounted with  the  'notail'  option.   This  incompatibility  has  been
       resolved  with  reiserfs  3.6.18 and lilo 21.6.  reiser4 introduced with the 2.5.x kernels
       requires lilo 22.5.2 or later.

       Beginning with version 22.0,  RAID  installations  write  the  boot  record  to  the  RAID
       partition. Conditional writing of MBRs may occur to aid in making the RAID set bootable in
       a recovery situation, but all  default  actions  may  be  overridden.  Action  similar  to
       previous versions is achieved using the `-x mbr-only' switch.


       Configuration  file  options `backup' and `force-backup' should specify a backup directory
       or backup file pathname template on all RAID installations. Use of  an  explicit  filename
       may not allow multiple backup files to be created correctly. It is best to use the default
       mechanism, as it works correctly in all cases.


       fdisk(8), lilo.conf(5), mkrescue(8), mkinitrd(8).

       The lilo distribution comes with very extensive  TeX  documentation  through  Version  21.
       Text  file  README's  in the source directory provide updates on more recent topics.  This
       can be found in /usr/share/doc/lilo-doc/ on Debian-based systems.


       Werner Almesberger <> (versions 0 to 21)
       John Coffman <> (21.2 to present date)

                                           07 Oct 2005                                    LILO(8)