One of the most powerful aspects of Linux concerns its open
method of starting and stopping the operating system, where it
loads specified programs using their particular configurations,
permits you to change those configurations to control the boot
process, and shuts down in a graceful and organized way.
Beyond the question of controlling the boot or shutdown process,
the open nature of Linux makes it much easier to determine the
exact source of most problems associated with starting up or
shutting down your system. A basic understanding of this process is
quite beneficial to everybody who uses a Linux system.
A lot of Linux systems use lilo, the
LInux LOader for booting operating
systems. We will only discuss GRUB, however, which is easier to use
and more flexible. Should you need information about lilo, refer to the man pages and HOWTOs. Both systems
support dual boot installations, we refer to the HOWTOs on this
subject for practical examples and background information.