9.5.1. Interfaces Load Order
When GRUB loads its second stage boot loader, it first searches for its configuration file. Once found, the menu interface bypass screen is displayed. If a key is pressed within three seconds, GRUB builds a menu list and displays the menu interface. If no key is pressed, the default kernel entry in the GRUB menu is used.
If the configuration file cannot be found, or if the configuration file is unreadable, GRUB loads the command line interface, allowing the user to type commands to complete the boot process.
If the configuration file is not valid, GRUB prints out the error and asks for input. This helps the user see precisely where the problem occurred. Pressing any key reloads the menu interface, where it is then possible to edit the menu option and correct the problem based on the error reported by GRUB. If the correction fails, GRUB reports an error and reloads the menu interface.