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Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Default Complete Operating system

What makes a complete operating system ? Years ago when the MS windows program was made, one thing about it was it was not a complete operating system, it was just a program, and required Dos to boot and start the computer, so any way, I never pursued MS windows and don't know much about that, but lately I have been noticing a trend, including the Linux's , I no longer use Linux either for various reasons, but any way since I do read various discussions about it , and questions about the many problems that seem to occur , I started wondering if Linux really can be considered a complete OS, I mean from what I have been seeing, it can not boot without some kind of boot loader, Grub2 being the standard default, even though there are others.
3 OS's, that I do consider complete OS's, none of which require or are dependent on some other system to boot, FreeDos, boots on it's own, no need for Grub2 or any other boot loader, also OpenBsd does not require any thing like Grub ,Lilo, etc,... and then even Minix3, boots just fine with out any other program to boot it.
I do realize that when people want multi boot systems , a menu of some sort is helpful, for selecting which system to boot, but I am referring to just a single OS, it seems Linux is not capable of booting by it'self , like MS windows, it requires a "boot loader" of some sort, or maybe I am wrong, can Linux boot , without Grub,Lilo, or some other boot loader, ?
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Old 2 Weeks Ago
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I think your "boot" distinction is misdirected.
  • The process of loading a kernel into memory and transferring execution to it -- bootloading -- varies by architecture. You are considering only one architecture.* Any OS that functions across multiple architectures will have multiple boot loaders. As an example, OpenBSD/armv7 uses u-boot to load the kernel. This is a third party bootloader.
  • Linux is packaged by various groups as "distributions" containing a Linux kernel and whatever utilities and libraries the distributors desire. Android is a good example. It is distributed by Google with a Linux kernel, libraries, a graphics subsystem, select utility programs, and some end-user applications. Android is then repackaged by handset manufacturers, and then again by telecom companies. The "distribution" on any Android phone or tablet is likely to be a conglomeration of components from these various distributors.
  • The BSD family of OSes, and MS Windows too, are each shipped as a cohesive whole.** The kernel, libraries, userland utilities and applications, and graphics systems are shipped together. (MS Windows may be distributed by hardware manufacturers, who may add their own software solutions on top of the Microsoft product.)
* Intel has two architectures -- 32 and 64 bit -- but for this discussion they are one, as an identical bootloader program may be used. Confusing things further, the Intel architecture has two completely different booting procedures - MBR and EFI.

** MS Windows on Intel ran "on top of DOS" until the advent of Windows NT in 1993. On Intel, in parallel, Windows 95 through Windows ME used the DOS kernel.

Last edited by jggimi; 2 Weeks Ago at 04:46 PM. Reason: clarified NT footnote, added u-boot discussion to the first bullet.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GarryR View Post
I mean from what I have been seeing, it can not boot without some kind of boot loader, Grub2 being the standard default, even though there are others.
You may also find the following section of the FreeBSD handbook suitably enlightening, even as a very general guide to bootstrapping:

https://www.freebsd.org/doc/handbook...roduction.html

In particular both the "boot manager" and the three stage boot process are covered.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Thanks both for the replies, they both help clarify better.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GarryR View Post
it seems Linux is not capable of booting by it'self
The CONFIG_EFI_STUB kernel configuration option allows Linux to boot itself in a UEFI system:

https://www.kernel.org/doc/Documentation/efi-stub.txt
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Linux-the-OS is a kind of patchwork thing whose pieces come from many sources. Many of the utilities are GNU, but not all. The kernel is not GNU. So I don't see why one wouldn't consider LILO to be part of the operating system, it's just another piece that comes from "somewhere".
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Quote:
jggimi >I think your "boot" distinction is misdirected.
Yes, it was, now I see it a bit different, at the moment I need to be brief, so any way,
Thanks every body,
In a nut shell, in a way, like a car, they are all complete Autos, but with out the battery, none start, except the earliest cars, old ones , were built with a "hand crank", thing in front where it could be started by cranking it manually, or (before the automatic transmissions) one can push start it.
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