Configuring GRUB2 for Xen on Gentoo

GRUB2 is highly customizable and feature-rich, however it is a bit of a nightmare if you configure bootloaders regularly. Unfortunately GRUB 0.97 doesn't support ext4 and - if you were an idiot like me - you might have set up your new dedicated with an ext4 /boot. Now, you have neither the time nor patience to re-install and need to make Xen go.

First, copy your Dom0 .config and kernel to /boot/. /etc/grub.d/20_linux_xen picks up on the CONFIG_XEN_PRIVILEGED_GUEST=y variable.

# cp /usr/src/linux/arch/x86_64/boot/bzImage /boot/kernel-dom0
# cp /usr/src/linux/.config /boot/config-dom0

Next, remove the executable flag from /etc/grub.d/10_linux or you will end up with three or four entries that boot straight to the Dom0 kernel without the hypervisor.

# chmod -x /etc/grub.d/10_linux

To add kernel boot parameters to your grub.cfg (as generated with grub2-mkconfig and 20_linux_xen) add these lines to your /etc/default/grub file:


The former will place your boot options on the Dom0 kernel's module line. The latter will place boot options on the xen.gz hypervisor's kernel line.

Now, generate your new configuration:

# grub2-mkconfig -o /boot/grub2/grub.cfg

Once the config file has been written, determine the position of the Xen hypervisor entry and update GRUB_DEFAULT in /etc/default/grub.

Install GRUB2 to your MBR(s) as necessary:

# grub2-install /dev/sda 


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