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Info This is a grub, not a Whonix ™ feature. Therefore Free Support Principle applies.

Before trying specific kernel boot parameters, it is advisable to first add them temporarily for testing or troubleshooting purposes. When the parameters have the intended effect, they can then be added permanently.

Kernel boot parameters are text strings that disable/enable certain features or change specific system behaviours. To achieve the desired change, note kernel boot parameters: [1]

  • are case-sensitive
  • can be a simple word (like "splash" or "noapic")
  • might have an = sign to denote values (like "acpi_backlight=vendor")
  • might include punctuation ("i8042.noloop")

Kernel boot parameters have no effect unless entered exactly as advised -- spelling/formatting errors or invalid values do not result in an error message.

Kernel Boot Parameter Change[edit]

Follow these steps to temporarily add kernel boot parameters.

1. Restart the system. [2]

2. Access the grub menu.

Repeatedly press the Esc key until the grub menu appears. Alternatively the Shift key can be held down continuously for BIOS-mode (not UEFI-mode) until the menu appears. [3]

3. Select the relevant entry to edit.

Use the arrow keys to highlight the relevant entry and then press the e key to enter edit mode.

4. Add kernel boot parameter changes.

Use the arrow keys to move down to the line that contains boot arguments: [4]

  • On BIOS systems the line will begin with linux.
  • On UEFI systems the line begins with linuxefi.

Press the End key to move the cursor to the end of that line. Press the space bar and carefully type in kernel boot parameters -- multiple parameters are separated with a space, but no spaces are added before/after any = signs or for punctuation in parameters.

5. Reboot the system.

Press Ctrl + X to boot the system with the new, temporary parameters.

The effect will only last for this boot session; once the system is restarted they will no longer have any effect.

Permanent Configuration Changes[edit]

1. Learn how to configure permanent changes.

Inspect the following resources:

  • folder /etc/default/grub.d
  • file /etc/default/grub.d/40_kernel_hardening.cfg

2. Create a new configuration file.

Open file /etc/default/grub.d/50_user.cfg in an editor with root rights.

(Qubes-Whonix ™: In TemplateVM)

This box uses sudoedit for better security [archive]. This is an example and other tools could also achieve the same goal. If this example does not work for you or if you are not using Whonix, please refer to this link.

sudoedit /etc/default/grub.d/50_user.cfg

3. Paste the necessary kernel parameters.


  • The following example uses kernel parameter nomodeset.
  • Replace only nomodeset with the actual kernel parameters you want to add.
  • Do not remove the leading text (underlined): GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="$GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX nomodeset".
  • Do not remove the trailing quote ("; marked in bold): GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="$GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX nomodeset".


4. Save.

5. Regenerate grub configuration.

sudo update-grub

The process is complete.

See Also[edit]


  1. [archive]
  2. Or shut it down and power it on again.
  3. The system might hang when holding down the Shift key. If that happens, just briefly release the Shift key and hold it down again until the grub menu appears.
  4. [archive]

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