Bootloader support


This section describes the support level of the two bootloaders that Mender supports, GRUB and U-Boot.

By default, Mender uses GRUB to boot, and this is the recommended bootloader to use, even on platforms that ordinarily use U-Boot. However, U-Boot can be used in cases where using GRUB is not possible or unsuccessful.

On platforms using Raw flash (UBI), it is only possible to use U-Boot.

The main technical reason for using GRUB rather than U-Boot is that GRUB requires no patching to work with Mender, whereas U-Boot does. For most users this will be the path of least resistance.

Please see the sub sections for GRUB and U-Boot for more details.


Below is a table listing the bootloader support using various device types. All versions of the Mender client software will work with either of the two bootloaders.

Feature Supported
GRUB integration for ARM systems Yes, default
GRUB integration for Flash/UBI devices No
GRUB integration for x86/UEFI systems Yes, default
GRUB integration for x86/BIOS systems Yes
U-Boot integration for ARM systems Yes
U-Boot integration for Flash/UBI devices Yes

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