Opened 10 years ago

Last modified 4 years ago

#578 new enhancement

Graphical boot experience

Reported by: Jiri Svoboda Owned by:
Priority: minor Milestone:
Component: helenos/unspecified Version: mainline
Keywords: ui Cc:
Blocker for: Depends on:
See also:


During a normal graphical boot the user should be presented with a seamless and non-disturbing graphical sequence. The exact sequence is a matter of taste, but could be something like

  • the screen is filled with background color
  • HelenOS logo is displayed
  • optionally some kind of progress indicator is displayed
  • seamless transition to fully initialized desktop

On ia32/amd64, for example, this should be able to cover the boot process at the very least from the point the kernel starts up and sets a graphic mode. Mode switching in the middle of the boot process (which we don't do currently) should naturally be avoided.

Boot messages from kernel and user space should not be displayed by default. For debugging purposes it's useful to be able to switch-over/fall-back to seeing the boot messages:

  • automatically when the boot process fails (*)
  • when the user pushes some key (e.g. Escape)
  • when the system is configured via a boot time or compile-time option to display the messages

(*) This is probably the most difficult one as it means programatically determining all cases where the boot process failed.

Change History (2)

comment:1 by Martin Decky, 10 years ago

I don't want to nitpick and I certainly understand the sentiment behind this ticket, echoing similar feature requests that emerged in the GNU/Linux distributions a few years ago. But I still need to add two comments:

  • HelenOS probably does not yet have all the required pieces in place. There is no user space mode-setting, both the kernel console and the user space mostly rely on the display being configured externally (either by the firmware or the boot loader). Also the production build of HelenOS should not have any kernel console and thus it should present the user with a different user experience than the common debug build. In the end of the day, there should be one mode-set by the firmware/boot loader and possibly one additional mode-set by the user space (if necessary). Who should be responsible for drawing the logo and the progress indicator then?
  • Currently, on a PC, it takes only a few seconds from GRUB to usable user space, despite the kernel console showing some printouts in the meantime. This is already almost seamless, there is really very little time to show and enjoy a logo and a progress indicator.

In my understanding, this ticket describes a distant (post-1.0) vision rather than a current (around-0.5.1) action item.

comment:2 by Jiri Svoboda, 4 years ago

Keywords: ui added
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