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[gentoo-user] Irritating ~5s pause whilst booting with Grub

From: Alan Mackenzie
Subject: [gentoo-user] Irritating ~5s pause whilst booting with Grub
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2018 18:33:53 +0000
User-agent: Mutt/1.10.1 (2018-07-13)

Hello, Grub,

I'm booting from Grub 2.02-r1 (maybe that's a Gentoo revision number) on
an utterly standard AMD Ryzen box, with a low end Radeon video card and
NVMe SSDs.  The booting, from EFI, works, but ....  it's slow.

This isn't a critical problem, but it's a little irritating.

When the machine boots, it first displays the BIOS invitation to type F2,
then starts Grub.  Grub spends about 5 seconds with a blank screen, and
an underline cursor dancing about randomly in the top left hand area of
the screen, possibly in some 25 x 80 area (whatever that might mean).
Only then does it display its boot menu.

Looking into my /boot/grub/grub.conf, I've got:

    # Menu timeout

: the irritating delay is ~5 seconds, so this can't be due to anything
dependant on that timeout setting; and

    # If we have a font available, start graphical output.
    if loadfont unifont; then
            echo "Loading unifont"
            # Output resolution for GRUB (eg. 1024x768 or 'auto').

            # Output resolution for Linux (VESAFB only).
            # 'keep' means use the same resolution as GRUB.
            # For other framebuffer drivers, pass a resolution using the
            # video= kernel param.

            # Load all video drivers.
            insmod all_video

            # Switch to graphical output.
            terminal_output gfxterm

.  I have already tried "gfxmode=1024x768" and removing all but the one
needed driver file from /boot/grub/x86_64-efi/video.lst.  To no avail.

What is taking up this ~5 seconds?  I still think it's Grub, the video
card, and the monitor negotiating a usable graphic display resolution.

My monitor is 1920 x 1080, but the video card, I believe, needs loading
with microcode before it can use this.

Can I somehow configure Grub to use the 80 x 25 character screen baked
into the video card, thus bypassing all this video negotiation?

I think I remember this delay not happening when I first intalled Grub
on the machine ~18 months ago, but started after some version update.

As I'm not subscribed to the list, could you leave my address in the
Cc:, please.  Thanks!

Alan Mackenzie (Nuremberg, Germany).

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