LinuxConf.Au: kboot - A Boot Loader Based on Kexec
Compared to the "consoles" found on traditional Unix workstations and mini-computers, the Linux boot process is feature-poor, and the addition of new functionality to boot loaders often results in massive code duplication. With the availability of kexec, this situation can be improved.
kboot is a proof-of-concept implementation of a Linux boot loader based on kexec. kboot uses a boot loader like LILO or GRUB to load a regular Linux kernel as its first stage. Then, the full capabilities of the kernel can be used to locate and to load the kernel to be booted, perform limited diagnostics and repair, enable network access, etc.
kboot, which could be characterized as a specialized mini-distribution, integrates the various components needed for a fully featured boot loader, and demonstrates their use. While the main focus is on core technical functionality, kboot can serve as a starting point for customized boot environments offering additional features. kboot can also be used as a platform for exploring architectural enhancements, such as pre-loading of device scan results to accelerate the boot process.