Finnix 92.0 will be released soon. It will have a new 2.6.25 kernel, updated software, and, most visibly, a new boot menu.

There have been suggestions for a new boot menu for awhile now. I liked the idea in theory, but there were various problems with most implementations (no graphics; graphics, but no fallback to text mode; no easy way to add boot options, such as toram, testcd, etc; no way to default to 64-bit boot options). Debian’s recent announcement of debian-installer for lenny beta 2 introduced a new installer boot menu system based on bootmenu.c32, which looked very nice and solved most of the problems I mentioned. However, no default 64-bit option on multi-arch CDs, which the announcement mentioned and lamented.

I used Debian’s configs as a base for a Finnix test. The results were very nice, and I was ready to do as Debian did and accept that the improvements were worth the loss of 64-bit autodetection. However, an acquaintance encouraged me to look into it (“Sounds like it’s time for some OPEN SOURCE MAGIC”), and within a few hours, I had a working patch.

The debian-installer guys loved it and had the patch applied within an hour, and as well, it will be in Finnix 92.0. Here’s a development screenshot: