Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Monday, May 25, 2015 at 21:36

You can boot Linux ISO directly from your HDD with grml-rescueboot utility. You don't need a CD, DVD, or USB drive anymore. You don't need to burn anything. And no need to formally configure anything. Just put an ISO then update your GRUB and it's done. Actually, grml modifies your GRUB to recognize an ISO you provide and to boot it. Finally, you can have more than one ISO to boot at any time you start your computer.

Boot Linux ISO Directly from The HDD

Install GRML

  • By GUI, you can search for grml-rescueboot in Ubuntu Software Center.
  • By Terminal, you can use this command:
sudo apt-get install grml-rescueboot
I made a mistake when writing this article. The correct package name was grml-rescueboot. Thank you for

Copy ISO File

Firstly, create /boot/grml/ directory if it does not exist. To create it, use command sudo mkdir /boot/grml/. If it does exist, continue.

Secondly, to create a live Linux boot with grml, you just need to copy a Linux ISO to /boot/grml/ directory. Yes, as easy as that! To do that, you may choose either using GUI or Terminal. By GUI, just open first your Nautilus as root by command sudo nautilus in  Terminal. Then just copy your ISO there by click.

By Terminal, you can do this command:
sudo cp -v /path/to/your/iso.iso /boot/grml

Update Your GRUB

You can only do this by Terminal. Do this command.
sudo update-grub
Normal output will be like these.

Generating grub.cfg ... 
Found linux image: /boot/vmlinuz-3.2.0-23-generic-pae 
Found initrd image: /boot/initrd.img-3.2.0-23-generic-pae 
Found memtest86+ image: /boot/memtest86+.bin 
Found Grml ISO image: /boot/grml/BlankOn-9.0-desktop-amd64.iso 
Found Grml ISO image: /boot/grml/GhostBSD4.0-RELEASE-i386.iso 
Found Grml ISO image: /boot/grml/blankon-tambora-desktop-i386.iso 
Found Grml ISO image: /boot/grml/kubuntu-15.04-desktop-i386.iso 
Found Grml ISO image: /boot/grml/ubuntu-15.04-desktop-i386.iso 
update-grub command output
Important: every time you add an ISO into /boot/grml/ directory, you must update your GRUB.


Then restart your computer. See that a bootloader should appear. Entry option started with Grml Rescue System will appear. Choose that entry and you boot into your Linux. If a bootloader doesn't appear when boot, hold Shift button when rebooting.