GFX Boot Menu Support

Easy2Boot can use a GFXBoot Menu. A sample GFXMenu  'message' file is included in the download (\_ISO\docs\Templates\GFXMenu folder) together with a MyE2B.cfg file. Just copy these to the \_ISO folder to test it out. 
 
Tip: E2B v1.78+ allows you to 'stamp' up to ten bitmaps onto the background wallpaper, and display one animated sequence (similar to an animated GIF) and supports larger, double-height fonts too (FONT24) - this may be easier and provide more functionality than trying to make a GFX Boot menu!
 
There are limitations when using a GFX menu, so read the sections below carefully!
 

How to make a GFX Boot menu (E2B v1.76+)

1. First make a \_ISO\MyE2B.cfg file containing (at least) these lines:
 
!BAT
set GFX=docs/GFXBoot/message
 
The MyE2B.cfg file must start with !BAT. The set GFX= line can be anywhere below the first line.
 
Note that the normal E2B background .bmp or .jpg wallpaper will not be used if you specify a GFX Boot file.
 
2. Double-click on the \_ISO\docs\GFXBoot\repack.cmd file to make a new message file
 
3. Now boot to E2B and you should see a menu similar to that below.
 
 
You can alter the background by changing the 800x600 back.jpg file in the \_ISO\docs\GFXBoot\files folder.
You can change the menu colours and position by editing the  \_ISO\docs\GFXBoot\files\gfxboot.cfg file.
 
Tip1: Keep the number of files in the \_ISO\docs\GFXBoot\files folder to a minimum because they will all be packed into the message file.
Tip2: You can use 7Zip to unpack a message file and obtain the gfxboot.cfg and back.jpg files from it.
Tip3: Remove the selected menu entry highlight bar (dark green in example menu) by using menu_bar_color=0x000000 (transparent)
Tip4: F1 and F2 are not really useful, so disable them as well as the Language text (xmenu_hide_current=1)
 

Animate Penguin menu

The penguin menu can only be enabled if you copy the .jpg files in the \_ISO\docs\GFXBoot\files\penguin folder up a level to the \_ISO\docs\GFXBoot\files folder and then edit the gfxboot.cfg file to set the percentage likelihood that the penguin background will be shown instead of the back.jpg background.

Use penguin=-1 for a date-dependent XMas surprise which always use the penguin theme, or use penguin=50 to see it 50% of the time.
 
 
  Animated 'Penguin' theme at Xmas time (automatically uses pback.jpg as the background)
 

Alternate Methods

You can make you own GFXMenu (which has to be compiled each time you change it) by following Windows Tutorial 21 here. This tutorial uses the same files as in the GFXBoot folder included in E2B.
You can also download the Windows GFX-Boot Customizer utiliy by SBond here to make a GFX-BOOT.GFX file.
For a linux-based GFX Boot GUI, see here.
 
See Laura's GFXBoot menus for some nice examples.
 
Your GFX Menu file (e.g. message or GFX-BOOT.GFX) must be under the /_ISO folder (the path specified in the MyE2B.cfg file is relative to the \_ISO folder) and you must specify the file path in your MyE2B.cfg file, e.g. set GFX=message if in the \_ISO folder or...
 
set GFX=docs/GFXMenu/message
This is the sample GFXBoot Menu message file included in the download (with some extra ISOs added).
Note that menu hotkeys are not supported in a GFX Menu.
 
On pre-v1.60 versions, you will need to copy the ZZGFXSubMenuxxx.mnu files from the \_ISO\docs\GFXSubMenu Files folder to the MAINMENU folder.

Limitations of GFX Menus

Using a GFXMenu has disadvantages:
  • Any error will take you to the grub4dos textmode menu
  • Hotkeys don't work
  • The keyboard scan codes and language can ony be changed by configuring GFXBoot
  • Number keys will immediately run a menu entry (e.g. press 9 to run the 10th menu entry)
  • No titles at the top of the menus
  • No help text is displayed for each menu item
  • No Help (F1) menu
  • No menu heading or footer text (unless in the jpeg background)
  • Cannot set the default menu entry or timeout
  • Cannot show the number of files present in each folder
  • When E2B switches to the text-mode console to list XML files, etc. it looks a bit messy.
  • You cannot define the resolution, wallpaper, text colours or menu position in the MyE2B.cfg file (must be done in the GFXMenu file and recompiled)
  • Password protection does not work
  • Uses a larger font so less items per screen.
  • Cannot enter  menu number by using the number keys - e.g. press 1 and then 2 - also menu items are not numbered
  • Cannot use the cursor keys to scroll from end to beginning (cursor stops on last item)
  • % Variables are not translated to text in menu entries, so you can't use a variable in a title .txt or .mnu file line.
If using your own compiled GFXBoot Menu menu file (e.g. message), I strongly advise you to get your USB E2B drive tested and working first, without using your GFXMenu message file - and then when it is all working correctly, try your GFXMenu. Some GFXMenus have been known to crash E2B (and display a small 'debug' box at the top left). 
 
You can instead try the sample GFXMenu file included in the \_ISO\docs folder in the E2B download.
 
Do not use hotkey entries (e.g. ^P) in any of the .mnu files or .txt menu files if using GFXMenu - it may cause the menu to crash when it loads!
 
Please don't ask me for any help making a GFXMenu - ask reboot.pro forum members instead or look here for a tool. I will only support grub4dos menus.
 
Older E2B versions (pre-v1.60): GFXBoot Menus do not understand the ^XX hotkey notation, so if you are using a GFXMenu, you must copy the ZZGFXSubMenuxxxx.mnu files from the \_ISO\docs\GFXSubMenu Files folder to the \_ISO\MAINMENU folder (you can delete the \_ISO\MAINMENU\ZZSubMenuxxxx.mnu files if you are only using GFXMode)If you don't copy the ZZGFXSubMenuxxxx.mnu files, you will not see the ANTIVIRUS, BACKUP, DOS, etc. folders in the Main menu!
 
Tip: The Windows console mode menus will look best if you use black as the standard console background colour in MyE2B.cfg and suppress the E2B boot messages e.g. 
 
color standard=cyan/black
set redir=> nul
set redirp=> nul
 
 

 





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