bootmenu command

The “bootmenu” command uses U-Boot menu interfaces and provides a simple mechanism for creating menus with different boot items. The cursor keys “Up” and “Down” are used for navigation through the items. Current active menu item is highlighted and can be selected using the “Enter” key. The selection of the highlighted menu entry invokes an U-Boot command (or a list of commands) associated with this menu entry.

The “bootmenu” command interprets ANSI escape sequences, so an ANSI terminal is required for proper menu rendering and item selection.

The assembling of the menu is done via a set of environment variables “bootmenu_<num>” and “bootmenu_delay”, i.e.:


is the autoboot delay in seconds, after which the first menu entry will be selected automatically


is the boot menu entry number, starting from zero


is the text of the menu entry shown on the console or on the boot screen


are commands which will be executed when a menu entry is selected

Title and commands are separated by the first appearance of a ‘=’ character in the value of the environment variable.

The first (optional) argument of the “bootmenu” command is a delay specifier and it overrides the delay value defined by “bootmenu_delay” environment variable. If the environment variable “bootmenu_delay” is not set or if the argument of the “bootmenu” command is not specified, the default delay will be CONFIG_BOOTDELAY. If delay is 0, no menu entries will be shown on the console (or on the screen) and the command of the first menu entry will be called immediately. If delay is less then 0, bootmenu will be shown and autoboot will be disabled.

Bootmenu always adds menu entry “U-Boot console” at the end of all menu entries specified by environment variables. When selecting this entry the bootmenu terminates and the usual U-Boot command prompt is presented to the user.

Example environment:

setenv bootmenu_0 Boot 1. kernel=bootm 0x82000000  # Set first menu entry
setenv bootmenu_1 Boot 2. kernel=bootm 0x83000000  # Set second menu entry
setenv bootmenu_2 Reset board=reset                # Set third menu entry
setenv bootmenu_3 U-Boot boot order=boot           # Set fourth menu entry
bootmenu 20        # Run bootmenu with autoboot delay 20s

The above example will be rendered as below:

*** U-Boot Boot Menu ***

   Boot 1. kernel
   Boot 2. kernel
   Reset board
   U-Boot boot order
   U-Boot console

Hit any key to stop autoboot: 20
Press UP/DOWN to move, ENTER to select

The selected menu entry will be highlighted - it will have inverted background and text colors.

The “bootmenu” command is enabled by:


To run the bootmenu at startup add these additional settings: