Boot Loader

What Does Boot Loader Mean?

A boot loader is a type of program that loads and starts the boot time tasks and processes of an operating system or the computer system. It enables loading the operating system within the computer memory when a computer is started or booted up.

Advertisements

A boot loader is also known as a boot manager or bootstrap loader.

Techopedia Explains Boot Loader

A boot loader primarily manages and executes the boot sequence of a computer system. A boot loader program is typically started after the computer or the BIOS have finished performing the initial power and hardware device checks and tests. It fetches the OS kernel from the hard disk or any specified boot device within the boot sequence, into the main memory. A boot loader is associated with only a single operating system. An operating system can also have multiple boot loader programs classified as primary and secondary boot loaders, where a secondary boot loader might be larger and more capable than the primary boot loader.

Advertisements

Related Terms

Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.