220-801,220-802 : CompTIA A+ Guide to PCs (Course & Lab)

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Gain hands-on expertise in CompTIA A+ certification exam by CompTIA A+ Guide to PCs course and performance based labs. Performance based labs simulate real-world, hardware, software & command line interface environments and can be mapped to any text-book, course & training. CompTIA A+ exam is globally recognized, vendor-neutral exam designed for IT professionals to install, upgrade, repair, configure, troubleshoot, optimize, and perform preventative maintenance of  the basic personal computer hardware and operating systems.

CompTIA A+ Guide to PCs (Course & Lab)
ISBN : 978-1-61691-483-7


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Exercise Questions
Glossary of terms
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Post-Assessments Questions


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Performance based lab
Video tutorials

Hands on Activities

Introduction to Computer Repair

  • Identifying desktop PC ports, part 1
  • Identifying the PC components
  • Open mouse properties
  • Identifying function keys of a keyboard
  • Identify ports on a desktop computer

On the Motherboard

  • Identifying the CPU package types
  • Identifying Intel sockets
  • Identifying motherboard slots
  • Identifying slots of a motherboard
  • Identifying a CPU slot
  • Identifying computer activities
  • Identifying sound card ports
  • Provide cooling and ventilation to the motherboard
  • Identifying computer cooling systems
  • Installing a processor and identifying motherboard components
  • Replacing a laptop battery
  • Installing expansion cards on a motherboard
  • Identifying a PCI-bus slot
  • Identifying and installing a PCI sound card
  • Connecting two monitors to a computer
  • Install expansion cards on the motherboard
  • Identifying an AGP slot
  • Identifying AGP slots
  • Removing a damaged network card
  • Installing PCIe cards on the motherboard
  • Identify laptop ports
  • Replacing internal components of a notebook
  • Insert a POST card in the motherboard
  • Identifying the motherboard form factors

System Configuration

  • Viewing system properties
  • System configuration
  • Change the screen saver timeout
  • Configuring two new computers: Home Entertainment and SOHO
  • Configure BIOS settings
  • Identifying BIOS settings
  • Enabling hardware virtualization
  • Disabling the COM and parallel ports
  • Replace a CMOS battery
  • Clearing the CMOS settings
  • Changing the CMOS battery
  • Identifying boot errors
  • View interrupts for integrated ports

Disassembly and Power

  • Opening a computer case with ESD precautions
  • Identifying the reset front panel connector
  • Assembling a PC
  • Installing computer components
  • Setting up a surge protected computer system
  • Installing a motherboard, processor, and processor fan
  • Identifying the steps to transmit and process data
  • Identifying units of electricity
  • Identifying electrical components symbols
  • Identifying computer devices
  • Installing an SMPS and connecting it to the motherboard
  • Identifying power connectors
  • Identifying computer power supply connectors
  • Prepare the system for upgrade
  • Identifying hazard categories
  • Replacing the power supply
  • Employ power-protecting equipment
  • Identifying characteristics of power conditioning equipment
  • Using a UPS to power computer components and ensure network connectivity
  • Configuring the UPS
  • Identifying fire extinguisher substances
  • Identifying fire extinguisher classes

Logical Troubleshooting

  • Troubleshooting theory


  • Identify the types of memory modules
  • Identifying memory modules
  • Identifying types of RAM
  • Installing SDRAM and DDR memory modules
  • Using the System Information utility
  • Enabling triple-channel memory mode
  • Install DDR3 RAM to form a bank of memory

Storage Devices

  • Installing a floppy drive
  • Place the paging file on a different physical hard drive
  • Identify ways to sanitize the drive
  • Identifying IDE interfaces
  • Identify the jumper setting used for a hard drive
  • Identify the jumper setting used for a DVD drive
  • Connecting the motherboard to the internal hard drive
  • Supplying power to a SATA drive
  • Installing a SATA hard drive
  • Installing a hard disk drive
  • Identifying RAID level characteristics
  • Identifying RAID levels
  • Clean up the hard disk drive
  • Perform Disk Cleanup and Back up now functions on your system
  • Improving the performance of hard drive and DVD drive
  • Removing a pen drive from a computer
  • Connecting a pen drive to the USB port
  • View the size of the pagefile.sys file
  • Format the pen drive

Multimedia Devices

  • Assemble a computer
  • Identifying I/O ports of the motherboard
  • Connecting speakers to a computer
  • Connecting a digital camera to a computer

Other Peripherals

  • Check properties of Keyboards, Disk drives, and Network adapters
  • Identifying computing terminologies
  • Identifying PC features
  • Identifying types of display monitors
  • Changing color and resolution settings
  • Identifying resolution standards
  • Connect two monitors simultaneously to a computer
  • Connecting a keyboard, mouse, and monitor to a computer
  • Connecting cables to a computer
  • Connecting a monitor and headset to a computer
  • Connecting a laptop to a docking station
  • Changing the desktop color
  • Using a KVM switch
  • Identifying display panel case components
  • Change your system's screen saver
  • View the driver details and install state of the keyboard
  • Identifying video card components
  • Printing tools
  • Calibrate the printing device
  • Identifying printer connectors
  • Connecting a USB printer to a computer
  • Identifying printer types
  • Identifying a daisy-wheel printer
  • Identifying the steps of the laser printing process
  • Identifying the stages of the laser printing process
  • Maintaining a laser printer
  • Inserting ink cartridges into a printer
  • Install a printer device
  • Spool print documents

Computing Design

  • Identifying features of a laptop and tablet

Basic Operating Systems

  • Enable calendar and clock gadgets on the desktop
  • Viewing the version of an Android smartphone
  • Viewing the iOS version of an iPhone
  • Replacing the battery of a smartphone and inserting a memory card
  • Restoring the earlier version of a folder
  • Change the visibility of a folder
  • View control panel options in different views
  • Hide a file
  • Encrypt a folder
  • Implement whole disk encryption
  • Accessing command prompt
  • View the date, time, and OS version from the command prompt
  • Ping your computer using the loopback address
  • Recovery console commands
  • Determining a computer's current IP (Internet Protocol) address

Windows XP, Vista, and 7

  • Configure Windows setting that deals with the STOP error
  • Configure the system to restart automatically
  • Restore and restart system automatically
  • Installing updates
  • Creating a backup of a local disk
  • Backing up a Windows security certificate and private key
  • Import a certificate file to the computer
  • Using the Driver Verifier tool on your system
  • Create a restore point
  • Uninstalling WinPatrol software
  • Reset an account password
  • Create a user account and a user group
  • Create a group
  • Create a user account
  • Disable a user account
  • Add a user to the group
  • Set the account with a password that cannot be changed
  • Configure document settings
  • Disable certain applications and services at startup
  • Disable all the programs that load automatically during startup
  • Understanding command lines used to restore the registry
  • View the Event Viewer Applications and Services Logs 
  • View all the options under Event Viewer
  • View the log files

Internet Connectivity

  • Preparing for a video conference on Skype
  • Identifying network connectors
  • Connecting an iPhone to the Wi-Fi network
  • Enable settings to allow pop-ups from a particular website

Introduction to Networking

  • Identifying the network topology
  • Identifying network topologies
  • Terminating CAT 5e and CAT 6 cables
  • Identifying the components of a multimeter
  • Identify different types of cabling
  • Identifying network connector characteristics
  • Identifying the steps for testing a network cable
  • Identifying steps to use a Toner Probe
  • Identifying port address
  • Change IPv4 properties of the wireless network
  • Connecting a workstation to the LAN and configuring IPv4 properties
  • Configuring IPv4 and IPv6 settings
  • Identifying considerations for wireless technology
  • View the Bluetooth service and Application Layer properties
  • Configure a wireless network adapter to wake up your system
  • Create an ad hoc network
  • Identify the fastest WLAN standard and best encryption available on a wireless router
  • Connect to the Wi-Fi network
  • Connecting a wireless network
  • Identifying wireless network
  • Creating an ad hoc network
  • Connecting two computers and a printer to the Internet
  • Check the connectivity of google.com through your Internet connection
  • Display the MAC address and TCP/IP network configuration values
  • Troubleshooting a Wi-Fi connection
  • Identifying network protocols
  • Install the Telnet server application
  • Sharing a folder with another user
  • Connect to a remote desktop
  • Identifying network protocol functions
  • Creating a sample network
  • Turning on airplane mode of an iPhone
  • Synchronize music files from a smartphone to a PC

Computer and Network Security

  • View Security Center service properties
  • Record system failure event in the system log
  • Restore system settings and previous versions of files
  • Secure a system from an unauthorized login
  • Understand security methods used for a router
  • Understand methods for the disposal of data and components
  • Configure success and failure audit events
  • Configure a password policy
  • Implement an account lockout policy
  • Identify tools for performing specified services on a computer
  • Protect a system from viruses and worms with a firewall
  • Check for driver updates of the built-in webcam of your laptop
  • Configuring the Windows Firewall
  • Locking an iPhone with a password
  • Understanding how to secure a mobile device

Exam Information

The 220-801 and 220-802 exams are a part of CompTIA's A+ certification. The CompTIA A+ course can benefit you in two ways. Whether you work or plan to work in a mobile or corporate environment where you have a high level of face-to-face customer interaction, where client communication and client training are important, or in an environment with limited customer interaction and an emphasis on hardware activities.

Prepare for the following certification

Table of Content

Here's What you will Learn

Lesson 1: Introduction to Computer Repair

  • Overview
  • CompTIA A+ Certification
  • Safety Note
  • Technician Qualities
  • Basic Computer Parts
  • External Connectivity
  • Mouse and Keyboard Ports
  • Mice and Keyboards
  • Wireless Input Devices
  • Mouse and Keyboard Preventive Maintenance
  • Keyboard/Mouse Troubleshooting
  • Video Port
  • USB Port
  • Installing Extra USB Ports
  • USB Troubleshooting
  • Parallel Ports
  • Serial Ports
  • Audio Ports
  • IEEE 1394 Ports
  • IEEE 1394 Troubleshooting
  • eSATA Ports
  • Network Ports
  • Modem Ports
  • Pros and Cons of Integrated Motherboards
  • Docking Stations and Port Replicators
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 2: On the Motherboard

  • Processor Overview
  • Processor Basics
  • Intel Processors
  • AMD Processors
  • Speeding Up Processor Operations Overview
  • Cache
  • Clocking
  • Threading Technology
  • Connecting to the Processor
  • Multi-Core Processors
  • Sockets and Slots
  • Processor Cooling
  • Installing Processors
  • Mobile Device Motherboards/CPUs
  • Overclocking Processors
  • Troubleshooting Processor Issues
  • Expansion Slots
  • PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect)
  • AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port)
  • PCIe (Peripheral Component Interconnect Express)
  • Laptop Expansion
  • More Motherboard Connectors
  • Chipsets
  • Types of Motherboards
  • Upgrading and Replacing Motherboards
  • Motherboard Troubleshooting
  • Soft Skills-Active Listening
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 3: System Configuration

  • Configuration Overview
  • BIOS Overview
  • The Setup Program
  • Flash BIOS
  • BIOS Configuration Settings
  • CMOS Memory
  • Motherboard Batteries
  • Other Configuration Parameters
  • IRQ (Interrupt Request)
  • PCI Interrupts
  • I/O (Input/Output) Addresses
  • Memory Addresses
  • Adapter Configuration
  • Soft Skills-A Good Technician Quality: One Thing at a Time
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 4: Disassembly and Power

  • Disassembly Overview
  • Electrostatic Discharge (ESD)
  • EMI (Electromagnetic Interference)
  • Disassembly
  • Tools
  • Opening the Case
  • Cables and Connectors
  • Storage Devices
  • Motherboards
  • Mobile Device Issues
  • Reassembly
  • Preventive Maintenance
  • Basic Electronics Overview
  • Electronics Terms
  • Power Supply Overview
  • Power Supply Form Factors
  • Purposes of a Power Supply
  • Power Supply Voltages
  • Mobile Device Travel and Storage
  • Mobile Device Power
  • ACPI (Advanced Configuration and Power Interface)
  • Replacing or Upgrading a Power Supply
  • Symptoms of Power Supply Problems
  • Solving Power Supply Problems
  • Adverse Power Conditions
  • Adverse Power Protection
  • Surge Protectors
  • Line Conditioners
  • Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS)
  • Standby Power Supply (SPS)
  • Phone Line Isolator
  • Electrical Fires
  • Computer Disposal/Recycling
  • Soft Skills-Written Communications Skills
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 5: Logical Troubleshooting

  • Troubleshooting Overview
  • Identify the Problem
  • Establish a Theory of Probable Cause
  • Test the Theory to Determine Cause
  • Establish a Plan of Action and Implement the Solution
  • Verify Full System Functionality and Implement Preventive Measures
  • Soft Skills-Document Findings, Actions, and Outcomes and Provide Feedback
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 6: Memory

  • Memory Overview
  • Memory Physical Packaging
  • Planning the Memory Installation
  • Planning the Memory Installation-Memory Technologies
  • Mobile Device Memory
  • Planning the Memory Installation-Memory Features
  • Planning for Memory-The Amount of Memory to Install
  • Planning for Memory-How Many of Each Memory Type?
  • Planning for Memory-Researching and Buying Memory
  • Installing Memory Overview
  • Removing/Installing Memory
  • Adding More Cache/RAM
  • Windows Disk Caching
  • Monitoring Memory Usage Under Windows
  • Old Applications Under Windows
  • Troubleshooting Memory Problems
  • Flash Memory
  • Soft Skills-Teamwork
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 7: Storage Devices

  • Storage Devices Overview
  • Floppy Drive Overview
  • Floppy Media and Construction
  • Floppy Drive Installation or Replacement
  • Hard Drive Overview
  • Hard Drive Geometry
  • Hard Drive Interfaces Overview
  • IDE (Integrated Drive Electronics)
  • SSD (Solid State Drive)
  • SCSI (Small Computer System Interface)
  • Storage Device Configuration Overview
  • PATA Physical Installation
  • SATA Physical Installation
  • SSD Physical Installation
  • Parallel SCSI Configuration
  • SCSI ID Configuration and Termination
  • SCSI Cables
  • SAS Installation
  • Mobile Device Storage
  • System BIOS Configuration for Hard Drives
  • Hard Drive Preparation Overview
  • Partitioning
  • How Drive Letters Are Assigned
  • Windows Disk Management
  • Fault Tolerance
  • High-Level Formatting
  • Troubleshooting Devices
  • RAID Issues
  • Preventive Maintenance for Hard Drives
  • Data Security
  • Removable Drive Storage
  • Disk Caching/Virtual Memory
  • Soft Skills-Phone Skills
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 8: Multimedia Devices

  • Multimedia Overview
  • Optical Disk Drive Overview
  • Optical Drive Features
  • Optical Drive Interfaces and Connections
  • Optical Drive Installation
  • Troubleshooting Optical Drive Issues
  • Preventive Maintenance for ODDs and Discs
  • Theory of Sound Card Operation
  • Installing Sound Cards
  • Sound Cards Using Windows
  • Mobile Device Sound
  • Speakers
  • Troubleshooting Sound Problems
  • Scanners
  • Digital Cameras
  • Soft Skills-Attitude
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 9: Other Peripherals

  • Chapter Overview
  • Video Overview
  • Types of Video Output Devices
  • Video Terminology and Theory
  • LCD (Liquid Crystal Display)
  • Video Ports and Cables
  • Multiple Displays
  • Projectors
  • Monitor Preventive Maintenance
  • Monitor Energy Efficiency
  • Privacy
  • Video Adapters
  • Specialized Video Cards
  • Video Memory
  • Installing a Video Adapter
  • Troubleshooting Video
  • Printers Overview
  • Printer Ports
  • Networked Printers
  • Wireless Printers
  • Categories of Printers
  • Impact Printers
  • Inkjet Printers
  • Laser Printers
  • Thermal Printers
  • Paper
  • Refilling Cartridges, Re-inking Ribbons, and Recycling Cartridges
  • Printer Installation
  • Upgrading Printers
  • Printer Preventive Maintenance
  • Printers in the Windows Environment
  • Windows Printer Troubleshooting
  • General Printer Troubleshooting
  • Impact Printer Troubleshooting
  • Inkjet Printer Troubleshooting
  • Laser Printer Troubleshooting
  • Soft Skills-Work Ethics
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 10: Computing Design

  • Design Overview
  • Computer System Design
  • Motherboard and Associated Component Design
  • Power Supply and Case Design
  • Storage Subsystem Design
  • Audio Subsystem Design
  • Display Subsystem Design
  • Mobility Design
  • Soft Skills-Dealing with Irate Customers
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 11: Basic Operating Systems

  • Basic Operating Systems Overview
  • Basic Windows Usage Overview
  • Basic Mobile Device Usage
  • Managing Windows Files and Folders
  • Attributes, Compression, and Encryption
  • Determining the Windows Version
  • Windows Registry
  • Editing the Windows Registry
  • Recovering the Windows OS
  • Recovering a Mobile OS
  • Virtualization Basics
  • Recovery Console/WinRE
  • Command Prompt Overview
  • Command Prompt Basics
  • Moving Around from a Command Prompt
  • The TYPE Command
  • Copying Files
  • The ATTRIB Command
  • Why Learn Commands?
  • Command Format
  • Soft Skills-Staying Current
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 12: Windows XP, Vista, and 7

  • Windows XP Overview
  • Windows Vista/7 Overview
  • Logging on to Windows
  • Pre-Installation of Windows
  • Viruses
  • Installation/Upgrade of Windows
  • Corporate Windows Deployment
  • Verifying the Installation
  • Troubleshooting a Windows Installation
  • Dual-Booting Windows
  • Virtualization
  • Reloading Windows
  • Updating Windows
  • Backing Up/Restoring the Windows Registry
  • Backing Up and Restoring the Windows System State
  • Configuring Windows Overview
  • Configuring Windows
  • Adding Devices
  • System Restore
  • Installing/Removing Software
  • Microsoft Management Console
  • Advanced Boot Options Menu
  • Overview of the Windows Boot Process
  • Speeding Up the Windows Boot Process
  • Troubleshooting the Windows Boot Process
  • Windows XP ASR (Automated System Recovery)
  • WinRE
  • System Configuration Utility
  • Task Manager and Event Viewer
  • Troubleshooting a Service That Does Not Start
  • Windows Reboots
  • Shutdown Problems
  • Monitoring System Performance
  • Supporting Windows Computers Remotely
  • Preventive Maintenance for Your Operating System
  • Soft Skills-Avoiding Burnout
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 13: Internet Connectivity

  • Internet Connectivity Overview
  • Modems Overview
  • Serial Communication Overview
  • How to Configure Serial Ports and Devices
  • 56Kbps Modems
  • Fax Modems
  • Digital Modems and ISDN
  • VoIP
  • Cable Modems
  • xDSL Modems
  • Troubleshooting Cable and DSL Modems
  • Satellite Modems
  • Modem Preventive Maintenance
  • Mobile Connectivity
  • Web Browsers
  • Soft Skills-Mentoring
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 14: Introduction to Networking

  • Networking Overview
  • Types of Local Area Networks
  • Network Topologies
  • Network Media Overview
  • Copper Media
  • Fiber Media
  • Protecting Your Network and Cable Investment
  • Ethernet Issues and Concepts
  • Network Standards
  • The OSI Model
  • The TCP/IP Model
  • Network Addressing
  • IP Addressing
  • Subnetting Basics
  • Wireless Networks Overview
  • Bluetooth
  • Wireless Networks
  • Antenna Basics
  • Wireless Network Standards
  • Wired or Wireless NIC Installation
  • Wireless Broadband
  • Virtualization Network Issues
  • Access Point/Router Installation
  • Configuring a Networked Printer
  • Network Troubleshooting
  • Network Printer Troubleshooting
  • Network Terminology
  • The TCP/IP Model in Action
  • Sharing
  • Email
  • Network Connectivity
  • Mobile Device Network Connectivity
  • Mobile Apps
  • Soft Skills-Being Proactive
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

Lesson 15: Computer and Network Security

  • Security Overview
  • Security Policy
  • Physical Security
  • Protecting the Operating System and Data
  • DEP (Data Execution Prevention)
  • Protecting Access to Local and Network Resources
  • Permissions
  • Internet Security
  • Security Incident Reporting
  • Wireless Network Security Overview
  • Wireless Authentication and Encryption
  • Default Settings
  • More Wireless Options
  • Wireless Security Conclusion
  • Wireless Network Troubleshooting
  • Mobile Security
  • A Final Word About Security
  • Soft Skills-Building Customer Trust
  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • A+ Simulator Exercises
  • Review Questions
  • Exercises
  • Activities

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