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CompTIA A+ Cert Guide (220-701 and 220-702) By Mark Edward Soper

CompTIA A+ Cert Guide (220-701 and 220-702)

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CompTIA A+ Cert Guide (220-701 and 220-702) Summary

CompTIA A+ Cert Guide (220-701 and 220-702) by Mark Edward Soper

Learn, prepare, and practice for CompTIA A+ 220-701 and 220-702 exam success with this CompTIA Cert Guide from Pearson IT Certification, a leader in IT Certification learning and a CompTIA Authorized Platinum Partner.

Includes Coverage of Windows 7. Start-to-finish A+ preparation from the world's #1 PC hardware expert, Scott Mueller!

Limited Time Offer: Buy CompTIA A+ 220-701 and 220-702 Cert Guide and receive a 10% off discount code for the CompTIA A+ 220-701 and 220-702 exams. To receive your 10% off discount code:

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CompTIA A+ 220-701 and 220-702 Cert Guide is a best-of-breed study guide. Best-selling authors and expert instructors Mark Soper, Scott Mueller, and David Prowse help you master all the topics you need to know to succeed on your CompTIA 220-701 and 220-702 exams and move into a successful career as an IT technician.

  • Master every topic on both new 2011 A+ exams
  • Assess your knowledge and focus your learning
  • Get the practical workplace knowledge you need!

The CompTIA authorized study guide helps you master all the topics on the A+ exam, including

  • Essential concepts and troubleshooting principles
  • BIOS and CMOS
  • Memory types and characteristics
  • I/O ports and multimedia devices
  • Video cards and displays
  • Motherboards, CPUs, and adapter cards
  • Laptop components
  • Networking
  • Security
  • Windows 7, XP, and 2000
  • Power supplies and system cooling
  • Printers
  • Safety and environmental concerns

Test your knowledge, build your confidence, and succeed!

  • Packed with visuals to help you learn fast
  • Dozens of troubleshooting scenarios
  • Real-world A+ prep advice from experts
  • Easy-to-use exam preparation task lists
  • Do I Know This Already? quizzes help you gauge your knowledge, focus your study, and review the material


  • Detailed explanations of correct and incorrect answers
  • Multiple test modes
  • Random questions and order of answers
  • Sample videos from CompTIA A+ Cert Kit

Mark Edward Soper has taught computer troubleshooting and other technical subjects since 1992. He is the author of Sams Teach Yourself Windows 7 in 10 Minutes, Absolute Beginner's Guide to A+ Certification, and many other titles on Windows, networking, and hardware upgrades. He is a CompTIA A+ Certified technician.

Scott Mueller is the PC industry's most trusted, authoritative hardware expert. He has personally taught PC repair to thousands of pros and enthusiasts. His book, Upgrading and Repairing PCs, has sold more than 2.2 million copies, making him the world's most successful PC hardware author.

David L. Prowse is a computer network specialist, author, and technical trainer. He has taught CompTIA A+, Network+, and Security+ certification courses to more than 2,000 students, both in the classroom and via the Internet. As a consultant, he installs and secures the latest in computer and networking technology. He has authored and coauthored a number of networking and computer titles for Pearson Education, including CompTIA A+ Exam Cram, Fourth Edition.

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About Mark Edward Soper

Mark Edward Soper has been working with PCs since the days of the IBM PC/XT and AT as a sales person, technology advisor, consultant, experimenter, and technology writer. Since 1992, he's taught thousands of students across the country how to repair, manage, and troubleshoot the hardware, software, operating systems, and firmware inside their PCs. He's created many versions of his experimental computer known as "FrankenPC" for this and previous books. Mark earned his CompTIA A+ Certification in 1999 and has written two other A+ Certification books covering previous versions of the A+ Certification exams for Que Publishing.

Mark has contributed to many editions of Upgrading and Repairing PCs, working on the 11th through 18th editions, coauthored Upgrading and Repairing Networks, Fifth Edition, and written two books about digital photography, Easy Digital Cameras and The Shot Doctor: The Amateur's Guide to Taking Great Digital Photos.

In addition, Mark has contributed to Que's Special Edition Using series on Windows Me, Windows XP, and Windows Vista, Que's Windows 7 In Depth, contributed to Easy Windows Vista, has written two books about Windows Vista, including Maximum PC Microsoft Windows Vista Exposed and Unleashing Microsoft Windows Vista Media Center, and two books about Windows 7, Easy Microsoft Windows 7 and Sams Teach Yourself Microsoft Windows 7 in 10 Minutes.

Mark also stays busy on the Web, posting many blog entries and articles at, as well as writing articles for Maximum PC magazine. He has taught A+ Certification and other technology-related subjects at Ivy Tech Community College in Evansville, Indiana.

David L. Prowse is a computer network specialist, author, and technical trainer. As a consultant, he installs and secures the latest in computer and networking technology. Over the past several years, he has authored and co-authored a number of networking and computer titles for Pearson Education. In addition, over the past decade, he has taught CompTIA A+, Network+, and Security+ certification courses to more than 2,000 students, both in the classroom and via the Internet.

Table of Contents

Introduction xxxvi

Chapter 1 PC Technician Essentials 3

PC Tools 3

Preventing Electrostatic Discharge 4

The CompTIA Six-Step Troubleshooting Process 5

Numbering Systems Used in Computers 6

Decimal Numbering System 6

Binary Numbering System 6

Binary Versus Decimal MB/GB 10

Data Storage and Overhead 11

Hexadecimal Numbering System 14

Measuring Data Transfer and Frequency 14

Bandwidth 14

Parallel Information Transfers 15

Serial Transfers 16

Hertz (Hz) 17

Important Websites 18

Chapter 2 PC Anatomy 101 21

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 22

The Essential Parts of Any Computer 25

Front and Rear Views of a Desktop PC 25

All Around a Notebook (Laptop) Computer 27

Quick Reference to PC Components 28

Points of Failure 29

Points of Failure on a Desktop Computer 30

Points of Failure on a Notebook Computer 30

Hardware, Software, and Firmware 31

Hardware 31

Software 31

Firmware 32

Why Hardware, Software, and Firmware Are Important to Understand 33

Working Inside Your PC 33

Opening the Case of a Desktop PC 33

Taking ESD Precautions 34

Connecting Internal and External Data Cables 35

Attaching Cables to the Floppy Drive and Controller 35

Attaching the VGA Cable to a Video Card or Port 37

Installing a PCI Card 38

Hardware Resources 39

Chapter 3 Motherboards, Processors, and Adapter Cards 43

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 43

Motherboards and Their Components 47

The System Bus and I/O Bus 48

Form Factors 49

ATX and Micro ATX 49

BTX 49

NLX 51

Riser Cards and Daughterboards 51

Integrated I/O Ports 52

Memory Slots 54

Expansion Slots 54

PCI Slots 55

AGP 55

PCIe (PCI Express) Slots 56

AMR and CNR Slots 58

Mass Storage Interfaces 59




Choosing the Best Motherboard for the Job 62

Installing Motherboards 63

Step-by-Step Motherboard Removal (ATX and BTX) 63

Step-by-Step Motherboard Removal (NLX) 65

Preparing the Motherboard for Installation (ATX/BTX) 66

Step-by-Step Motherboard Installation (ATX/BTX) 67

Step-by-Step Motherboard Installation (NLX) 68

Troubleshooting Motherboards 68

System Will Not Start 69

Devices Connected to the Port Cluster Don't Work 72

Devices Connected to Header Cables Don't Work 73

Mass Storage Devices Do Not Work Properly 74

Memory Failures 74

Card, Memory, or Heat Sink Blocked by Motherboard Layout 74

Processors and CPUs 75

Overview of Processor Differences 75

Intel Processors 75

AMD Processors 79

Processor Sockets and Packaging 83

CPU Technologies 84

Hyperthreading (HT Technology) 84

Dual-Core and Multi-Core 85

Processor Throttling 85

Microcode (MMX) 85

Overclocking 86

Cache 87

VRM 88

Speed (Real Versus Actual): Clock Speed Versus Performance 88

32-bit Versus 64-bit 89

Choosing the Best Processor for the Job 89

Performance 89

Thermal Issues 89

32-bit Versus 64-bit (x64) Compatibility 90

Other Processor Features 90

Installing Processors 90

Removing the Heat Sink 91

Removing the Processor 93

Installing a New Processor 94

Slot-Type CPU (early Pentium III, early AMD Athlon, and Others) 96

Troubleshooting Processors 98

System Runs Slower Than Rated Speed 98

Processor Failure 99

Installing Adapter Cards 99

General Installation 100

Display Adapters 103

Sound Cards 104

Video Capture Cards 104

Troubleshooting Adapter Cards 105

Device Connected to Adapter Card Doesn't Work 105

Performing Driver and Firmware Upgrades 106

Chapter 4 BIOS 111

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 111

Understanding BIOS, CMOS, and Firmware 115

Configuring the System BIOS 117

Accessing the BIOS Setup Program 118

BIOS Settings Overview 120

Automatic Configuration of BIOS/CMOS Settings 123

Selecting Options 124

Main Menu 124

Standard Features/Settings 125

Floppy Drive BIOS Configuration 126

PATA and SATA BIOS Configuration 126

System Information 127

Integrated Peripherals 129

Onboard Devices 130

I/O Devices 131

PATA/IDE and SATA Configuration 132

Power Management 134

PnP/PCI Configurations 135

Hardware Monitor 136

Processor and Memory Configuration 137

Security Features 138

Exiting the BIOS and Saving/Discarding Changes 139

Power-On Self-Test and Error Reporting 140

Beep Codes 141

POST Error Messages 142

POST Hex Codes 143

BIOS Updates 144

Flash BIOS Update 145

BIOS Chip Replacement 147

Chapter 5 Power Supplies and System Cooling 153

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 153

Power Supplies 157

Power Supply Ratings 157

Multivoltage Power Supplies 159

Causes and Cures of Power Supply Overheating 161

Overloading 161

Fan Failure 163

Inadequate Air Flow Outside the System 163

Inadequate Air Flow Inside the System 164

Dirt and Dust 164

Replacing Power Supply Form Factors and Connectors 165

Removing and Replacing the Power Supply 168

Testing Power Supplies with a Multimeter 170

Determining Power Supply DC Voltage Levels 172

Avoiding Power Supply Hazards 174

Power Protection Types 175

Surge Suppressors 176

Battery Backup Units (UPS and SPS) 178

Power Conditioning Devices 180

Buying the Correct-Sized Battery Backup System 180

Troubleshooting Power Problems 181

System Cooling 182

Passive and Active Heat Sinks 183

North/Southbridge Cooling 184

Video Card Cooling 186

Case Fans 187

Thermal Compound 188

Liquid Cooling Systems 191

Chapter 6 RAM 195

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 195

RAM Basics 199

RAM Types 201

DRAM 201

SRAM 201





Rambus 203

Operational Characteristics 204

Comparison of Memory Modules 205

Memory Module Width 206

Parity and Non-Parity Memory 207

ECC and Non-ECC Memory 208

Registered and Unbuffered Memory 209

Single-Sided and Double-Sided Memory 209

Installing DIMMs and Rambus RDRAM Modules 210

Troubleshooting Memory 212

Verifying RAM Compatibility 212

Overclocking Can Lead to System Instability 213

Avoid Mixing Metals in RAM and Sockets 213

Use Caution When Mismatching RAM Speeds 213

EDO Compatibility with Other RAM Types 214

"Parity Error - System Halted" Message 215

RAM-Sizing Errors at Bootup 215

Determining Whether Cache RAM Is the Source of a Memory Problem 216

Other Methods for RAM Testing 216

Preventative Maintenance for Memory 217

Chapter 7 I/O and Multimedia Ports and Devices 221

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 221

Understanding I/O Ports 225

USB 225

USB Port Types, Speeds, and Technical Details 225

Adding USB Ports 228

SCSI 229

Multiple Device Support with SCSI Host Adapters 229

Jumper Block and DIP Switch Settings for Device IDs 230

SCSI Standards 232

SCSI Cables 233

SCSI Signaling Types 234

Daisy-Chaining SCSI Devices 234

SCSI Host Adapter Card Installation 236

SCSI Daisy-Chain Maximum Length 236

SCSI Termination Methods 237

Serial (COM) 238

Serial Port Pinouts 240

Types of Serial Cables 241

Standard IRQ and I/O Port Addresses 243

How to Configure or Disable Serial Ports 243

Serial Port Software Configuration 244

Adding Additional Serial Ports 245

Parallel (LPT) 246

Parallel Port Configuration 248

IEEE 1394 (FireWire) 253

IEEE 1394 Ports and Cables 253

IEEE 1394-Compatible Devices and Technical Requirements 254

Installing an IEEE 1394 Card 254

PS/2 (Mini-DIN) 255

Centronics 255

1/8-inch Audio Mini-Jack 256

SPDIF Digital Audio 256

MIDI Port 257

RG-6 Coaxial 258

Understanding Input Devices 258

Keyboard 258

Mouse and Pointing Devices 259

Mouse Resource Usage 260

Bar Code Reader 260

Biometric Devices 260

Touch Screens 261

Touch Screen Interfacing to the Computer 261

Understanding Multimedia Devices 262

Webcam 262

Digital Camera 262

MIDI Music and MIDI Ports 262

Sound Card 262

Microphone 263

Video Capture Card 264

Installing Input and Multimedia Devices 264

Installing a Keyboard 265

Installing a Mouse or Other Pointing Device 265

Installing a Bar Code Reader 265

Installing a Webcam 266

Installing a Digital Camera 266

Installing a MIDI Port 267

Installing a Microphone 267

Installing a Biometric Device 268

Installing a Touch Screen 268

Installing a Sound Card 268

Installing a Video Capture Card 269

Troubleshooting Input and Multimedia Devices 270

Troubleshooting Keyboards 270

Troubleshooting Mice and Pointing Devices 270

Mouse Pointer Won't Move 272

Jerky Mouse Pointer Movement 273

User Can't Double-Click Icons 274

Troubleshooting Touch Screen 274

Troubleshooting Sound Card 275

Sound Card Plays Sounds But Can't Record CD-Quality Sound 275

Sound Card Works in Some Systems But Not in Others 275

Sound Playback Is Distorted or Choppy 275

No Sound at All from Sound Card 275

Sound Card Can't Play MIDI Files 276

Troubleshooting SCSI Devices 277

External SCSI Device Isn't Available 277

External or Internal SCSI Device Isn't Available 278

Troubleshooting I/O Ports 278

Troubleshooting USB Ports and Devices 278

USB Devices Not Recognized 278

USB Port Problems 279

Troubleshooting IEEE 1394 Ports and Devices 280

System Can't Detect the IEEE 1394 Card or Port 280

Incorrect Driver for IEEE 1394 Card or Device 281

Troubleshooting Parallel (LPT) Ports and Devices 281

Parallel Port Mode Problems 281

Problems with Daisy-Chained Devices 282

Cabling and Port Problems 282

Testing Parallel Ports 283

Switchbox Problems 284

Troubleshooting Serial Ports and Devices 284

COM 4 I/O Port Conflicts 284

Serial Port Drops Characters When Multitasking 284

Can't Connect Serial Devices to Port Because of Mismatched Connectors 285

Serial Cabling and Port Problems 285

Serial Configuration Problems 286

Testing Serial Ports 286

Maintaining Input Devices 286

Maintaining Mice and Pointing Devices 286

Maintaining Keyboards 288

Chapter 8 Video Displays and Graphics Cards 293

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 293

Video (Graphics) Card Types 297

Video Card Cooling 297

Installing a Video Card 298

BIOS Configuration 298

Video Card Physical and Driver Installation 299

Display Types 301

CRT Monitor 302

LCD Monitor 303

Data Projector 303

Video Connector Types 304

VGA 305

DVI 305

HDMI 307

Component/RGB 307

S-Video 308

Composite 308

Display Settings 308

Resolution 309

Color Quality (Color Depth) 311

Refresh Rates 312

Installing a Monitor 313

Troubleshooting Displays and Video Cards 314

Troubleshooting Picture Quality Problems with OSD 314

Using Advanced Display Properties for Troubleshooting 316

Troubleshooting Video Hardware 317

Preventative Maintenance for Displays 319

Chapter 9 Laptops and Portable Devices 323

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 323

Fundamental Features of Laptops and Portable Devices 327

Memory 329

Storage Devices 330

Peripherals 331

Docking Stations and Port Replicators 331

Media and Accessory Bays 333

Expansion Slots 334

PCMCIA (PC Card, CardBus) 334

ExpressCard 337

Mini-PCI and Mini-PCIe 338

Communications Connections 340

Bluetooth 340

Infrared (IrDA) 341

Cellular WAN 342

Ethernet 342

Wireless Ethernet (WLAN or Wi-Fi) 343

LCD Screen Technologies 343

Active Matrix 344

Passive Matrix 344

Screen Resolutions 344

Screen Quality Considerations 345

Input Devices 346

Stylus and Digitizer 347

Fn Keys 347

Touch Pad 347

Pointing Stick / TrackPoint 349

Power Management Issues 349

Processor Throttling 350

Peripheral Power Management 350

Power Sources 350

Battery Types 350

AC Adapters 351

Configuring Power Management 353

ACPI 353

Suspend, Standby, and Hibernate Modes 356

Applications for Portable and Laptop Hardware 357

Using Communications Connections 357

Using Bluetooth 358

Using Infrared (IrDA) 358

Using Cellular WAN 359

Using Ethernet 359

Using Wireless Ethernet (WLAN) 359

Working with Power Sources 363

Working with Display Subsystem Components 363

Adjusting the Amount of Shared Video Memory 364

Adjusting Brightness and Contrast on a Laptop Computer's Display 364

Using DualView to Work with a Secondary Monitor or Projector 365

Cloning the Laptop Display to a Secondary Display or Projector 367

Safe Removal of Laptop-Specific Hardware 369

Safe Removal of PC Cards 370

Safe Removal of ExpressCards 370

Safe Removal of Batteries 370

Safe Removal and Installation of Mini-PCI Cards 372

Safe Removal and Installation of Hard Disk Drives 373

Safe Removal of Optical Drives 374

Safe Removal and Installation of Memory 375

Safe Removal of LCD Panels 376

Safe Removal and Replacement of Pointing Devices 377

Portable and Laptop Diagnostics 379

Power Troubleshooting 379

AC Power Troubleshooting 379

DC Power Troubleshooting 380

Display Troubleshooting 380

Using an External Monitor to Check the Display Subsystem 381

Solving Internal Display Problems 381

LCD Cutoff Switch 381

Checking for Backlight Problems 381

Dead Pixels 382

Other Components 382

Removing Peripherals 382

Stylus and Digitizer Problems 383

Keypad Problems 383

Antenna Wires 384

Preventative Maintenance for Laptops and Portable Devices 384

Cooling Devices 384

Display Screens 386

Suitable Operating Environments 386

Air Temperature 386

Air Quality 386

Storage Methods 386

Transportation and Shipping 386

Chapter 10 Security 391

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 391

Security Fundamentals 395

Secure and Insecure File Systems 395

Authentication Technologies 395

Username/Password/PIN 396

Smart Cards 396

Biometrics 396

Protection Against Viruses and Malware 397

Software Firewalls 397

Hardware Recycling and Deconstruction 398

Securing Wireless Networks 398

WEP and WPA Encryption 398

Access Point Configuration for Maximum Security 399

DHCP Versus Static IP Addresses 400

Changing the SSID 400

Disabling SSID Broadcast 401

MAC Address Filtering 402

Changing Default Administrator User Password 403

Updating Access Point Firmware 404

Firewall Features 405

Data and Physical Security 405

Data Access Local Security Policy 405

Encryption Technologies 406

Encrypting File System 406

BitLocker Encryption 407

Backups 408

Data Migration 408

Data and Data Remnant Removal 409

Password Management 409

Locking a Workstation 410

Incident Reporting 410

Social Engineering 411

Access Control Purposes and Principles 412

Operating System Access Control 412

User, Administration, and Guest Accounts 412

User Account Control (UAC) 412

Groups 413

Permissions Actions, Types, and Levels 414

Permission Inheritance and Propagation 414

Moving and Copying Folders and Files 415

Components 415

Restricted Spaces 415

Auditing and Event Logging 415

Installing, Configuring, and Troubleshooting Security Features 417

BIOS Security Features 417

Software Firewalls 418

Configuring Exceptions 419

Troubleshooting Software Firewalls 421

Wireless Network Configuration 422

Configuring a Wireless Client with Windows XP SP2/SP3 422

Configuring a Wireless Client with Windows Vista 425

Configuring a Wireless Client with Windows 7 426

Troubleshooting Wireless Clients 427

Unused Wireless Connections 428

File Systems (Converting From FAT32 To NTFS) 430

Malicious Software Protection 431

Types of Malware and Infection Methods 432

Training Users in Malware Protection 432

Chapter 11 Printers 435

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 435

Printing Fundamentals 439

Laser Printers 439

How Laser Printers Use Memory 440

Toner Cartridges 442

Laser Printer Paper and Media 443

Inkjet Printers 444

Ink Cartridges 444

Inkjet Printer Paper and Media 446

Thermal Printers 446

Thermal Printer Ribbons 446

Thermal Printer Paper 447

Impact Printers 447

Impact Printer Ribbons 448

Impact Printer Paper and Media 448

Printer and Scanner Control 449

Drivers 450

Firmware 450

Print Processes 450

Laser Print Process 451

Step 1: Cleaning 452

Step 2: Conditioning 452

Step 3: Writing 452

Step 4: Developing 453

Step 5: Transferring 453

Step 6: Fusing 453

Color Laser Printing Differences 453

Inkjet Print Process 453

Thermal Print Processes 454

Impact Print Process 455

Interface Types 456

Adding Bluetooth Support 457

Adding Ethernet Support 457

Adding 802.11Wireless Ethernet (WLAN) Support 458

Adding Infrared Support 458

Printer Installation 458

Verifying Device Compatibility with Operating System and Applications 458

Connecting the Device 459

Installing Device Drivers 459

Using the Add Printer Wizard (Windows Vista and XP) 459

Using the Add Printer Wizard (Windows 7) 461

Installing a Printer or Multifunction Unit with a Vendor-Supplied Driver 461

Calibrating the Device 462

Configuring Options and Device Settings 462

Printer Options 462

Printing a Test Page 466

Educating the User About Basic Functionality 467

Optimizing Printer Performance 467

Tray Switching 467

Print Spooler Settings 468

XPS Features in Windows 7 and Vista 469

Device Calibration 470

Media Types 470

Paper Orientation 471

Print Order 472

Installing and Configuring Printer Upgrades 472

Memory 473

Firmware 474

Printer Troubleshooting Tools and Techniques 475

Identify the Problem 475

Identifying Symptoms 475

Review Device Error Codes 476

Review Computer Error Messages and Logs 476

Using the Self-Test Feature 477

Using Diagnostic Tools 478

Establishing a Theory of Probable Cause 478

Reviewing Service Documentation 478

Reviewing Knowledge Base 479

Defining and Isolating the Problem 479

Testing the Theory to Determine Cause 480

Problem: A complex document (one with many fonts or graphics) does not print 480

Problem: Repetitive marks on laser-printed document 481

Establishing a Plan of Action to Resolve the Problem and Implement the Solution 481

Verifying Full System Functionality and Implementing Preventative Measures (if Applicable) 481

Documenting Findings, Actions, and Results 481

Troubleshooting Print Failures 482

Paper Out 482

Clearing Print Queue 482

Restarting Print Queue 483

Power Off, Power On Printer 483

Paper Jams 483

Print Quality Problems 484

Error Messages and Codes 487

Performing Preventative Maintenance 489

Installing Maintenance Kits 489

Resetting Paper Counts 489

Cleaning Rollers, Printheads, and Other Components 489

Checking for a Suitable Environment 490

Using Recommended Supplies 491

Recommended Tools 491

Multimeter 491

Screwdrivers 492

Cleaning Solutions 492

Extension Magnet 492

Chapter 12 Storage Devices 497

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 497

Floppy Disk Drives 501

Floppy Disk Types 502

Floppy Disk Drive Hardware Configuration 503

Floppy Disk Drive Physical Installation and Removal 505

Floppy Drive BIOS Configuration 505

Maintaining Floppy Disks, Data, and Drives 507

Hard Disk Drives 508

PATA and SATA Data and Power Cables 509

PATA Drive Jumpering and Cable Select 510

ATA Specifications 511

ATA/IDE Drive Physical Installation 512

SATA Hard Drive Physical Installation 514

Installing an SATA Host Adapter 516

PATA BIOS Configuration 517

SATA BIOS Configuration 520

eSATA 521

Creating an ATA or SATA RAID Array 523

ATA/IDE Performance Optimization 526

PIO and DMA Transfer Modes 526

IDE Block Mode 528

IDE Busmastering Drivers 528

Enabling DMA Transfers for PATA Devices in Windows 528

Adjusting Disk Caching Settings in Windows 530

CD, DVD, and Blu-ray Optical Drives 530

CD, DVD, and Blu-ray Drive Interfaces 532

Physical Installation of Optical Drives 533

Recording CDs and DVDs in Windows XP 533

Recording CDs and DVDs in Windows Vista and 7 535

IDE/ATAPI Optical Drive Installation Issues 536

Removable Storage 537

Tape Drives 538

Flash Memory and Card Readers 539

Flash Card Reader 541

Installing and Using a Flash Card Reader 542

Hot-Swapping Flash Memory Cards 543

USB Flash Memory Drives 543

Hot-Swapping USB Flash Memory Drives 544

External Hard Disks 545

Hot-Swapping USB or IEEE-1394-Based External Hard Disks 545

Solid State Drives (SSDs) 546

Troubleshooting Storage 547

Troubleshooting Floppy Disk Drives 547

Internal Floppy Drive Cabling Problems 547

BIOS Configuration Problems 547

Drive Reliability and Compatibility Problems 547

Changeline Problems 549

Isolating Floppy Subsystem Problems 549

Troubleshooting PATA (ATA/IDE) Drives 550

Incompatible PATA Cables 550

UDMA-66 or Faster Drive Limited to UDMA-33 Speeds 550

No Power to Drive 551

Cables Attached Incorrectly to ATA/IDE Interface or Drive 551

Physical or Electronic Damage to Drive 551

Jumpering Issues 552

Drive Not Ready Error 552

Troubleshooting SATA and eSATA Drives 552

Loose Data and Power Cables 552

eSATA Drive Cannot Be Accessed 553

SATA 3Gbps Drive Runs in Reduced Performance Mode (1.5Gbps) 553

Physical or Electronic Damage to Drive 553

Using Hard Disk Diagnostics 554

Troubleshooting CD-ROM and DVD Drives 554

Read Delays After New Media Is Inserted 555

Drive Not Supported by CD/DVD Mastering Program 555

Can't Write to Media 557

Can't Read Some Media Types in CD-ROM or DVD Drives 559

Buffer Underrun Failures 559

Damage to Media Prevents Drive from Reading Media 560

Can't Play Music Through Sound Card's Speakers 560

Troubleshooting Removable-Media, External, and Tape Drives 561

Drive Not Recognized Problems 561

Read/Write Problems 562

Chapter 13 Using and Managing Windows 567

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 568

Differences in Windows Versions 572

GUI 572

System Requirements 575

Application Compatibility 576

Program Compatibility Wizard in Windows 7 576

Program Compatibility Wizard in Windows XP and Vista 577

Additional Application Compatibility Features 579

Primary Windows Components 580

Registry 580

Windows Interfaces 581

Windows Explorer 581

Common Tasks View in Windows XP 583

Windows Vista Favorite Links View 584

Windows 7 Explorer View 585

Changing Viewing Options in Windows Explorer 586

Displaying Objects in Files and Folders 587

Windows Vista Additions to Windows Explorer 588

Windows 7 Additions to Windows Explorer 589

My Computer 590

Control Panel 591

Starting Control Panel 595

Shortcuts to Control Panel Functions 596

Command Prompt 596

Network 597

My Network Places 598

Devices and Printers 598

Taskbar/Notification Area 600

Start Menu 603

Adding, Removing, and Sorting Start Menu Items and Folders with Windows Vista/XP 603

Adding and Removing Start Menu Items and Folders with Windows 7 605

Adjusting Start Menu Properties 605

Jump ListsWindows 607

Indexing 608

Essential Operating System Files 609

Windows 7 and Vista Boot Sequence 610

Windows XP Boot Sequence 610




Registry Data Files 612

Backing Up Registry Data Files 613

hiberfil.sys 614

Disk Partition, File, and Folder Management 615

Disk Partitions 615

Using Disk Management 617

Mount Points and Mounting a Drive 623

Windows File Systems 624

FAT32 624

exFAT (FAT64) 625

NTFS 625

Convert.exe 626

Working with Folders/Directories 628

Working with Libraries in Windows 7 629

Managing Folders in a Library 630

Changing Viewing Options 631

File Management 631

Creating Files 632

File Types 632

Naming Files 634

Long Filenames and DOS Alias Names 634

File Extensions 635

Symbolic Links 636

Setting and Displaying File and Folder Attributes in Windows Explorer 636

File Permissions 639


NTBackup 641

Using Windows Vista's Backup and Restore Center 643

Using Windows 7's Backup and Restore 644


Format/Format.exe 648

Using Format with Floppy, USB Flash, and Removable-Media Drives 649

Formatting Floppy and Hard Disks with Windows Explorer 649

Windows Explorer Command-Line Options 651

Command-Line Functions 652

Starting a Command-Prompt Session with CMD.EXE 652

Internal Commands Overview 653

Using Wildcards to Specify a Range of Files 654

HELP 655

DIR 655

EDIT 657

COPY 658


MD/CD/RD 661

System Management Tools 662

Device Manager 662

Computer Management and the MMC 665

Task Manager 666



Event Viewer 672

System Restore 673

Remote Desktop 676

Configuring Your Windows System to Accept Remote Client Connections 677

Connecting Remotely 678

Ending the Remote Session 680

Optimizing Windows 680

Virtual Memory, Performance Monitor, and System Monitor 680

Hard Disk 684

Temporary Files 684

Temporary File Settings in Windows 7/Vista/XP/2000 685

Services 686

Startup 688

Applications 688

Adjusting the Balance Between Background Services and Application Response 688

Adjusting the Priority of a Process 689

Stopping Unresponsive Applications 690

Chapter 14 Installing and Upgrading Windows Operating Systems 695

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 695

Installing Operating Systems 699

Verifying Hardware Compatibility and Minimum Requirements 699

Comparing Windows 7 Editions 701

Migrating User Data 702

Installation Methods 704

Starting a Clean Installation of Windows 7 from the Distribution DVD 704

Starting a Clean Installation of Windows Vista from the Distribution DVD 707

Installing Windows XP from the Distribution CD 710

Network Drive Installation 711

Disk Image 712

Installing Windows from a Recovery DVD/CD 713

Using Boot Disks to Start the Installation (XP and 2000 only) 713

Installing Windows 7 or Windows Vista from a USB Thumb Drive 714

Installation Method Options 716

Attended Versus Unattended Installation 716

Network Configuration 717

Preparing the Hard Disk for Installation 718

Providing Device Drivers During Installation 722

Verifying Installation 723

Upgrading Operating Systems 726

Preparations to Make Before Upgrading to a Newer Version of Windows 727

Upgrading to Windows 7 from Windows Vista 728

Upgrading to Windows Vista from Windows XP 732

Upgrading to Windows 7 from Windows XP 734

Upgrading to Windows XP from 2000 735

Troubleshooting a Windows Upgrade 736

Chapter 15 Troubleshooting and Maintaining Windows 743

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 743

Troubleshooting Windows 747

Recovering an Operating System 747

Last Known Good Configuration, Safe Mode, and Other Advanced Boot Options 747

Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE) 751

Recovery Console 753

Using System Restore with Advanced Boot Options 757

Using Windows 7's Image Backup 757

Using Windows Vista's Complete PC Backup 759

Using Automated System Recovery (ASR) (Windows XP) 760

Using the Emergency Repair Disk (Windows 2000) 761

Diagnosing and Troubleshooting Other Problems 762

Identifying the Problem: User Interview 762

Analyzing the Problem 763

Identifying the Problem: Logs and Services 764

Recording Symptoms and Error Codes 766

Checking Configurations and Device Manager 767

Common Problems 767

STOP (Blue Screen) Errors 767

Auto Restart Errors 769

System Lockups 770

DxDiag 773

I/O Devices 773

Driver Signing 774

Application Troubleshooting 774

Application Start or Load Failure 775

Print Spooler Stalled 776

Incorrect/Incompatible Printer Driver 777

Common Error Messages and Codes 777

Windows 7/Vista Boot Errors 777

Windows XP/2000 Boot Errors 779

Device/Service Startup Errors 780

More Windows Errors and Error Reporting 781

Solving Disk Problems 782

Using Diagnostic Utilities and Tools 783

Can't Boot from Hard Disk 783

Using Task Manager 784

Troubleshooting with Device Manager 786

Using System File Checker (SFC) 790

Maintaining Windows 790

Installing Service Packs and Hotfixes 790

Using Windows Update and Microsoft Update 793

Performing Scheduled Backup and Restore 794

Image Backups 794

Chapter 16 Networking 799

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 800

Network Models 805

Client/Server 805

Servers 806

Clients 807

Peer-to-Peer 807

Internet Connectivity Technologies 808

Modems and Dial-Up Internet Connectivity 808

Modem Technologies and Types 809

Analog Modem Installation 812

Dial-Up Internet Service Providers 813

Creating a Dial-Up Connection 813

Requirements for a Dial-Up Internet Connection 814

ISDN Internet Connectivity 814

ISDN Hardware 815

Setting Up an ISDN Connection 815

Broadband Internet Services (DSL, Cable, Satellite) 816

DSL 816

Cable Internet 818

Satellite 818

LANs and Internet Connectivity 820

Network Protocols 820

TCP/IP 820


TCP/IP Applications and Technologies 821

ISP 821


SSL 822

TLS 822

HTML 822

FTP 822

Telnet 823

SSH 824

DNS 824

E-mail 825

SMTP 826

POP 826

IMAP 826

Ports 826

Network Topologies 827

Network Types 828

Wired Ethernet Types 828

Wireless Ethernet 829

Bluetooth 830

Infrared 830

Cellular 831

VoIP 831

Cable and Connector Types 832

UTP and STP Cabling 832

Fiber-Optic Cabling 834

Coaxial Cabling 836

Plenum and PVC 837

Connector Types 837

Installing Network Interface Cards 838

PCI and PCI Express 838

USB 839

PC Card/CardBus 839

Configuring Network Interface Cards 839

Hardware Resources 839

Media Type 840

Full/Half-Duplex 840

Wireless Ethernet (WLAN) Configuration 840

Switches and Hubs 841

Beyond LANs-Repeaters, Bridges, and Routers 842

Networking Configuration 843

Installing Network Protocols in Windows 843

TCP/IPv4 Configuration 844

TCP/IP Configuration with a DHCP Server 845

TCP/IP Alternate Configuration 846

TCP/IP User-Configured IP and DNS Addresses 847

TCP/IP User-Configured Advanced Settings 847

Understanding IP Addressing, Subnet Masks, and IP Classes 847

WINS Configuration 850

Gateway 851

DNS Configuration 851

IPv6 IP Addressing 851

NetBEUI Configuration 853

Setting Up Shared Resources 853

Installing File and Printer Sharing 854

Shared Folders and Drives 855

Sharing a Folder Using Simple File Sharing 855

Sharing a Folder with User/Group Permissions in Windows Vista or Windows 7


Shared Printers 858

Administrative Shares 858

Setting Up the Network Client 858

Installing Network Client Software 859

Installing a Network Printer 859

Using Shared Resources 860

The Universal Naming Convention (UNC) 861

Fully Qualified Domain Names (FQDNs) 862

Mapped Drives 863

Browser Installation and Configuration 864

Setting Up Your Browser to Use Your Internet Connection 865

Enabling/Disabling Script Settings 867

Configuring Browser Security Settings 867

Using Network Command-Line Tools 868

Using the Net Command 868

Using Ping 868

Using Tracert 869

Using NSLookup 870

Using Ipconfig 870

Network and Internet Troubleshooting 871

Can't Access Network Resources 871

Significant Drops in Network Performance 872

Unattended PC Drops Its Network Connection 873

All Users Lose Network Connection 873

Users Can Access Some Shared Resources But Not Others 874

Can't Print to a Network Printer 874

Ping and Tracert Work, But User Can't Display Web Pages with Browser 874

Overview of Creating a Small Office/Home Office (SOHO) Network 874

Chapter 17 Safety and Environmental Issues 879

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 879

Recycling and Disposal Issues 883

Disposing of Batteries 883

Recycling Toner and Printer Cartridges 883

Disposing of Chemical Solvents and Cans 884

Disposing of Obsolete Monitors and Computer Hardware 884

Using an MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) 885

Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) 885

Preventing ESD 886

Power Diagnostics, ESD, and Safety 887

Protection Devices 888

Correct Storage for Equipment 889

Additional ESD Precautions 890

Hazards 890

High Voltage Hazards 891

Printers 891

The Power Supply 891

CRT Monitors 892

Systems in Suspend Mode 893

Precautions Against Electric Shock 893

Discharging CRTs 894

Mechanical Hazards 895

Tripping Hazards 895

Liquid Hazards 896

Situational Hazards 896

Atmospheric Hazards 897

Heavy Equipment Hazards 897

Environmental and Accident Incident Handling 898

Chapter 18 Troubleshooting and Communications Methods 901

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz 901

Troubleshooting Methods Overview 905

The Client Interview 907

Tips for Conducting the Client Interview 908

How to Evaluate the Client's Environment 909

Testing Power 909

Looking for Sources of Interference 910

Recording Symptoms and Error Codes 910

Determining Whether a Problem Is Caused by Hardware or Software 911

What Components to Check First 914

Points of Failure on the Outside of the Computer 914

"Known-Working" Doesn't Mean "New"-Best Sources for Replacement Parts 915

Keeping Track of Your Solutions 916

Where to Go for More Information 916

Useful Hardware and Software Tools 918

Hardware Diagnostics 918

Cleaning and Maintenance Tools 920

Recommended Equipment Cleaning Products 921

Selecting and Using a Computer-Compatible Vacuum Cleaner 922

Professional Behavior 922

How to Talk to Customers 922

How to Treat Customers' Property 923

Appendix A Answers to the "Do I Know this Already?" Quizes and Troubleshooting

Scenarios 927

Elements Available on the CD

Appendix B Memory Tables

Appendix C Memory Tables Answer Key

Appendix D Hardware Resources


TOC, 9780789747907, 1/18/2011

Additional information

CompTIA A+ Cert Guide (220-701 and 220-702) by Mark Edward Soper
Mark Edward Soper
Used - Very Good
Pearson Education (US)
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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