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Exam Objectives: CompTIA A+ 220-802

The exam objectives as stated (and copyrighted) by CompTIA, Inc. are as follows:

Operating Systems 33%

1.1 Compare and contrast the features and requirements of various Microsoft Operating Systems.

  • Windows XP Home, Windows XP Professional, Windows XP Media Center, Windows XP 64-bit Professional
  • Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Home Premium, Windows Vista Business, Windows Vista Ultimate, Windows Vista Enterprise
  • Windows 7 Starter, Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 7 Enterprise
  • Features:
    • 32-bit vs. 64-bit
    • Aero, gadgets, user account control, bit-locker, shadow copy, system restore, ready boost, sidebar, compatibility mode, XP mode, easy transfer, administrative tools, defender, Windows firewall, security center, event viewer, file structure and paths, category view vs. classic view
  • Upgrade paths—differences between in place upgrades, compatibility tools, Windows upgrade OS advisor

1.2 Given a scenario, install, and configure the operating system using the most appropriate method.

  • Boot methods
    • USB
    • CD-ROM
    • DVD
    • PXE
  • Type of installations
    • Creating image
    • Unattended installation
    • Upgrade
    • Clean install
    • Repair installation
    • Multiboot
    • Remote network installation
    • Image deployment
  • Partitioning
    • Dynamic
    • Basic
    • Primary
    • Extended
    • Logical
  • File system types/formatting
    • FAT
    • FAT32
    • NTFS
    • CDFS
    • Quick format vs. full format
  • Load alternate third party drivers when necessary
  • Workgroup vs. Domain setup
  • Time/date/region/language settings
  • Driver installation, software and windows updates
  • Factory recovery partition

1.3 Given a scenario, use appropriate command line tools.

  • Networking
    • PING
    • NET
  • OS
    • Taskkill
    • Tasklist
    • MD
    • RD
    • CD
    • DEL
    • FDISK
    • FORMAT
    • COPY
    • XCOPY
    • SFC
    • CHKDSK
    • [command name] /?
  • Recovery console
    • Fixboot
    • Fixmbr

1.4 Given a scenario, use appropriate operating system features and tools.

  • Administrative
    • Computer management
    • Device manager
    • Users and groups
    • Local security policy
    • Performance monitor
    • Services
    • System configuration
    • Task scheduler
    • Component services
    • Data sources
    • Print management
    • Windows memory diagnostics
    • Windows firewall
    • Advanced security
    • General
    • Boot
    • Services
    • Startup
    • Tools
  • Task Manager
    • Applications
    • Processes
    • Performance
    • Networking
    • Users
  • Disk management
    • Drive status
    • Mounting
    • Extending partitions
    • Splitting partitions
    • Assigning drive letters
    • Adding drives
    • Adding arrays
  • Other
    • User State Migration tool (USMT), File and Settings Transfer Wizard, Windows Easy Transfer
  • Run line utilities
    • CMD
    • MMC
    • MSTSC
    • MSINFO32
    • DXDIAG

1.5 Given a scenario, use Control Panel utilities (the items are organized by “classic view/large icons” in Windows).

  • Common to all Microsoft Operating Systems
    • Internet options
      • Connections
      • Security
      • General
      • Privacy
      • Programs
      • Advanced
    • Display
      • Resolution
    • User accounts
    • Folder options
      • Sharing
      • View hidden files
      • Hide extensions
      • Layout
    • System
      • Performance (virtual memory)
      • Hardware profiles
      • Remote settings
      • System protection
    • Security center
    • Windows firewall
    • Power options
      • Hibernate
      • Power plans
      • Sleep/suspend
      • Standby
  • Unique to Windows XP
    • Add/remove programs
    • Network connections
    • Printers and faxes
    • Automatic updates
    • Network setup wizard
  • Unique to Vista
    • Tablet PC settings
    • Pen and input devices
    • Offline files
    • Problem reports and solutions
    • Printers
  • Unique to Windows 7
    • HomeGroup
    • Action center
    • Remote applications and desktop applications
    • Troubleshooting

1.6 Setup and configure Windows networking on a client/desktop.

  • HomeGroup, file/print sharing
  • WorkGroup vs. domain setup
  • Network shares/mapping drives
  • Establish networking connections
    • VPN
    • Dialups
    • Wireless
    • Wired
    • WWAN (Cellular)
  • Proxy settings
  • Remote desktop
  • Home vs. Work vs. Public network settings
  • Firewall settings
    • Exceptions
    • Configuration
    • Enabling/disabling Windows firewall
  • Configuring an alternative IP address in Windows
    • IP addressing
    • Subnet mask
    • DNS
    • Gateway
  • Network card properties
    • Half duplex/full duplex/auto
    • Speed
    • Wake-on-LAN
    • PoE
    • QoS

1.7 Perform preventive maintenance procedures using appropriate tools.

  • Best practices
    • Schedules backups
    • Scheduled check disks
    • Scheduled defragmentation
    • Windows updates
    • Patch management
    • Driver/firmware updates
    • Antivirus updates
  • Tools
    • Backup
    • System restore
    • Check disk
    • Recovery image
    • Defrag

1.8 Explain the differences among basic OS security settings.

  • User and groups
    • Administrator
    • Power user
    • Guest
    • Standard user
  • NTFS vs. Share permissions
    • Allow vs. deny
    • Moving vs. copying folders and files
    • File attributes
  • Shared files and folders
    • Administrative shares vs. local shares
    • Permission propagation
    • Inheritance
  • System files and folders
  • User authentication
    • Single sign-on

1.9 Explain the basics of client-side virtualization.

  • Purpose of virtual machines
  • Resource requirements
  • Emulator requirements
  • Security requirements
  • Network requirements
  • Hypervisor

2.0 Security 22%

2.1 Apply and use common prevention methods.

  • Physical security
    • Lock doors
    • Tailgating
    • Securing physical documents/passwords/shredding
    • Biometrics
    • Badges
    • Key fobs
    • RFID badge
    • RSA token
    • Privacy filters
    • Retinal
  • Digital security
    • Antivirus
    • Firewalls
    • Antispyware
    • User authentication/strong passwords
    • Directory permissions
  • User education
  • Principle of least privilege

2.2 Compare and contrast common security threats.

  • Social engineering
  • Malware
  • Rootkits
  • Phishing
  • Shoulder surfing
  • Spyware
  • Viruses
    • Worms
    • Trojans

2.3 Implement security best practices to secure a workstation.

  • Setting strong passwords
  • Requiring passwords
  • Restricting user permissions
  • Changing default user names
  • Disabling guest account
  • Screensaver required password
  • Disable autorun

2.4 Given a scenario, use the appropriate data destruction/disposal method.

  • Low level format vs. standard format
  • Hard drive sanitation and sanitation methods
    • Overwrite
    • Drive wipe
  • Physical destruction
    • Shredder
    • Drill
    • Electromagnetic
    • Degaussing tool

2.5 Given a scenario, secure a SOHO wireless network.

  • Change default user-names and passwords
  • Changing SSID
  • Setting encryption
  • Disabling SSID broadcast
  • Enable MAC filtering
  • Antenna and access point placement
  • Radio power levels
  • Assign static IP addresses

2.6 Given a scenario, secure a SOHO wired network.

  • Change default usernames and passwords
  • Enable MAC filtering
  • Assign static IP addresses
  • Disabling ports
  • Physical security

3.0 Mobile Devices 9%

3.1 Explain the basic features of mobile operating systems.

  • Android vs. iOS
    • Open source vs. closed source/vendor specific
    • App source (app store and market)
    • Screen orientation (accelerometer/gyroscope)
    • Screen calibration
    • GPS and geotracking

3.2 Establish basic network connectivity and configure email.

  • Wireless / cellular data network (enable/disable)
  • Bluetooth
    • Enable Bluetooth
    • Enable pairing
    • Find device for pairing
    • Enter appropriate pin code
    • Test connectivity
  • Email configuration
    • Server address
      • POP3
      • IMAP
      • Port and SSL settings
    • Exchange
    • Gmail

3.3 Compare and contrast methods for securing mobile devices.

  • Passcode locks
  • Remote wipes
  • Locator applications
  • Remote backup applications
  • Failed login attempts restrictions
  • Antivirus
  • Patching/OS updates

3.4 Compare and contrast hardware differences in regards to tablets and laptops.

  • No field serviceable parts
  • Typically not upgradeable
  • Touch interface
    • Touch flow
    • Multitouch
  • Solid state drives

3.5 Execute and configure mobile device synchronization.

  • Types of data to synchronize
    • Contacts
    • Programs
    • Email
    • Pictures
    • Music
    • Videos
  • Software requirements to install the application on the PC
  • Connection types to enable synchronization

4.0 Troubleshooting 36%

4.1 Given a scenario, explain the troubleshooting theory.

  • Identify the problem
    • Question the user and identify user changes to computer and perform backups before making changes
  • Establish a theory of probable cause (question the obvious)
  • Test the theory to determine cause
    • Once theory is confirmed determine next steps to resolve problem
    • If theory is not confirmed re-establish new theory or escalate
  • Establish a plan of action to resolve the problem and implement the solution
  • Verify full system functionality and if applicable implement preventive measures
  • Document findings, actions and outcomes

4.2 Given a scenario, troubleshoot common problems related to motherboards, RAM, CPU and power with appropriate tools.

  • Common symptoms
    • Unexpected shutdowns
    • System lockups
    • POST code beeps
    • Blank screen on bootup
    • BIOS time and settings resets
    • Attempts to boot to incorrect device
    • Continuous reboots
    • No power
    • Overheating
    • Loud noise
    • Intermittent device failure
    • Fans spin—no power to other devices
    • Indicator lights
    • Smoke
    • Burning smell
    • BSOD
  • Tools
    • Multimeter
    • Power supply tester
    • Loopback plugs
    • POST card

4.3 Given a scenario, troubleshoot hard drives and RAID arrays with appropriate tools.

  • Common symptoms
    • Read/write failure
    • Slow performance
    • Loud clicking noise
    • Failure to boot
    • Drive not recognized
    • OS not found
    • RAID not found
    • RAID stops working
    • BSOD
  • Tools
    • Screwdriver
    • External enclosures
    • CHKDSK
    • FORMAT
    • FDISK
    • File recovery software

4.4 Given a scenario, troubleshoot common video and display issues.

  • Common symptoms
    • VGA mode
    • No image on screen
    • Overheat shutdown
    • Dead pixels
    • Artifacts
    • Color patterns incorrect
    • Dim image
    • Flickering image
    • Distorted image
    • Discoloration (degaussing)
    • BSOD

4.5 Given a scenario, troubleshoot wired and wireless networks with appropriate tools.

  • Common symptoms
    • No connectivity
    • APIPA address
    • Limited connectivity
    • Local connectivity
    • Intermittent connectivity
    • IP conflict
    • Slow transfer speeds
    • Low RF signal
  • Tools
    • Cable tester
    • Loopback plug
    • Punch down tools
    • Toner probes
    • Wire strippers
    • Crimper
    • PING
    • NET
    • Wireless locator

4.6 Given a scenario, troubleshoot operating system problems with appropriate tools.

  • Common symptoms
    • BSOD
    • Failure to boot
    • Improper shutdown
    • Spontaneous shutdown/restart
    • RAID not detected during installation
    • Device fails to start
    • Missing dll message
    • Services fails to start
    • Compatibility error
    • Slow system performance
    • Boots to safe mode
    • File fails to open
    • Missing NTLDR
    • Missing Boot.ini
    • Missing operating system
    • Missing Graphical Interface
    • Graphical Interface fails to load
    • Invalid boot disk
  • Tools
    • Fixboot
    • Recovery console
    • Fixmbr
    • Sfc
    • Repair disks
    • Pre-installation environments
    • DEFRAG
    • REGSVR32
    • Event viewer
    • Safe mode
    • Command prompt
    • Emergency repair disk
    • Automated system recovery

4.7 Given a scenario, troubleshoot common security issues with appropriate tools and best practices.

  • Common symptoms
    • Pop-ups
    • Browser redirection
    • Security alerts
    • Slow performance
    • Internet connectivity issues
    • PC locks up
    • Windows updates failures
    • Rogue antivirus
    • Spam
    • Renamed system files
    • Files disappearing
    • File permission changes
    • Hijacked email
    • Access denied
  • Tools
    • Anti-virus software
    • Anti-malware software
    • Anti-spyware software
    • Recovery console
    • System restore
    • Pre-installation environments
    • Event viewer
  • Best practices for malware removal
    • Identify malware symptoms
    • Quarantine infected system
    • Disable system restore
    • Remediate infected systems
      • Update anti-virus software
      • Scan and removal techniques (safe mode, pre-installation environment)
    • Schedule scans and updates
    • Enable system restore and create restore point
    • Educate end user

4.8 Given a scenario, troubleshoot, and repair common laptop issues while adhering to the appropriate procedures.

  • Common symptoms
    • No display
    • Dim display
    • Flickering display
    • Sticking keys
    • Intermittent wireless
    • Battery not charging
    • Ghost cursor
    • No power
    • Num lock indicator lights
    • No wireless connectivity
    • No Bluetooth connectivity
    • Cannot display to external monitor
  • Disassembling processes for proper re-assembly
    • Document and label cable and screw locations
    • Organize parts
    • Refer to manufacturer documentation
    • Use appropriate hand tools

4.9 Given a scenario, troubleshoot printers with appropriate tools

  • Common symptoms
    • Streaks
    • Faded prints
    • Ghost images
    • Toner not fused to the paper
    • Creased paper
    • Paper not feeding
    • Paper jam
    • No connectivity
    • Garbled characters on paper
    • Vertical lines on page
    • Backed up print queue
    • Low memory errors
    • Access denied
    • Printer will not print
    • Color prints in wrong print color
    • Unable to install printer
    • Error codes
  • Tools
    • Maintenance kit
    • Toner vacuum
    • Compressed air
    • Printer spooler
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