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CompTIA A+ Cert Guide: Using and Managing Windows

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This chapter goes into depth concerning the fundamentals of Windows Vista and Windows XP that will be tested in the A+ 220-701 and 220-702 exams.
This chapter is from the book

Until now, we have focused on hardware and sprinkled in little bits of software here and there. That's about to change. This chapter goes into depth concerning the fundamentals of Windows Vista and Windows XP. When you are done with this chapter, you might even want to read it again because there is so much information packed in it. And if you can pass the "Do I Know This Already" quiz, then our hats are off to you.

There is a slight amount of Windows 2000 in this chapter as well (because it is covered on the CompTIA objectives); however most of the concepts and techniques used in Windows 2000 work the same way in Windows XP. Unless Windows 2000 is specifically mentioned, you can safely assume that any time XP is described, the concept is the same for Windows 2000.

You might ask why there is so much Windows XP content within this chapter, as well as on the CompTIA A+ objectives. Well, even though XP is currently eight years old, there are still a slew of companies using it. Consequently it is very important to know for the exam. Windows Vista is currently the newest operating system that CompTIA includes on the A+ exam.

Note that you will sometimes see references to Windows Vista's "Computer" and Windows XP's equivalent "My Computer" within the same sentence. Sometimes this will be written as Computer/My Computer, or My Computer/Computer. The same holds true for other Windows interfaces that have undergone name changes with the advent of Windows Vista.

There is a lot of content to cover in this chapter; So, without further ado, let's demonstrate how to use and manage Windows!

"Do I Know This Already?" Quiz

The "Do I Know This Already?" quiz allows you to assess whether you should read this entire chapter or simply jump to the "Exam Preparation Tasks" section for review. If you are in doubt, read the entire chapter. Table 13-1 outlines the major headings in this chapter and the corresponding "Do I Know This Already?" quiz questions. You can find the answers in Appendix A, "Answers to the 'Do I Know This Already?' Quizzes and Troubleshooting Scenarios."

Table 13-1. "Do I Know This Already?" Foundation Topics Section-to-Question Mapping

Foundations Topics Section

Questions Covered in This Section

Differences in Windows Versions

1, 2, 14, 15

Primary Windows Components

3, 4

Windows Interfaces

5, 6, 16

Essential Operating System Files

7, 8

Disk Partition, File and Folder Management


Command-Line Functions

10, 11

System Management Tools


Optimizing Windows


  1. Which of the following technologies is the graphical user interface used by default in Windows Vista?

    1. Windows PowerGUI
    2. Windows Aero
    3. Windows GUI version II
    4. Windows Powershell
  2. You are the PC technician for your company. You are upgrading your computers to Windows Vista. There are certain users who have older applications. What tool can you use to make the application run under the newer operating system?

    1. XP Mode
    2. You cannot do this
    3. Program Compatibility Wizard
    4. Install the application in a virtual machine
  3. Which of the following is a central database for Windows, applications, and user settings that should be backed up on a regular basis?

    1. The Hardware Layer
    2. The Registry
    3. Windows Machine Database
    4. The Windows Hives
  4. You are working on a computer. You receive a message about virtual memory being low on resources. What is virtual memory?

    1. Physical memory sticks on the motherboard
    2. Memory that only runs in a virtual environment
    3. Your system memory and virtual memory are the same
    4. Your system memory has borrowed some hard disk space
  5. Which of the following is a file management utility that is used on Windows-based operating systems?

    1. Windows Explorer
    2. File Manager
    3. Server Manager
    4. Internet Explorer
  6. You are working on your Windows XP desktop computer. You need to modify your network settings. Which of the following will you use to modify this?

    1. My Computer
    2. Network Spot
    3. My Network Places
    4. My Network Manager
  7. Which of the following files are required to boot the Windows Vista operating system? (Choose all that apply.)

    1. Bootmgr
    2. BCD
    3. Hall.dll
    4. Ntoskrnl.exe
    5. Boot.ini
  8. Which of the following files is a specially formatted text file that configures the startup process for the Windows XP operating system?

    1. NTDETECT.com
    2. BOOT.ini
    3. NTLDR
    4. Ntoskrnl.exe
  9. You have just been given a new hard drive to install in a client's computer to be installed with a new Windows operating system. What processes must you go through while you install the operating system on the drive? (Choose two.)

    1. Create a new partition
    2. Nothing, the drive is ready to go
    3. Format the drive
    4. Install the drive utility
  10. You are doing some phone support for your company. A user calls up and says he is not able to get out to network resources. You need him to run the ipconfig utility to check for a valid IP address. How would you tell the user to pull up the command prompt? (Choose all that apply.)

    1. Start, Run and type command
    2. Start, Run and type cmd
    3. Start, Run and type com
    4. Start > Programs > Accessories > Command Prompt icon
  11. Which of the following parameters (switches) will copy all files, folders, and subfolders, including empty subfolders, to the TEST folder?

    1. xcopy *.* c:\test /T
    2. xcopy *.* c:\test /S
    3. xcopy *.* c:\test /E
    4. xcopy *.* c:\test \T
  12. You are providing some phone support for your clients. They are telling you that the video seems to be showing poorly. You need to see if there is a problem with the video card. Where would you instruct them to go to view this information?

    1. Display Properties
    2. The screensaver tab
    3. Device Manager
  13. You are contacted by a client that is having problems because her computer is running very slowly. You need to run a utility to see if the system needs to have more memory installed. Which of the following utilities should you use?

    1. Performance Monitor
    2. System Performance wizard
    3. Memory Tasks wizard
    4. System Configuration Utility
  14. What is the minimum processor requirement for Windows Vista?

    1. 133 MHz
    2. 233 MHz
    3. 800 MHz
    4. 1 GHz
  15. What is the minimum RAM requirement for Windows Vista?

    1. 64 MB
    2. 256 MB
    3. 512 MB
    4. 1024 MB
  16. A user wants to modify his network connection from the Windows Vista Network window. Which of the following options will allow the user to do this?

    1. Task Manager
    2. Command Prompt
    3. My Network Places
    4. Network and Sharing Center
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