Complete A+ Guide to IT Hardware and Software: CompTIA A+ Exams (1101/1102)

Master everything you need to know for the A+ exams, from hardware and software installation to configuration, troubleshooting, and security.

(220-1101-1102-SCH.AB1) / ISBN : 978-1-64459-384-4
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About This Course

This complete A+ guide to IT hardware and software pdf and online lessons provide in-depth preparation for the CompTIA A+ Core 1 (220-1101) and Core 2 (220-1102) certification exams. These industry standard certifications validate your skills in hardware and software troubleshooting, networking, security, and operational procedures. 

Skills You’ll Get

  • Pass the industry-recognized A+ certification exams and validate your foundational IT knowledge.
  • Install, configure, troubleshoot, and maintain various computer hardware and software components.
  • Understand networking concepts, network technologies, and basic troubleshooting methods.
  • Grasp essential security practices to keep data and systems safe.
  • Learn best practices for installing operating systems, deploying software, and performing preventative maintenance procedures.
  • Gain the practical skills and knowledge needed to thrive in an IT support specialist role.

Get the support you need. Enroll in our Instructor-Led Course.

Lessons

21+ Lessons | 558+ Exercises | 282+ Quizzes | 1618+ Flashcards | 1618+ Glossary of terms

TestPrep

90+ Pre Assessment Questions | 2+ Full Length Tests | 90+ Post Assessment Questions | 180+ Practice Test Questions

Hands-On Labs

110+ LiveLab | 00+ Minutes

1

Introduction

  • What’s New in the Ninth Edition?
  • Organization of the Text
  • Features of This course
  • CompTIA A+ Exam Objectives
2

Introduction to the World of IT

  • Who Needs This Course?
  • Technician Qualities
  • Breaking into IT with the CompTIA A+ Certification
  • Basic Skills for This Course
  • Types of Computers
  • Basic Computer Hardware
  • Mice and Keyboards
  • Common Peripherals
  • 1s and 0s
  • Safety Notes
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities 
3

Connectivity

  • Introduction to Connectivity
  • External Connectivity
  • Mouse and Keyboard Ports
  • Video Ports
  • Audio Ports
  • eSATA Ports
  • Modem and Serial Ports
  • Network Ports
  • Network Cabling
  • Integrated Motherboard Ports
  • Getting to Know Ports
  • Wireless Connectivity for Input Devices
  • Soft Skills: Using Appropriate Titles
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
4

On the Motherboard

  • Introduction to the Motherboard
  • Processor Overview
  • Processor Basics
  • Speeding Up Processor Operations Overview
  • Clocking
  • Cache
  • Threading Technology
  • Connecting to the Processor
  • Multicore Processors
  • Graphics Processing Unit (GPU)
  • Introduction to Virtualization
  • Intel Processors
  • AMD Processors
  • CPU Sockets
  • Processor Cooling
  • Installing a Processor
  • Upgrading Processors
  • Overclocking Processors
  • Installing CPU Thermal Solutions
  • Troubleshooting Processor Issues
  • Expansion Slots
  • PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect)
  • AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port)
  • PCIe (Peripheral Component Interconnect Express)
  • Motherboard Security Options
  • Types of Motherboards
  • Upgrading and Replacing Motherboards
  • Motherboard Troubleshooting
  • Soft Skills: Active Listening
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
5

Introduction to Configuration

  • Configuration Overview
  • BIOS Overview
  • The Setup Program
  • Flash BIOS
  • BIOS/UEFI Configuration Settings
  • CMOS Memory
  • Motherboard Battery
  • Firmware Updates: Flashing/Clearing the BIOS/UEFI
  • Other Configuration Parameters
  • Hardware Configuration Overview
  • Installing a USB Device
  • Installing an eSATA Card
  • Installing a Network Interface Card
  • Troubleshooting Configurations
  • Soft Skills: A Good Technician Practice: Change Only One Thing At A Time And Document
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
6

Disassembly and Power

  • Disassembly Overview
  • Electrostatic Discharge (ESD)
  • Electromagnetic Interference (EMI)
  • Tools
  • Disassembly
  • Reassembly
  • Preventive Maintenance
  • Basic Electronics Overview
  • Power Supply Overview
  • Replacing or Upgrading a Power Supply
  • Power Protection
  • Symptoms of Power Supply Problems
  • Soft Skills: Written Communications Skills
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities 
7

Memory

  • Memory Overview
  • Memory Physical Packaging
  • Planning a Memory Installation
  • Installing Memory Overview
  • Virtual RAM
  • Monitoring Memory Usage in Windows
  • Older Applications in Windows
  • Troubleshooting Memory Problems
  • Removable Storage
  • Soft Skills: Teamwork
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
8

Storage Devices

  • Storage Devices Overview
  • Hard Drive Overview
  • Solid-State Drive (SSD) Overview
  • Mechanical Drive Interfaces Overview
  • M.2 and NVMe
  • PATA, SATA, and SAS Connectivity
  • Storage Device Configuration Overview
  • System BIOS/UEFI Configuration for Storage Devices
  • Hard Drive Preparation Overview
  • Windows Disk Management
  • Fault Tolerance
  • Windows Storage Spaces
  • Disk Caching/Virtual Memory
  • Troubleshooting Storage Devices Overview
  • Data Loss and Corruption
  • Troubleshooting New Storage Device Installation
  • Troubleshooting Previously Installed Storage Devices
  • RAID Issues
  • SSD Issues
  • Soft Skills: Phone Skills
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
9

Video and Multimedia Devices

  • Multimedia Devices Overview
  • Video Overview
  • Video Cards
  • Projectors
  • Introduction to Audio
  • Installing Sound Cards
  • Sound Cards Using Windows
  • Speakers
  • Troubleshooting Sound Problems
  • Optical Drive Overview
  • Optical Drive Installation
  • Troubleshooting Optical Drive Issues
  • Scanners
  • Other Multimedia Devices
  • Soft Skills: Attitude
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
10

Printers and Multifunction Devices

  • Printer/Multifunction Device Overview
  • Categories of Printers
  • Impact Printers
  • Inkjet Printers
  • Laser Printers
  • Thermal Printers
  • 3-D Printers
  • Paper
  • Virtual Printing
  • Refilling Cartridges, Re-inking Ribbons, and Recycling Cartridges
  • Upgrading Printers
  • Printer Maintenance
  • Printer Installation Overview
  • Installing Multifunction Devices
  • USB Printer Installation
  • Printers in the Windows Environment
  • Printer Sharing
  • Cloud Printing/Scanning
  • General Printer Troubleshooting
  • USB-Attached Printer Troubleshooting
  • Windows Printer Troubleshooting
  • Impact Printer Troubleshooting
  • Inkjet Printer Troubleshooting
  • Laser Printer Troubleshooting
  • Soft Skills: Work Ethics
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
11

Mobile Devices

  • Mobile Device Overview
  • Using Mobile Devices
  • Cell Phones
  • Mobile Apps
  • Mobile Device Wired Connectivity
  • Mobile Device Wireless Connectivity
  • Mobile Device Email Configuration
  • Mobile Device Synchronization and Backup
  • Other Mobile Software Tools
  • Laptops Overview
  • Laptop Hardware
  • Laptop Power
  • Laptop Repairs Overview
  • Laptop Display
  • Mobile Device Security
  • Mobile Device Travel and Storage
  • Mobile Device Troubleshooting Overview
  • Soft Skills: A Word about Appearance
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
12

Computer Design and Troubleshooting Review

  • Design Overview
  • Computer System Design
  • Motherboard and Associated Component Design
  • Power Supply and Case Design
  • Storage Subsystem Design
  • Audio Subsystem Design
  • Display Subsystem Design
  • Troubleshooting Overview
  • Step 1. Identify the Problem
  • Step 2. Establish a Theory of Probable Cause (Question the Obvious)
  • Step 3. Test the Theory to Determine the Cause
  • Step 4. Establish a Plan of Action to Resolve the Problem and Implement the Solution
  • Step 5. Verify Full System Functionality and, If Applicable, Implement Preventive Measures
  • Step 6. Document the Findings, Actions, and Outcomes
  • Sample Troubleshooting Flowcharts
  • Soft Skills: Dealing with Difficult Customers
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
13

Internet Connectivity, Virtualization, and Cloud Technologies

  • Internet Connectivity Overview
  • Dial-up Connectivity
  • Cable Modems
  • xDSL Modems
  • VoIP
  • Fiber Networks
  • Satellite Modems
  • Mobile Connectivity Overview
  • Web Browsers
  • Basic Web Browser Issues
  • Introduction to Virtualization
  • Desktop Virtualization Basics
  • Cloud Computing
  • Soft Skills: Mentoring
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
14

Networking

  • Networking Overview
  • Network Media Overview
  • Ethernet Over Power
  • Protecting Your Network and Cable Investment
  • The OSI Model
  • The TCP/IP Model
  • Network Addressing
  • More IPv4 Addressing
  • Wireless Networks Overview
  • Wireless Network Standards
  • Wireless Network Components
  • Wireless Network Design
  • Antenna Basics
  • Wireless and Wired Client Device Configuration Overview
  • Configuring an End Device: IP Addressing
  • Adding a Computer to a Windows Domain
  • Wireless NIC–Specific Settings
  • Advanced NIC Properties
  • NIC Configuration When Using Virtualization
  • Thin or Thick Client Installation Overview
  • Wireless AP/Router Configuration
  • WWAN Cellular Configuration
  • IoT and Smart Devices
  • Network Troubleshooting
  • Troubleshooting Cable and DSL Modems
  • Networking Multifunction Devices
  • Network Servers
  • Embedded, SCADA, and Legacy Systems
  • Software-Defined Networking
  • Network Terminology
  • The TCP/IP Model in Action
  • More Windows Network Settings
  • Introduction to Shared Folders
  • Soft Skills: Being Proactive
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
15

Introduction to Operating Systems

  • Operating Systems Overview
  • User Interaction with Operating Systems
  • Overview of Popular Operating Systems
  • 32-Bit vs. 64-Bit Operating Systems
  • Windows 10 and Windows 11 Versions
  • Workstation Operating Systems
  • Operating Systems for Mobile Devices
  • End-of-Life (EOL) Concerns
  • Update Limitations
  • Compatibility Concerns
  • Corporate Operating System Needs
  • Basic Windows Usage Overview
  • Windows 10 and Windows 11 Desktop Components
  • Shortcuts and Tiles
  • Recycle Bin
  • Interactions Within a Window
  • Managing Windows Files and Folders
  • Searches and Indexing
  • Attributes, Compression, and Encryption
  • Introduction to Windows Control Panel Utilities
  • Determining the Windows Version
  • Windows Registry
  • Editing the Windows Registry
  • Backing Up Data
  • WinRE
  • Recovering the Windows OS
  • Soft Skills: Staying Current
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
16

Introduction to Scripting

  • Scripting Overview
  • Command Prompt Overview
  • Command Prompt Basics
  • Moving Around from a Command Prompt
  • The md and rd Commands
  • Two Useful Commands: del and type
  • Copying Files
  • The attrib Command
  • Why Learn Commands?
  • PowerShell
  • Other Commands You Should Look Over
  • Command Format
  • Introduction to Scripting
  • Script File Types
  • Use Cases for Scripting
  • Mitigating Consequences of Scripting
  • Environment Variables
  • Script Syntax
  • Introduction to Script Programming
  • Variables
  • Data Types
  • Examples of Using Variables
  • Comments Within Scripts
  • Basic Script Constructs
  • Decisions: The Selection Structure
  • Compound Conditions and Logical Operators
  • Loops: The Repetition Structure
  • A Brief Look at VBScript and PowerShell
  • Soft Skills: Changing Perspective When Troubleshooting
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
17

Advanced Windows

  • Advanced Windows Overview
  • Preinstallation of Windows
  • Installation/Upgrade of Windows
  • Corporate Windows Deployment
  • Verifying the Installation
  • Troubleshooting a Windows Installation
  • Reloading Windows
  • Windows Updates
  • Backing Up the Windows Registry and Data
  • Configuring Windows Overview
  • Configuring Windows
  • Adding Devices
  • Installing/Removing Software
  • Computer Management Console
  • System Tools
  • User Account Management
  • Managing Storage
  • Managing Services and Applications
  • Data Sources (ODBC)
  • Print Management Console
  • Overview of the Windows Boot Process
  • System Restore
  • Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE)
  • Startup Settings Menu
  • System Configuration Utility
  • Task Manager
  • Speeding Up the Windows Boot Process
  • Troubleshooting the Windows Boot Process
  • Black Screen/Video Issues
  • Troubleshooting a Service That Does Not Start
  • Slow Boot
  • Troubleshooting Windows Network Settings
  • Windows Reboots/System Instability
  • Shutdown Problems
  • Summary of Troubleshooting Steps
  • Power Options
  • Monitoring System Performance
  • Supporting Windows Computers Remotely
  • Preventive Maintenance for Your Operating System
  • Soft Skills: Avoiding Burnout
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
18

macOS and Linux Operating Systems

  • Introduction to macOS
  • Navigating the User Interface
  • Basic System Usage, Updates, and Backups
  • Management and Troubleshooting Tools
  • Utilities
  • Introduction to Linux
  • Navigating the GNOME User Interface
  • Basic System Usage, Updates, and Backups
  • Command-Line Interface
  • macOS and Linux Best Practices
  • Soft Skills: Be Humble
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
19

Computer and Network Security

  • Security Overview
  • Security Policy
  • Physical Security
  • Logical Security
  • Considering the End User
  • Licensing
  • Security Threats and Vulnerabilities
  • Protecting Access to Local and Network Resources
  • Permissions
  • Folder Options
  • Protecting the Operating System and Data
  • Internet Security
  • Remote Access to Network Devices
  • Internet Appliances
  • Wireless Network Security Overview
  • Security Incident Response
  • A Final Word About Security
  • Soft Skills: Building Customer Trust
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities
20

Operational Procedures

  • Operational Procedures Overview
  • Proper Power Handling and Adverse Power Conditions
  • IT Documentation
  • Change Management
  • Soft Skills: Skills TO SUCCEED
  • Lesson Summary
  • Activities

Appendix A: Subnetting Basics

1

Introduction to the World of IT

  • Disabling a Device Driver
  • Enabling a Device Driver
  • Configuring the Mouse Settings
  • Adding a Keyboard Layout
2

Connectivity

  • Connecting the Hub with Different Devices Using USB Cables
  • Installing a PCI Sound Card
  • Inserting a Pen Drive into the Laptop's USB Port
3

On the Motherboard

  • Enabling Hardware Virtualization
  • Identifying the CPU Socket (Slot)
  • Installing a Processor
  • Installing Expansion Cards on a Motherboard
  • Supplying Power to a SATA Drive
  • Identifying a PCI Bus Slot
  • Installing a USB 3.0 PCI Express Card (2.0 x4)
  • Providing Cooling and Ventilation to a Motherboard
  • Installing Motherboard Components
  • Connecting the Motherboard to the Internal Hard Drive
4

Introduction to Configuration

  • Accessing the BIOS Setup in Windows 10
  • Installing the NIC
5

Disassembly and Power

  • Assembling Computer Components
  • Replacing the Power Supply
6

Memory

  • Installing Memory Modules
  • Verifying the RAM Usage
  • Editing a Drive Letter
7

Storage Devices

  • Mounting a Drive to a Folder
  • Converting a FAT32 Partition to NTFS
  • Converting a Basic Disk to a Dynamic Disk
  • Creating a Storage Pool
  • Running the Disk Cleanup
8

Video and Multimedia Devices

  • Installing an Optical Drive and a PCI Sound Card
9

Printers and Multifunction Devices

  • Installing a Printer
  • Inserting Ink Cartridges into a Printer
  • Connecting a USB Printer to a Computer
  • Sharing a Printer
10

Mobile Devices

  • Locking an iPhone With a Password
  • Removing an Account in Android
  • Turning On the Airplane Mode of an iPhone
  • Configuring Email in Android
  • Viewing the iOS Version of an iPhone
  • Inserting a CD in a Laptop
  • Connecting a Router to a Laptop
  • Installing Laptop Components
  • Setting Up a VPN on Android
11

Computer Design and Troubleshooting Review

  • Connecting a Workstation to the LAN and Configuring IPv4 Properties
  • Identifying Clients and Servers
12

Internet Connectivity, Virtualization, and Cloud Technologies

  • Connecting the Cable Modem to Access the Internet
13

Networking

  • Configuring a Class C IP Address
  • Configuring a Class B IP Address
  • Configuring a Class A IP Address
  • Configuring an IPv6 Address
  • Configuring an IPv4 Address and a DNS Server
  • Creating a VLAN and Viewing its Assignment to Port Mapping
  • Configuring a DHCP Server
  • Adding a DNS Server
  • Using the ping Command
  • Using the nslookup Command
  • Using the ipconfig Command
  • Using the tracert and the pathping Command
  • Using the net Command
  • Using the Sharing Tab
14

Introduction to Operating Systems

  • Implementing EFS File Sharing
  • Backing Up the Windows Registry
  • Backing Up Files
15

Introduction to Scripting

  • Working with the Command Prompt
  • Running Commands on PowerShell
  • Creating a Loop in PowerShell
  • Executing the Basic Commands Through a ps1 File
  • Creating and Running a ps1 File
16

Advanced Windows

  • Setting Automatic Windows Updates
  • Creating a Swap Partition
  • Creating a Restore Point
  • Observing the Control Panel Options from Different Views
  • Configuring the Screen Resolution Setting
  • Uninstalling a Program
  • Configuring Computer Management Services
  • Displaying Windows PowerShell Snap-ins
  • Adding an MMC Snap-in
  • Using Windows Event Viewer
  • Using the Task Scheduler
  • Configuring UAC Settings
  • Viewing the Status of a Disk
  • Disabling a Service
  • Setting Up a Boot Device Priority
  • Monitoring the System's Performance Using Performance Monitor
  • Working with the Task Manager
  • Using the Task Manager to Start an Application
  • Configuring a Power Plan
  • Configuring Screen Savers
17

macOS and Linux Operating Systems

  • Viewing Processes in Linux
  • Obtaining Software Using the Command-Line Interface
  • Using Basic Linux Commands
  • Finding Files
18

Computer and Network Security

  • Conducting a DoS Attack Using Smurf Attack
  • Performing Reconnaissance on a Network
  • Performing a MITM Attack
  • Using Rainbow Tables
  • Conducting IP Spoofing
  • Creating a New User
  • Creating an Organizational Unit
  • Propagating Permissions
  • Stopping Permission Inheritance
  • Managing NTFS Permissions
  • Sharing a Folder
  • Using BitLocker
  • Disabling the AutoPlay Feature
  • Installing the Proxy Server Feature
  • Configuring Windows Defender Firewall
  • Configuring Network Address Translation
  • Setting up a Demilitarized Zone
  • Configuring a VPN

Any questions?
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CompTIA A+ 1101 and 1102 are two separate exams that you must pass to earn the full CompTIA A+ certification. They cover different but complementary topics:

  • CompTIA A+ 220-1101: Focuses on mobile devices, networking technology, hardware, virtualization, and cloud computing.
  • CompTIA A+ 220-1102: Covers operating systems, security, software troubleshooting, and operational procedures. 

The difficulty of the CompTIA A+ exam depends on your prior IT experience. With a strong foundation in computers and technology, you'll find it more manageable. However, even with no experience, the exams are achievable with thorough preparation using resources like the course you're considering.

Yes, the CompTIA A+ certification is valuable for IT professionals. It validates your foundational skills and knowledge, making you a more competitive candidate for entry-level IT support specialist, system administrator, or help desk technician positions.

Yes, the CompTIA A+ certification expires every three years. To maintain your certification, you'll need to retake both exams (1101 and 1102).

The passing score for the A+ 1102 exam is 700 on a scale of 1000.

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