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Master the Essentials of IT: Your Ultimate Guide to CompTIA A+ Certification

CompTIA A+ certification

Sometimes, things do not go as planned. Suppose you dreamt of pursuing a different career, but the almighty had planned something else for you. Yes, I am talking about those who unwillingly have to deviate from their path. Whether preparing for government exams or aiming to become a doctor, luck sometimes fails.

But why lose hope when a whole new world is awaiting your arrival? When one door closes, another one opens. Hence, IT is a domain that welcomes everyone, whether a fresher, a professional, or someone from a different background. And if you have no idea what tech exactly is, CompTIA A+ certification is at your rescue.

Read till the end to know everything about the CompTIA A+ certification course.

What is the CompTIA A+ certification course?

The CompTIA A+ certification course involves skills including networking, security, virtualization, operating systems, troubleshooting, configuring, and hardware components. It is a globally acknowledged IT accreditation.

But how will CompTIA A+ help me?

Since CompTIA A+ is a beginner’s program for those with no prior knowledge of tech, it is not extremely difficult and does not require any experience. After completing the course, you will receive a certification enabling you to indulge in IT and choose the domain of your preference.

Is there any exam for CompTIA A+ certification?

To earn the CompTIA A+ certification, you need to clear two exams. These exams help you get prepared for your upcoming tech journey. The exam details are as follows-

  • Exam 1

Exam Code: 220-1101

Exam Time: 90 Minutes

Exam Format: MCQs, Drag and Drops, and Performance-based 

Exam Cost: 253 USD

Total Questions: 90

Passing Marks: 675 out of 900

Exam Language: English, German, Japanese, Portuguese, Thai, Spanish, and French

Testing Provider: Pearson VUE

  • Exam 2

Exam Code: 220-1102

Exam Time: 90 Minutes

Exam Format: MCQs, Drag and Drops, and Performance-based 

Exam Cost: 253 USD

Total Questions: 90

Passing Marks: 700 out of 900

Exam Language: English, German, Japanese, Portuguese, Thai, Spanish, and French

Testing Provider: Pearson VUE

What will I learn with the CompTIA A+ program?

With the CompTIA A+ program, you will learn the following concepts directly from engineers-

Module 1: Hardware

  • BIOS configurations

Given a scenario, configure settings and use BIOS/UEFI tools on a PC.

  1. Firmware upgrades/flash BIOS
  2. BIOS component information
  3. Built-in diagnostics
  4. Monitoring
  • Motherboard components

Explain the importance of motherboard components, their purpose and properties.

  1. Sizes
  2. Expansion slots
  3. RAM slots
  4. CPU sockets
  5. Chipsets
  6. CMOS battery
  7. Power connection and types
  8. Fan connectors
  9. Front/top panel connectors
  10. Bus speeds
  11. Reset button
  • RAM Types

Compare and contrast various RAM types and their features.

  1. Types
  2. Single channel 
  3. Dual channel
  4. Triple channel
  5. RAM compatibility
  • PC Expansion Cards

Install and configure PC expansion cards.

  1. Sound cards
  2. Video cards
  3. Network cards
  4. USB cards
  5. Firewire cards
  6. Thunderbolt cards
  7. Storage cards
  8. Modem cards
  9. Wireless/cellular cards
  10. TV tuner cards
  11. Video capture cards
  12. Riser cards
  • Storage Devices

Install and configure storage devices and use appropriate media.

  1. Optical drives
  2. Magnetic hard disk drives
  3. Hot-swappable drives
  4. Solid state/flash drives
  5. RAID types
  6. Tape drive
  7. Media capacity
  • CPUs

Install various types of CPUs and apply the appropriate cooling methods.

  1. Socket types
  2. Characteristics
  3. Cooling
  • PC Connection Interfaces

Compare and contrast various PC connection interfaces, their characteristics and purpose.

  1. Physical connections
  2. Wireless connections
  3. Characteristics
  4. Analog
  5. Digital
  6. Data transfer speeds
  7. Quality
  8. Frequencies
  • Power Supply

Install a power supply based on the given specifications.

  1. Connector types and their voltages
  2. Specifications
  • Custom PC Configuration

Given a scenario, select the appropriate components for a custom PC configuration to meet customer specifications or needs.

  1. Graphic/CAD/CAM design workstation
  2. Audio/video editing workstation
  3. Virtualization workstation
  4. Gaming PC
  5. Home theater PC
  6. Standard thick client
  7. Thin client
  8. Home server PC
  • Display Devices

Compare and contrast types of display devices and their features.

  1. Types
  2. Refresh/frame rates
  3. Resolution
  4. Native resolution
  5. Brightness/lumens
  6. Analog vs. Digital
  7. Privacy/antiglare filters
  8. Multiple displays
  9. Aspect ratios
  • PC connected types

Identify common PC connector types and associated cables.

  1. Display connector types display cable types
  2. Device cables and connectors
  3. Adapters and convertors
  • Peripheral Devices

Install and configure peripheral devices.

  1. Input devices
  2. Output devices
  3. Input and output devices
  • Install SOHO

Install SOHO multifunction devices/printers and configure appropriate settings.

  1. Use appropriate drivers for a given operating system
  2. Device sharing
  3. Public/ shared devices
  • Print Technologies

Compare and contrast differences between the various print technologies and the associated imaging process.

  1. Laser
  2. Inkjet
  3. Thermal (feed assembly, heating element, special thermal paper)
  4. Impact (print head, ribbon, tractor feed, impact paper)
  5. Virtual (print to file, print to PDF, print to XPS, print to image)
  • Printer Maintenance

Given a scenario, perform appropriate printer maintenance.

  1. Laser
  2. Therma
  3. Impact
  4. Inkjet

Module 2: Networking

  • Network Cables and Connectors

Identify the various types of network cables and connectors.

  1. Fiber
  2. Twisted pair
  3. Connectors: RJ-11, RJ-45
  4. Wiring standards: T568A, T568B
  5. Coaxial
  6. Connectors: BNC, F-connector
  • Connectors and Cabling

Compare and contrast the characteristics of connectors and cabling.

  1. Fiber
  2. Twisted pair
  3. Speed and transmission limitations
  4. Splitters and their effects on signal quality
  5. Coaxial
  • TCP/ IP

Explain the properties and characteristics of TCP/IP.

  1. IPv4 and IPv6
  2. Public vs. private vs. APIPA/link-local
  3. Static vs. Dynamic
  4. Client-side DNS settings
  5. Client-side DHCP
  6. Subnet mask vs. CIDR
  7. Gateway
  • TCP and UDP Ports

Explain TCP and UDP ports, protocols and their purpose.

  1. Ports
  2. Protocols
  3. TCP vs. UDP
  • WiFi networking standards

Compare and contrast various WiFi networking standards and encryption types.

  1. Standards
  2. Encryption types
  • SOHO wireless/ wired router

Given a scenario, install and configure the SOHO wireless/ wired router and apply appropriate settings.

  1. Channels
  2. Port forwarding, port triggering
  3. DHCP (on/off)
  4. DMZ
  5. NAT/DNAT
  6. Basic QoS
  7. Firmware
  8. UPnP
  • Internet Connection Types

Compare and contrast Internet connection types, network types and their features.

  1. Internet connection types
  2. Cable
  3. DSL
  4. Dial-up
  5. Fiber
  6. Satellite
  7. ISDN
  8. Cellular
  9. Tethering
  10. Mobile hotspot
  11. Line-of-sight wireless Internet service
  12. Network Types
  13. LAN
  14. WAN
  15. PAN
  16. MAN
  • Network Architecture Devices

Compare and contrast network architecture devices, their functions and features

  1. Hub
  2. Switch
  3. Router
  4. Access point
  5. Bridge
  6. Modem
  7. Firewall
  8. Patch panel
  9. Repeaters/extenders
  10. Ethernet over Power
  11. Power over Ethernet injector
  • Networking Tools

Given a scenario, use appropriate networking tools.

  1. Crimper
  2. Cable stripper
  3. Multimeter
  4. Tone generator and probe
  5. Cable tester
  6. Loopback plug
  7. Punch down tool
  8. WiFi analyzer

Module 3: Mobile Devices

  • Laptop Hardware and Components

Install and configure laptop hardware and components.

  1. Expansion options
  2. Hardware/ device replacement
  • Components

Explain the function of components within the display of a laptop.

  1. Types
  2. LCD
  3. TN vs IPS
  4. Fluorescent vs. LED backlighting
  5. OLED
  6. WiFi antenna connector/ placement
  7. Webcam
  8. Microphone
  9. Inverter
  10. Digitizer
  • Laptop Features

Given a scenario, use appropriate laptop features.

  1. Special function keys
  2. Dual displays
  3. Wireless (on/off)
  4. Cellular (on/off)
  5. Volume settings
  6. Screen brightness
  7. Bluetooth (on/off)
  8. Keyboard backlight
  9. Touchpad (on/off)
  10. Screen orientation
  11. Media options (fast forward/rewind)
  12. GPS (on/off)
  13. Airplane mode
  14. Docking station
  15. Physical laptop lock and cable lock
  16. Rotating/removable screens
  • Mobile Devices

Explain the characteristics of various types of other mobile devices.

  1. Tablets
  2. Smartphones
  3. Wearable technology devices
  4. Smartwatches
  5. Fitness monitors
  6. Glasses and headsets
  7. Phablets
  8. e-Readers
  9. Smart camera
  10. GPS
  • Ports of other Mobile Devices

Compare and contrast accessories and ports of other mobile devices.

  1. Connection types
  2. Hotspot/ tethering
  3. Accessories
  4. Headsets
  5. Speakers
  6. Gamepads
  7. Docking stations
  8. Extra battery packs/battery chargers
  9. Protective covers/waterproofing
  10. Credit card readers
  11. Memory/MicroSD

Module 4: Hardware and Network Troubleshooting

  • Troubleshoot

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

  1. Common symptoms
  2. Distended capacitors
  3. Tools
  4. Multimeter
  5. Power supply tester
  6. Loopback plugs
  7. POST card/USB
  • Hard Drives and RAID Arrays

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

  1. Common symptoms
  2. Read/write failure
  3. Slow performance
  4. Loud clicking noise
  5. Failure to boot
  6. Drive not recognized
  7. OS not found
  8. RAID not found
  9. RAID stops working
  10. Proprietary crash screens (BSOD/pinwheel)
  11. SMART errors
  12. Tools
  13. File recovery software
  14. Defragmentation tool
  15. FORMAT
  16. CHKDSK
  • Troubleshoot Common Video Issues

Given a scenario, troubleshoot video, projector and display issues.

  1. Common symptoms
  2. VGA mode
  3. No image on the screen
  4. Overheat shutdown
  5. Dead pixels
  6. Artifacts
  7. Colour patterns incorrect
  8. Dim image
  9. Flickering image
  10. Distorted image
  11. Distorted geometry
  12. Burn-in
  13. Oversized images and icons
  • Troubleshoot Wired and Wireless Networks

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

  1. Common symptoms
  2. Hardware tools
  3. Command line tools
  • Troubleshoot Common Mobile Device Issues

Given a scenario, troubleshoot and repair common mobile device issues adhering to the appropriate procedures.

  1. Common symptoms
  2. Disassembling processes for proper re-assembly
  • Troubleshoot Printers

Given a scenario, troubleshoot printers with appropriate tools.

  1. Common symptoms
  2. Tools
  3. Maintenance kit
  4. Toner vacuum
  5. Compressed air
  6. Printer spooler

Wrapping Up!

Begin with the CompTIA A+ certification program to skyrocket your IT journey. Network Kings has always believed in shaping the careers of many and will be glad to assist you. Enroll now before it gets too late.

HAPPY LEARNING!

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