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Course: CompTIA A+ Certification 901. The Total Course

CompTIA A+ Certification 901. The Total Course

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About this Course

Welcome to the CompTIA A+ Certification 901. The Total Course from Mike Meyers and Total Seminars.

This is the first of a two course series for CompTIA A+ and is designed to prepare you to take and pass the CompTIA A+ 220-901 exam. To become fully A+ certified you will need to pass both the 220-901 and 220-902 exams. This course is over 14 hours in length containing over 120 video lectures. The first goal of the course is to make you a good PC Tech and in the process make sure you are ready to pass the CompTIA 901 exam.

The course covers all the CompTIA A+ 220-901 Objective Domains:

  • Hardware: 34%
  • Networking: 21%
  • Mobile Devices: 17%
  • Hardware & Networking Troubleshooting: 28%

Topics include how to:

  • Work with CPU, RAM, BIOS, motherboards, power supplies, and other PC components
  • Install, configure, and maintain hard drives
  • Manage input devices and removable media
  • Troubleshoot and fix common PC problems
  • Install video and multimedia cards
  • Work with smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices
  • Install and configure wired and wireless networks
  • Connect to the Internet
  • Install, configure, and manage printers and other peripherals

Who is the target audience?

  • This course is intended for anyone that is preparing for an entry level PC technician position or looking to improve their skills and become CompTIA A+ Certified. However, it goes beyond that and will give you the skills you need to be a better tech on the job
Basic knowledge
  • Basic familiarity with PCs and networks
  • There are no specific prerequisites as the course covers all the topics in detail
What you will learn
  • This is a complete and comprehensive CompTIA A+ 220-901 course. It is designed to prepare the student to be able to take and pass the first of two A+ exams needed to become CompTIA A+ Certified. To become A+ Certified requires you to pass BOTH the 220-901 and 220-902 exams There is a separate course covering the 220-902 exam
  • Once you complete the two CompTIA A+ courses, you will have the knowledge and confidence to pass the exams AND the skills to be a great PC tech. This course is ideal as both a study tool and an on-the-job reference
  • Your new skills and the CompTIA A+ Certification will help you land your first PC tech job or if you are already a PC tech, get that raise or advancement you are seeking
Curriculum
Number of Lecture: 127
Total Duration: 15:36:49
Path of the PC Tech
  • What is the CompTIA A+  

    In this episode, Mike welcomes you to the CompTIA A+ course.

    You can download the CompTIA A+ 220-901 exam objectives to see in details what is covered on the 901 exam.

  • How to Pass the A+ Exams  

    In this episode, Mike discusses strategies for successfully studying for the CompTIA A+ exams.

  • What is on the A+ 220-901 Exam  

    In this episode, Mike goes into detail explaining what is covered on the CompTIA A+ 220-901 Exam

  • Why Get A+ Certified  

    In this episode, Mike discusses the benefits of obtaining the CompTIA A+ Certification

The Visible Computer
  • How Computers Work  

    In this episode, Mike teaches the computing process (input, processing, output, and storage) using nothing but a blender and some coffee.

  • Primary PC Components  

    In this episode, Mike walks you through the major components of a PC, including the monitor, case, keyboard, mouse, speakers, printer, and more.

  • External Connections  

    In this episode, Mike takes you on a fast-paced tour of the many connectors found on PCs, including USB, Firewire, eSATA, VGA, DVI, and more.

  • Inside the PC  

    In this episode, Mike pulls back the curtain and takes you inside his system case to look at major internal components like the motherboard, CPU, RAM, and more.



Microprocessors
  • What is a CPU?  

    In this episode, Mike explains how a CPU isn't a brain at all--it's a calculator!



  • CPU Speeds and Cores  

    In this episode, Mike explores aspects of CPUs, such as speed—measured in GHz, clock multipliers, and multicore processors.



  • CPU Caches  

    In this episode, Mike demonstrates how CPUs keep working so quickly when every other component in your PC is so (relatively) slow.



  • 32-bit vs. 64-bit processing  

    In this episode, Mike compares 64-bit vs. 32-bit CPU architectures and the operating systems that can take advantage of the greater complexity of the former.



  • CPU Extensions  

    Many processors include special features that enable specific functions, such as virtualization support. In this episode, Mike explains the benefits of some of these features.



  • CPU Sockets  

    In this episode, Mike explores the two primary types of CPU sockets, PGA and LGA, and discusses the sockets that support common AMD and Intel CPUs.


  • Installing a CPU  

    In this episode, Mike walks you through one of the most frightening procedures in a PC tech's arsenal: installing a processor.



  • Cooling Your PC  

    CPUs generate a lot of heat, but your PC hates heat--what's a tech to do? In this episode, Mike shows you how to keep your CPU cool.



  • Liquid Cooling  

    Sure, you could use a fan and heatsink to cool your CPU, but that's far too simple. In this episode, Mike demonstrates how to take your CPU cooling to the next level with liquid cooling



RAM
  • RAM Sticks and Speeds  

    These horned creatures can often be found roaming the hills of...oh, wait. Random Access Memory, not rams, right? Okay. In this episode, Mike explains the purpose and some of the features of RAM.



  • RAM Capacity  

    How much RAM do you need? Or, perhaps a more important question, how much RAM can you possibly fit in your PC? Mike answers these questions and more in this episode.



  • Other Types of RAM  

    All RAM should be treated equally, but some kinds of RAM are unique enough to deserve their own episode.



  • Installing RAM  

    By far the easiest task taken on by a PC tech, RAM installation is a snap, and Mike shows you how it's done.



  • Troubleshooting RAM  

    RAM goes bad sometimes, and you need to know what to look for when it happens. In this episode, Mike shows you some tips and tricks on troubleshooting bad RAM.



BIOS
  • What is the BIOS?  

    In this episode, Mike the low-level programming stored on nonvolatile memory, called the Basic Input/Output Systems (or Services). BIOS enables you to communicate with the motherboard before an OS is installed.



  • POST  

    In this episode, Mike shows you how to monitor your PC from the time you press the power button to the moment Windows loads.



  • System Setup  

    The system setup screen enables you to adjust various hardware settings, such as boot order, clock speeds, power settings, and more. In this episode, Mike shows you two very different system setups and how to use them.



  • Troubleshooting BIOS  

    In this episode, Mike discusses what to do when something goes wrong with your BIOS.



Motherboards
  • Form Factors  

    Have you ever wondered how all of your PC components manage to fit together perfectly? In this episode, Mike shows you how form factors have evolved to enable all sorts of connections.



  • ATX and ITX Motherboards  

    In this episode, Mike covers the two form factor heavyweights: ATX and ITX.



  • Chipsets  

    Motherboards need other chips besides the CPU to function. In this episode, Mike teaches you the history of chipsets and their many functions.



  • The Expansion Bus  

    In this episode, Mike examines features of modern expansion buses including the parallel PCI and PCI-X and the serial PCIe.



  • Touring the Motherboard  

    In this episode, Mike explores a typical motherboard, pointing out the shapes and names for the many components on that board.



  • Installing a motherboard  

    Motherboards don't install themselves, unfortunately. In this episode, Mike takes on installing a motherboard into a case.



Power Supplies
  • Electricity Basics  

    Can't tell your watts from your amps? In this episode, Mike explores the basic pieces of electricity.



  • The Power Supply  

    In this episode, Mike explains how power supplies transform the electricity coming from the wall outlet into something usable by a PC.



  • Niche Power Supplies and Features  

    Not every power supply is the same, and some are only used in very specific instances. In this episode, Mike discusses uncommon power supplies and some important power supply features.



  • Choosing a Power Supply  

    Mike talks about the process of choosing a power supply to purchase. Also, peanut butter.



  • Troubleshooting Power Supplies  

    When power supplies go bad, there's not much you can do to fix them--in fact, you should never open up a power supply. In this episode, Mike explains what you can do when your power supply causes trouble.



Hard Drive Technologies
  • Hard Drives  

    In this episode, Mike talks about how hard drives work and discusses specific details about SATA connectors, versions, speeds, and features.



  • Solid State Drives  

    In this episode, Mike covers solid state drives (SSDs), examining the SATA/AHCI and PCIe/NVMe interfaces and protocols. The episode also discusses the two types of M.2 drives, SATA and NVMe.



  • Hard Drive Overview  

    Mass storage devices today share logical block addressing (LBA), a way to organize the storage areas on the media so that the type of media becomes transparent to the operating system (OS). Windows doesn’t care, in other words, whether the data is stored on an HDD, SSD, or something else.

  • RAID  

    In this episode, Mike describes the most common types of RAID, a feature that combines multiple drives into a single unit. 



  • Hardware RAID  

    In this episode, Mike explores the many variations possible when combining multiple hard drives into a single RAID array. He uses the RAID features built into the motherboard to accomplish this task; it’s often called firmware RAID.



  • Setting the Boot Order  

    Mike talks about how to configure the list of possible boot devices in your system.



Implementing Hard Drives
  • Decimal and Binary Prefixes  

    In this episode, Mike compares prefixes commonly used and misused in the computing industry.

  • Implementing RAID  

    If this RAID thing sounds good to you, Mike shows you how to set it up.



  • Hard Drive Troubleshooting  

    In this episode, Mike explores the symptoms of hard drive problems and the typical tools used to correct the problems.


Essential Peripherals
  • CD Media  

    Mike goes over the various forms of CD media and drives.

  • DVD Media  

    Find out what DVD stands for! It's not what you might think! Mike talks about DVD standards in this video.


  • Blu-ray Media  

    Mike tastelessly crows over the corpse of HD-DVD while explaining the heir to the HD optical media kingdom, Blu-ray.



  • Universal Serial Bus  

    In this episode, Mike introduces you to Universal Serial Bus, discussing the various connectors, versions, and specifications.



  • USB  

    In this episode, Mike covers the three generations of USB technology, plus examines all the connectors currently in use.



  • Flash Memory Overview  

    In this episode, Mike details the various formats of flash memory cards in the marketplace over time, such as Compact Flash (CF) and Secure Digital (SD).



  • Firewire and Other Connections  

    In this episode, Mike examines all the common or not so common connections that are not USB that enable you to attach devices to the PC.



  • Keyboards and Mice  

    Though keyboards and mice often don't make it into the tech conversation, Mike argues in this episode that techs need to know a lot about configuration and troubleshooting of these essential input devices.



  • Other Input Devices  

    Barcode scanner? Check. Digitizer? Check. Touch screen? Check. Mike gets to play with all the cool toys in this episode.



  • KVM Switches  

    Many server closets and complicated workstations have multiple computers, but limited space for peripherals. Mike shows you the beauty of keyboard, video, mouse (KVM) switches in this episode, demonstrating how to use them effectively.



  • Cameras and Camcorders  

    In this episode, Mike examines what techs need to know to support digital still cameras and camcorders for clients.



  • Webcams  

    In this episode, Mike discusses Webcams, the small camera/microphone combination devices built into most portable computers and that you can add to any computer.



  • Installing PC Expansion Cards Part 1  

    In this episode, Mike discusses the preparation required for adding cards and demonstrates the proper installation technique for expansion cards.


  • Installing PC Expansion Cards Part 2  

    In this episode, Mike explains essential steps to follow after installing an expansion card, such as downloading and installing drivers and configuring applications and the OS.



Building a PC
  • The Right PC for You  

    What kind of PC should you buy? What distinguishes a media PC from a gaming PC? What's a thin client? All these fascinating questions and more will be answered in this penultimate episode.



Display Technologies
  • How Monitors Work  

    It all comes down to that tiny dot called a pixel. Monitors would be nothing without pixels, and in this episode, Mike discusses how different types of monitors produce pixels, and from pixels, an image.



  • Plasma and DLP displays  

    Mike discusses two common television monitor types, plasma and DLP, that somehow made it to the CompTIA A+ exams as relevant for computers.



  • VGA and DVI  

    Most modern monitors use VGA or DVI to connect to your computer. In this episode, Mike explains how these interfaces work and what you should look out for when connecting monitors.



  • Other Video Connections  

    In this episode, Mike explores old and new video connections, such as composite, component, DisplayPort, and HDMI.



  • Graphics Cards  

    In this episode, Mike describes the process for installing and configuring a typical modern video card.



  • Projectors  

    Ready to take to the road and do presentations? In this episode, Mike discusses projectors and how to use them with your computer.



  • Using Multiple Monitors  

    In this episode, Mike explores using multiple monitors with a single workstation to increase productivity.



  • Troubleshooting Video  

    In this episode, Mike takes you into the sometimes crazy world of troubleshooting video.



Essentials of Networking
  • Introduction to Networking  

    In this episode, Mike explores essentials of networking—servers provide access to resources; clients request those resources. And pizza.



  • Moving Data Over a Network  

    In this episode, Mike describes how data moves across a network in frames; switches enable multiple devices to connect to a single network; every network device has a unique MAC address.



  • Structured Cabling  

    Mike turns to networking in this episode, introducing you to structured cabling, the kind of hardwired networks you'll find in most offices.



  • Patch Cables  

    In this episode, Mike details patch cables, the network connection workhorses of the computer world.



  • Fiber Optic and Coaxial Cabling  

    In this episode, Mike looks at the many varieties, advantages, and disadvantages of fiber optic and coaxial network cabling.

  • Networking Tools  

    Every accomplished CompTIA A+ technician understands how to troubleshoot and fix basic networking problems. Part of that process involves understanding the tools at your disposal. In this episode, Mike examines essential physical networking tools.



Local Area Networking
  • Introduction to TCP/IP  

    In this episode, Mike explores the basics of local area networks and communication over a network using TCP/IP addressing.



  • Network IDs and Subnet Mask  

    In this episode, Mike describes the process of setting up a network with static IP addresses and subnet mask.

  • Dynamic IP Addressing  

    In this episode, Mike explains using a DHCP server in a network to supply IP addressing information automatically.

  • NAT  

    Network address translation (NAT) enables multiple computers to share a single public IP address. Mike discusses this breakthrough technology.



  • Special IP addresses  

    In this episode, Mike explores various IP addresses, such as broadcast, loopback, APIPA, and private IP addresses.

  • PING and IPconfig  

    In this episode, Mike explores uses for the command-line tools ping and ipconfig.

  • TCP, UDP and ICMP  

    In this episode, Mike looks at the various protocols that make up the TCP/IP protocol suite.

  • Port Numbers  

    In this episode, Mike describes the use of port numbers in TCP/IP network communication.


  • Working with Connections  

    Keeping track of sessions when networking is important; Mike shows two tools for accomplishing this task, netstat and TCPView.

  • Understanding DNS  

    In this episode, Mike examines how the domain name system resolves fully-qualified domain names to IP addresses; plus he looks at the top-level domains, such as .com and .edu.



  • Dealing with DNS  

    In this episode, Mike explores DNS settings, both automatic and manual.


  • Windows Naming  

    In this episode, Mike discusses how computers use names and SAMBA to access resources remotely.

  • NET Command  

    In this episode, Mike explores the venerable and still very useful net command to show things such as user names, shared network resources, mapping network drives, and more.


  • NETDOM Command  

    In this episode, Mike describes the process of adding computers to a Windows domain using the netdom command from a command line in Windows Server. Geeky stuff, but it shows up on the exam!

  • Windows Name Resolution  

    In this episode, Mike looks at ways Windows machines figure out names of other computers on the network, through processes like NetBIOS and LLMNR.


  • Routers  

    Routers provide the essential connection points between and among interconnected networks. Mike explores the router topics in this episode that every CompTIA A+ tech should understand.



  • Configuring Routers  

    Mike discusses router configuration in detail.

  • Advanced Router Configuration  

    In this episode, Mike explores port forwarding, port triggering, DMZ, and QoS.


Wireless Networking
  • Wireless Network Hardware  

    Covering everything from wireless NICs to WAPs, Mike takes you on a journey of discovery through the fascinating world of wireless networking hardware. You will learn a lot about wireless networking hardware, and maybe, just maybe, a little about yourself.



  • WI-FI Standards  

    In this episode, Mike discusses the many 802.11 wireless standards, 802.11b/a/g/n/ac.

  • Basic WAP Setup  

    In this episode, Mike explores setting up a wireless access point, including changing the SSID, changing channels, and applying security.


  • Wireless Encryption  

    With great convenience comes great danger. Mike shows you how to secure your wireless network from outside intruders. You will look at the strengths and weaknesses of the available wireless encryption standards.



  • Wireless Problem Scenarios  

    Mike looks at some of the issues that can arise to topple your wireless network, with a special focus on wireless interference.



  • Connecting to a Wi-Fi network  

    Mike walks you through the process of connecting to a wireless network.



  • Troubleshoot Wireless Connections  

    Check those WAPs and tweak those antennas, because Mike's here to show you how to troubleshoot your wireless network. You will learn about antenna positioning, WAP configuration, MAC filtering, and more!



  • Bluetooth  

    Exciting short-range wireless standard or horrifying dental malady? You be the judge as Mike tells you about Bluetooth networks.



The Internet
  • Internet Tiers  

    In this episode, Mike discusses the top three tiers of routers and connections that make up the Internet.

  • Dial-up Connections  

    In this episode, Mike explores dial-up networking, including how modems work with the telephone network to provide connectivity at up to 56 Kbps.



  • Broadband connections  

    Dial-up is so 1999. In this episode, Mike explores the various broadband methods of connecting to the Internet, including cable, DSL, and fiber connections.



  • Wireless Internet connections  

    Cut the cord and go wireless in this episode. Mike talks about wireless Internet technologies like WiMAX, LTE, metropolitan Wi-Fi networks, and satellite.



  • Internet Applications  

    Your computer can do a lot of neat things on the Internet, but how does a PC sort out data for a web browser versus data for your e-mail client? In this episode, Mike explains how ports enable you to use different Internet applications.



  • Telnet and SSH  

    In this episode, Mike explore command-line tools for logging into and controlling remote computers.


  • HTTP  

    Mike uses netstat to show active port 80 and port 443 traffic.

  • E-mail  

    E-mail has its own protocols and ports and configuration, and you'll learn all about them in this episode.



  • FTP  

    You can use the File Transfer Protocol (FTP) to share files over the Internet. In this episode, Mike discusses how to configure and use FTP clients.



  • Remote Desktop Connections  

    You can use a number of different applications and protocols to access your computer remotely. In this episode, Mike discuses technologies like Telnet, Remote Desktop, and more.



  • File sharing  

    In this episode, Mike explores file sharing network protocols, such as CIFS, SMB, and AFP.

Portable Computing
  • Laptop Types  

    Not too long ago, there was only one type of laptop: a laptop. Nowadays, laptops come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and you need to know the names and features of each. Learn all about it in this episode.



  • Laptop Expandability  

    Many laptops offer ways to improve the internal components, such as adding more RAM or replacing the wireless NIC. In this episode, Mike takes you inside a laptop to see how it all happens.



  • Touring a Laptop  

    In this episode, Mike explores typical laptop computers, examining screen technologies and upgradable components.

  • Laptop Ports  

    In this episode, Mike looks at multiple laptop computers to show all the crazy types of ports you’ll find.

  • Proper Laptop Disassembly  

    Every manufacturer builds their laptops differently, meaning no single disassembly process will work for every laptop. You can, however, learn some tips and tricks that will assist you every time you open your laptop.



  • Power Management  

    In this episode, Mike compares the various power management modes, such as sleep and hibernate.

  • Troubleshooting Laptops  

    Sticky keys? Broken keys? Bad monitor? In this episode, Mike teaches you how to fix some common laptop problems.



Understanding Mobile Devices
  • What is a Mobile device?  

    In this episode, Mike discusses the many varieties of mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets.



  • Wired Mobile Connections  

    In this episode, Mike explores ways to connect mobile devices through wired connections for syncing and more; he looks at various connector types and varieties.



Printers and Multifunction Devices
  • Printer Technologies  

    Whatever happened to typewriters? You pressed a letter. It appeared on the page. No spell check. No deleting. It just worked. Oh well. In this episode, you'll learn all about various printer technologies, including inkjet, impact, and laser printers.



  • Printer Connections  

    It's the classic chicken and egg story: do we have all these connections on our PC so we can plug printers into them? Or do printers use all sort of connections because we already have them? Probably the second, actually, so it's not really a chicken/egg thing. In this episode, Mike explores the many ways to connect your printer to a PC, including USB, parallel, wireless, and more.


  • Maintaining Impact Printers  

    While they aren't as common, plenty of old impact printers still work for a living and need to be maintained. In this episode, Mike shows you some tips and tricks for keeping your impact printer clean and functioning.



  • Maintaining Inkjet Printers  

    Inkjet printers need constant cleaning and maintenance in order to function properly. In this episode, Mike demonstrates what you can do to maintain inkjet printers.



  • Maintaining Laser Printers  

    Needing to maintain laser printers can sound intimidating, but it's not that different from maintaining inkjet or impact printers. In this episode, Mike teaches you what you need to know to keep laser printers happy



  • Troubleshoot Print Jobs  

    Print jobs disappear all the time. Most of them end up in a black hole near the Andromeda galaxy. In this episode, Mike shows you how to troubleshoot those pesky print jobs and get them to print out successfully.



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