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 A+ Practical Application (220-802) Cram Notes


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1. Operating System

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

   Windows 2000 

  • Hardware requirements:

Hardware component

Windows 2000 Prof.

Windows 2000 Ser/ Ad Ser.







HD space




VGA or better

VGA or better

Network card



CD ROM Drive


Required (unless loading from network)

  • The Windows 2000 Performance tool is composed of two parts:

a. System Monitor:  With System Monitor, you can collect and view real-time data about memory, disk, processor, network, and other activity in chart (graph), histogram, or report form. Some of the important System Monitor counters are:

1. Memory>Available Mbytes: measures the amount of physical memory that is available. Typically > 4MB. If less than 4 MB, consider adding more memory.

2. Memory>Pages/Sec: Shows the number of times that the disk has been accessed, because requested information was not available in memory. If the value of the counter is not below 20, you should add more memory. A value of 4 or 5 is typical.

3. Paging File>%Usage: Indicates the % of allocated page file utilization. Should be less than 99%.

4. Processor>%Processor Time: measure the time that the processor is busy. Should be typically less than 80%

5. Processor>Interrupts/Sec: Indicates the average number of hardware interrupts that the processor receives each second. If more than 3,500, you can suspect a program or faulty hardware.

6. PhysicalDisk>%Disk Time: Measures the amount of time that the physical disk is busy servicing read or write requests. If more than 90%, you can improve the performance by adding another disk channel.

7. PhysicalDisk>%Current Disk Queue Length: indicates the number of pending disk requests that need to be processed. The value should be less than 2. The disk problems might arise from less memory, resulting in usage of excessive paging. Ensure that the memory is sufficient before attending to the disk problem.

8. LogicalDisk > %Free Space counter: Indicates the amount of logical disk’s free disk space. Typical value is 10% or above.

b. Performance Logs and Alerts: Through Performance Logs and Alerts you can configure logs to record performance data and set system alerts to notify you when a specified counter's value is above or below a defined threshold.

  • Windows 2000 Operating systems support 5 different volume types:

a. Simple volumes :A simple volume consists of a formatted disk on a single hard disk.

b. Spanned volumes: A Spanned volume consists of disk space on more than one hard disk.

c. Striped volumes: A Striped volume has disk space on 2 or more disks. The disk spaces must be same on all disks. Fastest disk access among all volume types. RAID level 0.

d. Mirrored volumes: A mirrored volume consists of a Simple volume that is mirrored in total, onto a second dynamic disk. Provides highest level of fault tolerance. RAID level 1

e. RAID-5 volumes: A RAID-5 volume consists of identical sized disk space located on three or more dynamic disks. Here any single disk failures can be recovered. RAID level 5

f. Note that Windows 2000 Professional doesn’t support Disk Mirroring, RAID-5 volumes, where as other Windows 2000 Operating Systems (2000 Server, Advanced Server) support.

  • Up-grade to Windows 2000:

a. You can upgrade Windows 95/98, Windows NT 3.51Work Station, Windows NT 4.0 WS can be upgraded to Windows 2000 Professional.

b. You can’t upgrade Windows 3.1 and Windows for workgroups to Windows 2000 Professional. If you need to install 2000 Prof. On Windows 3.x, you need to upgrade first to Windows 95/98 or NT and then upgrade to 2000 Prof. It is easy to do a clean install of Windows 2000 on Windows 3.x machines.

c. You need to ensure the following before the upgrade:

1. The hardware is adequate for upgrading to Windows 2000 Professional

2. Also, check the hardware, software adequacy by running Winnt32.exe / checkupgradeonly.

Note that the switch “checkupgradeonly” will output a report on the adequacy of hardware and software. It will also warn you if any applications need upgrade packs, which may be obtained from respective application vendors, if available. If the software upgrade pack is not installed for any application, the application may be rendered unusable!

3. It is also recommended, if you are upgrading on a large population, to upgrade only one work station, and check whether the application softwares are running properly.

  • The various file systems supported by Windows 2000 are:

a. FAT: Also called FAT16, supported by all Microsoft Operating Systems.

b. FAT32: Also supported by Win 95 OSR2 and Win98

c. NTFS: This is not supported by Win95/98

d. CDFS (Compact Disk File System, used to access CDs)

e. UDF (Universal Disk Format, used to access DVDs)

  • Pressing F8 during boot process in Windows 2000 desk top bring up the following options:

a. Safe Mode: Safe Mode loads only the drivers necessary to get the desk top up and running. The drivers loaded with Safe Mode include mouse, monitor, keyboard, hard drive, and standard video driver.

b. Safe Mode with Networking: Safe Mode with Networking is same as Safe Mode with networking enabled.

c. Safe Mode with Command prompt: Safe Mode with Command Prompt option loads the command prompt instead of Windows 2000 graphical interface.

d. Enable Boot Logging

e. Enable VGA Mode: Enable VGA Mode option loads a standard VGA driver. This option is good if you have any problem with newly installed video driver.

f. Last Known Good Configuration: Last Known Good Configuration enables the desk top to load the configuration that was stored when it was booted successfully last time. This option can’t take care of any hardware related problems.

g. Debugging Mode: The Debugging Mode option runs the Kernel Debugger, if that utility is installed.

h. Boot Normally: The Boot Normally is same as not pressing the F8 key. The Windows boots normally

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