A+ Core 2 (220-1102) Cram Notes

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1. Operating System

Windows XP

XP Professional supports multiple processors, multiple monitors (up to 9), Group Policy, Encrypting File System, Dynamic Disks, IIS, a built in backup program, and advanced networking capabilities (such as IPSec.) All of these features are missing from XP Home Edition. Another important distinction between the two versions is that XP Home Edition cannot join a Windows NT/2000/2003 domain

1. Windows XP Operating System comes in the following flavors:

  • Windows XP Home: The basic XP OS intended for home users

  • Windows XP Professional: The XP OS intended for business users

  • Windows XP Media Center Edition: Windows Media Center provides a large-font, remotely accessible interface ("10-foot user interface") for television viewing on the computer as well as recording and playback, a TV guide, DVD playback, video playback, photo viewing, and music playback.

  • Windows XP Table PC: This edition is intended for specially-designed notebook/laptop computers called tablet PCs. Windows XP Tablet PC Edition is compatible with a pen-sensitive screen, supporting handwritten notes and portrait-oriented screens.

2. Boot process (F8) in Windows XP desk top bring up the following options:

  • Safe Mode: This option uses a minimal set of device drivers and services to start Windows. The drivers loaded with Safe Mode include mouse, monitor, keyboard, hard drive, and standard video driver.

  • Safe Mode with Networking: This option uses a minimal set of device drivers and services to start Windows together with the drivers that you must have to load networking.

  • Safe Mode with Command Prompt: This option is the same as Safe mode, except that Cmd.exe starts instead of Windows Explorer.

  • Enable VGA Mode: This option starts Windows in 640 x 480 mode by using the current video driver (not Vga.sys). This mode is useful if the display is configured for a setting that the monitor cannot display.

  • Note: Safe mode and Safe mode with Networking load the Vga.sys driver instead.

  • Last Known Good Configuration: This option starts Windows by using the previous good configuration.

  • Directory Service Restore Mode: This mode is valid only for Windows-based domain controllers. This mode performs a directory service repair.

  • Debugging Mode: This option turns on debug mode in Windows. Debugging information can be sent across a serial cable to another computer that is running a debugger. This mode is configured to use COM2.

  • Enable Boot Logging: This option turns on logging when the computer is started with any of the Safe Boot options except Last Known Good Configuration. The Boot Logging text is recorded in the Ntbtlog.txt file in the %SystemRoot% folder.

  • Starts Windows Normally: This option starts Windows in its normal mode.

  • Reboot: This option restarts the computer.

  • Return to OS Choices Menu: On a computer that is configured to starting to more than one operating system, this option returns to the Boot menu.

3. Features supported by XP

  • On readable/writable disks, Microsoft Windows XP Professional supports the NTFS file system and three file allocation table (FAT) file systems: FAT12, FAT16, and FAT32. On CDROM and DVD media, Windows XP Professional supports two file systems: Compact Disc File System (CDFS) and Universal Disk Format (UDF).

  • While installing XP, if you have a standard desktop PC that uses integrated drive electronics (IDE) disk drives, then these will be detected during setup. If, however, you use SCSI disks or have Redundant Array of Independent Disk (RAID) storage systems, you will see, shortly after the reboot, the following line of text displayed at the bottom of the screen: "Press F6 if you need to install a third party SCSI or RAID driver..."

  • Pressing F6 will start a dialog that allows you to configure and install the drivers for your SCSI or other disk subsystem controllers. This option is usually used on server platforms that use large-capacity, high-speed, fault-tolerant disk subsystems. For most PCs, however, you won't need to use this option.

  • Windows XP advanced startup options can be accessed by pressing F8 key when prompted during the beginning of the Windows XP boot process.

  • On your Windows XP computer, you can use the View tab in Folder Options applet in the Control Panel to show / hide files and folders that have “Hidden” attribute set. You can also use Windows Explorer -> Tools --> Folder Options --> View tab.

  • You can access Computer Management screen through:

    • MyComputer on Desk Top -> Right Click -> Manage

    • Start -> Programs -> Administrative Tools -> Computer Management

    • One of the frequently used resource in “Computer Management” screen is System Tools. System tools contain the following:

      • Event Viewer

      • System Information

      • Performance logs

      • Device Manager

      • Shared folders

      • Local Users and Groups

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