Rephrase all the answers for each question in activity 2 and 5.
1. Describe the equipment you should use to prevent static electricity on your
body from damaging the equipment on which you are working.
An anti-ESD service kit comprising an anti-ESD wrist strap, grounding cord and
plug, and a conductive mat. The grounding plug should be connected to an
2. Your instructor will provide you with an anti-static service kit. Prepare it for use
and allow your instructor to check that you have connected everything correctly.
You can refer to the figure in the Component Handling section for assistance.
3. True or False? If you are using an anti-static floor mat, you do not need any
other anti-ESD service equipment.
False. A mat should be used with a wrist strap. You may also need ESD-safe
packaging for storing components.
4. In which atmospheric conditions is the risk of ESD highest?
During cool, dry conditions when humidity is low. When humidity is high, the
static electricity can dissipate through the moisture present in the air.
5. Electrical injuries include electrocution, shock, and collateral injury. Would
you be injured if you are not part of the electrical ground current?
Yes, you could receive a thermal burn from the head of an electric arc or electric
equipment. Your clothes can catch on fire, or your skin can be burned.
6. Which computer component presents the most danger from electrical
7. What component helps to protect users of electrical equipment against a
ESD wrist strap
8. What care should you take when lifting a heavy object?
The main concern is damaging your back. Lift slowly using your legs for power
not your back muscles.
9. What should you do before transporting a bulky object?
Check that there is a clear path to the destination point. If you cannot carry the
object safely, get help or use a cart.
1. Describe how you would open a PC case to access the motherboard.
Power down the PC and remove the power cable. With the power cable
removed, hold the power button down for a few seconds to ensure PC is
completely de-engergized. Then, remove any screws holding the case cover in
place, and slide the cover out from the retaining clips. This should expose the
motherboard. You would usually need to remove other panels only to access
2. At the rear of a system case are slots for adapter card ports. Why should
these be covered with blanking plates if not in use?
The fan system is designed to draw cool air across the motherboard and blow
out warm air. Large holes in the chassis disrupt this air flow. Also dust will be
able to settle on the system components more easily.
3. You have been servicing a computer but when you have finished you find that it
will not turn on. There was no power problem before and you have verified that
the computer is connected to a working electrical outlet.
What is the most likely explanation?
The cable connecting the power button to the motherboard could have been
disconnected and either not reconnected or not properly reconnected.
4. What is the main function of the chipset?
Provides controllers for the CPU to interface with other components (memory
and expansion bus for instance) and adapters to provide functions such as
video and audio, and Ethernet and wireless networking on the motherboard.
5. True or false? The Real Time Clock controls the timing of signals between the
CPU and other components.
False. The system clock controls timing; the Real Time Clock keeps track of the
calendar date and time.
6. What type of socket is used to install system memory?
Dual Inline Memory Module (DIMM).
7. You have a x8 PCIe storage adapter card—can you fit this in a x16 slot?
Yes—this is referred to as up-plugging. On some motherboards it may only
function as a x1 device though.
8. What is the bandwidth of a PCIe v2.0 x16 graphics adapter?
8 GBps in each direction (full duplex). PCIe v2 supports 500 MBps per lane.
9. You also need to help new hires identify the different types of motherboards used
in computers deployed throughout the company.
What type of motherboard is displayed here, and what characteristics did
you use to help you identify the board type?
Based on its small size dimensions and compact component design, this
motherboard is a mini-ITX.
10. What type of motherboard is displayed here, and what characteristics did
you use to help you identify the board type?
You can tell by the large size and large number of available components and
slots that this motherboard is an ATX.
1. In this graphic, identify the (A) audio ports, (B) video ports, and (C) USB
Moving from left to right, the components should be labeled: C, B, C, A.
2. You are speaking with a junior technician. He is not sure what is meant by a
“keyed” connector. Can you tell him?
A keyed connector has a catch or slot to ensure that it cannot be inserted the
wrong way round or used with an incompatible port.
3. What is the nominal data rate of a USB port supporting SuperSpeed+?
Normally 10 Gbps, but devices supporting USB 3.2 can use up to 20 Gbps over
4. True or false? USB-C ports and cables are compatible with Apple Lightning
ports and cables.
5. What type of device would you connect a Molex cable to?
A Molex cable is a power cable. Normally, devices such as disk drives and optical
drives require more power than can be delivered over the data bus. Note that
most drives actually use SATA power connectors these days.
6. Why would you install an I/O adapter card?
To make more or different kinds of ports available (SCSI, USB, or SATA typically).
1. A remote user has requested a Dvorak keyboard for use with her Windows 10
computer. The device has arrived and the user connected it to a USB port. She
contacts support saying that the keyboard “isn’t typing properly.”
What is the likely cause of this issue?
The appropriate keyboard layout has not been selected in Settings.
2. You are contacted by another remote user. The user has a laptop and desktop
computer. The user wants to know if there is a device that would allow them to
use the same peripheral devices with both systems without having to switch
cables over all the time.
What is your answer?
Yes, you can use a Keyboard Video Mouse (KVM) switch for this purpose.
3. You are supporting a client setting up a Point of Sale system.
Which peripheral device types or functions should she consider?
A POS system reads the information stored on the customer’s payment card or
digital wallet. Historically, this information was stored in the card’s magnetic
strip. Most POS devices retain a magnetic reader as a backup mechanism. The
majority of bank cards now also store the account information in an embedded
chip, which can be read by inserting the card into the reader. This chip may also
support contactless use or NearField Communications (NFC). A customer can
also store the card details in a smartphone and use the smartphone’s NFC chip
to make payments. Not all POS readers support contactless and it would carry a
slight price premium, so your client should decide whether it is important to
offer this payment method to her customers.
4. You have finished copying some files to a USB memory stick.
What should you do before unplugging the stick?
Use the Safely Remove Hardware icon to stop the device.
1. What limits upgrade potential for the system processor?
The type of CPU socket and chipset provided on the motherboard.
2. How can CPU performance be improved?
Overclocking—setting the processor to run at a higher clock speed than it was
3. Why can cache improve performance?
A CPU tends to repeat the same routines and access the same data over-andover
again. If these routines are stored in fast cache RAM, they can be accessed
more quickly than instructions and data stored in system memory.
4. What does SMP mean?
Symmetric Multiprocessing—installing more than one CPU. This requires a
motherboard with multiple CPU sockets.
5. How is the heat sink and fan assembly attached, and what problems can
occur releasing it?
The heat sink is attached to the motherboard via a clip or push pins. There will
also be a power connector for the fan. Clip mechanisms can be difficult to
release; push pins are now more common and just require a half turn on each
pin with a screwdriver to release. Another issue can arise where too much
thermal paste has been applied, causing the heat sink to stick to the processor.
6. What must you check when inserting a PGA CPU chip?
That pin 1 is aligned properly and that the pins on the package are aligned with
the holes in the socket. Otherwise, you risk damaging the pins when the ZIF
lever is lowered.
7. What is the difference between a heat sink and a heat pipe?
A heat sink uses solid metal fins to dissipate heat through convection (often
assisted by using fans to move air across the fins). A heat pipe contains fluid
that evaporates in the area over the CPU, cools and condenses in a another part
of the pipe, and then flows back to the area over the CPU to continue the cycle.
1. What advantages does UEFI have over BIOS?
UEFI supports 64-bit CPU operation and better hardware support at boot. UEFI
also allows for full GUI system utilities and mouse support plus better system
startup security options (such as pre-OS boot authentication).
2. Name three keys commonly used to run a PC’s BIOS/UEFI system setup
Esc, Del, F1, F2, F10.
3. What widely supported boot method is missing from the following list? HDD,
FDD, Optical, USB.
Network/PXE (Pre-eXecution Environment)—obtaining boot information from a
specially configured server over the network.
4. Where should you launch a typical firmware upgrade utility—from system
setup or from Windows?
If the option is available, it is safer to run a firmware upgrade from the system
setup program as it reduces the risk of some other process interfering with the
5. If you want to enforce TPM system security, what other BIOS feature should
A supervisor password to prevent the TPM keys from being accessed or cleared.
6. True or false? Processor extensions such as VT are set by the vendor
depending on the CPU model and cannot be enabled or disabled by the user.
Mostly false. A feature such as VT is sometimes disabled on some low-end
models, but if it is available as a feature of that model, the user can choose
whether it is enabled or disabled.
7. A user’s computer was recently installed with a new optical drive. The user
now reports a “chassis” error message after the POST sequence. What might
be the cause?
Intrusion detection is enabled in the BIOS.
8. When you are configuring BIOS security, what is the difference between a
supervisor password and a user password?
The user password allows the boot sequence to continue, while a supervisor
password controls access to the firmware setup program.
9. What security system allows system boot to be disabled if the computer is
LoJack for Laptops (other tracking software suites are available).
1. How would you calculate the power used by a component?
Multiply its voltage by the current it draws (W=V*I).
2. What causes a fuse to blow—excessive voltage or excessive current?
3. What is the significance of a PSU’s power output when you are designing a
custom build PC?
It determines the number of drives, expansion cards, and peripherals that the
PC can support (assuming the peripherals do not have their own power
4. Are you able to use a standard ATX12V PSU with a Mini-ITX motherboard?
Yes (assuming it fits in the case you have chosen).
5. You have a power supply with an 8-pin connector on it. What is this for?
It supplies power to a PCI Express graphics card.
6. You are connecting a new PSU. The PSU has a square 4-pin P4 cable but there
is no square 4-pin receptacle on the motherboard. Should you leave the
No; it will plug into an 8-pin EPS12V receptacle near the CPU. You should check
the motherboard documentation for advice about which pins to plug the cable
7. What setting should you check before installing a PSU?
That the voltage selector is set to the correct voltage (or if there is no selector,
that the PSU is suitable for the voltage used by the building power).
8. Another technician replaced the PSU on a PC. Later the same day the PC’s owner
contacts you to say that the system has been displaying numerous alerts about
What do you think might be the cause?
You would need to open the case to investigate the problem. Perhaps when the
upgrade was performed, one of the fan power connectors was not attached
properly. If the PSU cabling was not secured with cable ties, it could disrupt air
flow within the case, reducing the effectiveness of fans. There could be a fault
with the fan on the new PSU.
1. What cause might you suspect if a PC experiences intermittent lockups?
Assuming the cause is not recent installation of faulty software or hardware,
then thermal or power problems are most likely. Loose connections or faulty
memory or CPU are also possibilities.
2. How might you diagnose a thermal problem?
Feel if the system is hot to touch, check temperature gauges, watch for cyclic
3. What measurement would you expect from a multimeter if a fuse is good?
4. What might stop a POST from executing?
Faulty cabling and connections, poorly-seated chips, faulty interfaces and
devices, logic errors, faulty CPU, motherboard, or PSU.
1. Which component is likely to be a performance bottleneck on a workstation
used to edit digital movies?
The disk subsystem is most likely to cause the performance bottleneck. The files
will be too large to be stored completely in system memory and so must be
streamed from the disk, which will need to be both large and fast.
2. For what type of workstation is a CPU with 4 or more cores particularly well
Multiple cores benefit software that can take advantage of multi-threading.
Examples include virtualization software and Rapid Application Development
3. You are specifying a PC to act as a home theater. What multimedia outputs
should it support?
Surround sound audio outputs to the speaker system and HDMI to the TV
4. Which factors are most likely to make a PC used for gaming require high-end
These PCs use at least two heavyweight processors: the CPU and GPU. Also,
gamers are more likely than most other users to overclock components to
improve performance. Overclocking requires very effective thermal
5. On a thin client, which component is more important: NIC or HDD?
Thin clients do not need much permanent storage at all—some can make do
without any mass storage. They do not generate that much network traffic
either but that said, the NIC is the more important component here.
6. Why might high-spec components (CPU, memory, RAID) not be a good idea in
a home theater PC?
These devices need to operate as quietly as possible and using high-spec
components means heat, heat requires cooling, cooling usually means fans, and
fans mean noise.
1. A user needs to be able to access the central employee data repository to
run reports, but does not need access to any local applications used to
create, edit, and manage the employee data. The employee data is managed
on a server that can be accessed with a log in. What type of client is best in
2. June has recently been put in charge of making updates to the Human
Resource employee benefits website. She will be publishing a monthly
newsletter and posting company-wide announcements, among other small
updates and changes, on a regular basis. All changes to the website must be
tested on a number of platforms and web browsers to verify that the
changes are correct regardless of the operating system and browser. What
type of client setup would you suggest for her?
Answers will vary, but will most likely include a virtualization workstation so that
she can switch from different operating systems and test any website changes
3. In order to properly support the HR employee benefits website, a new server
running client VMs has been installed so that the environment that the
application requires can be strictly administered by IT staff. Current PCs will
be used to access the Client VM environment that is configured on the VM
Server. What needs to be present at all PCs that will be accessing this new
server and application?
☐ Appropriately configured VM Client.
☐ Fast network connection to server hosting the VM environment.
☐ Upgrade to video cards.
4. True or False? The HR manager’s client computer must meet the
recommended requirements to run Windows 10 so that she can access and
use all of the HR-related applications used by the organization. In this case,
the best client option is a thick client.
1. Customer 1 is using a desktop PC to play home movies and to set up slide shows
to show his family their vacation photos and is having difficulty with the computer
freezing during the movies. He is looking for a solution that will allow him to store
and play his movies seamlessly through a computer. He also wants his wife to be
able to access the pictures and movies from her laptop within the house.
What type of computer setup would you suggest for this customer? What
specific questions might you ask this customer about additional component
Answers may vary, but will most likely include setting up a home server PC for
easy file sharing among the household computing devices and to provide more
speed to play movies from the PC. You may ask if they are in need of additional
storage space and if they are looking for redundancy through a RAID array in
2. Customer 2 is from a small real estate office who has recently hired a graphic
designer to produce informational pamphlets and other marketing materials for
the agency, such as property drop sheets and circular layout designs. The office
manager has asked your company to determine the hardware and software
needs for the designer’s workstation so that it can be ordered and set up before
their scheduled start date in two weeks.
What hardware and software requirements would you suggest for the
graphic designer’s workstation?
Answers may vary, but will most likely include a PC with a high-end, multicore
processor, a high end video card, and the maximum RAM that the motherboard
can handle. In addition, the motherboard should contain multiple high-speed
ports for peripherals such as external hard drives or additional video cards. The
applications will most likely include Adobe’s Creative Cloud or similar graphicdesign
| The Official CompTIA® A+® Core 1 and Core 2 Student Guide (Exams 220-1001 and 220-1002)
Lesson 5: Installing, Configuring, and Troubleshooting Internal System Components | Topic E
LICENSED FOR USE ONLY BY: MICHAEL NGUYEN-IBANEZ ・ 23370021 ・ JAN 27 2022
3. Customer 3 is looking to make the switch from a traditional TV cable box and DVD
player to a home theater PC, so that she can stream Netflix and record shows and
movies from her TV. She already purchased a computer from a local home
entertainment store but cannot figure out why she cannot connect the cable TV
wire into the computer.
What would you check for first?
She needs to have a TV tuner card installed in the computer. The tuner card
provides the port to connect the cable from the provider to the computer. You
would also want to verify that the tuner card is correctly configured, and that all
device drivers are installed and up-to-date.