This is our study guide for CompTIA's A+ certification exam (220-701). We hope you find this guide useful in your studies. Listed below is the breakdown of the test percentages by domain, which should help prioritize your studying: Domain Hardware Troubleshooting, Repair & Maintenance Operating System and Software Networking Security Operational Procedure Percentage of Examination 27% 20% 20% 15% 8% 10% 100%
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Domain 1.0: Hardware Domain 1.1: Categorize storage devices and backup media FDD: Floppy disk drive. Magnetic storage device that uses a read/write head to read, record and erase data onto a floppy disk. Data is stored in binary fashion (0s and 1s). Standard data capacity for floppy disks is 1.44 megabytes (MB), although capacities ranging from 360 kilobytes (KB) to 2.88 MB were available over the lifetime of the technology. Considered obsolete since the PC99 standards, although still available on legacy systems and some specialty machines. HDD: Hard disk drive. Basic unit of permanent storage for computers. Works on same principle as floppy drives, except much larger capacities (< 1 terabyte (TB) currently) and the disks are solid platters. Majority of hard drives use magnetic storage and mechanical spindles and armatures, which make hard drives a vulnerable point for failure. Common interface types for hard drives include SCSI, EIDE and the current standard, SATA. In external versions, USB and IEEE 1394 (known as FireWire on Apple systems) interfaces are also common. o Currently, more computers are being released with solid state drives or devices (SSD), which use non-volatile flash memory to store data, similar to USB flash drives. SSDs are much faster, are less prone to failure since they have no mechanical parts and last longer. However, they are far more expensive, and not presently available in the same capacities as traditional hard drives. Apple uses SSD devices in many of their newer models, such as the MacBook Air, and manufacturers like Toshiba are following suit with Windows-based laptops. Optical drives: An optical drive is a storage device that uses a laser to read data encoded on discs in pits and lands, which mimic 0s and 1s. The first optical drives were CD-ROM drives, which could only read data. Soon, CD-writers were introduced, followed by DVD-ROMs and then DVD-writers. DVD-writers, in DVDR, DVD-RW and DVD+RW formats, are currently the standard (most DVD-writers
can write CDs as well), but Blu-ray drives, which use a higher-frequency laser and smaller tracks to increase data capacity several times greater than DVDs, are gaining in popularity. Like hard drives, common interface types include SCSI, EIDE and SATA, plus USB and IEEE 1394 for external versions. Removable storage: Refers to a type of storage that is not fixed inside a computer, but can be easily transported or removed from a system without disassembly. There are several types of removable storage, which have different capabilities and are used for different purposes, including archiving and system backup. o Tape drive: Tape drives are magnetic media devices that use a rolling magnetized read/write head to read or write data onto cassettes using magnetic ribbon, or ―tapes,‖ as storage. Tape cassettes range in storage capacity from about 20 GB to over 1 TB, and are low-cost, reliable technology. However, data stored on tape is recorded, and can only be accessed, sequentially, and tape drives are slow compared to other media. Data can be stored in compressed or uncompressed format. Common tape formats include DDS-1, DAT72, DLT-4 and TR-7. Drives can be internal or external. o Solid state devices: As mentioned earlier, solid state devices (SSD) are storage units that have no mechanical parts; they use non-volatile flash memory to store data. As a result, they last longer as they are not prone to mechanical failure, do not generate excessive heat and use less...