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CompTIA® A+ Operating Systems Exam Notes : Windows 2000 Hardware Requirements, System Monitorm And Disk Volumes

A+ Operating Systems Technologies(220-302) Exam Cram

A+ Certification, awarded by CompTIA® organization is the most widely recognized certification in the area of PC hardware and software technologies. To attain A+ certification, one need to pass 2 exams, namely, A+ Core Hardware Technologies, and A+ Operating Systems Technologies. These exams basically test the skills in assembling a computer, troubleshooting, and the ability to work with various operating systems.Linux is not included in the A+ Certification Operating Systems exam, as it has an exam of its own (Linux+ Certification),offered by CompTIA. The exam cram offers several final preparation points for candidates intending to appear for the A+ test.  Latest objectives are available from website.

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31. Windows 2000:

Hardware requirements:

Hardware component Windows 2000 Prof. Windows 2000 Ser/ Ad Ser.
Processor Pentium/133MHz Pentium/133MHz
Memory 64MB 256MB
HD space 640MB 1GB
Display VGA or better VGA or better
Network card Optional Optional
CD ROM Drive Required Required (unless loading from network)

When you install Windows 2000 in the same folder as that of Windows 95/ Windows 98/ Windows NT, the operating system gets upgraded to Windows 2000.

TCP/IP protocol stack is installed by default when you install Windows 2000 on a computer.

You can use Regional Options to support additional languages on your computer. With the support of additional languages, you will be able to edit documents written in those languages. You can also set locale specific to any region using this Option.

The Windows 2000 Performance tool is composed of two parts:

1. System Monitor, and

2. Performance Logs and Alerts.

  • 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.
  • 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.

Event Viewer maintains logs about program, security, and system events. You can use Event Viewer to view and manage the event logs, gather information about hardware and software problems, and monitor Windows 2000 security events.

To open Event Viewer, click 'Start', point to 'Settings', and then click 'Control Panel'. Double-click 'Administrative Tools', and then double-click Event Viewer.

Encrypting File System (EFS) keeps your documents safe from intruders who might gain unauthorized physical access to your sensitive stored data by stealing your laptop or Zip disk, or by other means.

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!

  • If you are creating a Striped volume on a new Windows 2000 machine, it can only be created on dynamic disks. However, if you are upgrading a Windows NT computer to Windows 2000, any existing stripe set will be supported.
  • For creating Stripe set with parity, we need at least 3 disk volumes.
  • Placing the paging file on different physical disks is optimal. This will improve faster access to the Paging file, and also distribute the load.
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer and Windows Explorer can be used for assigning Share and NTFS permissions on a Windows 2000 computer.

32. File names can be 255 characters long on a FAT, FAT32, and NTFS file systems.

33. Windows 2000 system monitoring:

Some of the important System Monitor counters are:

  • Memory > Available Mbytes: measures the amount of physical memory that is available. Typically > 4MB. If less than 4 MB, consider adding more memory.
  • 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.
  • Paging File > %Usage: Indicates the % of allocated page file utilization. Should be less than 99%.
  • Processor > %Processor Time: measure the time that the processor is busy. Should be typically less than 80%
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • LogicalDisk > %Free Space counter: Indicates the amount of logical disk's free disk space. Typical value is 10% or above

34. To insert a new file extension, you use Windows explorer, and select the application. Then, Tools -> Folder Option -> File Types. Configure the extension appropriately.

35. Windows 2000 disk volumes:

Windows 2000 Operating systems support 5 different volume types:

  • A simple volume consists of a formatted disk on a single hard disk.
  • A Spanned volume consists of disk space on more than one hard disk.
  • 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.
  • A mirrored volume consists of a Simple volume that is mirrored in total, onto a second dynamic disk. Provides highest level of fault tolerance. Mirroring is RAID level 1
  • 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.

Note that Windows 2000 Professional doesn't support Mirrored and RAID-5 volumes, where as other Windows 2000 Operating Systems (2000 Server, Advanced Server) support.

36. Fault tolerance boot disk is a floppy disk that enables you to boot a computer in the event that the first disk in a mirrored volume fails. If you mirror the installation folder in a Windows 2000 Server, you will not be able to boot because boot.ini points to the first volume. Therefore, you need to create a fault tolerance boot disk that contain an appropriately edited Boot.ini file, that points to the mirrored volume.

37. By default, you can start recovery console (in Windows 2000) using,

  • The Windows 2000 Professional Setup Disks
  • From the CD ROM drive using Windows 2000 Professional CD (if the CD -ROM drive is bootable).
  • Also, you can have "Recovery Console" as a start up option by typing \i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons at the command prompt, after switching to the CD ROM drive letter.

38. Windows 2000 provides two versions of Registry Editor

  • Regedt32.exe (32-bit) and
  • Regedit.exe (16-bit).

Regedt32.exe is automatically installed in the systemroot\system32 folder, while Regedit.exe is automatically installed in the systemroot folder. Regedit.exe is primarily used for its search capabilities as it doesn't support all functions and data types.

39. On a Windows 2000 computer, the default spool folder is located at: Systemroot\System32\spool\printers. For example, if the OS is residing on C drive, the default location will be: "C:\\WINNT\System32\spool\printers".

You can access this location through:

Start -> Printers -> File -> Server Properties -> Advanced tab. Type in the new spool location over the default location.

40.Up-grade to Windows 2000:

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

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