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Hardware for A+

Discussion in 'A+' started by Brooksy80, Jun 11, 2007.

  1. Brooksy80

    Brooksy80 Bit Poster

    Evening all,

    After reading a few other threads I've just ordered the latest Mike Myers all-in-one study guide (2007) and the PC Technician Street Smarts book from Amazon. Hope these are a good combination

    I have a question re hardware. What spec machiens would you aim to buy? I currrently own a 3ghz P4 with 1GB RAM and a P2 266 with 128MB of RAM. I don't really want to start tearing apart my P4 machine and re-installing the OS as I'm a bit inexperienced in these fields. I only have one monitor, would you buy another?

    I'm looking to study hard in the coming years so any machine's bought would be a long term investment. How may base units should I buy? What spec would you aim for? Would my 266 be in anyway useful?

    Where is the best place to buy machines from? A mate recommend buying factory repaired Dell units.

    Many Thanks
  2. Mr.Cheeks

    Mr.Cheeks 1st ever Gold Member! Gold Member

    i have one machine that dealt with all the os's i needed. How? VMWare of Virtual Machine...

    in regarding to ripping pc's aparat, best best would be local newspapers, get a low spec just for ripping them apart, and use them for hardware only, you can use vmware/virtual pc to simulate os's on your P4.

    Hope this helps
  3. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

    I agree that you should have one machine that you aren't afraid to break. Part of the certification (and ultimately the job) you are training for involves getting your hands dirty inside computers. Also, when you are working on the job, you are always working on someone else's hardware, so you try not to break it. That said, practice makes perfect. Get a junker PC and a screwdriver and start having a look around the insides of the thing.

    As Mr.Cheeks said, you could use VMware or some other form of virtualization software to install different OSes as virtual machines. Of course, you'd need a lab machine with enough horsepower to run them.

    As far as the book combo goes, Meyers has an excellent reputation as far as producing what is considered *the* A+ study guide. As far as PC Technician Street Smarts, as the author, I guess I have to stand by my work. :wink:

    Think of "Street Smarts" as a lab manual. It's broken up into four main sections:

    Hardware and Software Installation
    Maintaining and Documenting Computer Systems
    Networking Computer Systems
    Troubleshooting and Restoring Systems

    The book is written as if describing a "year in the life" of your typical PC technician. Each section contains a number of tasks and each task contains a scenario, the scope of the task (duration, setup, etc), any caveats (gotchas to watch out for), the equipment you'll need and then the actual steps of the tasks.

    Some of the tasks are typical (Install a stick of RAM) but some aren't...especially in the troubleshooting section. I used a bunch of trouble tickets that were generated from real life situations when I was working as a PC desktop support tech, so they aren't the canned scenarios you'll find in a thousand other books.

    One of the advantages to this book is that it is "real-to-life" or at least as close as I could make it given the fact that you have to be able to replicate the scenarios at home or in the classroom. They should teach you the skills you'll need plus give you a taste of what the actual job is really like.

    Let me know how you like the book. Thanks.

    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  4. Neil

    Neil Byte Poster

    2-3 systems (the MOST) would be sufficient for EVERYTHING that you plan on studying for in the future. Because they will come in pretty handy when studying the networking aspect of the exams, since you can get hands on experience on networking them together, using multiple OS's and many more. Factory repaired Dell units is not a bad option since they have the ability to last quite a while. Trust this helps.
    Certifications: CompTIA A+ & Network+
    WIP: MCSA: 70-270
  5. Brooksy80

    Brooksy80 Bit Poster

    Thanks for the input guys
  6. Fanatical

    Fanatical Byte Poster

    I'd say that just a couple of junk PC's would be enough to allow you to tinker with them without fear of destroying expensive components. With the Meyers book i suspect it'll tell you all you need to know spec wise about each piece of hardware so you don;t need 2 or 3 up to date PC's to work with (although check the objectives to see what kind of architecture you need to know)

    As for Os stuff then VMWare is the way forward to get used to each OS's differences.
    Certifications: A+, MCDST

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