A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e
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A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e. Chapter 3 PC Repair Fundamentals. Objectives. Learn about tools you’ll need as a PC support technician Learn how to develop a preventive maintenance plan and what to include in it Learn how to work inside a computer case

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A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e

Chapter 3

PC Repair Fundamentals


Objectives

Objectives

  • Learn about tools you’ll need as a PC support technician

  • Learn how to develop a preventive maintenance plan and what to include in it

  • Learn how to work inside a computer case

  • Learn what happens when you first turn on a PC before the OS is loaded

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Objectives continued

Objectives (continued)

  • Learn how to approach and solve a PC problem

  • Learn how to troubleshoot a failed boot before the OS is loaded

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Introduction

Introduction

  • Basic repair skills

    • Developing a maintenance plan

    • Implementing a maintenance plan

    • Working inside a computer case

    • Following sequence of events that occur at startup

  • Advanced repair skills

    • Using common-sense guidelines to solve problems

    • Interviewing a user

    • Determining if a problem occurs before or after boot

    • Troubleshooting and solving a problem of a failed boot

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Pc support technician tools

PC Support Technician Tools

  • Help you maintain a computer

  • Help you diagnose and repair computer problems

  • Criteria for choosing tools:

    • Level of PC support you expect to provide

    • Amount of money you can spend

  • Some essential tools:

    • Ground bracelet, ground mat, or ground gloves

    • Torx screwdriver set

    • Recovery CD, DVD, or floppy disk for target OS

  • Store tools in toolbox for PC troubleshooting

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-1 PC support technician tools

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Recovery cds

Recovery CDs

  • Used to boot a system

  • Also used to repair and reinstall Windows

  • Primary recovery CD sources

    • PC manufacturer (preferred)

    • Operating system distributor, such as Microsoft

  • Some hard drives have a hidden recovery partitions

    • A hidden partition can be used to reinstall Windows

    • A utility for creating recovery CDs may be provided

    • Access hidden utilities by pressing a Fn key at startup

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-2 Windows Setup CD and Windows Recovery CDs for a notebook computer

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Loop back plugs

Loop-Back Plugs

  • Used to test various ports

    • Some port types: serial, parallel, USB, network

  • How to use a loop-back plug

    • Plug in the loop-back plug

    • Run the software that comes with the plug

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-3 Loop-back plugs used to test serial and parallel ports

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Cleaning pads and solutions

Cleaning Pads and Solutions

  • Various types are designed for specific uses

  • Example: contact cleaner

    • Cleans contacts on expansion cards

  • Warning: solutions may be flammable and/or toxic

  • Sources of safety and emergency instructions:

    • Side of the can of solution

    • Material safety data sheet (MSDS)

  • Adhere to safety procedures of your employer

    • Example: fill out an accident report (if required)

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-5 Each chemical you use should have available a material safety data sheet

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Post diagnostic cards

Post Diagnostic Cards

  • Report computer errors and conflicts at POST

  • How to use a POST diagnostic card:

    • Install card in an expansion slot on the motherboard

    • Attempt to boot your system

    • Record any error codes appearing in LED panel

    • Look up the entry associated with the error code

  • Examples of Post diagnostic cards:

    • PCI Error Testing/Debug Card by Winic Corporation

    • POST card V3 by Unicore Software, Inc.

    • Post Code Master by MSD, Inc.

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-6 Post Code Master diagnostic card by MSD, Inc.

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Personal computer preventive maintenance

Personal Computer Preventive Maintenance

  • Preventive maintenance reduces number of problems

  • Goals of preventive maintenance plans:

    • Prevent failures

    • Reduce repair costs

    • Reduce downtimes

  • Goal of disaster recovery plan: manage failures

  • Some causes of PC failure: heat, dust, spills, viruses

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


When a pc is your permanent responsibility

When a PC is your Permanent Responsibility

  • Tasks and procedures to prepare for troubleshooting

    • Keep good backups of data and system files

    • Document all setup changes, problems, and solutions

    • Protect the system against viruses and other attacks

      • Always use a firewall (software or hardware barrier)

      • Install and run antivirus software

      • Keep Windows Updates current

    • Physically protect your equipment

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-9 Configure antivirus software to scan e-mail and instant message attachments and to download updates automatically

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Creating a preventive maintenance plan

Creating a Preventive Maintenance Plan

  • Plan based on history or pattern of malfunctions

    • Example: PCs in dusty areas need more maintenance

  • Goals common to maintenance plans

    • Extend the working life of a PC

    • Anticipate problems that could disrupt service

    • Ensure data is secure and backed up

    • Provide support to PC users

  • Basic steps involved in designing a plan

    • Define your overall goals

    • Incorporate procedures for achieving goals

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Dealing with dust

Dealing with Dust

  • Dust accumulates in layers over components

  • Two major problems due to dust blankets

    • PC components directly overheat

    • Cooling fans jam, also resulting in overheating

  • Maintenance task: remove the layer of dust

  • Two tools used to remove dust:

    • Antistatic vacuum

    • Compressed air

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Preparing a computer for shipping

Preparing a Computer for Shipping

  • Adverse factors to consider:

    • Rough handling

    • Exposure to water, heat, and cold

    • Misplacement or theft of computer

  • Some shipping guidelines to follow:

    • Backup the hard drive onto a backup medium

    • Remove inserted disks, tape cartridges, or CDs

    • Coil and secure all external cords

    • Separately wrap hardware components

    • Purchase insurance on the shipment

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Disposing of used equipment

Disposing of Used Equipment

  • Various guidelines for disposing of equipment:

    • Table 3-2

    • Manufacturer documentation

    • Local environmental regulators

  • Danger posed by monitors and power supplies

    • Residual charge in capacitors can cause shock

    • Modern devices discharge if unplugged for 60 minutes

    • Older devices may require discharge with a probe

  • Destroy secondary storage devices with sensitive data

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Table 3-2 Computer parts and how to dispose of them

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


How to work inside a computer case

How to Work Inside a Computer Case

  • Objective: dismantle a computer, put it back together

  • Some safety precautions to follow:

    • Make notes that will help you backtrack

    • Keep screws and spacers orderly

    • Do not stack boards on top of each other

    • Do not touch the chips on circuit boards

    • Do not use a graphite pencil to change DIP settings

    • Turn off the power, unplug and ground the computer

    • Do not remove covers of monitors or power supplies

    • Keep components away from hair and clothing

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Static electricity

Static Electricity

  • Build-up of charge due to absence of conductors

  • Electrostatic discharge (ESD)

    • Due to dissimilar electrical surfaces making contact

    • Only 10 volts of ESD can damage PC components

    • Walking across carpet generates up to 12,000 volts

  • Two types of damage: catastrophic and upset failure

  • Tool and methods for grounding yourself and the PC

    • Ground bracelet, ground mats, static shielding bags, antistatic gloves

  • If working inside a monitor, do not ground yourself

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-13 A ground bracelet, which protects computer components from ESD, can clip to the side of the computer case and eliminate ESD between you and the case

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Steps to take apart a computer

Steps to Take Apart a Computer

  • Essential tools:

    • Ground bracelet

    • Phillips-head screwdriver

    • Flat-head screwdriver, paper, and pen

  • Follow safety precautions at all times

  • Summary of Steps 1 - 4

    • 1. Enter CMOS and write down customized settings

    • 2. Power down the system, unplug all components

    • 3. Put the computer on a good-sized table

    • 4. Remove the cover of the PC

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-19 Removing the cover

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Steps to take apart a computer continued

Steps to Take Apart a Computer (continued)

  • Summary of steps 5 - 11

    • 5. Diagram cable connections and switch settings

    • 6. Identify cables connecting drives to motherboard

    • 7. Remove the cables to all drives

    • 8. Remove the expansion cards

    • 9. Remove the motherboard (or drives)

    • 10. Remove the power supply from the case

    • 11. Remove each drive (if not already removed)

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-33 Remove the motherboard from the case

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Steps to put a computer back together

Steps to Put a Computer Back Together

  • 1. Install power supply, drives, motherboard, cards

  • 2. Connect all data and power cables

  • 3. Plug in the keyboard, monitor, and mouse

  • 4. Ask instructor to check work (if in a classroom)

  • 5. Turn on the power and check PC functions

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Understanding the boot process

Understanding the Boot Process

  • Key learning objectives

    • Know how to boot a PC

    • Understand what happens first when a PC is turned on

    • Understand how an operating system is loaded

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Booting a computer

Booting a Computer

  • Process that drives a computer to a working state

  • Hard (cold) boot: turn the power switch on

  • Soft (warm) boot: allow the OS to reboot

  • How to soft boot Windows XP

    • Click Start

    • Click Turn Off Computer

    • Click Restart

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Choosing between a hard boot and a soft boot

Choosing Between a Hard Boot and a Soft Boot

  • Hard boots are more stressful on machines

    • Power surges through system when PC is turned on

  • Reasons to choose a soft boot over hard boot

    • Less stressful on the machine

    • Faster due to skipping initial steps

  • Some computers have a soft and hard power switch

    • Soft power switch shuts down and restarts Windows

    • Hard power switch cuts power and restarts machine

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


The startup bios controls the beginning of the boot

The Startup BIOS Controls the Beginning of the Boot

  • The startup BIOS gets a system up and running

  • Four phases of the boot process:

    • BIOS runs the POST and assigns system resources

      • POST: power-on self test

    • BIOS searches for and loads an OS

    • OS configures system and completes its own loading

    • Application software is loaded and executed

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-40 Boot Step 1: The ROM BIOS startup program surveys hardware resources and needs and assigns system resources to satisfy those needs

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Changing the boot sequence

Changing the Boot Sequence

  • BIOS looks to CMOS RAM to locate the OS

  • Boot sequence: order of drives checked for an OS

  • Change boot sequence using CMOS setup utilities

  • Access CMOS setup utilities when PC is turned on

    • Example: press F8 before Windows screen appears

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-42 Numbered steps show how BIOS searches for and begins to load an operating system (in this example, Windows NT/2000/XP is the OS)

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


How to troubleshoot a pc problem

How to Troubleshoot a PC Problem

  • Assume the attitude of an investigator

  • Do not compound the problem by your own actions

  • Look at the problem as a learning opportunity

  • Ask questions until you understand the problem

  • Believe that you can solve the problem

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Steps to solving a pc problem

Steps to Solving a PC Problem

  • Key advice:

    • Ask good questions

    • Document the process

  • Four-step problem solving process:

    • Step 1: Interview the user

    • Step 2: Back up data

    • Step 3: Solve the problem

    • Step 4: Verify the fix and document the solution

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-44 General approach to troubleshooting

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Troubleshooting a failed boot

Troubleshooting a Failed Boot

  • It takes time to acquire troubleshooting skills

  • Hands-on training: troubleshooting a failed boot

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


My computer won t boot

My Computer Won’t Boot

  • First step: maintain your calm

  • Second step: develop a game plan

  • Figure 3-45 provides a procedure

    • Plan is driven by a set of yes-no questions

    • Example: Does the PC boot properly?

      • If no, troubleshooter is directed to another question

      • If yes, troubleshooter is directed to stop (for now)

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Figure 3-45 Use this flowchart when first facing a computer problem

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Troubleshooting major subsystems used for booting

Troubleshooting Major Subsystems Used For Booting

  • Categories of troubleshooting steps in Figure 3-45

    • The electrical subsystem

    • Essential hardware devices

      • The motherboard, memory, and the CPU

    • Video

    • Reading from the hard drive

  • Key aides: tables identifying error codes

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


A guide to managing and maintaining your pc 6e

Table 3-4 Beep codes and their meanings

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Summary

Summary

  • Some PC repair tools: recovery CDs, screwdrivers, POST, cleaning pads and solutions, diagnostic cards

  • Preventive maintenance plans extend the life of a PC

  • Follow an organization’s preventive maintenance plan, or develop one if it does not exist

  • Computers present chemical and electrical hazards

  • Protect components in case from ESD by grounding yourself and the PC

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


Summary continued

Summary (continued)

  • Assembling and reassembling a PC prepares the technician for actual repair work

  • Startup BIOS controls when the boot process begins

  • Four step boot process: POST, loading the OS, OS initializing itself, loading and executing applications

  • Expert troubleshooters ask good questions

  • Before tackling a problem, develop a game plan

A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC, 6e


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