Course Name
Computer Repair Microcomputer Installation and Maintenance (A+ Certification Prep)

Contact Hours: 10

Course Description
Microcomputer Installation and Maintenance

This comprehensive course provides an introduction to the fundamentals of installing and maintaining microcomputers. Topics include: identifying components and their functions, safety, installation procedures, troubleshooting techniques, and preventive maintenance. This course in computer repair is up-to-date and will provide you with the necessary knowledge necessary to prepare for the A+ Certification Exam.

This course requires Adobe Flash and Acrobat plug-ins to view all course contents. You also need to download VLC player to view the video clips on the CD that comes with the text book. The links to download Flash, Acrobat plug-ins, and VLC players are listed below.

After completing this course the student will be able to:
  1. Explain the history of personal computing from three distinct
  2. Identify system components from the earliest models to the latest models.
  3. Disassemble and identify components from both earlier PC models.
  4. Describe the various types of memory used in microcomputer systems including RAM, ROM, PROM, EPROM, DRAM, and SPRAM.
  5. Describe the three categories of memory under DOS including conventional, expanded, and extended.
  6. Describe the various types of chip connections including DIP, PGA, and SIMM.
  7. Identify and describe the various bus types including ISA, EISA, MCA and VESA.
  8. Describe the three main functions of the power supply.
  9. Remove and replace a power supply.
  10. Describe functions of the Intel family of processors beginning with the 8088.
  11. Describe how the processor works with the coprocessor and define the various registers used by the processor.
  12. Identify safety hazards and demonstrate safety precautions used while working with the microcomputer and power supply.
  13. Demonstrate microcomputer set-up and perform check-out procedures including system configuration, formatting and partitioning the fixed disk, and loading the operating system.
  14. Demonstrate expansion card, floppy disk drive, disk controller, and fixed disk installation.
  15. Demonstrate the ability to connect (and perform check-outs for) various external peripherals such as printers and t-switches.
  16. List the rules and steps to good troubleshooting techniques.
  17. Identify the possible error codes for POST routine and isolate problems.
  18. Run general diagnostic tests to pinpoint system failures.
  19. Demonstrate the proper sequence of checks to perform for distinguishing between computer hardware and software problems.
  20. Demonstrate disk compatibility problem resolution.
  21. Identify drive and disk capacities and determine which are interchangeable.
  22. Identify factors which can adversely affect the normal operation of the microcomputer.
  23. Demonstrate the proper methods to clean internal and external system components.
  24. Identify the tools necessary to perform preventive maintenance on the microcomputer.
  25. Describe the methods used to insure proper system and application software backup.
  26. Identify the main types of power protection devices being used.
  27. Explain the addressing scheme of fixed disks including cylinder number, head,and sector number.
  28. Define the terms track, sector, and cluster.
  29. Describe the different data encoding technologies including MFM, RLL, and ARLL.
  30. Identify disk interfaces/controllers used with fixed disks including ST506/412, EDSI, and IDE.
  31. Describe the differences between the stepper motor and voice coil motor.
  32. Describe read/write head positioning.
  33. Explain interleave factor and its impact of data transfer rate.
  34. Perform disk maintenance using current utility software including Spinrite and Norton Utilities.

    There are reading, review, lab assignments, and quizzes each week. There are 12 weekly quizzes. Each quiz can be taken twice. The highest score will be recorded.

    Required Book(s)

    Section 1

    Identifying Components and Their Function
    • The History of Personal Computers
    • Personal Computer Components
    • System Disassembly
    • Types of Memory
    • Bus Types
    • Power Supply
    • Processor Types
    Section 2

    • General Safety Precautions
    Section 3

    Troubleshooting Techniques
    • General Troubleshooting Rules
    • System Diagnostics
    • Hardware/Software Diagnostics
    • Read/Write Disk Error Problems
    Section 4

    Preventive Maintenance
    • System
    • Tools
    • Backup
    • Protection
    • Fixed Disks
    • Data Encoding
    • Interfaces
    • Access Motors
    • Interleave
    • Utilities