PC Hardware

Tutorial 14

  1. Describe a basic sample toolkit for the computer professional.

    The basic toolkit should include screwdrivers, a Torx driver, tweezers, needlenose pliers, chip removers, a tube for small parts, a can of compressed air, ESD tools, a multimeter, a flashlight, a nut driver set, and curved hemostats.

  2. What is a Torx driver used for?

    A Torx driver is used to remove the star-shaped screws found on some proprietary computers. (Sizes T-10 and T-15 should meet the needs of most computers.)

  3. How many bootable floppy disks are needed for a computer professional's tool kit?

    One bootable floppy disk is needed for every operating system that you will be working on.

  4. You are only going to check the memory chips. Do you need to follow ESD (electrostatic discharge) safety practices?

    Always use ESD safety practices.

  5. SIMMs are available in two physical configurations. What are they?

    SIMMs (single inline memory modules) are provided in two basic (physical) formats: a 30-pin and a 72-pin chip.

  6. You have an extra 16 MB of RAM on a single 30-pin SIMM, and a friend has a computer and needs more memory. What do you need to check in order to determine if this memory module can be used on your friend's computer?

    You first have to determine whether there are any 30-pin slots available, then check the bus width to determine how many you will need to complete the job. For example, if the machine is a 486, you will need four modules to complete the job.

  7. What is parity? Can parity chips be mixed with nonparity chips?

    Parity is used to check the reliability of data. Parity requires one additional bit (chip). Memory can be purchased with or without parity. Parity adds about 10 percent more to the cost of memory. You cannot mix parity and nonparity chips.

  8. Can L1 cache memory be upgraded?

    L1 cache is part of the CPU and cannot be upgraded.

  9. Your client wants to install an internal modem. How would you determine whether this internal modem could be installed on your client's machine?

    First, the machine must have an available expansion slot. Second, there must be available resources such as IRQ and an address.

  10. A friend just got a bargain on a new Plug and Play sound card and wants to install it on her 486SX computer. Will it work?

    It will probably work, but will have to be manually configured either through software or jumpers.

  11. How do you determine whether to upgrade the CPU or install another motherboard?

    First, you must evaluate the existing motherboard to see if it can be upgraded and then determine the highest CPU that you can use. Second, you must determine the needs of the customer, particularly whether the CPU upgrade will meet the customer's operational requirements.

  12. What is the advantage of Plug and Play?

    Plug and Play, the latest technology available for installing expansion cards, is an independent set of specifications developed by a group of hardware and software companies. This specification allows the user to make configuration changes with minimal adjustments. The user simply installs the card, turns on the computer, and uses the device.

  13. What are the four requirements that must be addressed before installing a new drive in a computer?
    1. Will the drive physically fit inside the computer?
    2. Will the computer's BIOS and operating system support the size (storage capacity) of the drive?
    3. Will the drive controller support the new drive?
    4. Are there sufficient cables (data and power) to install the drive?