A+ 220-1002: Day 9: The Command Line & OS Troubleshooting

  1. A+ Certification
  2. A+ 220-1001: Day 1: Intro, Resources & the Test
  3. A+ 220-1001: Day 2: CPUs
  4. A+ 220-1001: Day 3: RAM
  5. A+ 220-1001: Day 4: Firmware, Motherboards & Power Supplies
  6. A+ 220-1001: Day 5: Disks & Mass Storage
  7. A+ 220-1001: Day 6: Peripherals & PC Builds
  8. A+ 220-1001: Day 7: OS Operations, User Management & OS Maintenance
  9. A+ 220-1001: Day 8: Users, Permissions and System Management
  10. A+ 220-1002: Day 9: The Command Line & OS Troubleshooting
  11. A+ 220-1002: Day 10: Displays & Networking Basics
  12. A+ 220-1002: Day 11: LANs: Ethernet & WiFi
  13. A+ 220-1002: Day 12: The Internet & Virtualization
  14. A+ 220-1002: Day 13: Portable & Mobile Computing
  15. A+ 220-1002: Day 14: Mobile Administration & Printing
  16. A+ 220-1002: Day 15: Security & Operations
  17. A+ 220-1002: Day 16: Review & Test Preparation

Command Line Interfaces

Current A+ objectives include at least some degree of familiarity with the Windows, Linux and Mac command line interfaces (CLIs). Fortunately, Linux and Mac use the same commands, for theĀ  most part.

Our text covers specific commands in some detail. You need to know:

  • How to open a Windows Command Shell (cmd.exe) and Powershell (powershell.exe)
  • How to open a Linux terminal
  • How to open a Mac terminal
  • How to change directories, move files, rename files


Create a page in your notes for Windows Commands.


Create a page in your notes for Mac Commands.


Create a page in your notes for Linux Commands.


Batch Files / Shell Scripts

It will be a real strong point on your resume if you can say you have some experience – any experience – writing command-line shell scripts. The process is very different between the Unixes and Windows.

So do a simple search. It’s good to get used to starting almost every process with a search:


WikiHow, for instance, has a good starter tutorial, though its use of loops might put off beginners:


HowToGeek has a little more advanced demo, including a video:


And SpeedGuide has a good, technical tutorial that will give you a great backup script:


Now, let me intoduce you to the excellent SpiceWorks community, and a Windows shell script to back up an entire Windows profile:


Another excellent source is StackOverflow. Notice how this script only backs up new or changed files:


It may be handy to turn this into a fun hacking exercise:


OS Troubleshooting

Be clear that OS Troubleshooting is a different topic than Troubleshooting Methodology, which we looked at back in 220-1001. Working from the command line is often a critical skill for this. Our book covers some good details, and here’s some discussion


Also see Professor Messer’s video for the current version of the A+:





-Startup Repair

-System Restore

-System Image Recovery

-Memtest / Windows Memory Diagnostic




Getting to Advanced Startup Options

Win 7/8 – f8 during boot

Win 10 – hard restart over and over (!)

Textbook Time

Chapters 15 and 16