Chapter Summary

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The following points summarize the key concepts in this chapter:

Operating System Basics

  • MS-DOS is considered synonymous with the term DOS, even though there were other disk operating systems produced.
  • The three programs that constitute the core operating system of MS-DOS are IO.SYS, MSDOS.SYS, and COMMAND.COM.


  • CONFIG.SYS loads extra hardware and device drivers that are not built into the IO.SYS file.
  • It is important that you are familiar with the steps involved with the boot process.

Windows 3.x

  • Windows 3.x is not an operating system, but provides a common user interface for applications written to its standards.
  • It is important that you are familiar with the different modes of Windows and how (and where) they function.
  • Windows runs on top of MS-DOS. It is an MS-DOS-based program that provides a graphical user interface (GUI).
  • It is important that you know the different areas of memory.
  • Windows provides three types of fonts: vector fonts, raster fonts, and TrueType fonts.
  • There are three methods for managing or configuring Windows: the Control Panel, Windows Setup, and Windows .INI files.
  • Sysedit is a program for editing the system files (AUTOEXEC.BAT, CONFIG.SYS, WIN.INI, and SYSTEM.INI).
  • PROGRAM.INI controls the settings for the Program Manager Group files.
  • Virtual memory allows the processor to use the hard drive to simulate RAM.
  • A popular disk cache is SMARTDRV.EXE. It is provided as part of MS-DOS and is activated by entering it into the CONFIG.SYS file.
  • Windows uses a .PIF (Program Information File) to hold the necessary data to set up the virtual machine.
  • Windows 3.x problems can be divided into three distinct groups: lockups, GPFs, and erratic behavior.

Microsoft Corporation - A+ Certification Training Kit
Microsoft Corporation - A+ Certification Training Kit
Year: 2000
Pages: 127 © 2008-2017.
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