Best CompTIA A+ Practice Questions to Prepare for the Exam

Best CompTIA A+ Practice Questions to Prepare for the Exam

The best way one-two-punch to prepare for the CompTIA A+ exam is to study and answer practice questions. 

In this article we’ll discuss what will be on the exam and provide advice on how best to ace the exam, but most importantly we’ll provide you with both multiple choice and performance-based questions (PBQs) you can use to test your knowledge of each domain you will be tested on. 

The following won’t be an exhaustive list of questions that cover every area you’ll be tested on. However, they will give you a glimpse of what CompTIA A+ will look and feel like. 

CompTIA A+ Exam Domains

Unlike nearly every other CompTIA exam, CompTIA A+ comprises of two exams: Core 1 and Core 2

In order to obtain the A+ certification, you must pass both of these exams. 

Core 1 tests you on hardware, cloud computing, and networking technology. 

Core 2 focuses on software, operating systems, and the basics of cyber security. 

Each exam is comprised of no more than 90 questions to be answered in 90 minutes. The exact number of questions will depend on how many PBQ questions you must answer. The passing score for Core 1 is 675/900. The passing score jumps to 700/900 for Core 2. 

CompTIA A+ Exam Domains

Core 1 Sample Questions

To prepare you for the CompTIA A+ exam, here are two CompTIA A+ practice questions for each domain you’ll be tested on in addition to two Performance Based Questions. 

Mobile Devices (15%)

Test takers must understand the basics of mobile devices, including how they are configured, the various pieces of hardware used, and how they are connected to networks. 

Things you must remember:

Hardware components
Display components
Connection methods ranging from Bluetooth to hotspots
Wireless/cell data networks

Sample Question 1:

What is the purpose of NFC on a mobile device?

a) To charge the device's battery wirelessly.

b) To transfer data between devices by touching or bringing them close together.

c) To improve Wi-Fi network performance.

d) To project the device's screen onto a larger display.

Click for answer

b. To transfer data between devices by touching or bringing them close together.

Sample Question 2:

Which technology allows a mobile device to determine its geographic location using signals from satellites?

a) Bluetooth

b) RFID

c) GPS

d) NFC

Click for answer

c) GPS

Networking (20%)

Networking is all about how different host systems can communicate with each other, whether it be two devices on a home network, or hundreds of computers around the world sharing resources simultaneously. 

Things you must remember:

Network types (LAN, WAN, etc.)
Network hardware (Hubs vs Switches)
Cable types, CAT cable standards, and wiring patterns
IP addressing (IPv4 vs IPv6, address classes, etc.)
Common port numbers and their protocols

Sample Question 1:

What protocol does the largest network in the world use?

a) AppleTalk

b) TCP/IP

c) HTTP

d) IPX/SPX

Click for answer

b) TCP/IP

Sample Question 2:

MAC addresses can be represented by how many hexadecimal characters?

a) 4

b) 8

c) 12

d) 16

Click for answer

c) 12

Sample Performance Based Question:

2. Question

Click for answer

3. Answer

Hardware (25%)

There is a lot of hardware that CompTIA A+ covers. You’ll be tested on your knowledge of cabling, RAM types, storage devices, vital computer components, and even printer hardware and configuration. 

Things you must remember:

Network, peripheral, video, hard drive, and connector cables
RAM types ranging from virtual RAM to SDRAM, DDR, and RDRAM
Various types of storage
Integral computer components (Motherboard, CPU, encryption, expansion cards)
Installing and replacing printer consumables

Sample Question 1:

Sam’s inkjet printer's output has the bottom of every letter missing in text and strange horizontal lines evenly spaced in her images. What part of the inkjet should she check for problems?

a) The printhead

b) The paper take-up rollers

c) The photosensitive drum  

d) The printer's resolution

Click for answer

a) The printhead

Sample Question 2:

Which component of a computer is responsible for processing and rendering graphics, particularly in gaming and graphic design?

a) CPU 

b) RAM 

c) GPU 

d) PSU 

Click for answer

c) GPU

Virtualization & Cloud Computing (11%)

Virtualization and cloud computing make up just 11% of the questions you’ll be asked in Core 1. Prepare to be tested on various cloud computing concepts and client-side virtualization. 

Things you must remember:

Differences between the public, private, and community cloud
Differences between SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS
Desktop virtualization
Reasons for using a virtual machine

Sample Question 1:

Which cloud deployment model is known for its scalability and flexibility, allowing an organization to share resources among multiple tenants?

a) Public cloud

b) Private cloud

c) Hybrid cloud

d) Community cloud

Click for answer

a) Public Cloud

Sample Question 2:

In a virtualized environment, what is a snapshot?

a) A photograph of a physical server

b) A backup of a virtual machine's current state

c) A virtual version of a physical network switch

d) A real-time video stream of a virtual machine's activities

Click for answer

b) A backup of a virtual machine’s current state

Hardware and Network Troubleshooting (29%)

Although it’s an entry-level exam, CompTIA A+ will test your critical thinking ability when it comes to basics of network and hardware troubleshooting in everything from mobile devices and computers to printers and video projectors. 

Things you must remember:

Six steps of the troubleshooting methodology
Troubleshooting issues related to motherboards, RAM, CPU, and power
Fix issues related to mobile devices, video projectors, display, and storage
Troubleshoot wired and wireless networks

Sample Question 1:

A user reports that their computer starts up but displays no image on the monitor. What should you check first?

a) Network cables

b) RAM modules

c) Power supply

d) Monitor cable

Click for answer

d) Monitor cables

Sample Question 2:

A computer on the network cannot access the internet, but others can. What could be the issue?

a) Virus infection

b) Faulty power supply

c) Incorrect DNS settings

d) Low RAM capacity

Click for answer

c) Incorrect DNS settings

Sample Performance Based Question:

You’ve recently been hired as the new head of customer support for your company. You have been tasked with creating an effective troubleshooting framework for how IT support will address problems customers have their your company’s products. 

Drag the following steps into the correct order:

Troubleshooting Model

Click for answer

5. Troubleshooting Model

Core 2 Sample Questions

Both Core 1 and Core 2 must be passed to obtain your CompTIA A+ certification. Here are CompTIA A+ practice questions designed to help you pass the Core 2 exam. 

Operating Systems (31%)

Core 2 covers a range of topics related to operating systems. You should have an understanding of the most popular operating systems, their most common command line tools, and how to navigate and configure them.

Things you must remember:

Microsoft basic features and command line tools
How to use Task Manager and Microsoft Management Console
Configure Windows settings
Apply and configure OS tools
Common features and command line tools for Linux and MAC OS

Sample Question 1:

To take ownership of a Linux file, which command should you use?

a) pwd

b) chmod

c) chown

d) passwd

Click for answer

c) chown

Sample Question 2:

Which of the following tools allows a person with administrator privileges to add local users to a Windows system?

a) The Local Users and Groups Control Panel applet

b) The Local Users and Groups Snap-in under Computer Management

c) The Local Users and Groups tab in the properties for My Computer

d) The Local Users and Groups tab in the properties for My Network Places

Click for answer

b) The Local Users and Groups Snap-in under Computer Management

Sample Performance Based Question 1:

6. Question

Click for answer

7. Answer

Sample Performance Based Question 2:

8. Question

Click for answer

9. Answer

Security (25%)

Despite being an entry-level IT certification, CompTIA A+ still requires test takers to understand the basics of computer security. You will be tested on security controls, protocols, malware types, common vulnerabilities and will have to critically think your way through complex scenarios.

Things you must remember:

Types of physical and logical security controls
Security protocols and encryption methods
Various forms of malware and how to defend against them
Understand social engineering attacks such as Vishing and Whaling
Configure security settings for Microsoft Windows OS

Sample Question 1:

Tony receives a computer that has a Trojan Horse virus. Which of the following should you do first?

a) Identify the malware

b) Establish how the virus was acquired

c) Run the System Recovery utility

d) Rollback to the System Restore Point

Click for answer

a) Identify the malware

Sample Question 2:

You’re a technician working for a large company and you notice a user has left a Post-it note attached to her monitor of a new password that he was just given. What should the technician do?

a) Take it and give it to him when he gets back from lunch

b) Explain to her how dangerous it is to leave passwords lying around

c) Inform their supervisor

d) Log in with it and change her password to teach her a lesson

Click for answer

c) Inform their supervisor

Sample Performance Based Question:

Drag and drop the malware definition to its corresponding malware

Click for answer

Drag and drop the malware definition to its corresponding malware

Software Troubleshooting (22%)

A+ will test your technical knowledge of how to effectively troubleshoot software. You won’t be asked to troubleshoot complex problems, but you should know the basics of Windows and Android troubleshooting along with how to remedy PC security issues and best malware removal practices. 

Things you must remember:

Troubleshoot common issues such as boot problems, time drift, and blue screen of death
Troubleshoot common security problems like fake alerts, unwanted notifications, and OS update failures
Find best procedures for malware removal
Troubleshoot common mobile OS and application issues

Sample Question 1:

Your computer's web browser is displaying unwanted pop-up ads and toolbars. What could be causing this issue?

a) Insufficient power supply capacity

b) Malware or adware

c) Overheating CPU

d) Outdated graphics driver

Click for answer

b) Malware or adware

Sample Question 2:

A user reports that their computer takes a long time to boot up. What is a potential solution to improve boot time?

a) Install a larger monitor

b) Upgrade the keyboard

c) Disable unnecessary startup programs

d) Add more RAM

Click for answer

c) Disable unnecessary startup programs

Operational Procedures (22%)

Obtaining CompTIA A+ shows employers that you understand the basics of operational procedures. It means you know how to operate support systems information management, understand basic change-management practices, can perform backups, and use common safety protocols.  

Things you must remember:

Understand how to use ticketing systems and properly manage assets
Know how to implement best change management practices
Backup and recovery procedures
Be aware of environmental impacts and local environmental controls
Know the basics of licensing, regulated data, and incident response

Sample Question 1:

In the context of IT and digital forensics, what does the "chain of custody" refer to?

a) A document that outlines the company's IT policies

b) A secure physical lock used to protect IT equipment

c) The process of documenting and maintaining the integrity of digital evidence

d) The hierarchy of command within an IT department

Click for answer

c) The process of documenting and maintaining the integrity of digital evidence

Sample Question 2:

What type of computer backup involves copying all data, including operating system and application files, to create a complete and exact replica of the system's state at a specific point in time?

a) Incremental backup

b) Full backup

c) Differential backup

d) Cloud backup

Click for answer

b) Full backup

CompTIA A+ Exam Advice

While these questions may be daunting, remember that CompTIA A+ is an entry-level IT certification. Many of the people who take this exam are new to the field and are without professional experience. Through their studies alone, most people are able to pass these two exams and obtain their certification. 

Here are some helpful strategies to improve your test scores:

  • Memorize the acronyms and their meanings at the bottom of CompTIA’s objectives page (CompTIA will only supply the acronyms on the exams).
  • Studying is not a race. There is a lot of material to cover. Take your time so you understand each and every item on the list of objectives.
  • Schedule an exam date in the future to give you the motivation you need to study.
  • If you desire, you can take the exam in the comfort of your own home.
  • Study while simultaneously taking practice tests to gauge your knowledge.

Conclusion

These CompTIA A+ practice questions are designed to give you a taste of what to expect when you two the two A+ exams. 

To adequately prepare for the A+ certification, we recommend using our A+ cheatsheet, enrolling in a course that walks you through the topics covered on the exam, and taking practice tests prior to the exam to gauge your mastery of the test material. Use practice tests to gauge which areas you understand and which areas you need to spend more time studying. 

Obtaining CompTIA A+ is often the first step towards a long-term career in cyber security. To understand the best way to move forward and obtain the career you want, we recommend joining StationX’s Accelerator Program, where you’ll have access to certification advice, mentorship, over 1,000 classes and labs, and receive assistance creating a blueprint for obtaining the career you want.  

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  • Spencer Abel

    Spencer is part cyber security professional and part content writer. He specializes in helping those attempting to pivot into the vast and always-changing world of cyber security by making complex topics fun and palatable. Connect with him over at LinkedIn to stay up-to-date with his latest content.

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