Ops 201: Foundations of Computer Operations

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Overview

Learn to support technology operations by resolving issues with hardware, software, and virtual or cloud systems.

In this hands-on course, you will deploy and troubleshoot Windows and Linux operating systems in various virtual and cloud environments. Key skills such as customer service, knowledge and process documentation, system shell proficiency, performance monitoring, system process management, issue handling, backup/imaging/recovery tools, and software application installation, maintenance, and removal will be practiced.

The course focuses on practical systems support and troubleshooting. Students will utilize issue tracking systems and the ITIL service management framework to communicate, resolve, and document issues and incidents. Students will also study how endpoints interact with the greater IT infrastructure, exploring concepts such as network protocols, Wi-Fi, and server-based user identity support.

This course includes a career coaching curriculum to get you ready for your job search. The course totals 160 hours, including lectures, lab, coworking, and collaborative projects.

Outcomes

At the end of this course, you will be able to land an entry-level IT Support Technician position with skills to:

  • Deliver outstanding customer service
  • Assess user needs and recommend solutions
  • Resolve technical issues in various virtual and cloud environments
  • Contribute to and using a shared knowledge repository
  • Respond to, log, track, and resolve support cases in an issue tracking system
  • Apply a standardized troubleshooting methodology
  • Utilize imaging, backup and recovery tools
  • Deploy and supporting Windows 10 and Ubuntu Linux operating systems
  • Use Microsoft 365 and Exchange
  • Install, update, and remove software applications
  • Study and apply ITIL best practices to service delivery
  • Monitor and tune endpoint performance
  • Perform IT asset management in a systematic fashion
  • Incorporate infrastructure connectivity concepts such as network protocols, Wi-Fi, Voice-over-IP (VoIP) telephony
  • Troubleshoot endpoint network connectivity issues
  • Be prepared for a Ops 301: Networking and Sysadmin course

Prerequisites

  • Ops 101: Explore Cybersecurity: If you are new to the cybersecurity field and want to get a sample of the cyber experience, complete Ops 101 to build your own virtual private cloud on AWS and find out if a career in cybersecurity is right for you.
  • Ops 102: Intro to Computer Operations: If you’re new to configuring computers, complete Ops 102 to get an introduction to how computers work! Practice installing software and load up your own virtual machine in AWS cloud.
  • Students with previous experience can test out of this requirement in their application. If you'd like to test straight into this course, please make sure you have experience with all of the topics listed on the Ops 102 course pages.

Topics

Technical Service & Support

  • Asset management
  • Continuous improvement methodologies
  • Customer service
  • Endpoint technical support
  • Incident management
  • Issue tracking system
  • ITIL service management framework
  • Knowledge management, documentation, and standard operating procedures (SOP)
  • Remote desktop support and diagnostics
  • Service level agreement (SLA)
  • Technical project support
  • Technical reporting and communication
  • Troubleshooting methodology
  • User requirements analysis

Hardware & Software

  • Desktops and laptops
  • Imaging, backup, and recovery
  • Windows 10 and Ubuntu Linux operating systems
  • Microsoft 365 and Exchange
  • Performance monitoring and tuning
  • Peripherals
  • Printer/copier/fax troubleshooting
  • Software application deployment, updating, and removal
  • Workstation software deployment

Infrastructure connectivity

  • Active directory user support
  • Cloud-based virtual machine deployment
  • Network protocols TCP/IP, DHCP, DNS, LAN, SMTP, WAN, VPN, ports, ethernet
  • Network troubleshooting
  • VoIP/SIP-based telephony
  • Wireless networks

Certification Alignment

This course will substantially prepare you for achieving the learning objectives of CompTIA A+ certification. This course covers significant aspects of four of the five domains required for A+.

  • CompTIA A+ 220-1001
    • 2.0 Networking
    • 3.0 Hardware
    • 4.0 Virtualization and Cloud Computing
    • 5.0 Hardware and Network Troubleshooting

Career Transition Services

Changing careers is about more than learning a new skill. In tandem with your Ops education, you will receive powerful career-building strategic training so you can confidently start your job search as soon as (or even before!) you graduate.

Our Career Transition Services provide training, mentoring, leadership, and introductions to industry partners to help you become a more well-rounded software developer and a leader in your field. These services, which start in Ops 201 and continue after Ops 401 graduation, involve a series of events, workshops, and assignments that help you think holistically about your new career and take actionable steps towards success.

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Material Requirements

You are required to supply your own laptop that meets the below requirements. Chromebooks are not suitable for this course, since you can’t directly control installed software. You are responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of your computer throughout the course.

  • 64-bit Operating System: Linux, macOS, or Windows 10
  • Fully up to date, with the latest version of the operating system and all security updates installed
  • At least 80GB of free space on the hard drive
  • At least 16GB RAM required. 32GB of RAM or more strongly preferred
  • Free of viruses, and in general working order

By the first day of class, you will need:

  • The latest version of Google Chrome
  • A second computer intended for lab and data overwrite
  • At least three 64GB USB 2.0 or better flash drive

Stacked Modules

Concepts in each of our courses are taught using stacked modules, where a new concept is introduced in each class session, building upon what came before it. This is a challenging style that requires persistence, practice, and collaboration, but allows more concepts to be introduced over the length of the course. This method helps students learn and retain more information in a short period of time. Learn more about stacked modules »

Homework Policy

In order to pass the class, students must attain at least 90% of available points.

Professionalism

Punctuality, participation in discussions, completion of assignments, and demonstration of professional courtesy to others are required, in accordance with our Code of Conduct. Attendance will be taken at the beginning of every class. Passing requires at least 90% attendance. Students should always contact the instructors ahead of time if they are unable to attend all or part of the published class/lab hours.

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