A plus 220-1001 – Exam Objective 1.6
A+ Exam Objective 1.6
1.6 Given a scenario, configure basic mobile device network connectivity and application support.
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Welcome to ExamNotes by CertBlaster! In
this section we will look at CompTIA’s 220-1001 sub-objective 1.6. We will
cover Mobile devices and how they connect to networks.
IMPORTANT NOTE: One area NOT explicitly
listed on the objectives that should be there concerns Short Message Service (SMS) and
the evolution of Multimedia
Message service (MMS). SMS, otherwise known as text messaging,
is a practice that should only be undertaken when you can provide your
attention to it, i.e. not while
you are driving (the statistics on this are seriously alarming). Smartphone
communications are responsible for more driving injuries and fatalities than
drunk driving! We’ll leave that there and consider this a Public Service
Announcement from DTI Publishing to you. Although it has not on the test so
far, it’s likely to be on the way to the test. Do take heed. Ok, so now on to
the actual goods…
Wireless / cellular
data network (enable/disable)
Here we will look at a few wireless data device configurations
and usages. For this section, consider an anonymous mobile device and service
provider. The mobile service plan has unlimited 4G LTE service on calls and
data. The unlimited calls and data factor is a consideration when we talk about
In general, the term hotspot refers to an area where you can
wirelessly connect to the internet and other application layer services such as
email, messaging, and social media. Many businesses, including prominent coffee
houses, offer this service as a way to encourage patrons to extend their stay
at their location, providing additional sales opportunities that a grab and go
patron would not be exposed to. Having a delicate, icing drizzled pastry in
your field of vision will have an effect on you. It won’t be long before you’re
back at the counter either for a refill or that pastry!
Depending on the device’s capabilities, your own wireless device
can be turned into a hotspot. With your own hotspot, you can have a completely supported
wireless business meeting with a small group at a park or a lake, anywhere but
that conference room. In most cases, the device sharing the hotspot will have
its internet capability disabled. Bandwidth will not reflect the full capacity
of the host and battery life will be impacted.
This technique allows you to connect your cellphone to a laptop
or tablet through USB or Bluetooth, enabling devices using the phone’s cellular
connection to provide mobile connectivity to another device. This connection is
a one to one connection share. Good for essential connectivity, this connection
type offers limited bandwidth and if used over a Bluetooth connection, will
drain the battery quickly.
If you suffer loss of connectivity, first check if that little
airplane icon on your smartphone is showing. The first icon on your phone indicates
that the device’s radios are capable of communication.
Airplane Mode On
The initial proliferation of cellular and Wi-Fi capable devices
prompted a concern among airlines that these devices could interfere with the
safe operation of the systems on an aircraft. Passengers were instructed to
turn their devices off. Boring! Device manufacturers came up with a quick mode,
called Airplane mode, which disables the offending radios. Pressing the
airplane icon switches off all the external communication methods of the device.
Airplane Mode Off
Bluetooth has been around for some time, but never really
realized its potential until mobile devices began using Bluetooth to establish
short range communication between peripherals and other devices. The most
significant and potentially lifesaving application of this technology came when
Bluetooth was combined with hands free headsets, enabling hands free phone conversations.
This made driving while talking much safer. This was enhanced when auto makers
incorporated Bluetooth into the automobile’s features, allowing users to make
calls without even looking at the phone. The technology is available in many
devices including headphones, keyboards, and even some heart monitors. When two
devices are connected together via Bluetooth, they are said to be paired. Up to 7
additional devices can connect, using a master/slave relationship, in a small
network called a PAN (Personal
Area Network), also referred to as a piconet. Here is an example of a
Bluetooth headset waiting to pair and how a one to one connection works. The
blue light on the left hand button will light when paired.
For starters, both devices must be Bluetooth capable and have
Bluetooth enabled when initiated. In most cases, the device will actively
search for devices to pair.
The devices must be set (initially) to discover nearby Bluetooth
devices. In essence, one device must be discoverable for the other device to find
it. Most devices enter this mode for 15 to 30 seconds when powered up. If the
devices are set to automatically pair, you’ll be connected after a couple of easy
One of the devices will initiate the paging process that will
locate other device(s) and establish the parameters for the connection. Automatic
pairing is not the best practice as it leaves you more susceptible to Bluetooth
attacks such as Bluesnarfing and Bluejacking (covered later). Consider the
environment you expect to be in and picture a 10 meter range around yourself.
Here, in three steps, is a Headset pairing to a PC.
Step 1 – Discovery
Step 2 – Pairing
Step 3 – Ready to go
appropriate pin code
One way to protect your device from unauthorized access is the
use of a passcode or PIN. Many devices require this to establish the Bluetooth
connection. Your hands free car setup generally requires this as do most
keyboards and other command and control peripherals. The problem with this is
that the passcodes are so simple that they are practically guaranteed to be
cracked. For example, you will encounter default codes such as 0000, 1111, or
the most secure 1234. Most users don’t even think of changing it. Here’s a
Tablet that has a decently complex PIN.
Testing the connection can be as simple as trying the device. However,
depending on your software, there may be in app connection testing available.
In the app, you can see items such as connection speed, signal strength, and signal
confirmation which are generally found under Settings/ Bluetooth. 3rd party
programs are also available.
ISP email configuration
There is no shortage of email service providers. You probably
have multiple accounts. Your primary account is most likely provided by your
ISP. Your employer will generally assign you one as well. If you need apps for
your smartphone or tablet that are not provided by your OS developer, you will have
another account. My only advice here is to not use the same password for all of
your accounts since one compromised email password could expose all accounts.
Receiving email is done over different protocols. There are two
main protocols available depending on your service. The first is Post Office
Protocol (POP) with the latest version being POP3. This protocol is responsible
for the management, saving or deleting, of email messages on the server. The
default mode in POP3 is to delete the message after delivery. Leaving messages
on the server is useful if you use multiple devices for messaging.
Today’s email user is probably using email on a collection of
possible devices, tablet, smartphone, and laptop, as opposed to the traditional
PC. If your smartphone downloads and deletes a work related email (POP3
default), you will have a problem when you check email on your PC or laptop
because the email will be gone. The Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP), on
TCP port 143, solves this problem by leaving the messages on the server
regardless of the delivery status. Every device that checks will get the email.
This is great unless you get spammed a lot. It’s possible that 18 out of 20 emails
are junk and your server space will end up filling quickly. This calls for
closer scrutiny of the undeleted messages on your server. You will have to move
them to the trash folder and purge it, or configure the client to purge trash.
Despite this, IMAP is the preferred client messaging protocol.
The Simple Mail Transport Protocol (SMTP) uses TCP port 25 for
internet mail transmission. It is an internet standard protocol. Due to the
proliferation of SPAM and other email related vulnerabilities, other ports can
be used, most notably port 587. A secure nonstandard implementation of this
protocol is SMTPS which is quite effective because it is one of the protocols
that can utilize SSL (Secure Sockets Layer). SMTP is responsible for the
transmission of email between servers and for sending email from a client.
Other protocols are used to receive email on the client.
Using S/MIME in Exchange provides encrypted authentication,
message integrity, digital signatures, and overall message security. This can
be enabled in Outlook under Tools/ Trust Center/ E-mail Security. The server
will require it and without server support it will not work.
Here is a good example of the email configuration available on a
Windows phone. Click Add An Account and follow the steps to configure your
account(s). As you can see here, the user’s default email was created when he
signed on to the device for the first time.
Mail menu on a smartphone
commercial provider email configuration
Google provides email under the gmail.com domain. If you use the
chrome browser, you can access Gmail from your Start page or by simply entering
gmail.com in your address bar. You will be prompted to sign in or to create an
account. The Gmail program only needs to be installed if you plan to use it
offline. By default, Gmail will synchronize your last 7 days of emails when
Yahoo is available as an app or through the browser. Create an
account at Yahoo.com, click the mail button while online, and off you go.
Follow the setup wizard to install the app, if desired.
Formerly Hotmail.com, Outlook.com is a hosted email program that
is capable of deploying 3rd party apps. This
is useful if you frequently require them. The installation is simple and is guided
by a wizard.
Offered as an upgrade from Outlook.com, Exchange Online is
available with Microsoft Office 365, providing additional security and
More than just email, iCloud can be
used to back up and store your data. If you have an AppleID, possibly created using
a portable music player, you can use that to login to your iCloud.com account.
Otherwise, create one and follow the steps in the wizard to get set up. You can
select objects to synchronize at will on a schedule.
The PRI (Product Release Instructions) is a document or webpage
that provides the description for the software update process. It defines new
or changed feature descriptions and how to implement the update. Always read
this document to be sure the update doesn’t suddenly need access to your
contacts or camera. This documentation is also helpful if an update has
undesired side effects. You can review it for the possible cause.
The PRL is a database file stored in your cellular device.
Called the Preferred Roaming List, this file stores the device’s performance
carrier preferences regarding connection frequencies and other settings to be
used on the connection.
Baseband updates are applied to the modem firmware in your
cellular device. It is not an OS update, although this update can be rolled with
the general OS update when necessary.
Radio firmware controls the parameters of your cellular and/or
Wi-Fi signal. When problems exist with the device connections, a firmware
upgrade often resolves the issue. Be careful and ensure that there is
uninterrupted power throughout the process and that you don’t interfere in any
way. Treat the radio firmware the same way you would a PC’s CMOS ROM. Any
problem during the update could render the device useless (brick). Be careful.
IMEI vs. IMSI
Yes more acronyms. These are relatively simple. You know that
each device on a network must have a unique identifier. Equally in the
interconnected environment today, each mobile device, such as phones or tablets,
on the planet has to have a unique hardware identifier. This is known as the
IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identifier)
and is a number that is unique worldwide and assigned by the manufacturer. The
IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identifier)
operates under the same principle of uniqueness, but is assigned to the user or
cellular subscriber. This number will be assigned by your service provider and
stored on your device’s SIM card, making it portable. This means if you upgrade
to a device that uses a compatible SIM card, your IMEI will change and your
IMSI won’t. Simply put, the IMEI is the phone and the IMSI is you.
VPNs (Virtual Private Network) are useful in the mobile
environment. They provide highly secure connections from unlikely locations, basically
anywhere with cellular service. By providing a secure tunnel for your
connection, its integrity and security are assured.
…and that’s all for A+ 220-1001 exam objective 1.6
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