Understanding the Windows 10 Boot Process

March 22, 2019 at 9:53 am

Windows 10 Boot Process

In order to properly troubleshoot Windows 10 startup problems (as you are required to do in exam MD-100 from Microsoft), it is critical that you understand the various phases of the boot process and the components involved. This post provides that information below:

Phase 1 – Preboot

In this phase, the PC’s firmware is in charge and initiates a POST and loads the firmware settings. Once all this works (hopefully), the system identifies a valid system disk and reads the MBR. The system then starts the Windows Boot Manager. This is located here: %SystemDrive%\bootmgr

Phase 2 – Windows Boot Manager

It is the job of the Windows Boot Manager to find and start the Windows loader (Winload.exe). This is located on the Windows boot partition – %SystemRoot%\system32\winload.exe

Phase 3 – Windows Operating System Loader

In this phase, essential drivers required to start the Windows kernel are loaded and the kernel starts to run. The key file here is %SystemRoot%\system32\ntoskrnl.exe

Phase 4 – Windows NT OS Kernel

The kernel loads the system registry hive into memory and loads the drivers that are marked as BOOT_START. The kernel then passes control to the session manager process (Smss.exe).

You can identify the phase you are in visually by what your computer is displaying and the LEDs that are on the system. I will follow up with additional posts on this subject so that you can easily tell what phase you are stuck at – and what you can do to fix things.

Thanks for reading, and be sure to check out my new MD-100 Windows 10 training at CBT Nuggets!

Recording: Routing Protocol Configuration Best Practices

March 21, 2019 at 3:07 pm
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MD-100 at CBT Nuggets is GROWING to 5 Sections!

March 20, 2019 at 6:03 pm

Windows 10 Training

After sitting the final version of the MD-100 exam today, I have decided to add a fifth module to the MD-100 course I am creating at CBT Nuggets. This will delay the entire complete playlist by one week, but I need to ensure my students are ready for a fairly tricky little exam!

Here is a recap of the modules with release dates for everyone! Note that I also put in the information for MD-101 in this post as well. The reason for that is twofold:

  1. Many of you are going to ask me about that!
  2. I would recommend (if you can) that you study for MD-100 then MD-101 and then take each exam. The reason for this recommendation is the amount of carryover in the two exams. If you cannot, no biggie, you will be fine if you study the “old-fashioned” way.

MD-100 at CBT Nuggets

  1. Microsoft Windows 10: Deploying Devices (AVAILABLE ON CBT NUGGETS)
  2. Microsoft Windows 10: Managing Devices (AVAILABLE ON CBT NUGGETS)
  3. Microsoft Windows 10: Connecting Devices (AVAILABLE ON CBT NUGGETS)
  4. Microsoft Windows 10: Maintaining Devices (Week of 3/25/2019)
  5. Microsoft Windows 10: Advanced Topics (Week of 3/25/2019)

MD-101 at CBT Nuggets

  1. Microsoft Windows 10: Deploy and Update (Releases April 2019)
  2. Microsoft Windows 10: Policies and Profiles (Releases April 2019)
  3. Microsoft Windows 10: Manage and Protect (Releases April 2019)
  4. Microsoft Windows 10: Manage Apps and Data (Releases April 2019)

Live Webinar: Routing Protocol Configuration Best Practices

March 20, 2019 at 4:30 pm
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Part 3 of 4: MD-100 Windows 10 is Available

March 19, 2019 at 7:25 pm

MD-100

Overview

That’s right – another part of this fun MD-100 series is available. This part has some super-cool Hands-On Labs that allow you to practice and experiment with multiple Windows 10 machines in our own safe and sandboxed Cloud-based lab environment. No more getting yelled at for breaking a company workstation trying some new Windows 10 features!

Course Details

Here are the Nugget titles for you in this skills-based training:

Microsoft Windows 10: Connecting Devices

  1. Configure Client IP Settings
  2. Configure Mobile Networking
  3. Configuring the VPN Client
  4. Troubleshooting Networking
  5. Configuring WiFi Profiles 
  6. Configuring Remote Assistance and Quick Assist
  7. Configure Remote Desktop Access
  8. Enable PowerShell Remoting 

Hands-On Labs for MD-100

6 of your 8 Nuggets contain accompanying Hands-On Lab exercises. These permit you to watch me make configurations and then try these for yourself on real Windows 10 systems. After performing the skills demonstrated in the Nugget, you can re-launch your lab environment and experiment with your own variations of the technology configurations! Remember, you cannot break anything, so be sure to have fun!

For the two Nuggets without Hands-On Labs, you will watch Anthony Sequeira perform detailed demonstrations of the following:

  • Configure Mobile Networking – watch as Anthony configures the Cellular Networking feature of a new Windows 10 Galaxy Book 2. This nifty little Microsoft Surface Go competitor is a slick little machine.
  • Configuring WiFi Profiles – watch your instructor configure key parameters of Windows 10 to ensure that WiFi connectivity works just the way you want it to.

The MD-100 Exam

As I write this post, the exam has left BETA from Microsoft! Woohooo! Here is the official page for the exam:

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/learning/exam-md-100.aspx

If you are interested in seeing the topics of both the MD-100 and MD-101 exams in an easy to view fashion, check out the post on my blog here. As usual, the GOLD exam topics did not change from the BETA:

Finally! New Windows 10 Exams in Beta!