Technical Computer Competencies Assessment

Use the following chart as a guide to set expectations around the competencies that can help you succeed.

  • Familiarity with the software components that require regular updating so that you can configure disk-protection to keep those changes (e.g., Windows updates, anti-virus definitions, MS Office updates).
  • An understanding that disk-protection greatly affects how the computer handles changes you make to a computer (e.g., patrons cannot save work to the protected system drive, you have to turn off disk-protection to install software).
  • Familiarity of hard drive partitioning so that you know which sections of a hard drive are protected and understand how to create parts that are unprotected to save work, if desired. For an overview of hard drive partitioning, see
Lock-down computers
  • An understanding of computer user accounts and how they limit or grant access to various pieces of the computer's operation (e.g., an administrator should have the ability to change other users' passwords, but regular users should not be able to do this).
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Policies (or Group Policies) to modify user permissions and access is helpful. For an overview of Microsoft Policies, take a look at
Imaging and cloning
  • The capacity and the ability to manage large files (2 GB and greater) on various media (e.g., recordable DVDs, portable hard drives, servers). Imaging copies the contents of the whole hard drive to one file. This creates “big” files (anywhere from 2 GB on up, depending on what software you have installed on your computer).
  • Familiarity with hard drive partitioning to understand the sections of a hard drive being imaged. Some people will store a copy of an image on the hard drive of the computer, making it much easier to clone the computer if the need arises. It is important to maintain a copy of these images elsewhere as a backup. For an overview of hard drive partitioning, see
  • An understanding of available imaging and cloning tools. Some tools, especially older versions, may require the creation of bootable CDs, floppy disks, or flash drives. Newer versions of cloning software are more flexible and offer ways of imaging/cloning that don't require boot disks. Most imaging software includes tools to create boot CDs.
  • An understanding of third-party imaging and cloning tools. For example, BartPE ( is an outstanding and free boot CD creation tool, but requires advanced knowledge of Windows operating system and hardware device drivers. There are other options at