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Table of contents
1.
Beginner-Level Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer for Freshers
1.1.
1. What is an Operating System?
1.2.
2. What do you understand by Bootloader?
1.3.
3. What is Safe Mode?
1.4.
4. Give examples of types of OS. 
1.5.
5. What is a Domain?
1.6.
6. What do you mean by DNS?
1.7.
7. Have you worked with Active Directory? What is it?
1.8.
8. What does RIS stand for?
1.9.
9. What is BUS Speed?
1.10.
10.  What do you mean by Ping Command?
1.11.
11. What is ERP Software?
1.12.
12. What is an IAS Server?
1.13.
13. What do you mean by scope and superscope?
1.14.
14. What are the differences between Desktop OS and Server OS?
1.15.
15.  What are the differences between Tree and Forest in Active Directory? 
2.
 Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer for Intermediate
2.1.
16. What do you mean by BIOS?
2.2.
17. What is the difference between SMTP and POP servers?
2.3.
18. Explain the functions of BIAS?
2.4.
19. What is SID?
2.5.
20. What is Forward Lookup Zone in DNS?
2.6.
21. What is the full form of OU? What is its function?
2.7.
22. What is a VPN server?
2.8.
23. What is DHCP? 
2.9.
24. Define Default Gateway. 
2.10.
25. Is it possible to reach a client from a place other than the server?
2.11.
26. What do you mean by the MSI and EXE files?
2.12.
27. What is an Additional Domain Controller?
2.13.
28. What do you mean by a Domain Controller?
2.14.
29. Explain the difference between DC ( Domain Controller) and ADC( Additional Domain Controller)?
3.
 Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer for Experienced
3.1.
30. What is a client OS & a Server OS?
3.2.
31. What is an IP Address? How many classes of IP addresses are there? Give their ranges.
3.3.
32. What is IPCONFIG? What is its purpose?
3.4.
33. How do you start a computer in Safe Mode?
3.5.
34. Explain Permission, Rights, and Policy.
3.6.
35. What does BSOD stand for?
3.7.
36. What do you think are the responsibilities of a Desktop Support Engineer?
3.8.
37. What do you mean by Incremental and Differential Backup?
3.9.
38. What does the  FIXMBR command mean?
3.10.
39.  Can you explain about the NTLDR Error?
3.11.
40.  How to access the Recovery Control in Windows?
3.12.
41.  Mention the types of Active Directory partitions.
4.
Conclusion
Last Updated: Mar 27, 2024
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Top Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer Role 2024

Author Komal
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Create a resume that lands you SDE interviews at MAANG
Speaker
Anubhav Sinha
SDE-2 @
12 Jun, 2024 @ 01:30 PM

 

Welcome, Ninjas! Do you know who a Desktop Support Engineer is? Do you know about the skills required to become a Desktop Support Engineer? Do you want to become a Desktop Support Engineer? Well, we got you covered. 

Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer Role

A Desktop Support Engineer is a person that provides assistance to users with hardware & software requirements. This blog covers a set of desktop support engineer interview questions. The desktop support engineer interview questions will give you a brief understanding of how the interview for this role proceeds. They give you an idea of what to prepare for a desktop support interview.

Beginner-Level Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer for Freshers

This blog section comprises Beginner level desktop support engineer interview questions. Let us get started!

1. What is an Operating System?

There was a time when all the work on computer systems had to be done manually, which proved very inefficient and time-consuming. A software was developed to work on the hardware to relieve the user of putting in all the hard efforts. It is called Operating System.

An Operating System acts as a layer or an interface between the user and hardware.

  • An OS provides an environment where the user can perform various functions or activities without worrying about the underlying hardware. 
  • It performs various functions like Resource Allocation, Memory Management, Disk Scheduling, etc.
  •  Windows, Linux, macOS, etc., are examples of some popularly used Operating System.
     
OS

 

2. What do you understand by Bootloader?

It is a program that loads the computer's operating system into its memory. In simple words, it is a program that follows the set of instructions for booting the Operating System in the memory. The set of instructions are included in BIOS. These instructions are stored in the Bootloader Program. It also performs various low-level initialization tasks and configures the peripheral devices. It is also known as Boot Software.

3. What is Safe Mode?

Safe Mode is the diagnostic mode of the Operating System. In the safe mode, the complete OS is not loaded in the memory. Only the essential programs and drivers are loaded. It's suggested to enter Safe Mode when one faces issues that prevent Windows from working correctly. This Mode helps in troubleshooting the cause of problems.

4. Give examples of types of OS. 

The two types of operating systems in relevance to the desktop support engineer role are Network Operating Systems (NOS) and Simple Operating Systems. Examples of Network Operating System are Windows NT, Windows 2000, etc. Examples of Simple Operating Systems are FreeOS, Windows 95, etc.

5. What is a Domain?

A set of computers controlled by a particular company or organisation with specific guidelines is called a domain. Computers under the same domain have a IP address.

  • It comprises a group of computers that come under a common administrative domain. 
  • They share a common address and administrative policies.

6. What do you mean by DNS?

We cannot obviously remember the long numerical IP address of every website we want to visit. For example, millions of people visit google. We do that by typing the domain name ‘google’ in the search bar and not the IP address.

DNS stands for Domain Name System. It works like a directory and maps the readable names of the host or domain names to their numerical IP(Internet Protocol) addresses. This system is hierarchical and decentralized. When a user searches the domain name, it acts like a request to a DNS Resolver, which then looks up the IP Address associated with the requested domain name.

7. Have you worked with Active Directory? What is it?

Yes. An Active Directory is an index-structured directory developed by Microsoft for use in Windows. It stores information or data about the domain and networks. It also authenticates and authorizes the users and devices in a windows domain network.

8. What does RIS stand for?

RIS is a remote installation service used to simultaneously install the operating system on multiple computers. Remote installation service supports PXE Booting. PXE stands for Pre-Boot Execution Environment. It is used to deploy operating systems to a large number of computers.

9. What is BUS Speed?

Bus speed refers to the rate at which the data is transferred between the processor and the other components of a device. It is expressed in megahertz (MHz) or gigahertz.. It is also called Front-side bus speed (FSB). Bus Speed forms an important factor in determining the overall performance of a system. 

10.  What do you mean by Ping Command?

PING refers to the Packet Internet Groper command. It tests the network connectivity and calculates the time taken by the target device to respond after the data packet is sent by another device. It ensures the connectivity of a network host, such as a computer.

11. What is ERP Software?

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is a comprehensive business management tool that integrates and automates various core processes such as finance, HR, inventory, manufacturing, sales, and more within an organization. It provides a centralized system to streamline operations, improve efficiency, and facilitate data-driven decision-making. ERP software aims to enhance collaboration, reduce manual work, and enhance overall productivity across different departments and functions of a business.

12. What is an IAS Server?

IAS (Internet Authentication Service) is a side server owned by Microsoft. It uses the Remote Authentication Dial-In User Service (RADIUS) protocol, allowing the NAS (network access server) to move forward the requests for authentication over the internet. Therefore the actual database of users allowed for logging into an organization’s network remotely is maintained by the IAS server. 

13. What do you mean by scope and superscope?

The specific configurations for managing the allocation of IP addresses to network devices, in the context of Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, are referred to as a scope and superscope.

Scope refers to a valid IP address range used to assign to a DCHP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) client. A superscope is an administrative feature that enables the grouping of scopes for providing IP addresses from various logical subnets to clients upon one physical network. Within the same physical segment, we can have various logical IP ranges by using a superscope.

14. What are the differences between Desktop OS and Server OS?

The desktop operating system refers to the environment where a user handles a personal computer. This type of operating system basically operates with a desktop and is widely used for obtaining different services from a server. The basic features, such as printing I/O and memory allocation, are supported by a desktop operating system.

Server OS refers to an advanced operating system designed for installing and using on a server computer. This type of operating system basically runs on the provided server and can access the server both in GUI and in the command-level interface as well. Some examples of Server OSs are RedHat Enterprise Linus, Windows Server, and Mac OS X Server.

15.  What are the differences between Tree and Forest in Active Directory? 

The directory Service developed by Microsoft for the Windows domain network is called an active directory. An active directory tree refers to the collection of domains within a Microsoft active directory. 

An active directory forest refers to the highest organizational level within an active directory and a single database, single global address list, and a security boundary are shared by every forest. Therefore, the main difference between the two is that Tree refers to the collection of domains on the other hand, a set of trees in a active directory is referred to as a forest.

 Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer for Intermediate

This blog section comprises intermediate level desktop support engineer interview questions. 

16. What do you mean by BIOS?

The operating system of our device starts working as soon as the device is switched on. For OS to start working, it has to be loaded in the system memory.  BIOS is a Basic Input/Output System

Basic Input-output System consists of input-output functions, which are  low-level routines that the OS uses to interface with different I/O devices. BIOS provides instructions to load the OS in memory. BIOS also performs a power-on self-test (POST) to ensure that hardware components function properly.

17. What is the difference between SMTP and POP servers?

We receive multiple emails every day. We even download them on our server to access them or the content contained in them. Two protocols are followed here. The two protocols are SMTP & POP. SMTP stands for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. POP stands for Post Office Protocol. Let’s have a look at the differences between them.

  • SMTP permits sending electronic mail (Emails) from a client to a server. POP permits the user or client to download the message into his own inbox.
  • SMTP is used for sending messages while POP is used for accessing the messages.
  • SMTP is implemented on port number 25 of the system whereas the POP is implemented on the port number.
     

18. Explain the functions of BIAS?

BIAS (Basic Input/Output System) is a firmware in a computer's motherboard that performs critical functions during the boot process:

  • Power-On Self-Test (POST): BIAS checks hardware components (CPU, RAM, etc.) for errors during startup.
  • Boot Device Selection: It identifies the bootable device (hard drive, USB, CD/DVD) and loads the bootloader.
  • System Configuration: BIAS manages system settings like date, time, and boot order.
  • Security: Some BIAS versions include password protection and secure boot options.
  • Compatibility: It ensures hardware and software compatibility.
     

19. What is SID?

SID stands for Security Identifier. It is assigned to each user working on a computer by an Operating System. Some of the functions of SID are as follows:

  • It helps in the identification of a user on the computer.
  • SID enhances security features.
  • It manages the user’s access to resources. 

20. What is Forward Lookup Zone in DNS?

We cannot obviously remember the long numerical IP address of every website we want to visit. For example, millions of people visit google. We do that by typing the domain name ‘google’ in the search bar and not the IP address.

The forward zone maps the domain name to the numerical IP Address. When a user searches for a domain name, it sends the request to the resolver, which returns the IP Address corresponding to the domain name. On the other hand, the reverse lookup maps the numerical IP Address to the domain name.
 

21. What is the full form of OU? What is its function?

It is necessary to organise the related users, services within the Active Directory. OU stands for Organizational Unit. It is a logical container within Active Directory that allows us to group the objects such as users, services, computers, etc. It proves to be an effective management tool that helps organize resources within a domain.

22. What is a VPN server?

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. It is a mechanism that enables us to establish a secure connection to a private network on the Internet. A VPN server delivers or provides VPN services to the user. VPN servers offer several benefits, such as enhanced security, privacy, and freedom of access to the internet. 

23. What is DHCP? 

It is not favorable to allot IP addresses manually. DHCP stands for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. DHCP can be used for dynamically allocating IP addresses to a large number of computers. Along with allocating IP addresses, various other network configuration parameters are allocated.

24. Define Default Gateway. 

A default gateway is a node or a path that allows communication between local and remote networks. It is like a Router configured with a specific IP address on the local network. It is called default because applications use this gateway unless some other gateway is specified.

25. Is it possible to reach a client from a place other than the server?

Reaching a client from a place other than the server is possible. We know that traditionally A client-server usually requests information from the server to start any activity or request data. But it is very much possible that a client can make a connection or start communicating directly with any other client, for example, in P2P (peer-to-peer) networking, where communication is easily established between clients without the requirement of a heavy central server.

26. What do you mean by the MSI and EXE files?

MSI stands for Microsoft Installer files, which store the information about the files to be installed. These type of files can only install, maintain or remove of software. The .msi files are not executable. They just store information about the installation of files.

.EXE stands for an Executable file, which helps access files available on a device. It can either install or run the files already installed on the computer.

27. What is an Additional Domain Controller?

An Additional Domain Controller (ADC) is a backup or secondary server in a Windows Server network that replicates and stores a copy of the Active Directory database. It helps improve network reliability, fault tolerance, and load balancing by sharing the authentication and directory services workload with the primary Domain Controller (DC). If the primary DC goes down, the ADC can still provide authentication and directory services, reducing downtime and ensuring network continuity.

28. What do you mean by a Domain Controller?

Domain Controller checks security and authenticates the users who try to connect within the computer network domain. It forms a crucial component of the Active Directory. It replicates information among the Domain Controllers within a domain. It ensures that all Domain Controllers have a consistent copy of the domain security information.

29. Explain the difference between DC ( Domain Controller) and ADC( Additional Domain Controller)?

A Domain Controller (DC) and an Additional Domain Controller (ADC) are both servers used in Windows networks, but they have different roles:

  • Domain Controller (DC):
    • The primary server in the network.
    • Contains the master copy of the Active Directory database.
    • Responsible for authentication, user management, and directory services.
    • Central point for managing network resources.
    • If the DC goes down, it can disrupt network operations.
       
  • Additional Domain Controller (ADC):
    • A secondary server in the network.
    • Stores a copy of the Active Directory database from the DC.
    • Provides backup authentication and directory services.
    • Helps distribute the network load and improves fault tolerance.
    • If the DC fails, the ADC can step in to ensure network continuity.
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 Interview Questions for Desktop Support Engineer for Experienced

This blog section comprises advanced level desktop support engineer interview questions.

30. What is a client OS & a Server OS?

Client Operating System is an operating system that runs on a desktop and obtains services from a server. A client OS can serve only one user at a time. Examples of Client Operating Systems include Windows, Android, MAC, etc.

Server Operating System operates on a server and provides services to clients. Server OS can simultaneously serve multiple clients. Examples of Server Operating System include Windows Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, etc.

Server OS is more efficient than the Client OS as it provides greater security features.

31. What is an IP Address? How many classes of IP addresses are there? Give their ranges.

An IP address is a string of unique address assigned to every device connected to a network. We have two versions of IP addresses - IPv4 & IPv6. There are five classes of IP addresses - Class A, B, C, D & E. These classes have different ranges, and we can define which IP Address lies in what class knowing its range. 

CLASS RANGE
A 0.0.0.0 - 127.255.255.255
B 128.0.0.0 - 191.255.255.255
C 192.0.0.0 - 223.225.255.255
D 224.0.0.0 - 239.255.255.255
E 240.0.0.0 - 255.255.255.255

32. What is IPCONFIG? What is its purpose?

ipconfig is a windows operating system command that displays the local computer's network configuration. 

The purpose of ipconfig is to show the current configuration of the network, including 

  • IP addresses assigned to the computer 
  • Subnet mask
  • Default gateway 
  • DNS server addresses. 

33. How do you start a computer in Safe Mode?

Safe Mode is the diagnostic mode of the Operating System in which only essential programs and drivers are loaded. It's suggested to enter Safe Mode when one faces issues that prevent Windows from working correctly. This Mode helps in troubleshooting the cause of problems. 

Following are the steps to start a computer in Safe mode:

  1. Press the Start button & choose the Power icon.
  2. Hold the Shift key and then click on Restart.
  3. A menu will pop up. 
  4. Select Startup Settings from Troubleshoot's Advanced Options.
  5. Click on the Restart button.
  6. The computer will reboot.  
  7. A menu will be shown. 
  8. Press four and then select Enable Safe Mode.

The Computer then boots in safe mode. 

34. Explain Permission, Rights, and Policy.

Permissions refer to the specific actions assigned to users that allow them to perform actions on a resource, such as reading, writing, executing a file, or accessing a network resource. 

Rights are privileges assigned at the user or group level, providing the ability to create or delete files or log on to a system. 

Policies are the general rules and regulations created by administrators that govern access to resources in a system or network. 

35. What does BSOD stand for?

BSOD stands for Blue Screen of Death. It is an error screen ( with all details of the error  that occurred ) displayed by the Windows operating system whenever a critical error occurs that can cause damage to the OS.  It is implemented to prevent damage and helps in troubleshooting. After the BSOD appears, we should shut down the computer to prevent further damage.

36. What do you think are the responsibilities of a Desktop Support Engineer?

Desktop Support Engineer is a person that provides assistance to users with hardware & software requirements. The roles of a Desktop Support Engineer include:

  • Installing the OS.
  • Configuring & updating the OS regularly.
  • Using Antivirus Software for scanning the OS.
  • Managing the backup and recovery processes.
  • Ensuring compliance with data processing.

37. What do you mean by Incremental and Differential Backup?

A backup strategy is a strategy to back up the essential business data and make its copies to restore it from any kind of loss. The two backup strategies are Incremental & Differential.

  • Differential: This strategy is used to back up those files which faced changes after the last full backup.
  •  
  • Incremental: This strategy is used to back up those files that have changed since the last full or incremental backup. 

 

Incremental backups are usually faster than differential backups as they are backed up more frequently. But they might also contain redundant data as they are backed up since both the last full and incremental backups.

38. What does the  FIXMBR command mean?

The FIXMBR command is one of the Recovery Console commands. It writes a new master boot record to the hard disk drive specified.

The syntax of the FIXMBR:

fixmbr device_name,

where 

device_name refers to the drive location where a master boot record will be written.

39.  Can you explain about the NTLDR Error?

The file that is executed by the boot sector and displays the boot menu for the users to select a target system is NTLDR. NTLDR (New technology loader) error is an error that occurs when a system consists of an outdated input/output (BIOS) or when Windows boot files are damaged or missing. The “ NTLDR is missing” error appears when the computer tries to boot a non-bootable floppy disk.

40.  How to access the Recovery Control in Windows?

To access the Recovery Control in Windows, follow these steps:

  • Open the Start Menu: Click on the Windows Start button in the bottom-left corner of the screen.
  • Search for "Recovery": In the search bar, type "Recovery" and press Enter.
  • Choose "Open System Restore": In the search results, you should see an option like "Open System Restore" or "Recovery options." Click on it.
  • Access Recovery Options: This will open the Recovery Control Panel, where you can perform tasks like system restore, reset, or access advanced startup options.
     

Alternatively, you can also access recovery options during system boot:

  • Restart Your Computer: Save any open work and restart your computer.
  • Interrupt the Boot Sequence: During the startup process, press a specific key (usually F2, F12, ESC, or Del) to interrupt the normal boot sequence and access the boot menu or BIOS settings.
  • Choose "Troubleshoot" or "Advanced Options": Navigate through the options until you find "Troubleshoot" or "Advanced Options," and then select it.
  • Access Recovery Options: Within "Troubleshoot" or "Advanced Options," you can access various recovery options, including system restore, reset, or startup repair.
     

41.  Mention the types of Active Directory partitions.

An Active Directory is an index-structured directory developed by Microsoft for use in Windows. It stores information or data about the domain and networks.

There are 4 types of Active Directory partitions:

  • Schema partition: The schema partition stores information about the objects and the rules for manipulating those objects.
     
  • Configuration partition: As the name suggests, it stores all the data related to configuration, such as Topologies, sites, etc.
     
  • Domain partition: This partition contains all the actual objects we see in our Active Directory, such as users, domains, services, etc.
     
  • Application Partition: This partition contains all the information regarding the application in Active Directory.

Conclusion

We discussed the desktop support engineer interview questions (easy, medium, and hard). We hope these questions helped you enhance your knowledge. Refer to the above desktop support engineer interview questions as the collection of the most asked questions in any desktop support engineer interview.

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