A common question many have when first using Windows 10 is “where is the Control Panel?” The Control Panel has been replaced with Windows 10 Settings. The new look and feel of the Settings window is aligned to be used across various types of platforms and devices, in addition to being used by both a keyboard and mouse along with touch screen access.

Let’s take a look at some of the quick ways to access Settings:

  1. Start Menu – select the Start menu with a left click and then click on the Settings icon from the left panel. This is the quickest access.
  2. WinX Menu – using the Windows key + X  OR right click on the Start menu displays the option to select Settings.
  3. Keystroke – Windows key + I- is a quick easy keystroke.
  4. File Explorer also displays the option when you select This PC from the Computer tab.
  5. From a Command Prompt Or PowerShell type – start ms-settings: (make sure to include the : )
  6. Another option is from the Run window (Windows + R) and then type the command ms-settings: (again include the : )
  7. The Action Center also has a shortcut tile – All Settings

As Windows 10 evolves there may be other ways to access the Settings but this is a good start for getting around.

Personalization of settings:

Display – What you see isn’t all you get…

Windows 10 on a new laptop may look crisp and sharp, but for some folks it may not be that easy to see text or icons. You now can adjust the size in 25 percent increments or customize to your liking. Simple right-click on the desktop and choose Display settings and adjust the Scale and Layout.

Default Web Browser – Don’t want Edge?

If you install Chrome and if you missed the option to set it as your default browser the first time you open it, don’t worry, you can go the Settings option. Select System/Default apps and then choose your default Web browser preference.

File name Extensions – What’s the extension?

By default the file name extensions are hidden. Next time you need to see the extensions in File Explorer click on the View tab and from the Show/Hide group select File name extensions. This will display all extensions.

Taskbar Space – Want more space?

Depending on your environment, you may want more room on the Taskbar for your pinned applications. There is an easy way to grab space by either removing or shrinking the Cortana area left of the Start button. Right click in the Cortana search area and select Cortana from the menu and then select either Hidden or Show Cortana Icon.

Tile Groups – Want to create your own?

You can easily edit the standard tiles on the Start menu or assemble your own tile groups for quick access to the tools and applications you want to use.  If you want to remove a tile simply right click on the tile and select Unpin from Start. To create a group of tiles – drag the tiles to the Start menu on the right panel, you can organize and size the tiles as you like. After organizing as you want, move the mouse to the top portion of the panel and click where Name Group appears. Name the group and select the Enter key.

Windows 10 is the latest Microsoft OS, and may require some adjustment time, but as always with Microsoft products, there are multiple ways to do things. So click around and see the new features and what they can do. You can do it!