The Control Panel was used to customize Windows before Windows 10. It was the go-to app for configuring everything on Windows from the wallpaper to the firewall settings. Control Panel was and remains a desktop app that Microsoft is looking to, eventually, phase out. In its place is the Settings app.
Open Control Panel on Windows 10
With each major Windows 10 feature release, Microsoft moves functionality from the Control Panel to the Settings app but it still has a long way to go before the Control Panel will no longer be needed. Unfortunately, Microsoft has removed it from the Power User menu so opening it is a bit confusing since it isn’t an app in the apps’ list in the Start menu.
1. Open Control Panel – Run box
- Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the Run box.
- In the Run box, enter the following, and tap the Enter key.
2. Open Control Panel – File Explorer
- Open File Explorer to any location.
- Click inside the location bar.
- Enter the following, and tap the Enter key.
3. Open Control Panel – Windows search
Control Panel is still an app on Windows 10 which is why you can use Windows search to open it.
- Tap the Win+S keyboard shortcut to open Windows search.
- Enter Control panel in the search bar, and look for the app in the search results.
- Click the app to open it.
4. Open Control Panel – Task Manager
- Right-click the Taskbar and select Task Manager from the context menu.
- On the task manager window, go to File>Run new task.
- In the run box that opens, enter Control panel, and tap Enter.
5. Open Control Panel – Settings app
- Open the Settings app.
- Click inside the search bar on any screen.
- Enter Control Panel and select the app from the results.
6. Open Control Panel – Command Prompt
- Open Command Prompt.
- Enter Control Panel, and tap the Enter key.
7. Open Control Panel – PowerShell
- Open PowerShell with normal user rights.
- Enter Control Panel, and tap Enter.
If you explore the Settings app a bit, you will find that many links to certain settings will open the Control Panel. Apart from the above methods, you will also find some UI elements on Windows 10 that open a Control Panel window such as the battery icon in the system tray. If you know which Control Panel setting you want to open, you can get its path from the Control Panel app and use all of the above methods to open it directly. All you have to do is use the path instead of using Control Panel.