[Tip] Different Ways to Open Control Panel in Windows 10

Control Panel is one of the most essential and useful programs in Windows operating system. It allows us to customize almost everything present in the OS. We can add/remove features, change OS functionality and much more with the help of the Control Panel.

When Windows 8 was released, Microsoft introduced modern "Settings" app in the OS which was added to replace the traditional Control Panel program. Since the release of Windows 10 operating system, Microsoft is trying very hard to port all parts and functionality of Control Panel into Settings app. With the release of every new Windows 10 build, Microsoft has been improving Settings app and implementing more Control Panel sections into Settings app.

Now in newer Windows 10 versions, Microsoft has started promoting Settings app as the main program to customize the OS. They have removed Control Panel shortcuts from almost everywhere. Control Panel shortcut has been removed from Windows Explorer ribbon, Win+X menu and many other places.

Related: [Windows 10 Tip] Restoring Classic Control Panel Shortcut in Win+X Menu

Now Microsoft wants all Windows 10 users to use Settings app as main app to control things in Windows. But since not everything has been implemented in Settings app yet, we still need to open Control Panel many times.

So today in this tutorial, we are going to share different ways to open traditional/classic Control Panel in Windows 10 operating system.

Following are a few methods to access Control Panel in Windows 10. Most of these methods will also work in previous Windows versions such as Windows 7, 8, etc.

So without wasting time lets start the tutorial:

1. Using Control Command:

Control Panel is actually a standalone executable file "control.exe" which is stored in C:\Windows\System32 folder. So you can launch Control Panel using Control command.

You can use Control command in RUN dialog box, Search box, Command Prompt, Windows Explorer addressbar, etc to directly launch Control Panel.

To open RUN dialog box, press WIN+R keys together and then type control and press Enter. It'll launch Control Panel.


You can also enter control command in Cortana search box to launch Control Panel.


You can also create a shortcut of Control Panel using control command on Desktop or anywhere else.

2. Launch Control Panel from Start Menu:

Control Panel shortcut is still available in Start Menu. You can access it by clicking on Start button, then scroll down to bottom and click on Windows System folder. There you'll find Control Panel shortcut.


You can also right-click on the shortcut and pin it to Start Menu's right-side area or Taskbar for quick and easy access.

3. Launch Control Panel from Windows Explorer "This PC":

Open Windows Explorer also known as "This PC" and then click on "Up" button present in the toolbar. Alternatively you can also press Alt+Up Arrow keys together. It'll go to parent directory "Desktop" where you'll find Control Panel icon.


You can also right-click inside Navigation pane of Windows Explorer and select "Show all folders" option. It'll add Control Panel icon in navigation pane.


4. Add Control Panel Icon on Desktop:

Windows also allows you to add Control Panel icon on Desktop for quick access. You can add Control Panel icon on Desktop using "Desktop Icon Settings" window.

You can open it using Settings app -> Personalization -> Themes and then click on "Desktop icon settings" link given in right-sidebar.

Alternatively, you can directly launch "Desktop Icon Settings" window using following commands in RUN dialog box:

control desk.cpl,,0
control desk.cpl,,@web

It'll open "Desktop Icon Settings" window. Now select "Control Panel" checkbox and apply the changes. It'll add Control Panel icon on Desktop.


RELATED: Create Shortcuts to Themes, Desktop Background, Display Settings and More

5. Open Control Panel from Settings app:

Many times when you are changing options in Settings app, you may need to open Control Panel to change some options which are unavailable in Settings app. In such situations, you can directly launch Control Panel from Settings app.

Just type Control Panel in Settings app's search box and it'll show Control Panel in the drop-down box. Select it and it'll open Control Panel right from Settings app.


6. Add Control Panel Shortcut into Windows Explorer "This PC":

You can also add a direct shortcut of Control Panel into This PC window as shown in following screenshot:


Long time back, we posted exclusive tutorials to add useful shortcuts directly into Windows Explorer (This PC) window. You can visit them at following links:

The above mentioned tutorials still work in Windows 10 and you can add Control Panel shortcut to This PC window using these tutorials.

7. Add Control Panel Shortcut in This PC Context Menu:

If you want, you can also add Control Panel shortcut to This PC context menu (the menu which appears when you right-click on This PC icon) as shown in following screenshot:


Following tutorials will help you in adding Control Panel and other useful shortcuts in This PC context menu:

8. Add Control Panel Shortcut in Desktop Context Menu:

You can also access Control Panel shortcut from Desktop context menu as shown in following screenshot:


With the help of following tutorials, you'll be able to right-click on Desktop and select Control Panel shortcut:

9. Use "God Mode" to Access All Control Panel Options in One Place:

You can also add "God Mode" icon on Desktop or any other desired place to access all Control Panel options from a single place. You can consider it as the Master Control Panel.


Following tutorials will help you in learning and adding "God Mode" shortcut:

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That's all for now. If you know about any other easy way to open Control Panel in Windows, feel free to share it in your comment...


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Posted in: Windows 10

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