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Chapter 24. Configuration via Control Pa... > Sizing Up the Control Panel

Sizing Up the Control Panel

As most experienced Windows users know, the Control Panel is the central location for making systemwide modifications to everything from accessibility options to user profiles. Microsoft has moved some features around in Windows XP from where you might expect them from your experience with Windows 2000, NT, 98, and so on. Most of these movements have resulted in new or expanded applets in the Control Panel. So, before throwing up your hands in frustration, check there (and Table 24.1 in the next section). The Help system also has a “Where is it now?” feature, which will help you locate seemingly vanished items.

Not all the settings the Control Panel handles are pivotal to effective or reliable operation of the system. In fact, many of the adjustments you can make from the Control Panel applets are interface improvements rather than related to system reliability and functionality. For example, the Display applet, among other things, can be used to make Windows a little easier to use or tolerate. Other applets are more imperative, such as applets for setting user rights, installing new hardware, or running system diagnostics.


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