ARTICLES IN THE BOOK
A GUIDE TO WINDOWS VISTA
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Control Panel is a part of the Microsoft Windows graphical user interface which allows users to view and manipulate basic system settings and controls, such as adding hardware, adding and removing software, controlling user accounts, and changing accessibility options. Additional applets can be provided by third party software.
In recent versions of Windows, the Control Panel has two views, Classic View and Category View, and it is possible to switch between these through an option that appears on the left side of the window.
Allows users to configure the accessibility of their PC. It comprises various settings primarily aimed at users with disabilities or hardware problems.
Launches a wizard which allows users to add new hardware devices to the system. This can be done by selecting from a list of devices or by specifying the location of the driver installation files.
The Add/Remove Programs dialog allows the user to manipulate software installed on the system in a number of ways;
Contains tools for system administration, including security, performance and service configuration. These are links to various configurations of the Microsoft Management Console such as the local services list and the Event Viewer.
Allows user to change the date and time stored in the machines BIOS, change the time zone and specify whether to synchronize the date and time with an Internet Time Server and which server to use.
Allows the user to change the display characteristics of their computer;
This item allows for configuration of how folders and files are presented in Windows Explorer. It is also used to modify file type associations in Windows; meaning, which program opens what file types.
Displays all fonts installed on the computer. Users can remove fonts, install new fonts or search for fonts using font characteristics.
Allows the user to view and edit the game controllers connected to the PC.
Allows the user to change the way the computer manages internet connections and browser settings (although cross-platform browsers such as Firefox and Opera have their own preference panes), it has several tags specifying different attributes;
Lets the user change and test keyboard settings, including cursor blink rate and key repeat rate.
Mail allows for configuration of the mail client in Windows, usually Microsoft Outlook. Microsoft Outlook Express cannot be configured with this item; it is configured through its own interface.
Mouse allows the configuration of pointer options, such as the double click and scroll speed, and include visibility options such as whether to leave trails behind the mouse pointer and whether the pointer should disappear when typing. This also allows the user to specify the pointer appearance for each task, such as resize and busy.
Displays and allows the user to edit or create network connections such as Local Area Networks (LAN) and internet connections. It also offers troubleshooting functions in case the computer has to be reconnected to the network.
Manages telephone and modem connections.
Includes options to manage energy consumption such as;
Displays all the printers and faxes currently installed on the computer, and has two main uses;
Various regional settings can be altered, for instance:
Displays all the scanners and cameras installed on the computer, and allows them to be configured or removed, or new ones to be added.
The security center gives the user access to the inbuilt Windows security components, as well as providing information about any existing antivirus software such as McAfee or Zone Alarm. It includes access to Windows Update, where users can specify whether the computer should check for updates regularly (also available through the Windows Update panel), and options for managing internet security settings. It also includes links to internet articles about PC security and current virus threats and notifies the user when the PCs security is compromised.
This panel contains various audio-related functions;
Change settings for text to speech support.
View and change basic system settings. A user can for instance:
Allows the user to change the behavior and appearance of the task bar and Start Menu;
This allows the user to configure their account and other accounts used in the system, should they have sufficient privileges. They can change their username and password, their picture (if enabled) and their .net passport. If the current user has an administrators account they can also add, delete and modify other user accounts as well as make changes to core system settings. This panel also specifies whether the guest account should be active and whether to use the Welcome screen.
Allows users to enable and schedule the Microsoft automatic updates.
Enables users to configure a Bluetooth connection.
Requirement: Windows XP Service Pack 2.
Enables users to manage Windows color settings.
Requirement: Installing the Microsoft Color Control Panel Applet, available via the Microsoft web site.
The Client Service for NetWare applet is used to select a default tree and context in a Novell Directory Services (NDS) environment, or the NetWare server used most frequently in a non-NDS environment.
Requirement: Installing the Client Service for NetWare.
Part of Windows Defender, allows users to view detailed information about software that is currently running on the computer that can affect the users' privacy or the security of the computer.