Microsoft control Issues

Creators Update hid the Control Panel … again. Seize control of your Microsoft account.

Playing hide and seek with Control Panel in Windows 10 Creators Update

Microsoft wants us to get used to the Settings app.

Since Windows 8, it’s been a challenge to find the familiar old Control Panel we’re relied on for years. In Windows 10 Creators Update, the Settings app was overhauled again, this time to include a section for Apps.

That’s fine, but there are still times when we need the Control Panel. In this update, Microsoft removed the Control Panel link from the right-click Start menu, where it’s been since Windows 8.

That’s an annoyance, not an improvement. 

I wanted to repair an installed program last week when I was at a customer, couldn’t find Control Panel, and the App app doesn’t offer that choice.

The quickest way to open Control Panel is:

  • Press the WindowsKey and the R key at the same time
  • Type Control Panel
  • Click OK

Great till you need it next time! If you want to create a shortcut:

  • Click on Start | Settings | Personalization | Themes | Desktop Icon Settings
  • Check the box for Control Panel
  • Click on OK

That places the Control Panel icon on your Desktop.

There are other ways to get to Control Panel, and we will cover them in a future column. Have you found a good way to do this in Creators Update?

Manage your Microsoft account

A Microsoft account is an email address and password you use to sign in to your computer, and to access other Microsoft products like Office Online, Office 365, OneDrive, Skype, and even to access the Microsoft Store. It’s the Microsoft version of an Apple ID!

If you’re using Windows 10 or Windows 8, you are probably signing into your computer with a Microsoft Account.

While it’s true that Windows 10 is more lenient about what you can do without a Microsoft account than Windows 8 was, it’s also true that you will not be able to take advantage of all Windows 10 features without a Microsoft account.

If you’re not sure what kind of account you’re using, open Settings and click on Accounts. If you see an email address there, you’re using a Microsoft account.

If you’re not, you’ll see Local Account there.

Click on the Manage my Microsoft Account link to make changes.

A browser page will open and might prompt you to sign into your account. Click on Your Info to change how your name appears when you sign in and to upload a nice profile picture instead of the grey head thing.

And if you click on Manage how you sign in to Microsoft, you can add another email address and remove ones you do not use. Why would you do that?

If you originally used a Telus email and then switched your service to Shaw, you won’t have access to that Telus email if something goes wrong. Or, if you just started using a different email for any reason, you want to keep that Microsoft account up to date.

This page will step you through the things you can do. Whatever you do, please be sure to write down the email and password for your Microsoft account.


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About the Author

The Technology Shaman, Cate Eales, has been helping people make online computing safe, accessible, and fun for over 30 years.

Cate lives in Kelowna with her husband, Eric. She owns and operates Computer Care Kelowna, a mobile computer business providing on-site service for home and small business customers.

Cate is here to help you and your home or business computer get along.

E-mail Cate at [email protected] with comments, suggestions, or questions.

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