Windows 10, the Control Panel set to disappear

Windows 10 is reportedly planning to remove the Control Panel from upcoming versions of the operating system. Here's why

The Control Panel is one of the sacred monsters of Windows: introduced by Microsoft with Windows 2.0, in 1987, for many years it was the realm of geeks and computer repair technicians. In 2012, with Windows 8, it was hidden behind the new simplified interface of the Settings app, hated by the aforementioned geeks, but since then it's still accessible.

Shortly, however, it may disappear. This is what you can guess from reading the code of Windows 10 Build 19587, that is, the latest beta version released for testing to developers. Among the new lines of code compared to previous versions of Windows there are some that would serve to completely hide the Control Panel. What many fear, however, is that this is the first step towards the cancellation of this advanced tool for managing computer hardware and drivers. This would be yet another attempt by Microsoft to modernize Windows 10, which wouldn't please those who for years have used the Control Panel as a reference point when something doesn't work.

Windows 10: Control Panel Vs Settings

The real problem, probably, is that Microsoft never really made the choice to eliminate the Control Panel: for years it has existed "behind" the Settings app. You have to look for it in the Start menu bar to find it, but it's there. Just as there is still another fundamental app in case of hardware problems: Device Manager (once called Peripheral Manager), the most powerful tool of all for solving hardware problems on a Windows computer. For over a decade, Microsoft hasn't made up its mind: all these apps are still present in Windows 10, but only Settings is easy to find and known by everyone.

Control Panel: when it will disappear

As always, when we talk about features hidden in the code of a beta, it's not at all certain that the prediction will become reality. Technically, the first opportunity to make the Control Panel disappear would be the second semi-annual Windows 10 update (20H2), which will arrive in the last months of 2020. The first six-monthly update (20H1) is expected to arrive in a few weeks, by April, and is unlikely to bring this news with it.