Control Panel "Don't Load" Feature Does Not Work

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Article ID: 126972 - View products that this article applies to.
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You can prevent individual Control Panel components from loading under Windows NT versions 3.1 and 3.5 by modifying the Registry. However, this does not work in Windows NT version 3.5. For example, if you modify the Registry to specify that the Control Panel Keyboard component should not load, the component still loads.


In Windows NT version 3.5, a cache mechanism is implemented to speed up the loading of Control Panel components. When you run Control Panel for the first time, a cache is created that includes information regarding each component in the Control Panel. Therefore, Registry entries specifying certain components not to load are not read in Windows NT version 3.5.


To work around this problem, add the /CACHE switch to the Control Panel Command Line in the Program Manager Program Item Properties dialog box after you modify the Registry. For example:

   CONTROL.EXE /cache


Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in Windows NT version 3.5. We are researching this problem and will post new information here in the Microsoft Knowledge Base as it becomes available.


You can use the following procedure to prevent Control Panel components from loading.
WARNING: Using Registry Editor incorrectly can cause serious, system-wide problems that may require you to reinstall Windows NT to correct them. Microsoft cannot guarantee that any problems resulting from the use of Registry Editor can be solved. Use this tool at your own risk.
  1. Run Registry Editor (REGEDT32.EXE).
  2. From the HKEY_CURRENT_USER subtree, go to the following key:
    \Control Panel
  3. From the Edit menu, choose Add Key.
  4. Type "Don't Load" (without the quotation marks) in the Key Name text box and choose OK.
  5. Select Don't Load.
  6. From the Edit menu, choose Add Value.
  7. Type the following in the appropriate text boxes:

          Value Name:  <Control Panel component>
          Data Type:   REG_SZ
          String:      0 or 1 (Either string value will prevent the
                               Control component from loading)
       The default Control Panel component names are:
          Color          International          Desktop
          Fonts          System                 Keyboard
          Ports          Date/Time              Printers
          Mouse          Network                Devices
          Drivers        Sound                  Cursors
          Server         Services               UPS
          Display (Windows NT version 3.5 only)
          MIDI Mapper (Windows NT version 3.1 only)
  8. Quit Registry Editor and restart Control Panel.
NOTE: If you need to modify the Registry again to prevent additional Control Panel components from loading, do not repeat steps three and four.


Article ID: 126972 - Last Review: February 28, 2014 - Revision: 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.51
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