Description of Control Panel (.cpl) Files

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Article ID: 149648 - View products that this article applies to.
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SUMMARY

This article describes the purpose and usage of Control Panel (.cpl) files.

MORE INFORMATION

Each tool in Control Panel is represented by a .cpl file in the Windows\ System folder. The .cpl files in the Windows\System folder are loaded automatically when you start Control Panel. Note that Control Panel files are sometimes loaded using entries in the [MMCPL] section of the Control.ini file.

The following table lists the most common .cpl files, including all the .cpl files included with Windows:

File name      Purpose
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Access.cpl     Accessibility properties
Appwiz.cpl     Add/Remove Programs properties
Desk.cpl       Display properties
FindFast.cpl   FindFast (included with Microsoft Office for Windows 95)
Inetcpl.cpl    Internet properties
Intl.cpl       Regional Settings properties
Joy.cpl        Joystick properties
Main.cpl       Mouse, Fonts, Keyboard, and Printers properties
Mlcfg32.cpl    Microsoft Exchange or Windows Messaging properties
Mmsys.cpl      Multimedia properties
Modem.cpl      Modem properties
Netcpl.cpl     Network properties
Odbccp32.cpl   Data Sources (32-bit ODBC, included w/ Microsoft Office)
Password.cpl   Password properties
Sticpl.cpl     Scanners and Cameras properties
Sysdm.cpl      System properties and Add New Hardware wizard
Themes.cpl     Desktop Themes 
TimeDate.cpl   Date/Time properties
Wgpocpl.cpl    Microsoft Mail Post Office
				
Note that in Windows 98, the Desk.cpl file is named Deskw95.cpl in the compressed cabinet (.cab) file. The file is renamed to Desk.cpl in the Windows\System folder.

Third-party software and hardware manufacturers can add Control Panel icons to provide an interface for setting configuration options for their products. An icon appears in Control Panel when the .cpl file is placed in the Windows\System folder by the program's Setup tool.

You can create a shortcut to a Control Panel tool by dragging an icon from Control Panel to the desktop or another location, or by manually creating a shortcut and specifying the path to a .cpl file.

Note that the Sounds tool does not have its own .cpl file; it uses the Mmsys.cpl file. To create a shortcut to the Sounds tool, use the command line control mmsys.cpl sounds.

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Article ID: 149648 - Last Review: May 7, 2007 - Revision: 1.4
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows 98 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Plus! 95 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 95
  • Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition
Keywords: 
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