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I need a shortcut (typical shortcut file, script, special exe, doesn't matter) for PC Settings in Windows 8.

I see that PC Settings is an executable named SystemSettings.exe, found in C:\Windows\ImmersiveControlPanel.

However, creating a shortcut to it doesn't work. The same if I try to run this executable from the Command Prompt, for example.

Any ideas on how to create such a shortcut?

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If you know how to do it in Windows 7, you can just apply that to the Desktop "app" – YatharthROCK Sep 22 '12 at 14:20
For the start screen, though, I can't help... – YatharthROCK Sep 22 '12 at 14:20
There is no PC Settings in Windows 7. PC Settings is the new Control Panel in Windows 8, with settings related to the new interface, among other things. – Corporate Geek Sep 22 '12 at 14:25
Open the charms (on the right) -> go to settings -> change PC settings (on the bottom of the Settings charm). – Corporate Geek Sep 22 '12 at 14:30
You mean the thing you get when you click 'PC Settings' in the 'Charm Bar'? It's already there, isn't it? Why do you need more? – YatharthROCK Sep 22 '12 at 14:31

If you are open to hacks, then I've got one for you. I'm using AutoHotKey to do it. I have a 1920x1080 screen, so if your resolution is different, the mouse click command will have to be different. Here's the script, using Win+S as the shortcut to fire this:

Send #i
Sleep 1000
Click 1756,1050

Any time I hit Win+S, it will send the Win+I command, wait for it to pop open, then click on "Change PC Settings." I didn't spend too much time playing with the sleep time, but feel free to adjust that down if your computer is faster than mine.


A screen resolution independent script is provided below:

Send #i
Sleep 1000
Send {Down}{Down}{Down}{Down}{Down}{Down}{Enter}
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I found a solution that is very similar to what you suggest. After lots and lots of thinking and testing, I think this approach works best. Thanks! – Corporate Geek Oct 1 '12 at 18:26

The Settings charm has a keyboard shortcut of Windows logo key + I.

If that's the one you are looking for, you can either just use this keyboard shortcut instead of a desktop shortcut, or use a macro product such as AutoHotkey to create a compiled script that can be called via a desktop shortcut and that will issue this combination of keys.

Even if that's not the solution, a AutoHotkey script might be able to reproduce all the mouse actions that one uses to call up PC Settings on Windows 8 (however, not having Windows 8, I cannot verify).

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That keyboard combination takes you to the Settings charm, not PC Settings. But I am looking into some custom scripting right now, based on keyboard shortcuts and key presses to make it work every time. – Corporate Geek Sep 26 '12 at 13:04

Maybe that script is what you are looking for:

explorer.exe shell:::{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}

Microsoft published a list of all Canonical Names of Control Panel Items here: Canonical Names of Control Panel Items

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On my computer that opens up some "All Tasks" menu on the desktop rather than the "Change PC Settings" pane in Metro – Ryan Oct 1 '12 at 16:05
This doesn't work as a shortcut for PC Settings. – Corporate Geek Oct 1 '12 at 18:25
up vote 1 down vote accepted

In the end, I used the approach recommended by @Ryan. However, I did create a shorter script, that is less error prone (sort of):

Sleep (100)
Sleep (50)

If you don't want to create the script yourself, you can download the final result from an article I published on the topic. It is a small executable with a nice icon, etc.

Download a Desktop Shortcut to PC Settings, for Windows 8

Appreciate everyone's input on the topic. It was definitely useful.

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