Yeah, the panel was useless in 8.0, and now even more so in 8.1.
The panel was not useless, just easy to miss its value. By right-clicking on a network name in 8.0, you could access the connection properties, which is most relevant when the password to a wi-fi connection changes, as it does regularly at my office. However, this option has been removed in 8.1.
Managing networks is increasingly relevant given that fewer devices are wired than ever before. Does anyone have a way that is not through the command prompt to change a stored password on a wifi network? In the charms bar, there is a list of available and saved networks, including the one I would like to connect to, but because the saved password is wrong I cannot connect to it (or delete it and re-add it). I also can't access a list of saved networks anywhere else.
-If I go into the PC settings from the Charms bar, in Network the wi-fi only shows as "Not Connected". No list of available or saved networks.
-Network connections from right-clicking the Start button in Desktop doesn't help. Since I can't change the password to connect (and it doesn't prompt me that the stored password is incorrect, which would also help, but it didn't do that in 8.0 either), it only shows that wi-fi is not connected.
-Control panel Network and Sharing Center only allows addition of a new network (again, because I cannot connect, it shows no active connections, and no list of available networks).
I do not want to have to look up or memorize the steps required to change the network password each month, and I am afraid I will type something wrong and make it worse. It is unbelievable that there would not be a method through the UI -- the average PC or tablet user does not use command prompt, ever.
EDIT: I have found one way: try to connect to the saved network. When it fails, re-open the charms bar and right click on the available networks directly on the settings charms bar (long hold on tablet), which then gives me the option to forget the network. Then go back in to networks and attempt to connect to the same network, and it will promt for password. Complicated, but at least possible. Win 8.1 took a step back with this function.