rmt wrote:1. How/where do I access the control panel?
There is FAQ on Apachefriends, see https://www.apachefriends.org/faq_osx.html
To start XAMPP simply open XAMPP Control and start Apache, MySQL and ProFTPD. The name of the XAMPP Control is "manager-osx".
If you dont know where to find manager-osx, run a file search program (there probably should be one under OSX).
rmt wrote: 2. How do I use the command prompt to create and use databases?
Very similar to the Windows solution, find out where the binarys of mysql are stored (i.e. use a file search), and then:
a) either start mysql by giving full pathname, for example (i assume "#" as prompt):
# /Applications/Xampp/bin/mysql -u username -p password
or change to that directory (also via "cd" as under Windows) and start mysql from there:
# cd /Applications/Xampp/bin
# ./mysql - u username -p paaswd
You must prepend "./" to the command, due to OSX (this is not due to Xampp or MySQL; you have to do so for any command, which is not included in the PATH Variable - this is basic OSX knowledge). Keep in mind, that "/Applications/Xampp/bin" might not be the right folder, i simply took a name as an example. Finally keep in mind, that pathnames and filenames are case-sensitive under OSX.
P.S.: You are just finding out the hard way, that Apples (and their fans) argument, that "everything is easier under OSX than every else" and everything simply "works self-explanatory" simply is a BIG LIE! Of course Windows is easier to use. You may also struggle with file and folder permissions, when creating your first projects. But dont tell this to other Apple fans, they will hang up you the next tree....