Disabling certain wordpress features

Is there a way that I can possibly disable comments, pingbacks and trackbacks sitewide so my users don’t have to manually turn them off prior to creating new pages?

Also if possible disable the “Comments are Closed” that appears on the bottom of the pages.

Also would be nice to hide certain dashboard menus from users but again I want to disable them in advance and not on an individual basis or something users have to manually do. And while I am on the dashboard subject would be also nice to customize the color and fonts to make it appealing to my users.

My aim is to have all these features disabled/preconfigured from the jump and not on a per blog basis or for admin to have to do them one by one.

Not sure if this is something that can be discussed here in its entirety or if I need to head on over to wordpress for solutions but just fyi I’ve been checking there already but only found a few tidbits here and there but not a complete solution or if some of them are even a wise thing to do.

For instance for hiding dashboard menus I tried several ways via plugins and modifying funtions.php in my child menu for Blogs-Mu-Child but I saw no changes to dashboard menus as they were all still there.

As far as trackbacks and pingbacks I’ve seen one where you run a SQL Query like this… UPDATE wp_posts SET ping_status = ‘closed’; to disable them (yet to try) but I saw nothing in the post if this was a sitewide operation or if it’s even a wise thing to do especially since some of these posts are older than WPMU 3.0.1

I would imagine if it’s executed on the database that it means it will affect the network sitewide but I need to be 100% sure or even if the command is advisable. Please let me know if I need to send any of the files I’ve tried.

Don’t mean to just throw all this stuff out at you guys all willy nilly but any help will be appreciate if at all possible.

Thanks

Dave