Windows/Linux: Google Desktop users can keep an eye on important feeds with the Google Reader Gadget, a clever but not quite perfect desktop implementation of Google's RSS reader.
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Google releases a desktop gadget for Google Docs that lets you drag and drop spreadsheets, presentation, and word processing files onto it to upload it to your account. You'll need to be running Google Desktop to get the gadget (available for Windows and Linux only), which lists all your account's documents for quick access to your files. Along with the recently-launched
Windows only (running Google Desktop): If you want access to your Gmail on your desktop (literally) without running a full-blown email client, now you can download the Gmail Google Desktop gadget. You'll need the free Google Desktop software installed first, and then you can dock your Gmail gadget to the desktop to read, search, send, and star messages. The Gmail gadget offers the same keyboard shortcuts that web-based Gmail offers, too. You can even open multiple instances of the gadget and log each into a different Gmail account. The only complaint about the gadget? It doesn't play a sound when new mail arrives. (Though you may thank Google for that one.) The Gmail gadget is a free download and works in conjunction with Google Desktop 5 for Windows only. Gmail Google Gadget
Google releases Google Desktop 5.8 for Windows today and promises 50% less memory usage during startup and faster shutdown.
Windows only: Send videos, pictures and music between Windows PCs or any Universal Plug n' Play device (like a Playstation 3) with a simple Google Desktop Gadget called Google Media Server. The gadget allows you to offer up all the media indexed by Google Desktop to any other device with the gadget, or that can grab UPnP media, and also offers access to your Picasa Web Albums and YouTube videos. For anyone looking for an easy way to shuttle their digital media back and forth across a standard home network, this gadget might be the "just works" kick-starter. Google Media Server is a free download, requires a Windows system running Google Desktop 5 or later. Google Media Server
You can do a lot of things with Google Desktop, and use it as an advanced widget and sidebar engine—but what if you really just want a better system-wide search tool? The Google Operating System blog drills down on the latest Google Desktop release to get better performance and speed out of its file-finding function. From staight-up preference changing to registry hacking, you can force the handy app to focus only on those things you want to retrieve later even before installation, but the author recommends at least one change for new and existing users alike:
Linux only: Search through and launch programs and Microsoft Office documents from the new Google Desktop for Linux Beta 1.1, released Friday. The update to Google's Beagle alternative also includes better image search and customisable hotkeys.
Google Desktop for Linux 1.1 Beta
Windows only: Google Desktop users can now add some of their favourite gadgets and sidebar applets to their personalised iGoogle home pages as well. That means being able to play music, monitor system performance or even check wireless signal strength from your browser. The latest (still beta) release of Google Desktop also includes better Outlook search compatibility, multiple gadget instances and a polished look for the search box. Google Desktop is also available for Mac and Linux, but the desktop-to-iGoogle gadgets appear to be only working for XP/Vista/2000 users at the moment.