Desktop gadgets were introduced in Windows Vista as a a collection of system add-ons that offer you various functions and services, from calendars and calculators to photo slideshows and simple desktop games. Gadgets are also available on Windows 7, where they’re no longer locked up in the sidebar and can be freely arranged on your screen. Installing gadgets in Windows couldn’t be easier: right-click anywhere on the desktop, select Gadgets, choose the ones you like and drag and drop them on the desktop. If you want to download more, click the Get more gadgets online link and have a look at Microsoft’s online gadget repository. We’ve already selected a few of them for you!
As you can infer from its name, Twitter Explorer is a simple yet handy gadget that lets you keep track of tweets on your desktop. Check your timeline, post messages, send replies and retweets… all in a customizable interface with various themes and sizes.
Another self-explanatory gadget name! Now Playing displays the current playing song on your PC, either as album artwork or as text. It works with Windows Media Player, iTunes, Winamp, Foobar and others. You can also control the player, rate songs and customize the gadget with skins.
This highly customizable gadget lets you monitor dozens of elements on your system: CPU and RAM usage, download speed, hard drive space and activity, WiFi signal strength, battery charge status and many more. It also features a bunch of skins and backgrounds.
MultiSearchIt lets you search from almost any web search engine, database, shops or other online service you can think of. Search Google, Yahoo!, YouTube, eBay, Amazon, the Wikipedia and more!
With WeatherBug you receive the latest information about weather conditions in real time, from anywhere in the world. The gadget features both the current weather status and detailed forecasts from 8,000 tracking stations all over the world, and also lets you access weather webcams and severe weather alerts.