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Apr 23 2007   4:21PM GMT

Google Desktop: Never leave your homepage without it?

GuyPardon Guy Pardon Profile: GuyPardon

To be fair, we discovered Google Desktop years ago. The recent introduction of Google Desktop for Mac, however, caught our attention and led us to revisit the application.


Desktop search itself is nothing new either, of course. Google Desktop has, in its Windows incarnation, been the subject of both security concerns and accusations of spyware.

In fact, recent patch vulnerabilities and a generalized need to lock or secure Google Desktop (read expert Matt Schwartz’s tips on how to tame Google Desktop, if you’re curious) have left enterprise and individual users somewhat cautious about inviting the desktop search engine (DSE) onto their hard drives.

We can’t whole-heartedly recommend it because of these concerns, though the end user experience of many of our geeky early-adopting friends has been positive.

Now, Mac users have the same choice, though as most will immediately protest, OS X’s fourth generation (10.4, aka Tiger) has long had such an engine already built-in, appropriately named Spotlight.

We’ll leave it to you to compare the two, though the Unoffical Apple Weblog (TUAW) has done if for you in this excellent review of Google Desktop for Mac that contrasts the feature sets of the two engines.

If you use other Google apps on your Mac, notably Gmail, Google Desktop may be worth your time. ArsTechnica‘s Jacqui Cheng offers a generally positive hands-on review of Google Desktop for Mac as well.

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