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Google Desktop Search
Originally Published: October 19, 2004
What is Google Desktop Search?
Google Desktop Search is a program that runs on your Windows computer. It allows you to search your hard disk for files. Google describes it as follows:
"Google Desktop Search is [...] a desktop search application that provides full text search over your email, computer files, chats, and the web pages you've viewed. By making your computer searchable, Google Desktop Search puts your information easily within your reach and frees you from having to manually organize your files, emails, and bookmarks."
Google Desktop Search is a beta program. This means that Google is still working on the final version.
Limitations of Google Desktop Search
The current version of Google Desktop Search offers limited application and format support. It searches for emails from MS Outlook and Outlook Express, chat sessions from AOL Instant Messenger, browsed web pages, text files and MS Office files.
Google Desktop Search also requires a newer MS Windows operating system. You must have at least Windows 2000 or above. Google Desktop Search will only install if you have 1 GB free hard disk space on your primary hard disk.
There are some concerns that your private data may be not secure if you're not careful.
For example, people could read your close chat discussions, they could read your email messages and they could take a look at the web pages you visited. More information can be found in the Google Desktop Search Related Articles section below.
Should you install Google Desktop Search on your computer?
If you have a hard time to find files on your computer, you might want to give Google Desktop Search a try. However, you should make sure that no other person has access to your computer because of the privacy issues.
Details about Google Desktop Search can be found on this page. A comparison of six desktop search tools can be found here.
Google Desktop Search Related Articles
"Google Desktop Search might just be too good. Using the new software, I was able to bypass user names and passwords that secure Web-based e-mail programs and view personal messages sent and received on public PCs.
Using Google's new software on a shared computer at the Google booth at the Digital Life trade show floor I was able to easily search for, find, and read private Yahoo e-mail sent on the computer by previous users earlier in the day."
"If it's installed on computers at libraries and Internet cafes, users could unwittingly allow people who follow them on the PCs, for example, to see sensitive information in e-mails they've exchanged. That could mean revealed passwords, conversations with doctors, or viewed Web pages detailing online purchases."
"Privacy hysterics bring old whine in new bottles to the Internet party. The desktop search beta from this Web search leader doesn't do anything you can't do already."
"But not all of these desktop search engines are alike. We looked at six [...] Read our reviews for help in choosing the hard drive detective to dig out your data."
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