Google Desktop Arrives on Linux

By Steven Vaughan-Nichols  |  Posted 2007-06-28 Print this article Print

The Linux desktop grows hotter with Google's delivery of its Google Desktop search program for Linux.

Google has finally released a long-awaited native Linux application: Google Desktop for Linux. As with the already shipping OS X and Windows versions, Google Desktop enables Linux users to search for text inside documents, local e-mail messages, their Web history and their Gmail accounts. This first beta version doesnt offer the sidebar and gadgets, which are found in other versions of the application. Those will come later, according to a Google representative, who stated, "We focused most of our efforts on desktop search. Gadgets and sidebar are not supported, but will probably be added in the future." The first version supports many popular versions of Linux. It comes in the form of both RPM and a DEB distribution packages. The RPM can be installed on Red Hat, Fedora, SUSE, and Mandriva distributions. The DEB will install on Debian and Ubuntu systems. The program works with both KDE and GNOME.
Officially, Google Desktop is supported on Debian 4.0, Fedora Core 6, Ubuntu 6.10, SUSE 10.1, and Red Flag 5. It should work, however, on any modern Linux that has glibc 2.3.2+ and gtk+ 2.2.0+ installed. For example, it also worked on MEPIS 6.5, even though Google doesnt mention compatibility with that distribution. At this time, it only supports PCs with 32-bit x86 compatible processors.
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Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is editor at large for Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to becoming a technology journalist, Vaughan-Nichols worked at NASA and the Department of Defense on numerous major technological projects. Since then, he's focused on covering the technology and business issues that make a real difference to the people in the industry.

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