Google Desktop Arrives on 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 doesn’t 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 doesn’t mention compatibility with that distribution. At this time, it only supports PCs with 32-bit x86 compatible processors.

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