Jul 6 2007

Using and Customizing the Windows Sidebar

 The Windows Sidebar is a small panel that sits on the edge of your screen that houses small gadgets or mini applications, each can provide different information, gathered from your PC or the Internet. Vista ships with a few of these or you can download more off the Internet at Microsoft.

Windows Sidebar is not displayed on by default on all PC?s. If you?re screen resolution is 1024×768 or less the Sidebar won?t be on by default.

To turn it on Click Start ? All Programs ? Accessories ? Windows Sidebar.











Or the fastest way. Click Start and type ?Windows Sidebar? in the search box, then click it to launch.












Configuring the Sidebar:

You will probably want to customize the Sidebar and add different gadgets or change the way it displays or where it appears on your desktop. Many of the Sidebar features can be configured from the Windows Sidebar Properties dialog box. Mouse over to the Sidebar Right Click, and choose Properties.












In this dialog box you can determine whether the Sidebar will start when Windows starts, if you want it to display on top of other windows or whether you want it on the left or the right. If you have multiple monitors you can choose which to display it on.

To close the sidebar, right click anywhere in it and choose close Sidebar. To open it again, just click its icon in the system tray.





Adding Gadgets to the Sidebar:

To add Gadgets to the Sidebar click the + at the top of the Sidebar and it will open the Gadgets panel.









Choose the one you want to use, click and drag to the Sidebar. To get more Gadgets click Get more gadgets online.

To remove a Gadget from the Sidebar, right click it and choose Delete.

Configuring each Gadget:

You can also configure each Gadget by either right clicking and choosing options to change the Opacity or when you hover your mouse over the right edge of the Gadget click the small wrench.











Each Gadget has its own options to change. You can also detach a Gadget from the Sidebar and move it anywhere on your screen you want, just click it and drag it where you want. Want it back in the Sidebar just drag it back.

I hope this helps in explaining how the Sidebar works.

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