Wednesday, October 10, 2007

8 Widget engines for the Linux platform

A widget is a small pretty looking self contained program that runs on the desktop and performs a specific function. There are weather widget that fetches up-to-date weather forecasts and information from the Internet, clock widgets that displays the time, calendar widgets and all sorts of widgets that can perform a wide variety of tasks. Widgets require a platform to run and there are several available for both Windows and Linux. A lot of users are already aware of the various options available for Windows, but Linux widgets aren't that popular. So here I'm going to present some of the best widget engines available for Linux.

1. Screenlets: Probably the best looking widget platform available for Linux. The widgets are cute and very similar to those offered by Yahoo and Apple.

2. SuperKaramba: One of the most popular widget engines for the KDE desktop. The widgets are referred to as themes. There are plenty to download at

3. gDesklets: Another very nice looking widget engine. gDesklets is not restricted to one desktop environment, but currently works on most of the modern Unix desktops (including GNOME, KDE, Xfce). The support for a wide variety of desktop enviroment is a very helpful feature of gDesklets.

4. aDesklets: adesklets is an interactive Imlib2 console for the X Window System. It provides to scripted languages a clean and simple way to write great looking, mildly interactive desktop integrated graphic applets. The collection isn't that great and won't find variety, but desklets for popular tasks are available.

5. Moonlight Desklets: Moonlight is Novell's nascent open-source implementation of Microsoft's Silverlight framework for rapid, rich media application development. This is a relatively new engine so not many widgets are available. But they have some really nice looking widgets nonetheless.

6. Google Gadgets: Google gadgets come bundled along with the Google Desktop software. A very large collection of gadgets are available. 

7. Opera widgets: Opera widgets run on top of the Opera browser (version 9 and above), the only browser that supports widgets. There are more than a thousand Opera widgets available. I already wrote about some useful Opera widgets before.

8. Jackfield: Jackfield isn't actually a widget engine. It's an application for the Gnome desktop that can run widgets of other popular platforms like Yahoo, Apple, Microsoft Vista Sidebar and Opera. If you use this application you get access to thousands of widgets from all the 4 platforms!!

If you count them all, you will find that it's actually 10 and not 8 widget engines that you can run on Linux. Thanks to Jackfield, that enables you to run 3 of the engines that aren't supported in Linux.


  1. adesklts are cool

    i m using them in ubuntu , check out mine desktop


    this is the link

  3. google desktop for linux doesnt have the gadgets..........

    pls remove from ur list or correct me if im wrong

  4. ^^ Thanks for correcting me. I thought since Google desktop was available for Linux, Google gadgets will be too. I corrected the mistake.

  5. kludgets is another engine.
    runs on both linux and windows.
    and can display MacOS dashboard widgets

  6. Um, some of these widget sites are so old (abandon-ware?)!

    As an example, has news from 2007, at the latest.

    The Google link is still listed, above, too.

    This site is not fully Opera-compatible.

  7. "This site is not fully Opera-compatible."

    so im just gonna come out and say this ... stop being a wanker and use firefox

  8. [Quote]"This site is not fully Opera-compatible."

    so im just gonna come out and say this ... stop being a wanker and use firefox[/Quote]

    Users of alternitive Browsers, typically have there reasons i myself prefer opera over ff .. but crome is much faster than ff .. ie is almost usless at this point

    So please be kind about browser choices ...

    Back to the Reason of my Post .. most of these projects are abandoned and are incomplete ie the last one Jackel .. only supports one of the 3 platforms this post refers to and has been abandonded

  9. im using this gadget..thnks for the share..

  10. I hated Superkaramba. I would rather eat my hair than use that nasty program.


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