How-To Geek

Search Your Computer Quickly With the Deskbar Applet on Ubuntu

Ubuntu linux includes one of the most useful utilities available on any operating system: the Deskbar

With this utility, you can search any or all of the following services:

  • Programs
  • Dictionary
  • Files
  • Address book
  • Open Windows
  • Yahoo!
  • bookmarks
  • Web History

To install this utility, open up a terminal window and type in the following command:

sudo apt-get install deskbar-applet

Now you can add it to your panel by right clicking anywhere on the panel, and choosing Add to Panel:

You should see this icon somewhere in the dialog. Click the Add button or drag it to your panel:

If the applet displays as a single icon, it may be easier to change it to a full search box. You can do that by right clicking it and choosing preferences. Click the View tab, and then change the Layout to “Entry in panel”:

If you hit Alt+F3, you’ll change the focus to the textbox immediately. Typing in a search pops up a dialog allowing you to choose what search type you want:

To enable more search types, you can select them in the preferences page for the applet.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 12/10/06

Comments (2)

  1. nullify

    sounds like apple’s spotlight search… one big thing i missed when i switched from mac. totally trying it out.

  2. Shane

    Awesome! I tried this out and it doesn’t seem to work properly with my document folders (which are linked to another drive). … it sucks that you can’t actually configure things in more detail?

    Any ideas? Am I missing something here..

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