Desktop Gadgets (unofficially) comes to Windows 8.1

You may have noticed that in Windows 8, Desktop Gadgets were removed as a choice for the legacy desktop. Although Microsoft caved and added back a Start button, Desktop Gadgets were not so lucky.

However, we can help you out there, if you really want them back. Sergey Tkachenko, with the help of a friend has updated the tweaked Desktop Gadgets for Windows 8 so that they can also be installed on Windows 8.1 easily.


We know you love these.

To install with a few mouse clicks, launch the installer.

Which also supports all available Windows 8.1 languages, so you can get the gadgets and sidebar interface in your native language.

Wait for the installer to finish then right click on the desktop and you'll see the familiar "Gadgets" item in your desktop context menu.

Now all we need is someone to update those gadgets into Tiles, so they really look "Modern".

Source: Winaero - Windows 8.1 Desktop Gadgets

Thanks to Sergey for the tip and hosting the file.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Mozilla shares Firefox OS Simulator, for in-browser app tests

Next Story

Rumor: SkyDrive.com to add recent activity feed

48 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

Yea I have been using 8GadgetPack since Win8 first came out! So, this WinAero guy is a little late to the party..

When I saw the Windows 7 "Harmony" wallpaper as part of the news headline, I thought the news was regarding Windows 7.

Weren't these removed from Windows 7 specifically to plug a security hole? It seems bringing them back (unless they were modified) might be a bad idea.

yeaaaaaa!!!! I love gadgets!!!!

I used to have a "comic feed" gadget for one of my old websites.. had a few thousand downloads, not much more but still worth it.

i'll have to add this to my links later on if I revive

Hurrah! I like to have a clock in the corner of the desktop while I'm working.
What's the use of only having one on a tile on the Start Screen - when I'm not working??

I love the Vista sticky notes! Still use them all the time on my Windows 7 machine (I hate the actually Windows 7 sticky notes, awful things)

I actually have them installed on windows 8, could use rainmeter too but for my tastes the sidebar gadgets does the job just fine.

Really neat, actually. Even though I don't make much use of them, I love how this dev ported it for anyone who does. Nice guy

Yes, it is also the same reason we disabled them at work. Security risks and most of them are considered open source, which brings some challenges to a managed enterprise environment.

Instead of bringing back these leftovers from Vista, why not just allow us to pin Metro apps to the Task Bar... that have Jump Lists?

For example, say I pin the Weather app to the desktop Task Bar and want to quickly check the weather. Instead of having to interrupt my workflow & go all the way back to the Start Screen, imagine if you could right click on the pinned Weather app to get a quick summary of the weather? Simple, right? It could be very useful for simple tasks like Weather, Stocks, Headlines, Mail, etc.

They really need to do this already.

Neobond said,
Spot on, I don't understand why some Live Tiles can't be pinned to the desktop, like weather etc.

It's because the desktop is not modern. /s

I would love the idea of pinning metro tiles to a regular desktop. Like the weather tile pinned in the corner of the regular desktop would be cool.

how about pining to the taskbar, then the live tile appears above when you hover over, like the preview windows appears now if the program is open

margrave said,
I would love the idea of pinning metro tiles to a regular desktop. Like the weather tile pinned in the corner of the regular desktop would be cool.
I'd ditch the HTC Home gadgets I've been running if I could do this.

mulligan2k said,
how about pining to the taskbar, then the live tile appears above when you hover over, like the preview windows appears now if the program is open
This would be great, you could use something like JumpList Launcher (http://en.http://www.ali.dj/jumplist-launcher/) to make a custom JumpList to save space.

Neobond said,
Spot on, I don't understand why some Live Tiles can't be pinned to the desktop, like weather etc.

There has to be some reason to look forward to Windows 8.2 or 9.0

I still use the alarm and CPU meter gadgets out of preference. No modern alarm app so far has worked for me and I have yet to see an app that gives me such detail of CPU/GPU readings. I use Skype in snapped mode, Xbox music and a host of other apps from the store, but for these basic utilities a little box that gives me quick info at a glance is always preferred.

Caglar said,
oh no, don't put them back please!

It is a 3rd party add-on. If people want to use them, so be it.

Sadelwo said,
I still use the alarm and CPU meter gadgets out of preference. No modern alarm app so far has worked for me and I have yet to see an app that gives me such detail of CPU/GPU readings. I use Skype in snapped mode, Xbox music and a host of other apps from the store, but for these basic utilities a little box that gives me quick info at a glance is always preferred.

Skype Metro is borderline useless till Stardock get their Metro apps on Desktop software compatible.

You dont remember correctly. With 3 open the sidebar process uses 18MB of RAM and never goes above 1% processor usage on my system but usually sits at 0%.

<1% CPU and 18MB of RAM usage for the sidebar process plus 3 gadgets doesnt sound like a resource hog to me... definitely not a huge one.

Many of them were poorly coded and had huge memory leaks. I've seen sidebar.exe grow to a commit size beyond 100MB if left running for a week with some of those notorious gadgets. Regardless, they were a half-hearted second attempt to bring full-featured gadgets to Vista, and a vestige of legacy Windows. As much as I miss having them on screen all the time, it was time for them to go.

What? Why was it time for them to go? They don't offer anything better now. If they were being replaced with something better then fair enough, but there isnt even something similar in its place. Live tiles don't serve the same purpose as you have to switch from what you're doing to see them. If they were to allow you to keep live tiles on the desktop as if they were gadgets then that would work quite nicely though.