Google has updated its desktop search app, adding a new feature that gives users access to e-mail, news, weather, photos and website feeds without having to go through a separate Web browser.

Google Desktop 2.0, currently in beta, also features Quick Find, which lets a user search for files and applications by typing only part of a name, plus a toolbar for Outlook users that lets them search their messages and review results from within Outlook.

Its searching and indexing has also been extended. Instant messaging indexing has been extended to MSN Messenger, plus Outlook data beyond e-mail, such as contacts, appointments and tasks is now indexed. E-mail from Google's Gmail Web mail serviceis also added.

Google has also expanded the APIs available for the application, so that developers can create plug-ins for Sidebar.

Google Desktop 2.0 is available now in English with more languages available soon. The free application runs on Windows XP and Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 and above. It can be downloaded for free from