Vista is on the loose and now some of you may be looking for extras and gadgets to add a little bit of excitement to your experience. Microsoft has a website setup so that downloading your gadgets is simple, and easy, including access to 3rd party gadgets. You can find those gadgets here organized by top downloads, and top rated.

Top Gadget downloads include:

  • Outlook info: shows info from MS Outlook. Customize with a skin of your own, or a built-in skin (87,367 downloads).
  • Remote Desktop Gadget: Save history or remote servers, server address auto-complete, and more (75,725 downloads).
  • Calculator: 59,958 downloads
  • Digital Clock: An alternative clock solution (57,089 downloads).
  • Google-bar: Search directly on Google.com- results open in a new window (54,180 downloads).

Top rated gadgets include:

Gadgets are also broken down into different categories which makes searching easy.  You’ll find categories like fun and games, Techy-geeky-cool, tools and utilities, etc.

If you bought Vista Ultimate, you’re entitled to the “Ultimate Extras.”  Some of the extras are available, with others coming soon.  Two of the Ultimate extras that you’re able to get your hands on right now include BitLocker and Texas Hold ‘Em.  BitLocker allows you to encrypt your hard drive for added security.   If this sounds interesting to you, and you’d like to know how it should be used, this is a good resource for that.

Finally, Texas Hold ‘Em Poker just adds another game to Vista.  You can play with up to five computer players and set the ability level (Microsoft promoting gambling??? :) ).

My favorite Ultimate Extra that I’ve seen in a demo is the DreamScene which allows you to select a video for your desktop background. I probably wouldn’t ever use it for two reasons. First, my laptop doesn’t support Windows Aero which this Ultimate extra requires, and secondly, I’d be afraid of what it might do to my battery life.  Regardless, I think it’s the best extra they have come up with so far as far as the “wow” factor is concerned.  This extra will be available soon.

Source: Windows Vista Blog