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Now security advisors are calling for disabling the Windows Sidebar entirely.

Are there stand-alone apps that work with both Windows Vista and 7?

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I'm not sure what you mean by "stand-along apps". Could you clarify that please? –  imtheman Jul 20 '12 at 21:07
    
Yahoo Widgets was one, but is discontinued now. –  Moab Jul 21 '12 at 1:02
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Windows sidebar is safe, its the gadgets you download that are not, just be careful where you download them. " Gadgets installed from untrusted sources can harm your computer and can access your computer's files, show you objectionable content, or change their behavior at any time."...technet.microsoft.com/en-us/security/advisory/2719662 –  Moab Jul 21 '12 at 1:06