In case you haven’t spotted it, Microsoft released a Beta version of MSN Deskbar this week.  It’s much more than just a “Search Engine” textbox on your toolbar; it indexes your mail and Hard Drive (in a similar fashion to LookOut) and provides lightning fast searching.  It even indexes your source code J

I have had it installed for a few days now and I’m completely hooked – I found LookOut saved me loads of time and this has already (its found documents containing keywords, source files from years back with handy examples, etc.)

Check out this blog article by Simon Guest which highlighted the extension features, which are fantastic!

Here are some of the shortcuts I’ve added so far (Yes Google is there, just in case J)

gg=http://groups.google.ie/groups?q=$w&hl=en
msdn=http://search.microsoft.com/search/results.aspx?qu=$w&View=msdn&st=b&c=0&s=1&swc=0
msdn2=http://msdn2.microsoft.com/library/$w
g=http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en&q=$w&meta=
kb=http://support.microsoft.com/?id=$w
notepad=c:\windows\system32\notepad.exe

So if you want to add shortcuts to your search tool (maybe even an internal one), go to the search engine, type in say “Test”.  Then copy the URL and replace “Test” with $w.   Then in the MSN Deskbar type @<shortcutname>,<URL>