Google Gadgets FAQ & Tips

Here are some basic tips for getting the most from gadgets. Scroll through the Q & A to browse or use the quick links on the right to get to where you want.


How and where can I Add Google Gadgets?

A.You can add gadgets to Google sites and Blogger. Find out how to do it below.

  • Blogger is a free tool for creating blogs.

    First copy the gadget URL. Go to your Blogger Dashboard > Layout, then either in the sidebar, header or footer, select Add a Gadget > Add your Own. Next, paste in the copied gadget url, and fill in your preferences to configure the gadget, then press save.

    You can re-configure your gadget by clicking on the tool wrench by it on your signed-in blog page, or by clicking the edit link for that gadget in Layout.

  • Google Sites are free websites or wikis that you can easily to build yourself. Google gadgets provide a simple way for you to add dynamic content to your Google Sites web pages.

    First copy the gadget URL. Go to edit page > Insert then scroll down to select More gadgets from the drop down menu. From the Setup Your gadget screen select add gadget by URL and (delete the http:// prompt) right click > select paste. You will then be able to setup your gadget size and or preferences. Don't forget to choose the best view (maximised or not). You may preview how the gadget will appear. When you have finished with the setup, select OK to add gadget then save your page.


The gadget URL is too long to type out, is there an easy way?

A.Yes, the best way is to always use copy and paste to do it. That way you are sure you have got the URL right. If you're not sure how to do this, see below.

  • All our listings display the "gadget URL". (If you are looking for the URL of a gadget made by someone else, you need to click the view source link on the full gadget description in the iGoogle gadget directory. The URL is then displayed in your browser's address bar.) To copy the URL, highlight it by holding down the left button on your mouse. Right click > select copy.

    To add the gadget, click into the "add gadget by url" box on the page where you are adding the gadget. Next, right click > select paste.

Is there a full screen view for gadgets?

A.Yes, depending on the gadget and the page you have added it to.

  • Google sites support an alternative full screen mode for individual gadgets called the "canvas view" which can be selected when adding the gadget. Some of our gadgets have links to a full screen view.


I think I have a technical problem with Google gadgets, what should I do?

A. As a first step, check out some of the issues below. Contact us if you believe it is a problem with one of our gadgets.

  • Don't overload one page with too many gadgets.

  • Some gadgets require Flash, especially games and pets gadgets. If your computer does not have Flash, or the latest version of Flash, you may get a blank space where the game/pet should be.

    You can download the latest Adobe Flash Player here for free.

    Our gadgets were built primarily for the now retired iGoogle platform. Flash based gadgets do not work on Google sites.

    A gadget may also appear blank if there is a problem with the way it has been written. In that case, you should contact the developer.

  • If a gadget displays this, it may just be a very brief technical glitch. Try refreshing the page, or clearing your browser's cache then refreshing the page.

    It may also mean maintenance is being carried out where the gadget is hosted, or the place where the gadget is hosted is too busy, or other technical stuff. If this continues for more than a couple of hours with one of our gadgets, please let us know.

  • Sometimes updates are made, for example, to the gadget itself or the Gadgets API. What this means in non-geek speak is that very occasionally a gadget may stop working. If a gadget that was previously working suddenly stops, try deleting the gadget, clearing the browser cache (see below) and adding the gadget again to see if that solves the problem.

    If you think it's a problem specific to one of our gadgets, please let us know.

  • A browser is a program like Internet Explorer or Firefox that displays web pages. You need to have javascript enabled in your browser for gadgets to work. If it has been disabled, Google give some good guidance on how to enable javascript. If you do get problems or something isn't working right, you should try clearing your browser's cache / deleting cookies first. Also try removing any browser add-ons or gadgets that may be causing problems and try re-starting your computer.

    Always keep your browser up to date and make sure you have the latest version available.

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