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What is the Difference Between Googlebar and Google Toolbar?

By Derek Schauland
Updated May 16, 2024
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Google™ has given the Internet community many tools to make searching and other online experiences better. Among these innovations are the googlebar and Google Toolbar which, when installed, allows Google™ functionality to live directly within a browser. It also eliminates the need to visit the Google™ homepage to make use of search and other functions.

When using Google Toolbar, bookmarks can be stored, search with suggestions are available, and web pages can be shared with friends right from your browser window. While the googlebar and Google Toolbar are both useful tools, there are some noted differences.

Googlebar is an open source application that was created to make the utilities provided for Internet Explorer® with the Google Toolbar available for Netscape and Mozilla Firefox® users. The design of the googlebar and Google Toolbar looks a bit different, but the core functionality is the same, to put Google™ tools into the browser application.

One difference between the googlebar and Google Toolbar was that the googlebar was built by the same group of open source developers behind the Firefox® browser, while Google’s in house team of developers created the Google Toolbar. Since the release of Mozilla Firefox®, the Google Toolbar has been expanded to work as a toolbar in the Firefox® browser as well as Internet Explorer®, making the officially supported toolbar by Google™ the more widely downloaded application. The development behind googlebar has slowed due to some of the upgrades to the Google Toolbar and spreading popularity.

One of the main differences in features between the googlebar and Google Toolbar is that the official Google Toolbar has auto fill capabilities, which require additional plug-ins for the Netscape and Firefox browsers. While Google™ has ported their toolbar to Mozilla Firefox®, which is based on the code that created Netscape®, the official toolbar does not function within Netscape Navigator®. To use this functionality, the googlebar will still be needed to make this happen.

The "what’s new" section of the googlebar website from Mozilla® has not been updated since 2006 most likely because the Google Toolbar has been ported to Firefox® and the latest releases of Internet Explorer®, but Firefox 1.5 with googlebar installed and updated to the latest release will still function quite well.

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Discussion Comments

By anon158998 — On Mar 09, 2011

I like WiseGeek. It really comes in handy. But I think that you should change the name. --David K.

By apolo72 — On Mar 04, 2008

The little Google search box that may automatically (without additional downloads) show up in your web browser (it is automatically built into my FireFox browser) is neither the googlebar nor the Google Toolbar. It's yet another way that Google has attempted to make searching (using their service ;) ) more convenient.

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