One thing that's bugged me about Messenger is that I couldn't dock it without resorting to third-party add-ons which (while cool are not always up with the latest bleeding edge betas).

So I was really happy today to discover a Vista Sidebar gadget that actually works how I want and does what it says on the tin.

MessengerGadget displays a customizable, usable list of contacts docked in your sidebar (or floating on the desktop if that's your preference - though I'm not sure how that's better than the usual interface) - you can quickly check peoples status and double-click to chat.

I'd love to see an option to hide the windows client (one less thing taking up desktop real estate) and run messenger totally from the sidebar but this is certainly good enough for now.

All I want now is for Messenger to get tabbed chat and a spell-check!