When toolbars are done badly, they can be very annoying. When they're done right, however, they can bring easily-accessed extra functionality to your browsing experience. Luckily for us, the Ask. com Toolbar is a good example of the latter. The Ask. com Toolbar can be used with Firefox or Internet Explorer and on both is a slim, well-designed tool that fits in perfectly. The Ask icon on the far left is a direct link to the search website, or you can use the built-in search bar to locate information directly from within the toolbar. The small Ask. com Toolbar icons that takes up the rest of the bar allow you to customize your search immediately, limiting the results to Images, Weather, Dictionary, Thesaurus, Stocks or Blogs.
The Ask. com Toolbar also gives you handy access to page resizing and a Highlight function, but I have to admit that I couldn't make this work during my tests. On the far right there are a limited number of configuration options, among them options to display recent searches or clear them when you exit the browser. Ask. com Toolbar isn't revolutionary, but if you like the Ask search engine, it is a nice way of adding some subtle search power to your browsing experience.