I'm not exactly sure when or why it happened, but somewhere along the way, my System Tray volume icon disappeared.
At one point, it was right there, just waiting to be clicked. Now, the System Tray shows only my network, battery, and Action Center indicators. (Just to clarify, I'm using Windows 8, but referring to Desktop mode. The same issue could apply to Windows 7.)
Now, to find volume, I have to first click the little System Tray arrow, which reveals all the "overflow" icons, then search for volume amidst nearly a dozen others. Hassle!
Fortunately, this is an easy fix:
1. Click that aforementioned arrow, and then click Customize in the pop-up icon box that appears.
2. Scroll until you see Volume, then click the corresponding Behaviors drop-down menu.
3. Choose Show icon and notifications.
4. Click OK to exit.
Presto! Now your volume icon is once again an omnipresent member of the System Tray. You can use this same method for any other icons you want to keep visible at all times.
Contributing Editor Rick Broida writes about technology and is author of the new book,"The Cheapskate Rules." Ask for help with your PC hassles at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up to have the Hassle-Free PC newsletter (which is included in the Power Tips newsletter) e-mailed to you each week.