If you've ever wanted a faster, sleeker way to access your computer's volume controls, look no further than Volumouse. This innovative program lets you set both mouse controls and keyboard shortcuts to access the master volume controls as well as volume settings for a variety of devices. It's easy to use, highly customizable, and hard to do without once you've gotten used to using it.
The program appears as an icon in the Windows system tray, and clicking the icon launches an options panel where you can configure the utility's many features. You can create as many as 12 rules for either mouse actions or keyboard shortcuts, and they can be saved in multiple configurations. The two default rules provide good examples of what the program does: pressing either the Alt key or the left mouse button while also turning the mouse's scroll wheel will turn the master volume up or down on all channels. But you can also select any number of other actions that will control a variety of devices, including the microphone, CD player, and headphones, and you can even control screen brightness.
An optional indicator displays the volume control on the screen as the volume changes. What we love about Volumouse is that it's simple enough for anyone to take advantage of its basic features, but it also includes plenty of options for geekier users who want to highly customize its behavior. The program's built-in Help file didn't load, but we found adequate documentation on the Volumouse Web site. Overall, we think this is an extremely useful utility, and we recommend it.
Volumouse comes as a ZIP file and is accessible after extraction with no need for installation.