I don’t know about you, but I have a widescreen monitor and I’ve enjoyed having the WordPress administration menus collapsed versus extended. The extra real estate is nice to have with less for me to look at. However, this collapsed menu comes at a price whereas, this menu option does not allow me to see updates for plugins, themes, nor can I see if any comments are being held in the moderation queue. While I think this is a WordPress shortcoming, Scott Reilly has once again created a simple plugin that solves a simple problem. It’s called Notifications For Collapsed Admin Menu. This plugin shows a visual notification by providing a background color on the comment and plugin icons. As a bonus, if you hover the mouse cursor over the icons, a tooltip will show the number of comments or plugins that need to be taken cared of. The following image provided by Scott is a good explanation as to how this plugin works.
If you choose to use this plugin, keep the following note in mind:
Also refer to the plugin page for directions on how to change the color that is used for the visual notification.