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There is an app for OSX called "Bartender" that lets you hide multiple app indicators behind a single icon. I've tried looking for an Ubuntu/*nix equivalent to no avail. Does any one have any suggestions?

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Ubuntu pioneered "indicators" instead of "system tray icons" as they were before in order to solve this problem. There are now a limited number of indicators that are based on function, and each indicator can represent multiple applications.

Examples: the sound indicator controls your system volume and also your music player; the messaging indicator interfaces with instant messaging, email and microblogging.

More information at:

However, this is really for developers. I'm not aware of any mechanism that allows users to collapse multiple system tray icons without getting a developer to alter the program. Perhaps someone else has an answer for that.

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KDE environment in kubuntu have plasma widgets having similar feature. You can define group on desktop icons.

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