My mouse cursor often moves on its own...is it a mouse problem or something else?
December 23, 2005 10:09 AM   Subscribe

For the past two days, I have noticed that my mouse cursor will move itself and point to the systray. I've never had this issue before so I am extremely confused over it. Does anyone know what it could be? Thanks!
posted by smoothie to Computers & Internet (10 answers total)
 
Have you checked your mouse control panel? Some mouse drivers have options to have the mouse automatically move to point at things that the computer anticipates you want to work with. This is often called something like "snap-to" navigation or something similar.
posted by Mid at 10:24 AM on December 23, 2005


If it's a laser mouse and you have red on your mousepad, that might be part of the problem. It was for me and my Mighty Mouse.
posted by dobbs at 10:40 AM on December 23, 2005


Or, if it's a laptop with a Trackpoint in it, the little trackpoint hats sometimes get loose or off-center, causing the pointer to get temporarily wedged in a certain direction.
posted by Gable Oak at 10:48 AM on December 23, 2005


Laptop or Desktop? Mouse or trackpad or "nubbin"? If laptop and not a mouse, make sure you are not accidentally interacting with the trackpad or whatever the nubbin is called. Your mouse driver should have the option to disable one or the other (or both) depending on which you prefer to use and which you accidentally bump while typing.

on preview, replace all occurences of "nubbin" with "trackpoint"

Also, like Mid says, check your mouse driver for settiings and "features" that might be doing this.
posted by misterbrandt at 11:33 AM on December 23, 2005


It happens to mine all the time. Someone once told me to leave it along and let it move until it stops. I do that whenever it happens and it seems to fix itself.
posted by any major dude at 11:48 AM on December 23, 2005


There's also a slight possibility something unfriendly is installed on your system.

I'd suggest installing AdAware and running it to ensure nothing's in the background. Make sure you have strong Anti-Virus, as well, although that's not likely to be the problem.

dobbs—did you mean an (led-based) optical mouse? Mine's a laser, with no visible light, because it uses infrared. I don't think it gets tripped up on red...
posted by disillusioned at 1:17 PM on December 23, 2005


Is your mouse set to "snap to" dialog boxes? I forget where the setting is (probably somewhere in Control Panel > Mouse), but it makes the mouse move to a dialog box whenever a new one pops up. Perhaps it's a background type process of a systray app and is causing the mouse to go.

Another possibility is that your mouse is losing signal (if it's wireless). I use a wireless mouse with my laptop, and sometimes if I pick up my laptop and just walk away without first turning off the mouse, the cursor would get stuck in the top left hand corner of the screen.
posted by mr.dan at 1:38 PM on December 23, 2005


Does it happen to be a Logitech mouse? This happens with mine sometimes but only when it's idle...
posted by jackofsaxons at 7:20 PM on December 23, 2005


I've had this problem with a laptop with a trackpoint (I think, the Wikipedia page wouldn't load for me but the description here sounds about right). Plugging in an external mouse and using that made the problem go away.
posted by rjs at 12:25 AM on December 24, 2005


I just got a new cellphone and my wired mouse at work moves first to one side, then to the other, every time my phone checks my email. it's weird and i've heard the 'dit dit dit' thing before but never seen a mouse move. is the mouse motion coinciding with anything radio-related?
posted by crabintheocean at 7:28 AM on December 24, 2005


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