mouse wanders erratically

lately , when using the mouse, after a few seconds of inactivity, the cursor will wander across the screen without any movement of the mouse. It will snap back into operation when mouse is moved, but never did this before. System reset didn't fix it,...using "go back" utility didn't fix it...not using computer for a few hours and it seems ok for now. Any clues on what to try if it happens again?
mconnerAsked:
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jhanceCommented:
Check your mouse for dirt/lint in the mechanism.  Look at the bottom and remove the circular cover that holds the ball in.  Look at the inside.  There are usually 3 rollers and they often get clogged up with crud.  Clean it off with a QTip/alcohol and blow any loose material out.
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mrorangeCommented:
is this a laptop or pc?
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jhanceCommented:
Check your mouse for dirt/lint in the mechanism.  Look at the bottom and remove the circular cover that holds the ball in.  Look at the inside.  There are usually 3 rollers and they often get clogged up with crud.  Clean it off with a QTip/alcohol and blow any loose material out.


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mconnerAuthor Commented:
thanks for your input, ...I have had to clean the mouse"rollers" many times over the years but this did not seem related to a mechanical thing. I feel it was software somehow, or a conflict of some kind, since I did not physically do anything to fix it. If the contacts in the mouse are bad, I think it would still be doing it, but it's not. It worked fine when in use, but drifted when left idle.Let me field a few more possibilities, ...if no other ideas are offered...I'll accept the comment as an answer...thanks again....(gateway 333 pII w/ intellimouse -desktop pc)
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jhanceCommented:
>If the contacts in the mouse are bad,

I said nothing about contacts.  I'm talking about a MECHANICAL problem where the rollers that track the mouse ball lose traction with it and they SPIN on their own.  What you've described is a classic "dirty mouse" problem and I've fixed these things many times for people.

The sensors are tiny little disks with slots around the edge.  These interrupt a beam of light.  If it's free to move after losing it's grip on the ball it can move back and forth (perhaps driven by a slight vibration in your desk) and the cursor will "walk" across the screen.  Sometimes it's not in the right spot, other times it is.  That's why it doesn't happen all the time.  These are very sensitive.  Try it.  See how little mouse movement it takes to cause the cursor to move.
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mconnerAuthor Commented:
thanks for your input, ...I have had to clean the mouse"rollers" many times over the years but this did not seem related to a mechanical thing. I feel it was software somehow, or a conflict of some kind, since I did not physically do anything to fix it. If the contacts in the mouse are bad, I think it would still be doing it, but it's not. It worked fine when in use, but drifted when left idle.Let me field a few more possibilities, ...if no other ideas are offered...I'll accept the comment as an answer...thanks again....(gateway 333 pII w/ intellimouse -desktop pc)
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mconnerAuthor Commented:
Thanks "jhance"....I used the term contacts figuratively but you described a scenario that seems plausible...the free spinning discs not held fast by the mouse ball...the only thing I ever experienced from a "dirty mouse "was a bumpy action when rolling across the pad..but live and learn...thanks M.C.
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