Random Mouse cursor hesitation

Posted on 2006-05-19
Last Modified: 2008-01-09
My system has been running fine since the initial install (WinXP).
Now, an annoying little behavior has popped up.
A few times a minute, when I move the mouse cursor to select something I'm working in, the mouse freezez.
I can move it around for a second and nothing happens on the desktop until it is released and then I can move the cursor.
It's like there is some kind of routine grabbing the mouse driver and then letting go.
It's not a show stopper, but a pain when I'm in the zone and doing some graphics work.
I look to see that the cursor is over the menu and there it is stuck halfway in the middle of the motion. I second later.... move on!

Ran McAffe, windows defender, and restored to when this was not a problem to no avail. All come back clean.
Any ideas?
Thanks in advance....
Question by:pnanna
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    We had this problem on our Dell GX Optiplex 240 - 270's.  First goto the manufacturers site and see if there is a BIOS upgrade.  

    If not run task manager and click the performance tab.  Let the window display in the background until the mouse freezes.  See if the Memory or CPU goes up while it's frozen.  If so you can click the processes tab to find out what service or application is causing it.

    If the CPU or Memory does not go up while the mouse freezes, it could be due to a faulty memory chip or bad sectors on your hard drive.

    I hope that helps.
    LVL 24

    Accepted Solution

    I have seen this caused by hard drives reverting to PIO mode. Windows XP will force a drive to revert to PIO if reaches at certain number or CRC errors at any point. Not having DMA access to hard drives can cause all sorts of slowdown behavior, including mouse stuttering.

    To restore DMA if this is the case....

    To check DMA mode, and to change it after deleting the registry keys...
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    Both me and my nephew had this problem. Are you using a Microsoft optical mouse with wheel? Both of us were and the way we fixed this problem was to buy Logitech mice. Problemed cleared right up. I have seen others having the same trouble here at the office.

    Author Comment


    Indeed, my primary drive was in the PIO mode.
    I switched back per your instructions.
    The mouse cursor hesitation however still prevails.
    But anything performance related is still a help!
    LVL 24

    Expert Comment

    Did you get the problem taken care of? Just curious since you said DMA didn't fix it, yet you closed the question.

    Author Comment

    Sorry, I've not used this board before and didn't realize I had closed the question somehow....
    Anyway, nope....... the mouse cursor stall has become more frequent and aggrivating throughout the week.
    I did the Bios upgrade and checked the processes while the cursor is hung. Kept a sharp eye on the drive led when it happens and there is no tie that I can see.
    Purchased a fresh hard drive yesterday and this weekend will image and replace my C: drive first, and then the other two drives in case they are going bad.
    Would havng my Pagefile Sys on a drive other than the primary be a problem?

    LVL 24

    Expert Comment

    "Would havng my Pagefile Sys on a drive other than the primary be a problem?"
    No, in fact it's usually recommended if possible, to have the pagefile on a drive other than the boot or system drive.

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