I've encountered a similar problem. Out of the blue, my hard drive light would just keep on blinking when idle and as soon as I moved the mouse, it would stop. It appeard as if the computer was loading or running something on its own when left alone. After some research, I found out that somehow, the "indexing services" on the hard drives were activated. Indexing supposedly generates a list a computer compiles for faster file access. However, it really didn't make a difference to me and the continously blinking hard drive light was unnerving. So I basically turned off the indexing service and that did it. Hard drive is again silent when idle.
Here is how to check/deactivate indexing:
1) Double click my computer, right click on C:, click properties, click the tab "general", uncheck the box for "allow indexing service to index this disk for fast file searching", click apply/OK.
2) Right click my computer, click on manage, click on "services and applications", double click services, right click on "indexing service", click on properties, make sure that the service is "stopped".
Thats pretty much it. XP pro probably activates indexing on default so you're getting all this hard drive activity. I hope this solves your problem. Let me know how this turns out...
I have the same problem. I have gone though the extensive posts here and I finally found the cause but their is no solution from DELL because they refuse to see it as a problem. Typical of DELL as it reflects their standards or lack thereof.
Blinking hard disk light
No matter what DELL tell you, this is not normal behaviour for modern computers. Computer hard drive lights should NOT flash when their is no disk activity. This must be a design fault of the DELL motherboard.
Windows-XP polls the DVD-RW or CD-RW drive on a regular basis checking the media type loaded. It appears the DELL motherboard hard disk drive light shows ANY activity on the IDE controller and not just hard disk activity unlike every other computer in the world.
Many DELL systems with a DVD-RW or CD-RW drive installed.
Hard Disk Drive light flashes every second when their is no other disk/process activity.
Diagnosis (instructions for Windows-XP):
Kevin Davies (...building computer's for 15 years...)
Message Edited by Kevin Davies on 04-07-2005 04:19 AM
Never mind I figured it out with your help about what was causing. I figured out that it was the firmware that needed updated. So I went to dell downloaded the new firmware and installed it and now when the computer is idle, the light does not blink. So again thanks for the help.