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Mouse starts wandering off


At least once a day, my mouse starts wandering off on it's own and then erases what is on the screen as it goes along. It's impossible to control it and all we can do is reboot. I have Norton Virus Scan running and it doesn't find any virus. We are networked here at work with a desktop as a server(5 computers plus the server) and all have to log into the network. It doesn't happen to anyone else but me so it must be something on my computer. Do you have any idea what could cause this? And how I can fix it? I appreciate your help.


This question was answered on March 9, 2004. Much of the information contained herein may have changed since posting.

When you run your mouse over the desktop it picks up all kinds of debris, gunk, and goo that can get drawn up into the mouse and keep it from working well

Symptoms of a dirty mouse include a pointer that jumps around on the screen or won't move at all If you've got a pointer problem, it's probably time to clean your mouse

Start with cotton swabs and denatured alcohol We recommend denatured alcohol over rubbing alcohol, which has glycerin in it and can leave a slippery residue behind

You could go to a computer store and buy one of those fancy mouse-cleaning kits, but there really isn't any need You're going to be able to clean it just as well by using these two inexpensive items

First, remove the ball

Start by removing the mouse ball Turn your mouse upside down, turn the disk that's holding the ball in place, and let the ball drop out Clean the ball with a dry cloth

Clean the inside

Look inside the mouse You'll see two rollers: One is for horizontal movement and the other is for vertical movement That's where most of the gunk usually ends up

Use that cotton swab and some alcohol to rub away the residue You won't need much alcohol -- just moisten the cotton swab Rub the rollers and turn them until you get all the residue off

Back together, clean as new

When the rollers are clean, let them dry out for a moment or two Return the ball into place and turn the disk securely Your mouse should be as good as new

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Posted by Student of Katharine Gibbs School - New York on March 9, 2004