General discussion

Cursor Jumps Around Screen

Feb 22, 2005 11:03AM PST

A new problem has cropped up on my computer. My cursor suddenly jumps to previous parts of the document I am typing in at random times. I could be pecking along and all of a sudden the blinking cursor jumps several lines up the page (always up) and I end up typing in the middle of previously written words.

I can?t find any rhyme or reason for this. It happens at random times in Word and Internet Explorer/Firefox, and I have seen no commonalities between keystrokes. I have updated my virus definitions and run complete scans with nothing found. I?ve also scanned the computer with Spyware Doctor.

Can anyone shed some light as to why my cursor is suddenly jumping or how to fix it??

I?m using a Dell Inspirion Laptop with Windows XP SP2.


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Try another mouse.
Feb 22, 2005 4:07PM PST

If you can't find a software problem, it's time to begin suspecting the hardware.


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Mouse Problems
Mar 17, 2005 2:11PM PST

Kees, One of my co-workers had that same sort of problem. The curser had a mind of its own. We run Macs. The solution for this particular problem was a new mouse. AOK now!


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tried that :(
Sep 29, 2005 8:07AM PDT

I am sad to report I tried that for my Inspiron 9300 and it didn't completely fix the problem.

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I know how to fix this issue
Oct 11, 2005 7:14AM PDT

The reason the cursor is jumping and moving is in the O.S. The fix for it is Reformating the system and instlling the Operating System correctly.. It isn't the mouse trust me I had that problem twice one 2 diffrent computers and one was 6 weeks old .. All I did was reinstall XP on it but I had to reformat the older system.. I promise reformat and your mouse will act fine..

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Oct 11, 2005 10:13PM PDT

Reinstalling XP is a bit tough, Dell won't send the me OS on CD. The system didn't come with it!

But, when I restore the system (which I did twice) it doesn't fix the problem. Would you have expected it to do so?

I am reluctant to deal with Dell on getting the OS disks, it is well over 350 hours dealing with this computer so far, and customer service is a nightmare. Also, there's the reinstallation of everything - a huge undertaking with close to 100Gb of stuff on the system!

I appreciate your thoughts,

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jumping cursor on inspiron
Oct 12, 2005 4:53AM PDT

Hello Debra,

I simply downloaded the correct driver for my Inspiron 8200 (the driver that was installed was just a "ps2 compatible mouse" which didn't have the adjustments for the track stick (?) or little blue knob that sticks out of the keyboard between the G,H & B keys. After I downloaded the driver for the ALS touchpad, I was able to disable the track stick, and now I don't have the problem of jumping cursor. I didn't use the little stick anyhow .... easier than reinstalling OS! Good luck

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The Fix (at least it worked for me) HALLELUJA!!
Feb 9, 2006 7:36AM PST

I just spent 40 minutes w/ HP customer service, and my cursor problems are over, seemingly. I was walked through a series of fixes, and the last one seemed to work. It was not a static charge, and it was not a driver problem, as was first suspected. I don't actually know what the problem was, just how it was fixed.
I was told to press <ctrl><f6> at the same time. When I did this it took me to the welcome screen (the one I get when I first turn on my comp). I clicked on my user name, and tried typing, and the problem persisted. This was repeated several times, w/ the problem remaining.
So I was instructed to reboot my computer, which I did, and after that the problem has been nonexistent (knock on wood). If the problem were still here, typing would be much too painful and frustrating to type this message, and would have inevitably resulted in a flying notebook.
I hope this saves someone the frustration that I just went through.

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Will this fix work on a Toshiba Satellite -15
Mar 3, 2006 12:43AM PST

Will this fix work on a Toshiba Satellite -15 to fix the jumping cursor.Thanks indyt2

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Same problem with cursor
Feb 25, 2005 1:57AM PST

I have the same problem with the same setup. I have an Inspiron 8500, what model is yours? I usually use it with a mouse plugged in, so I disabled the touchpad thinking maybe I was tapping it. Didn't work, still jumps around.

I actually changed the name of a client into a curse word this morning when replying to an email in Outlook 2003 and didn't notice. Very embarrising explaining that one.

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Try the software angle.
Feb 25, 2005 7:21AM PST

If no answer from the original poster comes, and you're sure it isn't the touchpad nor the mouse (mice are very easy to change), it's time to go for virus and spyware checks. Those nice keyboard loggers are supposed to only log and not type themselves, of course, but one never knows.

This problems occurring on (approximately) the same machines lead me to still suspect the hardware, personally. But laptop-hardware is difficult to repair. You might still have warranty on it? And did you already contact Dell customer support. If it's really a hardware problem, they might already know it. I suppose they will start with telling you to use their restore CD to go back to the very beginning of the software environment on this machine. Only if the problem still occurs then, they might be willing to repair the machine for you.

Good luck,


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Feb 25, 2005 9:26AM PST

I disabled the track stick (NOT touchpad) and my problem is solved. I never realized I was hitting it while typing . . . or maybe it's just ultra sensitive or something, but I have the stick off and everything else on and it works fine.

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Same Problem
Mar 12, 2005 11:55PM PST

I have the exact same problem. Its driving me crazy. I have a Dell Inspiron 8600c. I do not have track stick on my laptop. Have you any other suggestions?

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Same Problem
Mar 16, 2005 12:38PM PST

It's got to be along the virus line. My laptop just started doing this two days ago. I have a HP Pavillion. I recently downloaded SP2 so don't know if that has something to do with it. But have noticed that it happens when I type the letter sequence of yo ... it just happened. I've run Norton, Xsoft, Adware, and have come up with nothing.

HELP!! It's impossible to type anything when 'almost' everytime you type the word you, the cursor jumps. (It didn't happen just them). Can't figure this one out.

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same problem
Mar 17, 2005 10:42PM PST

I am using a Dell latitude laptop running XP and for several weeks now have had this jumping cursor problem. I have used this laptop daily for over a year without problems. No new software. I run virus protection and spyware programs and have detected no problem. I have never used the track stick, since I am used to the tapping mousepad, but I haven't tried disabling the trackstick yet. Somehow, tho, I don't think that is it: a tech person suggested I was hitting something inadvertently, but it has occurred even when I take exaggerated steps to keep everything except my finget tips OFF the laptop. (it just jumped again. Oddly, for a while I thought I detected certain patterns to it, I thought it happened more often on the word "you", etc. but I now think it is totally random.

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Same problem with Latitude
Apr 19, 2005 12:24AM PDT

I was told by my IT guy it's a hardware problem, related to pressure on the frame of the laptop. Bummer.

I've tried a mouse, disabling the touchpad, and everything else is up to date and checked out.

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Attach a keyboard
Jan 16, 2007 8:13AM PST

I solve the problem by attaching a keyboard and not useing the laptop keyboard.

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Jumping cursor
Apr 1, 2007 12:43PM PDT

I had an Apple notebook OSX and had exactly the same issues with cursors. I ignored it thinking the notebook was just getting old or maybe I was just typing too fast.
However, wtrying to assist a friend with her PC laptop over the weekend, she complained about the same problem.
Tried all the tricks of turning off and on mouse/touch pad/keyboard settings to no avail.
Will now try some of the fixes I've just read in the blogs and will update. Seems like this issue is more evident with laptops.

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Jumping cursor
Jun 26, 2005 4:40PM PDT

I have the same jumping cursor problem with Toshiba satellite A70 in Word - I thought it was due to the wireless mouse but it also happens with the touchpad.
Very irritating to say the least.

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Jumping Cursor
Jan 15, 2007 6:50PM PST

OS Name Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
Version 5.1.2600 Service Pack 2 Build 2600
OS Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation
System Name LIFEBOOK
System Manufacturer FUJITSU
System Model LifeBook N6110
System Type X86-based PC
Processor x86 Family 6 Model 13 Stepping 8 GenuineIntel ~1866 Mhz
BIOS Version/Date FUJITSU // Phoenix Technologies Ltd. Version 1.07, 4/25/2005
SMBIOS Version 2.3
Windows Directory C:\WINDOWS
System Directory C:\WINDOWS\system32
Boot Device \Device\HarddiskVolume1
Locale United States
Hardware Abstraction Layer Version = "5.1.2600.2562 (xpsp.040919-1030)"
User Name LIFEBOOK\Owner
Time Zone Eastern Standard Time
Total Physical Memory 512.00 MB
Available Physical Memory 106.54 MB
Total Virtual Memory 2.00 GB
Available Virtual Memory 1.96 GB
Page File Space 1.20 GB
Page File C:\pagefile.sys

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my control panel doesnt show touch pad/track stick options
Aug 10, 2005 12:00PM PDT

i get pointer, driver, pointer options, etc.
no touch pad or track stick though.
how do i fix this then/?

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control panel doesn't show touch pad
Aug 18, 2005 10:24PM PDT

Under "Mouse" you should have several tabs: Tapping, Gestures, Area Switch, Others, Buttons, Pointers, Pointer Options, Orientation and Hardware. Choose "Tapping" to adjust the touchpad. This is on a Compaq Presario R3000 running Windows XP Home. If this doesn't apply to you, I've head that cursor jumping can also be caused by a virus (don't know which one, though). Good luck.

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Inspiron 9300 same problem
Aug 25, 2005 12:26AM PDT

I am having this problem as well. It appears to neither be the touchpad or mouse. I can have the cursor jump from program to program, within a word processing program to earlier text, and deselect web pages when I am just scrolling or filling in the address bar or forms on line. Sometimes the hourglass shows up for an instant before the cursor deselects. There is no rhyme or reason I can see to this other than it is at least once a minute.

I have tried everything. All the diagnostics are fine, and uninstalling and reinstalling drivers isn't fixing it. It does it in Safe Mode, too. I've reinstalled the system three times, done all the diagnostics, replaced the motherboard, hard drive, screen and touchpad.

This is an Inspiron 9300, 1.5 Ghz, 512Mb dual process ram with an NVIDEA graphics card with 512Mb memory. 100Mb hard drive that's 93% clear. I run several anti mal- and spyware programs and Norton Systemworks.

Any ideas what else I can try to fix this?

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jumping cursor
Apr 3, 2005 10:02AM PDT

Hello dbadger.
I had similar problems and noticed that it stopped when I unplugged my mouse on my Toshiba Satellite Laptop.
So I reinstalled my Logitech Rollerball Mouse software and that seems too have cleared it up.
Hope this helps


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cursor jumping a Dell thing
Apr 22, 2005 1:37AM PDT

I have a brand new Dell laptop a Latitude D5O5 and have exactly the same problem of the cursor jumping around

it sounds like a Dell thing to me?

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Not a Dell Thing...
Apr 22, 2005 4:37AM PDT

I have an HP laptop, so it's not just a Dell thing. My laptop is about three years old and it just started doing this in the last 4-6 weeks. Makes me think it's a virus.

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Sony too
Jun 14, 2005 4:06PM PDT

You're right, I have a Sony VAIO PCGFX240, about 4 years old. It has this problem too. It hasn't always had it. Lately it seems to be getting worse though. It makes life EXTREMELY frustrating. Somebody has got to have an answer. I've also talked to other people who've been experiencing this phenomenon. HELP!

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Aug 1, 2005 5:54PM PDT

My R51 started doing it a couple of weeks ago.

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the problem came 'out of the box'
Aug 25, 2005 12:31AM PDT

This computer of mine (9300 Dell, 1.5Ghz, etc) has had this problem since day one. I hadn't even gone onto he internet before it occurred teh first time, I believe. (I cannot swear to that, though.)

My problem is so severe that I've had to reselect this message 3x so far. Can't work on this computer. Doesn't matter what program I use, either, it seems to occur in all of them.

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Not a Dell Thing, nor even a PC thing...a Windows thing?
Mar 13, 2007 2:59AM PDT

I have the same jumping cursor problem on my Apple iBook which I must use at work. Also the random/auto/instant/highlight/erase thing makes me crazy. The touchpad is so sensitive that you can't navigate anywhere without highlighting something you don't want to. I need to use the touchpad since I carry the iBook around a lot in a wireless office environment. BUT - I have the same problem on the Dell laptop I use at home where I also use a wireless mouse on a wireless internet connection. Happened before we went wireless, too.

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A Windows thing?
Mar 13, 2007 3:50AM PDT

Hi Macsue, I posted something similar last week. This happens on my new Gateway laptop. It also happened on my last PC, a Dell laptop, AFTER a hard drive crash and new hard drive/OS installation. I never had this problem before that. Neither were wireless and neither had a mouse. Gateway Support told me to update the Synaptics software -- which I did, and it hasn't helped. It is so frustrating. The one thing I have learned to use A LOT is the "undo" key, especially when the jumping cursor highlights entire sections of text and deletes them. At least that has prevented me from jumping off a bridge! I have watched the cursor jump to a different section of text without my touching the PC at all. It is really ridiculous. I have checked the Microsoft Support Knowledge Base and it does mention an issue with the cursor behaving erratically, but it refers to mouse pointers, which we are not using. (I just started to type here and the screen jumped down to the bottom, for no reason.) Anyway, if you get any resolution, please let me know and I'll do the same. Thanks.

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