I was wondering what piece of software the groupthink recommends to see what program is accessing the HD at any given moment. Mind you, this is a Vista-32 machine. Maybe there’s a system tool that already does this?
Not that I know of but the free Sysinternals suite has several utilities that do this – DiskMon, FileMon, and Process Monitor.
If you’re investigating Mysterious Disk Activity, Vista has a whole bunch of background stuff that runs while the system is idle, far more so than XP had. Most of the time it turns out to be updating the prefetch flags on files.
In Vista, go to Task Manager -> Performance -> Resource Monitor. This will give you some rough idea about which processes are using the disc.
Thanks for the recommendations. I am, in fact, a little puzzled as to why the HD seems to be going off once every second. It’s eeriely like the sound of a wristwatch ticking away. The resource monitor reports that it is Vista’s own processes doing their thing.