Recently my external hard drive sounds like it is being constantly scanned or indexed, and I cannot figure out why. I turned off Windows Search and disabled my antivirus software, but it doesn't make any difference. Nothing is being used in the hard drive. I'm using Windows 7. Is there a way to find out what is accessing my hard drive?
You can monitor your disk activity with Resource Monitor. Simply search
Resource Monitor in the search bar, or open up your task manager and click the Resource Monitor button under the Performance tab.
Process Monitor is a great utility for checking out file access requests. You get an awful lot of information but using filters (highlighted in picture) you can narrow down what's causing the access.