There In the old days when laptops were big and bulky, there was always a hard disk drive indicator LED somewhere on the laptops. Actually there were multiple LEDs displaying for indicating one or other type of activities. But now when laptops are getting slimmer and slimmer, manufacturers tend not to use many LED indicators in their design. Unless you look for a laptop having some indicator lights, you might not know whether your laptop’s storage drives are active.
Through the use of an open-source tool SSD-LED you can always know the activity status of the storage drives. It works for both the hard disk drives (HDD) and the newer solid state drives (SSD). It places an icon in the notification area in Windows desktop. When your drives are not being accessed, it shows a black icon. When the drives are being read, it displays a green icon. And when the drives are being written to, it displays a red icon.
By default it displays the activity of all the storage drives available, but in the preferences, you can select one of the drives available in your PC. You can also choose the activity indicator threshold (the speed of drive access at which it assumes the drive is active) and the refresh interval (time after which is checks for the drive activity). In the preferences window, it displays a real-time graph for the read and write access speeds for the selected drives.
Even though this tool has a title SSD-LED, it works for the hard disk drives as well. In fact it enumerates all the physical drives (as far as the source-code of version 188.8.131.52 shows). But it can be useful specially for the SSDs as they don’t make any sound unlike the HDDs that make a small spinning sound when being accessed, which means there is no way to know if SSDs are being accessed without any notification indicator.
You can download SSD-LED from https://github.com/SIRprise/SSD-LED.