AlphaGeeky
1 Copper

Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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As I have said in the title, My webcam front led light flashes randomly for no apparent reason. almost like it is taking quick snapshots of me or something. there is no software using the camera. 

I have reimaged 10 to the device and I have disabled access to the cam from all software in the windows 10 settings. but I still randomly have the light flicker on for brief moments occasionally. I have noticed that it often happens when I am getting notifications. and more when I first sign into windows either from sleep or reboot. but I can not figure out what is activating the camera or camera light. 

I can safely rule out malware since I re-imaged the device. (that didn't stop me from putting a tiny piece of tape over the lens though! lol)

any help is appreciated.

1 Solution

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RDA3440
1 Nickel

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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So I have good news and bad news.  It has been confirmed the webcam activity LED is actually hardwired to the microphones.  If you disable the mic, and disable Cortana - no LED.

Unfortunately, I use Cortana, so crippling Windows to work-around a design flaw was not acceptable.

Dell has taken back my 7275 and replaced it with an XPS 13 2-in-1 made to my spec.  While I'm making sacrifices with respect to the 4K display and LTE connectivity, I feel that this is an acceptable solution.  It would be unreasonable to expect Dell to re-engineer the product to correct it at this stage since the 7275 is going to be phased out anyways.

Kudos to Dell/EMC for treating the issue as serious and following through on the commitments made.  I have to say the ProSupport experience was really top notch.

For those that are affected, your current options are:

1. Disable Cortana

2. Contact Dell if your ProSupport warranty is in place.

The firmware could in theory be rewritten to not turn on the LED if the mic is activated and not the webcam, but even that would be a long shot.  If that were the case, I would actually keep my 7275.  I am really going to miss that device.

10 Replies
Rchapman80
1 Copper

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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I'm having the same issue. Have you found a fix?

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Evin11
1 Copper

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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same problem no update

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RDA3440
1 Nickel

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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This has been confirmed with THREE Latitude 12 7275 PC's - all exhibit the same behaviour with Windows 10.  Dell - are you planning to fix this?  It is NOT defective hardware.

Saltgrass
4 Ruthenium

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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It isn't a red light, is it?

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XPS 2720, Inspiron 17 7779, Inspiron 15 7567, XPS 13 9365, Inspiron 1545, TB16 Dock

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RDA3440
1 Nickel

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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No - it is the webcam activity LED - white LED.  Try any video conferencing software or test the camera via Control Panel - when the camera is active the LED is on.  That is the LED being referred to.

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RDA3440
1 Nickel

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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I engaged Dell support (thankfully I bought ProSupport with my unit) and a tech will be out to replace the camera strip.  I'm not convinced this is the root cause, but let's see what the outcome is.  I will post back to this thread with the results.

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AlphaGeeky
1 Copper

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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I doubt that replacing the camera board will  resolve anything, unless the replacement camera has a newer updated firmware.  Maybe a firmware update for the camera will be coming down the pipe for everyone eventually... But then, this is Dell we're talking about here... doubt it, unfortunately... Dell has an uncanny reputation for ignoring issues that doesn't break any core functionality.

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RDA3440
1 Nickel

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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So - poor results so far.  I have had two visits, one to replace the Webcam (no LED on that circuit at all), and one to replace the screen (again, no LED on that either).  The LED appears to be wired to the mic.  

Edited...for now! 

A supervisor called me back to advise that we have exhausted all options and it is now being escalated again.  I should be getting a call tomorrow.

I will continue to post updates.

Stay tuned!

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SysopChris
1 Copper

RE: Dell Latitude 12 (7275) Front Webcam Activity light coming on briefly and intermittently.

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I am so glad to have found someone else experiencing this with the Latitude 7275, servicetag<ServiceTag removed> . My hardware all seems fine and no other 3rd party camera apps are installed besides Skype & Win10. My light is also white. It is supposed to indicate webcam activity as far as I can tell.

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