I moved into an older house with mostly ungrounded circuits. I do plan to upgrade the electrical system to install a proper ground, but I needed to get my workstation up and running right away for work, so I used a "cheater" plug to hook my power strip to the 2-prong outlet in my new office room.
I noticed that, with my "better" power strip (a large 12-outlet unit with USB charging ports and all that), I get mild shocks off my PC tower's metal casing. It's not static electricity, it's definitely AC voltage (has that tingle to it). But I noticed that things plugged into another cheapo power strip I have on a "cheater" do not cause shocks on the casing.
I could be completely wrong, but I suspect that the issue is that my bigger power strip has an LED that lights to indicate that the circuit ground is good. I wonder if what is happening is that when I touch my PC's case, which would be connected to the ground of the power strip via the power cable, the current (trying to) to light that LED is passing through me to ground. (The strip is under the desk, and I'm not really keen on deliberately causing a shock just to see if the LED flashes, and even then my body is probably adding enough resistance to prevent the LED from lighting anyway - I might just be feeling a very small amount of current, since it's not really painful, just "uncomfortable".)
My questions are: is my theory correct (is this why I get shocks when using a power strip with a ground LED but not when using a cheaper one without such an LED) and is there anything I can do about it other than get some cheaper power strips until I am able to rewire the system with a proper ground? I considered replacing the outlet with a GFCI, but that doesn't really give you a true ground, it just protects you from a ground fault - which might mean I would trip the GFCI every time I touch my PC case, which wouldn't be a good thing...