yes, that would definitely be the smart thing to do. reformatting the hard drive and reinstalling windows isn't hard though, so it's faster just to do it your self (just make sure you have *everything* backed up!!!) there's a couple free programs you can use for reformatting. one is the Ranish Partition Manager
it's freeware and can do any kind of reformatting, partitioning etc. that you could want to do with your hard drive, but it's a DOS program and it's not completely intuitive, so read up on it first if you're going to use it. another one is from Maxtor, it's called MaxBlast Plus II
(it will only work if at least one of your hard drives is a maxtor but I think I remember you saying something about having a problem with a maxtor drive Ed) it works quite nicely for formatting and partitioning. I've used both, but if you're new to partitioning, go with the Maxtor (or another alternative is PartitionMagic by PowerQuest) which is easier to use.