|Yes, you can do it yourself. Many Dells have a built-in recovery partition - try pressing 'Ctrl' & F11 at the boot screen to see if it starts. But you can still do it from the supplied disks, as long as they came with your machine - you should have more than one disk from Dell: the OS disk and then a drivers disk and applications disk is the usual case. Just insert the OS disk, press F12 to select the boot menu and choose the CD/DVD, choose your country/language and then 'install now'. Once it's finished, insert the drivers disk and it should recognise the hardware on your system & you just go through installing the correct drivers as necessary, then use the final disk to replace any utilities that came with your machine that you may want.|
$100 is a bit on the high side, but it's probably about right because they would hopefully recover/restore your data as well, and then install all of the latest updates, which can be quite time consuming. Vista is a bit of a pain because whereas XP was easy to reinstall with just about any OEM disk, Vista is much more 'locked in' to the manufacturer.
"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..." Pink Floyd