|My desktop, Compaq PC, uses a Recovery CD to restore like new. I notice that some of my XP settings automatically returned after I did a recovery.|
I am thinking you may want to use something like a harddrive manufacturers utility CD or floppy to write zeros to the HDD, then format the zeros.
eg. Werstern Digital's "Data Lifeguard Tools" can do this ----
Compatible with Windows 95/98/98SE/ME/NT/2000/XP. The software includes utilities that can perform the following tasks: drive copy, diagnose a drive for problems, write zeros or low level format a drive, provide drive information, create bootup disk, and provide ATA Ultra management.
WD says if you do not have v.11, you should download it: