How clean and safe is it when you reformat your hdd using windows vist

1. is using the windows vista disc the proper way of reformatting a hdd and installing the same operating system windows vista?

*these are the steps i took*

- place the disc inside my dvd rom, and reboot
- press enter, so it loads to the windows vista page
- when i go to the page that has your hdd options, i click on "format", which only takes around 10 seconds to format.

By using the windows vista disc, will my hdd be safe and clean if i had virus or malcious trojan worms?

Or should i use a hdd that already has an operating system and then connect my hdd (the one i want to reformat) and once my pc reconize my 2nd hdd, right click on my hdd and click "format"

I mean i did that and took me about 4-5 hours with a 1tb hdd. Using Vista only takes about 10 seconds, doesn't seem like it really cleaned my hdd. Did it?
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  1. That's fine and proper way to re-format it when reinstalling OS. No need to do anything else.
    What was done in 10 sec is a quick-format -- erasing the whole file system so unless someone run a special recovery software, your data is cleaned and your drive can be used for installing a new OS.
  2. Like HappyBison said, the 10 second format is safe - any viruses that used to be on the disk will be rendered impotent by it. The only issue is if you had confidential information and you want to be sure it's erased so that nobody can get at it using data recovery software.
  3. When you did the LOOONNNGGG format it must have defaulted to doing a Full Format which does the Quick version and then runs an exhaustive hardware test. Next time you do this, look for the option to specify Quick Format.
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