All new drives are advanced format drives. They use 4K sectors. Vista and seven have no problems formatting them correctly. XP can format them but the alignment will be off causing performance degradation. With XP, use the format tool provided by the drive manufacturer. Some drive manufacturer's also have an align tool just in case you already used XP format to format a disk.
Other than that, you partition and format them normally.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Format