Trying to reinstall vista, can't format drive.


May 21, 2009
I am assisting a friend with her vista reformat and re-installation, because she was recently the target of some nasty spyware and wants to reformat now for PC health anyway.
Here is the build I posted in a previous thread, for your information: link to previous thread

Since I am helping her via phone, and I am not 100% familiar with windows vista, I used this website to guide her along the installation.

We did not get far.

Around step 10, where you select the hard drive and click reformat, the option was grayed, in fact all of the options except load driver were grayed and she was not able to reformat. The only other option was to reinstall vista onto the hard drive, which wouldn't wipe any of the files at all. The point is to completely erase all the files on the HD so there is no chance of the spyware returning.
Having these buttons grayed out is extremely annoying and I don't know what to do about it.

After some research, I came up with a few possible solutions. I don't know which ones are the best.
The first was using Partition Magic 8 to create a partition then simply install on that, and delete the other partition with the application. However I heard that this software does not work on vista 64 bit. Also possibly partition magic would be able to format the drive while vista may not be able to for some reason.
The second idea I had was to use a Kill Disc type thing, I heard DBAN was the best:
The 3rd idea I had was to use WD's Data LifeGuard Diagnostics to write zeroes to the entire hard drive -- not sure how safe this is.

Please let me know which is the best solution, or if there is a solution you may suggest otherwise. Vista being unable to reformat this drive is very annoying.

EDIT: She just ran the WD LifeGuard Diagnostics and the quick scan was unable to complete after 20 minutes -- seemed to get stuck at the very end. I ran it for myself and it only took 1 minute, granted my HD is 80 gigs and hers is 300, it should not take 20 minutes for the quick scan to complete. perhaps the disc has errors. It's less than 6 months old so I can't imagine there are serious problems, but if there are, I would need help fixing that too..


Oct 24, 2009
Try with the booting process---------------------------------
insert the pen drive in USB and take a bootable disk and insert in the cd rom then restasrt the computer .after some time display show the all drive in the computer than u will see the pen drive after that u will format the pen drive