Hi all, Well my Dell is coming up on a few years old and it's running a little slow/laggy. I think that it is caused, at least in part, to all of the crap and stuff I have had on the machine over the years. What I am considering doing is buying an external HD (Firewire) to back-up all of my data, files, pictures, etc. from my machine - then basically formatting the existing drive, reinstall XP with SP2 and all related updates, etc... then reinstall all of the programs that I use then finally move the files over from the external HD. 1. Are the external HD's affordable? I'd prefer not to use 10 or 15 CD-ROMS. 2. After the format - will the external HD have any issues with the formatted drive (is there any code that is placed on the ext HD that would be deleted with the format)? 3. Is there a better way? 4. When the reformat is complete, is it advisable to partition the HD and put the OS on one partition and program files on the newly created partition? Any other advice or information will be appreciated.