Old HDD questions

Hi all, 

A couple of months ago our family computer died so I opened it up too see what I could scavenge before we threw it out. I found a old 500 GB Western Digital caviar black and I was wondering if it was possible to reuse it for general data storage. I'm planning to build a gaming pc and I’m going to install a 120 GB SSD for windows 7 and some games. I want the HDD for general data storage, like music and videos. I wanted to know if I could delete the old data on it (windows XP and other programs) and run it along side my new SSD. Also how would windows see it and would I need to change any settings to run it alongside the SSD. Anyway if you could answer this question, it would be very helpful and sorry if this is a stupid question, I’m not the best at computing.

First a question is the 500GB Sata or IDE

If it's SATA you should be fine wiping it and running it as storage *but make sure you don't hook it up untill after you have installed windows on your SSD. at least that has been my experience for best results. i hope that helps.

 

I'ts SATA but how would i wipe the data on it including windows? 

You should just be able to plug it into your new computer, if you just want to remove everything from the drive you can reformat it by right clicking onto it in the explorer and selecting format, if you need to securely erase everything you should overwrite it first, luckily most cleanup utilities have something like this built in. I know ccleaner and revo uninstaller have one for example.

Just use that to securely wipe your drive, once you have done that you should be able to use it as a normal drive without further configuring. Also if it's an old drive I tend to not use it for data storage because HDDs can die within 3-5 years so I always use old drives to store backups of my OS/data.

if you install it into your machine prior to install the o/s on the ssd, you should be able to format it during the windows installation