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You may well be right . It wouldnt be the first time I have regretted selling something. Usually works out well for the person I sell to and very expensive for me as I invariably end up re buying the same thing at a later date . BUT at this moment in time I have a shiny black ornament sitting alongside all my other gear .Just not getting any use out of it . Even as a BD player , I have got bored of paying even £15 for a film .And probably for the same reason I will be getting rid of my 360 HD-DVD drive at some point in the not too distant future.
Yes - just do a restore - then a quick format. Thats what I did when I sold my U.S one and got a UK one. Dead quick.
The guy who bought it might have been looking to dig up my old account but I doubt it (no swag tattoo) etc but its all password protected and I assume that the password is remembered over the network and not on the hard drive.
There is a way to do a reset, I had problems with my HDD on release day and the first thing Sony support said to try was a reset. I havent done it since and Im not exactly sure what it resets as it didnt solve my particualar problem but as far as I remember with the console in standby mode (red light only) hold the power button until you hear two beeps. I know this resets display settings and such but Im not sure if it resets user data, it certainly doesnt wipe the HDD. There maybe a way to do a "hard" reset as Im assuming that this method is a soft reset.