A few days back, I was having a conversation with my friend, and we came to the topic of Low Level Formatting of HDD, which use to exist under the older versions of PHOENIX and AMI Bios Chips in the early 2000, which is no longer supported in current versions of the Bios.
however, there are some tools like http://hddguru.com/software/HDD-LLF-Low-Level-Format-Tool/
Supported OS: MS Windows XP, Vista x32/x64, 7 x32/x64, Server 2003, 2008, 2008R2
HDD Low Level Format Tool is a utility for low-level hard disk drive formatting.
- Supported interfaces: S-ATA (SATA), IDE (E-IDE), SCSI, SAS, USB, FIREWIRE.
- Big drives (LBA-48) are supported.
- Supported Manufacturers: Maxtor, Hitachi, Seagate, Samsung, Toshiba, Fujitsu, IBM, Quantum, Western Digital, and almost any other not listed here.
- The program also supports low-level formatting of FLASH cards (SD, MMC, MemoryStick and CompactFlash) using a card-reader.
This HDD Low Level Format utility is free for home use. It can erase and Low-Level Format a SATA, IDE, SAS, SCSI or SSD hard disk drive. Will also work with any USB and FIREWIRE external drive enclosures as well as SD, MMC, MemoryStick and CompactFlash media.
An option to quickly wipe partitions and MBR data is available.
WARNING: After running this low level format tool, the whole disk surface will be erased.
Data restoration is impossible after using this utility!
Free for personal/home use (speed is capped at 180 GB per hour which is 50 MB/s)
Use this at your own RISK
This site also has got some more advanced tools like MHDD which is for querying the DISK Controller for HPA and DCO.
Hope this helps!