Computrace plus http://www.computrace.com/public/products/computraceplus/whitepaper.asp#
It seems Computrace is started when the BIOS is run. The URL takes you to a page where you can request a whitepaper on the risks in using Pre-boot authentication. This might be a solution for you. http://www.ztrace.com/zTraceGold.asp
ZTRACE GOLD is undetectable and unerasable on a laptop's hard drive. The computer completes a handshake with the ZSERVER at every Internet connection. If the laptop is reported missing, a patent pending process occurs for the ZTRACE Recovery Team to identify the computer's exact physical location. The ZTRACE Recovery Team coordinates with local law enforcement for a completely outsourced recovery solution; the entire tracing and monitoring service resides with ZTRACE. For enterprises, ZTRACE GOLD provides a flexible solution that can be managed internally by an organization's own internal security department or outsourced with the ZTRACE Recovery Team.
I am not the worlds best with hardware/firmware. Can software be writen to lock sectors on the harddrive so even a low level wipe dose not clear them? I have heard something about this a while back. I think it was AOL actualy I heard this about. Locking HD block/sectors might want to look into that. http://www.pcphonehome.com/product.html Cannot be removed via normal format and fdisk commands. Compatible with Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2K/XP
So there it is. Kill winblows and install Linux or BSD and home free. All of these of course rely on you connecting to the internet. Soooo Do not connect to the net till you are sure it is safe. Do not use Windows OS, Do not ever connect to the net from home. heh, have fun with your new toy. You could get a wireless nic card and connect in star buck and around offices using wireless lan's. You might need (I think it is air snort???)
You should kill windows. All of these seem to use windows. I doubt re-partioning would work, I know you can hide stuff from format, but low level wipe? Not sure on that. If you wipe and are truely paranoid used the 37 time wipe feature. It will be one step above paranoid DoD 7 time wipe on BcWipe http://www.jetico.com/home.htm