If I format my SSD with the OS on it and do a fresh install of Windows can I keep my Steam games and files in my secondary HDD? or do I have to format it as well?
Steam is normally good about preserving stuff after a reinstall.It depends on whether any of the games also put some of their install info in the registry or other folders of the OS drive. A lot of Windows software puts configuration information on the OS drive regardless as to where the main files are installed. If you format the OS drive, that configuration info will be lost and may require you to re-install the software to restore it. I'm not familiar with how Steam installs games but I would make sure you do an image backup of the OS drive just in case.
Okay thank you. Everything's running fine right now. Gonna give it some time before I do a fresh install of Windows don't want to go through the hassle of doing so right now.Steam is normally good about preserving stuff after a reinstall.
OP, as long as you disconnect your data drive when you reinstall Windows, then reconnect it, and then install Steam to the same directory (ex: D:\Steam) you should be good. If anything fails to run, you can just do a file validation on the game and it will download/repair only what it needs to.