OPTION 1 (relies on EaseUs and brings back all my apps)
- install the new drive
- use EaseUs (or other tools) to partition the new drive into 3 partitions: tiny small and large ( for the hidden, os/apps/profiles, data partitions respectively)
Note - at this point windows 8 is not even installed
- boot with the ease us cd
- attempt to recover the hidden and small partition FROM the backup drive TO the new drive ( to tiny/small partitions)
- reboot the new drive (will it really boot up into Windows 8 ???
- populate the new large partition from my backup data files