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How do I properly clone my Asus G55vw 500gb HDD to a SSD?

Level 10
I have a mSATA 240gb Mushkin Atlas Deluxe SSD on the way, and I am looking for info on how to set it up properly. I am wondering if I can just clone the 500gb HDD to the SSD? I have read that there can be issues with alignments when cloning a HDD to a SSD. Also, when the HDD has multiple partitions there can be issues as well. Is there anyone that can verify this? I know a fresh install of Windows 8 on the SSD would be ideal, but I do not have a disc to do so. I also would like to keep the hidden recovery partition around for if any issues arise. Here are some more specific questions I would like answered if possible.

1. What is the best software to use to clone a HDD to a SSD?
2. Can I just clone the C: (OS) partition by itself?
3. If I do clone it, is there a program I can use to check the alignments and overall performance of the SSD?
4. If a fresh install is the absolute best solution, how can I go about getting a Windows 8 disc and using my same product key?
5. Should I just shoot myself because I have no idea what I am doing when it comes to this task?

I have never replaced, reformatted (unless you count holding F10 during boot on my old Asus G73), or anything like this with a HDD before. So I am totally lost right now. I just wan't to get the most out of my SSD. (Damn things aren't cheap)

Hmm... Maybe Asus should have put a few more partitions on this HDD....

Sorry for the wall of text, and thank you in advance!

p.s: I love my ROG logo at startup, please don't tell me to fresh install. 😞

I haven't put much on my G55, it is not even two months old yet. Should I reset it to factory to make the cloning process go smoother?

You shouldn't need too. Cloning works pretty well. I keep images of different stages it makes it easy to just roll back for instance back to windows installed and updated, or windows installed and Main software installed and updated. I also keep images back ups that either daily, weekly or Monthly get Incremental back ups. I keep all these images on external hard drives. So if your worried at all about a failure during cloning just create yourself a Image of your hard drive. Then clone if for some reason the cloning fails like you lose power or something you have an Image back up. Even in a cloning failure you shouldn't lose any data from your original hard drive
G752VY-DH72 Win 10 Pro
512 GB M.2 Samsung 960 Pro
1 TB Samsung 850 pro 2.5 format
980m GTX 4 GB
32GB DDR 4 Standard RAM

Z97 PRO WiFi I7 4790K
Windows 10 Pro
Z97 -A
Windows 10 Pro

Level 7
I just put my Samsung 840 pro on a USB to SATA cable, downloaded the latest Samsung Data Migration tool and ran it. Installed the SSD into the boot drive slot, moved the factory HDD to the sencondary slot. Then ran the latest Samsung SSD Magician, relocated my data files, and performed a few manual tweaks. TaDa!!! All done.
Everything is working fine. Benchmarks are right where they should be. No troubles with Windows 8 Pro.
Not sure why this isn't working for everyone.