I had the same problem and spent 5 days re-installing Windows 7 to just get the same IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error!! Well all I did was the following:
1. Install Windows 8/8.1 the same way you did
2. As soon as your laptop BlueScreens with IRQL, switch your laptop off
3. Grab a screwdriver, REMOVE your WLAN card from the port and turn your laptop on (With your windows disk/usb drive inside).
4.Then when your laptop boots up, you should see it setting up and working! But you still need to do a few more things...:
5. Go to Device Manager and under Network Adapters uninstall whatever is in there
6. Then shut down.
7. Once your laptop is shut down, pop your WLAN card back in your laptop
8. Turn your laptop back on and then go to your manufacturer website and download the driver for your WLAN!
Problem solved. Literally that is ALL YOU NEED TO DO. I see others saying it's a faulty HDD but trust me it isn't. Your HDD is fine, install media is fine, but your driver isn't. The reason for this error occurring is that your installation media is pre-loaded with a standard WLAN driver and thus not compatible with your PC/Laptop. So all you need to do is remove the actual hardware and start it up, that way your computer won't look for it therefore giving you the chance to uninstall it!
As an example, remember with Windows XP and Vista, you would say, replace the WLAN card or install new hardware such as a RAM stick and when you boot it up, your PC/Laptop has a hissy fit and BSOD on you...
So you removed it and it worked yeah? Literally, SAME THING but just made prettier than the MSDos horrid BlueScreen we all remember... Plus they add a nice emoticon haha!
Hope this has helped you in your struggles!