Is there a way just to simply move the OS to the SSD so that the OS settings are saved and no need to install the programs that are already there.
Could we like transfer a huge chunk of the C: drive to another HDD then do a system image. And we can just restore it on the SSD
Yes you can, you can do it with HDD cloning softwares, which I never tried them, since I always do a fresh install. I don't know any good cloning softwares, so you will have to figure that out. But there are risks while cloning your drives. Make sure you back up your data before cloning, because there could be errors while in the process. But I will recommend a fresh install, it's not really recommend to clone your HDD to the SSD.