We (at Shoreline Research) have conducted some trials of operating programs from PCMCIA disks and not run into too many problems. There is even a noticeable improvement in speed, since you are not dealing with spinning drives and mechanical elements when using PCMCIA memory.
But, we have experienced some instability and system crashes because of this bipolar activity. In one instance, we even inadvertently installed a portion of the OS on the PCMCIA card, with disastrous results when the card was unplugged.
Our recommendation: Let your careful conscience be your guide. Start with small programs, and don't get too ambitious by trying to pack all of Microsoft Office on a single card. A better recommendation: Upgrade your system with a new and more capable disk drive, or purchase an add-in card drive that can be inserted and not removed.
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