A LiveCD is an operating system stored on a bootable compact disc that can be run from the CD-ROM drive itself without installation of any files onto the computerís local hard drive. It does this by creating a RAMDISK (placing the operating system files into the random access memory - RAM). The system can be returned to its original state when the LiveCD is ejected and the computer rebooted.
This is how consulting is done!

Linux is a freely-distributable open source operating system that runs on virtually any platform.  One of the most interesting aspects of using Linux is that besides the operating system, you get a web browser, an office productivity suite, and many, many other programs - not only do you get an operating system, you also get all the software you need for your everyday computing needs.  There is little initial cost for this operating system.  The costs come later in the form of training & organizational costs associated with switching from one system to another (known as integration costs).  These issues are examined in my Project Proposal.  There are many LiveCD / Linux distros available.  Below are a few of the more popular distros that I reviewed as part of my research for this project.  If you support a distro not listed, please don't sent me hate mail - there are literally hundreds if not thousands of different distros and there isn't enough time in the day to look at everything out there.  Thank you.

KNOPPIX was the very first LiveCD that I worked with (thanks Ed Crowley).  It is a compilation of GNU/Linux software, run completely from CD or DVD.  It automatically recognizes and supports many types of graphic cards, sound cards, SCSI devices and other peripheral devices.  KNOPPIX can be adapted and used as a Linux demo, a training course CD, a rescue system or as a platform for commercial software product demos.  It is not necessary to install anything on fixed disk.  Using transparent decompression, up to 2 gigabyes of executable software can be put on a CD (the "light" CD edition, for instance, has 1900MB of software on it, and on a DVD5, up to 10GB of live software can be installed).