Software Distribution:

Review of the Department of Energy's National Energy Software Center

IMTEC-88-2: Published: Oct 14, 1987. Publicly Released: Oct 22, 1987.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the activities of the Department of Energy's National Energy Software Center, particularly its handling of computer software requests by foreign countries and domestic users.

GAO found that: (1) during an 18-month period, the center filled 69 domestic and 10 foreign requests for software; (2) general mathematics, computing systems, and scientific data management systems were the programs most frequently requested; and (3) the center ships only programs designated for unlimited use to foreign countries. GAO also found that the center: (1) prohibits the redistribution of its programs to other users and does not believe that users violate its stipulations; (2) encourages contractors to copyright their programs to prevent unauthorized upgrading and commercialization; (3) classifies its programs according to sensitivity and subject matter; and (4) shipped five programs on software development, engineering, and chemical engineering to Italy in an 18-month period.

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