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Software at COEN

A multitude of software packages are available for use in the College of Engineering labs and are updated routinely to reflect the latest available versions.

See COEN Labs information for more details about specific packages and locations of Windows or Linux labs.

HELPFUL Educational Tools for Faculty

Adobe's Creative Cloud Suite and Endnote are NOT FREE

Many engineering applications in the labs are also available for faculty to use on COEN workstations (if a volume license exists; each licensing agreement may vary).  Some packages are NOT included in  University volume license agreements (and therefore must be purchased):

      • Adobe Creative Cloud (including Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.) software
      • Endnote

ADOBE Creative Cloud suite applications may be purchased leveraging educational discounts through approved resellers. Requests may be submitted to COEN IT Services.

ENDNOTE is available directly through Thomson Reuters or approved resellers.

Mendeley (an Endnote freeware alternative):

Software for Faculty/Staff/Students

Engineering and Scientific Software

Ansys simulation software is available to students for free. Visit the Ansys website for details to review student offerings from the website.

Matlab is available online through a web browser, or as software you download and install on your personal computer.

Mathematica is available for faculty and staff personal machines, and free student editions are also available on the OIT Software website.

Solidworks for Mechanical Engineering Students – kits for engineering student personal computers only (self-serve offering provided to the student directly by an academic department; computer labs in Engineering are configured with the COEN IT supported academic version).  See more details about computers labs (and software) here.

Microsoft Office for Personal Use

Microsoft Office 365

Microsoft Office: Microsoft’s 365 offering is available for free (in the cloud)

AZURE and VMAP Programs

Microsoft OS DEV Offerings and Virtualization Software

Engineering faculty, staff, and students are enrolled in Microsoft’s Azure Dev Tools for Teaching’s software program. Membership provides free access to Microsoft software (with the exception of Office applications), including operating system downloads.

As of March 2022, the VMWare virtualization software program has changed (VMWare Workstation: Windows, Fusion: Mac OSX).

Software is available directly from the VMware Academic Software Licensing Program (now administered through specific academic department registration, only).

VMWare Workstation Player is available for free through VMWare (

OS X Versus Windows

When purchasing a computer for use with engineering software, the most compatible operating system is Windows. Not all software programs are coded to run on Apple OSX devices.

Software Purchasing

Engineering software packages used in COEN labs and on COEN servers are purchased by COEN IT Staff, which includes license renewals for engineering packages. (There is no requirement that faculty or staff purchasing software for installation on his or her COEN desktop or laptop go through COEN IT Staff).

Things To Know When Buying Software

The University Requires Software Review

Software for individual COEN workstations can be purchased by COEN faculty or staff (with departmental approvals and authorizations) through third-party vendors or internally through the Purchasing Department.

University Committees (SARB) and/or the Legal department review software purchases. If documents must be signed (agreements/EULAs), those will be reviewed before purchase.

When purchasing software, academic pricing may be available.  Please review the Boise State University’s Purchasing requirements before initiating an order, verify the software you are researching is not already available through state contract vendors, and verify that your order is tax-exempt.  The vendor may require that you fill out a sales tax exemption certificate and submit that with purchase documentation.  Some vendors require a purchase order to complete the transaction.

***Any software purchase from a vendor requiring a Boise State Signature for a software license agreement/EULA must be reviewed by Boise State’s Legal department before the software may be purchased.

For more information about purchasing, see the State of Idaho Purchasing Website:


If you have questions about software or need to request an installation on COEN equipment, contact IT Support for the College of Engineering at