Statistical Disclosure Control

τ-ARGUS home page


τ-ARGUS is a software program designed to protect statistical tables. The CASC-project took a previous version of τ-ARGUS, as developed during the SDC-project, as a starting point.

After a test-phase (coordinated by IStat) version 3 was the final release of the CASC-project. However we have continued our efforts, also thanks to the ESSNet-project and at the end of the ESSNet project version 3.4.1 was available.

Major new extensions are the reading of SPSS-system files, inclusion of the audit-routine, negative values in Modular and the generation of a-priory files.

Since version 3.5 linked tables can be protected simultaneously, both with the modular approach as well as the hypercube method.

Partly funded by Eurostat, a project was started on 20 December 2012 to port the at that time most recent version of τ-ARGUS to an Open Source version. The resulting version should contain the possibility to be run on a Windows platform as well as on a Linux/Unix platform. Moreover, the cell suppression, CTA and rounding methods should be able to make use of Open Solvers.

τ-ARGUS software releases

Version 4.1.5

See the User Manual of version 4.1 for more information on the use of τ-ARGUS.

You can download the latest Windows binaries, build on 32 bit Windows 7:
Version 4.1.5 Version 4.1.5
with bundled JRE7
Release notes 09-02-2017

Older versions, build on 32 bit Windows 7:
Version 4.1.4
Version 4.1.4
with bundled JRE7
Release notes 09-02-2017

Version 4.1.3 Release notes 23-11-2015
Version 4.1.2 Release notes 13-08-2015
Version 4.1.1 Release notes 28-04-2015
Version 4.1.0 build 2 Release notes 23-02-2015
Version 4.1.0 build 1 Release notes 19-12-2014

We have build τ-ARGUS on 32 bit Ubuntu 14.4.0 for version 4.1.0 only. We do not have enough Linux expertise to continuously develop a Linux version. SO, in case you want a newer version, please go to sdcTools on GitHub to download the sources and compile your own newer version.

You can download Linux binaries, Build on 32 bit Ubuntu 14.4.0:
Version 4.1.0 build 1 Release notes 19-12-2014

You can download the sources (4.1.0) here.

For an overview of known issues, click here.

Version 3.5.0 build 27

You can also still download the (Windows only) version previous to the Open Source version here. (UnZip the file in a temp-directory and run the install.bat procedure).

Please note that this version includes the 2012 release of XPress.

See the Manual of version 3.5 for more information.

The following programs were created for the 3.5 version. They are not tested on later versions (4.1 and later).

For users of the SBS-format a conversion program to convert SBS-files to τ-ARGUS files can be downloaded here
This version includes a routine to import the ARGUS output in the original SBS file.

For users of SAS an interface has been written by the Swedisch colleagues as a deliverable of the ESSNet on SDC harmonisation.
It can be downloaded here.

Optimisation solvers

For the calculation of an optimal pattern of secondary suppressions τ-ARGUS uses a LP-solver. Due to the complexity of the mathematical problems involved we use high quality commercial LP-solvers. Traditionally we use the Xpress-MP solver made by FICO.
We are very grateful for the friendly cooperation and support by FICO. FICO has taken over the responsability for XPress from Dash Optimisation. The 3.4 version of τ-ARGUS requires a licence for XPress2009.

Contact and reference your need for a τ-ARGUS specific license. Since we had to change the licencing mechanism of Xpress when going to Open Source, existing users should contact to get their licences renewed in compliance with the new situation.

Alternatively CPlex can be used, e.g. for those users who already have a licence for CPlex and who want to use that solver.

Although τ-ARGUS is free software (a result of a European 5th Framework project), these solvers are commercial products. You can download the τ-ARGUS software from this page, but you have to obtain a licence for one of these solvers yourself, directly from the suppliers.

Since version 4.1.2 τ-ARGUS can also make use of Open Solvers. However, note that these solvers are not always able to deal with larger tables.

Questions related to τ-ARGUS should be directed to Peter-Paul de Wolf.

For the conditions to obtain Xpress-MP (including updates) see the 2010 pricelist here

A summary of the installation procedure for τ-ARGUS can be found here

For floating XPress licences a new licene manager has been develloped by FICO
The software can be downloaded here and a description can be found here

An upgrade for the XPress drivers for Windows XP can be found here

For the conditions to obtain CPlex see here

τ-Project team





Anco Hundepool

Overall coordination
Software development (User interface)

Ramya Ramaswamy Software development (Kernel)
Peter-Paul de Wolf Modular/HITAS


Luisa Franconi


DeStatis  Sarah Giessing Coordinator tabular data research
GHMITER implementation
Dietz Repsilber GHMITER


JJ Salazar

Optimisation models

UPC Jordi Castro Network flow models
ONS Giovanni Merola
Philip Lowthian

VS2010 redist