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This paper presents the results of a parametric study of fenestration in a single-family residential prototype. The DOE-2.1B energy analysis program was used to analyze the variation in heating and cooling energy requirements and resultant costs due to changes in the following fenestration characteristics: orientation, size, conductance, and shading coefficient. Incremental energy use changes due to the effects of night insulation, shade management, and overhangs were also examined. Climate sensitivity was established by considering results from four distinct climate zones representative of warm and humid (Lake Charles, LA), hot and dry (Phoenix, AZ), temperate (Washington, DC), and cold (Madison, WI). The analysis of the effects of hypothetical fenestration systems on building energy use was made viable by development of an algebraic expression through the use of multiple regression procedures. Such techniques also permitted the definition and isolation of those window characteristics which minimize residential energy use and/or cost.