Benzyl-substituted benzylpyridinium (BP) chloride salts were used as a source of thermometer ions to probe the internal energy (IE) transfer in desorption/ionization on porous silicon (DIOS). To modify their wetting properties and the interaction energies with the thermometer ions, the DIOS surfaces were silylated to produce trimethylsilyl- (TMS), amine- (NH2), perfluoroalkyl- (PFA), and perfluorophenyl-derivatized (PFP) surfaces. Two laser sources--a nitrogen laser with pulse length of 4 ns and a mode locked 3 x omega Nd:YAG laser with a pulse length of 22 ps--were utilized to induce desorption/ionization and fragmentation at various laser fluence levels. The corresponding survival yields were determined as indicators of the IE transfer and the IE distributions were extracted. In most cases, with increasing the laser fluence in a broad range (approximately 20 mJ/cm2), no change in IE transfer was observed. For ns excitation, this was in remarkable contrast with MALDI, where increasing the laser fluence resulted in sharply (within approximately 5 mJ/cm2) declining survival yields. Derivatization of the porous silicon surface did not affect the survival yields significantly but had a discernible effect on the threshold fluence for ion production. The IE distributions determined for DIOS and MALDI from alpha-cyano-4-hydroxycinnamic acid reveal that the mean IE value is always lower for the latter. Using the ps laser, the IE distribution is always narrower for DIOS, whereas for ns laser excitation the width depends on surface modification. Most of the differences between MALDI and DIOS described here are compatible with the different dimensionality of the plume expansion and the differences in the activation energy of desorption due to surface modifications.