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Install MATLAB

This article applies to: Software Licensing


October 2017: We have activated Single Sign-On with MathWorks. When you register your license, you will use your standard Cornell credentials. Technical considerations have caused us to split our MATLAB license between Weill and the rest of Cornell. Weill users must register MATLAB under a different license number and activation key than the rest of Cornell.

New Installation of MATLAB: Single-User Configuration

  1. Get your MATLAB activation code:
    • Institutional (staff/faculty) Licenses: Look up your Activation Key on your online order confirmation page. The Activation Key is under the Download Software link. For instructions on how to access this page, please see our online guide How To Look Up Your Software License Codes.
      (Weill users: If your order confirmation page does not display a separate line for Weill users, please contact CU Software and include your Order ID with the request.)
    • Cornell University Students: MATLAB is available at no charge for all currently-registered students at Cornell. Note that the activation procedure is different for students at Weill. Please refer to the appropriate PDF for your circumstances:
      MATLAB activation for students at Weill
      MATLAB activation for all other Cornell students
  2. Download the appropriate installer for your computer from the CU Software MATLAB page to your computer's hard drive. Don't try to run the software remotely, as this will fail. You have two kinds of installers to choose from:
    • Standard Installer (recommended): Smaller initial download that allows you to select individual MATLAB components that you want to install. Students please note: the individual components will be downloaded from the vendor's external website, which may be subject to NUBB charges.
    • Disk Image Installer: A large download in ISO disk image format that includes all licensed components. Only the current version is MATLAB is available via this method. Please note that if you wish to burn this image to an optical disk, you will need to use a Dual Layer DVD (DVD-R DL)
  3. Make sure that your computer has an active Internet connection. If you cannot connect to the Internet, you will not be able to activate with these instructions. If that's the case, please contact us for more information.
  4. Launch the installer:
    • Standard Installer: Double-click the installer to launch.
    • Disk Image Installer: From the mounted MATLAB installer disk, find and the installer application file, and double-click to launch:
      Windows: setup.exe
  5. On the Install MathWorks Software window, select Install Using The Internet. Click Next.
  6. On the License Agreement window, you must agree to abide by the license terms. Select Yes and click Next.
  7. On the License Information window, you will need to sign into your account on the MathWorks system.
    • If you have previously created a MathWorks account:
      1. Type in the e-mail address you registered with MathWorks and your MathWorks password. Click Next.
      2. On the Activation Key window, type in the Activation Key that you retrieved in Step 1.
      3. Click Next, and proceed to Step 8.
    • If you have never created a MathWorks account:
      1. Select I need to create an account. Click Next.
      2. On the Account Creation screen, fill out the information that is requested. Click Next. You must use an email address that ends with "". Use the Activation Key that you retrieved in Step 1.
  8. The Email Verification screen should indicate that MathWorks sent you an email. Look for a message from and click the confirmation link. Your browser should open a new window that says Your email address has been successfully added. You may then close that window.
  9. Back on the Email Verification window, you should now see a Next button. Click that button.
  10. On the Installation Type window, we recommend that you choose Typical. Click Next.
  11. On the Folder Selection window, we recommend that you choose the default installation location. Click Next.
    Windows users: Windows may ask permission to create the default folder location. Click Yes.
  12. On the Confirmation window, make sure that the components that you want to install are showing. Click Install.
  13. The installation can take more than an hour. Please be patient while the installer runs.
  14. On the Product Configuration Notes window, you may be told that you need additional third-party software to take advantage of certain MATLAB components. Make a note of those. Click Next.
  15. On the Installation Complete window, make sure the Activate MATLAB box is checked. Click Next.
  16. On the MATLAB Software Activation window, click Next.
  17. MATLAB will contact the vendor's servers to activate. Click Confirm.
  18. Activation should now be complete. Click Finish. You will receive a message from MathWorks via email shortly confirming product activation.

New Install of MATLAB: Network Configuration

  1. Please contact us to request that we set you up as a MATLAB asset manager with MathWorks.
  2. After you have been set up, MathWorks will contact you with step-by-step configuration instructions.

Update Existing MATLAB Single-User Installation (version 2008a or later)

  1. Start MATLAB
  2. Under the Help menu, select Licensing, then Activate Software.
    Mac Users: You need to use the Help menu within the MATLAB window; NOT the OS X Help menu bar item.
  3. On the MathWorks License Update window that appears, select Activate automatically using the Internet.
  4. Log in to your MathWorks account
  5. Enter your MATLAB Activation Key.
  6. On the Update Confirmation window, click Confirm.

Your installation of MATLAB should now be activated.

Some customers have reported that they receive a window stating that MATLAB requires deactivation. If you are receiving that message, please click the "Deactivate" button on the window, then proceed with the instructions above.

If you are running MATLAB for and are unable to complete the above license update procedure, you may need to manually deactivate MATLAB. To deactivate, launch MATLAB and select Help -> Licensing-> Deactivate from the MATLAB menubar. If you cannot get that far, please see our MATLAB Manual Deactivation page for further instructions.

Update Existing Older Version MATLAB Single-User Installations (2007b and earlier)

  1. Please contact us to request a MATLAB license file for the version of MATLAB that you are using. We will send you Cornell's MATLAB license information and a phone number at MathWorks for you to call.
  2. Call MathWorks at the provided telephone number. Explain that you need a new license file for your specific older version of MATLAB. You will need Cornell's license information, which you received in step 1.
  3. Follow the instructions provided by the MathWorks technical representative.

Update Existing MATLAB Network Installation 

  1. Log in to your MathWorks account and request an updated Network License File from the License Administration page, and follow their instructions for updating this file on your license management server.
  2. If you are not authorized to view this page, or cannot find it, please contact us to be set up as a MATLAB Asset Manager.
  3. After you have been set up as an Asset Manager, MathWorks will send you instructions for setting up your MATLAB network.

About this Article

Last updated: 

Monday, August 13, 2018 - 10:36am

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