How do I activate MATLAB or other MathWorks Products?

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Accepted Answer

MathWorks Support Team
MathWorks Support Team on 8 Nov 2021 at 5:00
Edited: MathWorks Support Team on 8 Nov 2021 at 21:45
When installing MATLAB or other MathWorks Products, the license will activate itself either during installation (R2020a and newer) or after the installation (R2019b and older).
However in some cases it may be necessary to activate MATLAB directly. There are two ways to activate MATLAB:
  • Automatically activating using the activation client
  • Manually activating through the MathWorks License Center

Automatically activating using the activation client

It is sometimes necessary to activate an instance of MATLAB which is already installed. For example, you may need to update your license, or you may need to change the license that MATLAB is using.
To activate an instance of MATLAB which is already installed on an online machine, launch the MathWorks activation client. There are two ways to do this:
If you can launch MATLAB:
If MATLAB is currently activated and able to launch, you can launch the MathWorks activation client from the MATLAB help menu:
  1. In the "Resources" section of the toolstrip, open the "Help" menu.
  2. Hover over the "Licenses" submenu.
  3. Click "Activate software." This will launch the MathWorks activation client.
If MATLAB will not launch
If you have an expired or otherwise unusable license, MATLAB may not be able to launch. In this case, you will need to launch the MATLAB activation client directly. The location of the MathWorks activation client depends on your Operating System:
Windows
The activation client is located here:
C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R20XXx\bin\winXX\activate_matlab.exe
Mac
  1. Open Finder.
  2. Go to "Applications".
  3. Right-click or control-click on the MATLAB application icon. (e.g. MATLAB_R2020b.app)
  4. Click on "Show Package Contents".
  5. Open "Activate.app".
Linux
The activation client is located here:
/usr/local/MATLAB/R20XXx/bin/activate_matlab.sh
Once you have launched the MathWorks activation client:
  1. Select "Activate automatically using the internet."
  2. Log into your MathWorks account
  3. Select the license from the list of licenses you would like to activate
  4. Confirm the activation information
  5. Click "finish" to complete the activation process.

Manually activating through the MathWorks License Center

If you are on an offline machine, it may be necessary to activate the license through the MathWorks License Center.
Instructions on how to activate MATLAB via the license center are detailed in the article below:

    Still unable to activate?

    A video walkthrough on how to install and activate an individual license can be found below:
    If you are continuously prompted to activate MATLAB every time you launch it, please see this article:
    If you are unable to activate MATLAB after following the instructions in this article, please contact MathWorks support:
      13 Comments
    Tara Grey
    Tara Grey on 15 Oct 2020
    Hi, I have a windows 10 and I was wondering where exactly do you put the code in for the activation client?

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    More Answers (18)

    Ronald Woods
    Ronald Woods on 14 Dec 2015
    For Windows 7 64 bit the location of activate is located in C:\Program Files\bin\win64 not C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R20XXx\bin\winXX, at least on my machine
      9 Comments
    Walter Roberson
    Walter Roberson on 4 Feb 2021
    You could use Windows Explorer to navigate to that directory, and double-click on activate_matlab.exe in that directory in order to run it.
    Or you could use Windows-R to have Windows give you a GUI to type a command in, and in that space you would paste in
    C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R2020b\bin\win64\activate_matlab.exe
    and then press enter in order to run the file.

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    Charlotte Verhaeghe
    Charlotte Verhaeghe on 20 Oct 2015
    While activating the Matlab software, my licence checkout failed because a I gave in the wrong username, is it possible to do the licence activation over?
      3 Comments
    Walter Roberson
    Walter Roberson on 15 Jan 2016
    You follow the instructions in the main answer, which is broken down by operating system and broken down by whether you are able to start MATLAB or not.

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    Khurram Amin
    Khurram Amin on 11 Feb 2016
    I am getting error although I followed this procedure correctly. The error information is given below:
    Diagnostic Information:
    Feature: SR_MATLAB
    License path: (Some Place)/.matlab/R2015b_licenses:/usr/local/MATLAB/R2015b/licenses/license.dat:/usr/local/MATLA
    B/R2015b/licenses/(license_file_name).lic
    Licensing error: -9,57.
      5 Comments
    Walter Roberson
    Walter Roberson on 22 Oct 2019
    I find some Linux related posts that relate SR_MATLAB to ethernet ID problems, but I have never seen any hint that microphones have an influence on licensing ??

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    yati j
    yati j on 11 Sep 2016
    how do i fix the error software package..my matlab didnt work..
      2 Comments

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    Patrick
    Patrick on 31 Jan 2017
    Edited: Patrick on 31 Jan 2017
    Just a quick edit for those in Ubuntu 16.04. If I go to the location described and right-click on the folder then "Open in Terminal" then type in "activate_matlab.sh" you will get a "command not found error"
    How need to right-click within the folder and then type sudo ./activate_matlab.sh
      2 Comments
    Walter Roberson
    Walter Roberson on 3 Oct 2017
    Patrick did specifically say "Just a quick edit for those in Ubuntu 16.04"
    For Windows you would see the information posted by Mathworks, above, directing you to
    C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R20XXx\bin\winXX\activate_matlab.exe
    for current versions that would be
    C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R20XXx\bin\win64\activate_matlab.exe
    but sufficiently old versions might use win32

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    Jophet Mehida BOUEDIBELA
    Jophet Mehida BOUEDIBELA on 20 Sep 2018
    Edited: Jophet Mehida BOUEDIBELA on 20 Sep 2018
    If MATLAB will not launch
    If you have an expired or otherwise unusable license, MATLAB may not be able to launch. In this case, you will need to launch the MATLAB activation client directly. To find the MATLAB activation client on each OS:
    Windows
    The activation client is located here:
    C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R20XXx\bin\winXX\activate_matlab.exe Once you have launched the MATLAB activation client:
    Select "Activate automatically using the internet." Log into your MathWorks account Select the license from the list of licenses you would like to activate Confirm the activation information. Click "finish" to complete the activation process.
    Thanks! It works perfectly...

    Yang Peng
    Yang Peng on 26 Oct 2018
    osx系统在matlab已经无法启动的情况下如何解决这个问题?
      2 Comments

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    Richard
    Richard on 29 Mar 2019
    What to do when activate_matlab.exe does not open / fails silently?
    Win7/64, MATLAB 2018b, used to work fine.
      4 Comments

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    wilfail memeus
    wilfail memeus on 25 Sep 2020
    • Open Finder.
    • Go to "Applications".
    • Right-click or control-click on the MATLAB application icon. (e.g. MATLAB_R2015b.app)
    • Click on "Show Package Contents".
    • Open "Activate.app".
    Linux
    The activation client is located here:
    /usr/local/MATLAB/R20XXx/bin/activate_matlab.sh
    Once you have launched the MATLAB activation client:
    1. Select "Activate automatically using the internet."
    2. Log into your MathWorks account.
    3. Select the correct license.
    4. The username field should auto-populate with the correct user name. Leave it as is.
    5. Confirm the activation information.
    6. Click "finish" to complete the activation process.
    7. Restart MATLAB.
      2 Comments
    Steven Lord
    Steven Lord on 8 Oct 2020
    If you've gone through the steps in this MATLAB Answers post and MATLAB is still not able to activate successfully please contact Technical Support using the telephone icon in ther upper-right corner of this page and work with them to determine how to get MATLAB working successfully.

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    Lonkong Clovis
    Lonkong Clovis on 14 Oct 2020
    how can I remove error-9 in version matlab 2020a
      1 Comment
    Colin Fraser
    Colin Fraser on 14 Oct 2020
    Check out this article.
    https://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/99067

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    Shahroz Ali
    Shahroz Ali on 26 Feb 2021
    How i can download and install matlab
      1 Comment
    Walter Roberson
    Walter Roberson on 26 Feb 2021
    Once you have purchased a MATLAB license under your own name, proceed to https://www.mathworks.com/downloads/ and click on "Download MATLAB R2020b" (or as appropriate release depending when you are reading this.)
    On the page that comes up, click on Windows, MacOS, or Linux, depending on which operating system you have.
    You will be offered a file to download.
    • If you are using Windows, it will be an exe file. Execute the exe file to cause it to unpack some code and automatically start running the installer program
    • If you are using Mac it will be a .dmg.zip file. Double-click on the .dmg.zip file to expand it into a .dmg file, then double-click on the .dmg file to open the disk image, and in that disk image, double-click on the Install MATLAB app that shows up.

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    Abdul Rasheed
    Abdul Rasheed on 27 Oct 2021
    Pls activate my matlab
    abdulrasheed.ar376@gmail.com
      1 Comment
    Walter Roberson
    Walter Roberson on 27 Oct 2021
    Sorry, the volunteers who answer questions here do not have access to the license database. You will need to contact Mathworks Support for free installation assistance.

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    wael anzi
    wael anzi on 11 Nov 2021 at 1:25
    لا اعرف مفتاح التنشيط
      1 Comment
    Walter Roberson
    Walter Roberson on 11 Nov 2021 at 10:53
    Sorry, the volunteers who answer questions here do not have access to the license database. You will need to contact Mathworks Support for free installation assistance.

    Sign in to comment.


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