MatLab: Activate or Renew

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MatLab is a mathematical program available for all faculty, staff, and students of Louisiana State University. To activate MatLab, a MathWorks Account is required. 


To Activate or Renew MatLab:

1. Start the Activation application from one of the following methods:

If MatLab is open:
  • All Systems: In the Home tab, navigate to the Resources section and select Help, then click Licensing, then choose Activate Software.


If MatLab is not open:
  • Windows Systems — Double-click the activate_matlab.exe file in your MATLAB installation folder.  On Windows, this location would look like  C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R2020b\bin\win64 . On other platforms, it is where   matlabroot\bin\$ARCH   is your MATLAB installation folder, and  $ARCH  is a platform-specific subfolder, for example:  matlabroot\bin\win64  .
    • If you do not have administrator rights on your device, you will need to run the following command via Command Prompt instead to continue with activation. Please note that the R2020b in this code may need to be replaced with the current version you are running. For further assistance, please contact your department's IT staff.
      • cmd /min /C "set __COMPAT_LAYER=RUNASINVOKER && start "" "C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R2020b\bin\win64\activate_matlab.exe""


  • macOS Systems — Open Applications, navigate to the MATLAB application, right-click (or Ctrl+click) the package and select Show Package Contents. Double-click the application icon in the MATLAB package. 
  • Linux and macOS (manual) — Open Terminal and execute the script in the  matlabroot\bin  folder.


2. Select Online via Internet (automatic) or Offline (manual) installation. In general it is fastest to choose Online for this step, however if you want to do an Offline installation, you will need a local license file. If you do not have one, please contact your department's local IT adminstrator.


3. Under Sign into a MathWorks Account, click Sign In

   If you selected the Offline option, you will instead be asked to Enter the full path to your license file, including the file name. After you enter the full path to the file, click Next, and the product should complete activation and show an Activation Complete screen. If you receive this screen, you have completed activation and can proceed to use MatLab.

  • Note: if you have not created an account before, please see the following article to create an account first: MatLab: Create a New Account


4. Choose a MathWorks license and select Individual (most use cases) or Concurrent (if a lab install), then click Next.

5. For Individual licenses, enter the local account username of the computer account you will be running MatLab from. This will sometimes be different from your LSU username. Please make sure this account is the one you are planning to log in with and use the software under. The Individual License limits use of the software to a particular user on a particular computer.

6. Once your information is correct, click Confirm.

7. After activation is complete, you are now ready to access MatLab.


Support Links

Quick Start Campus-Wide License for Faculty, Staff, and Students 

How to Activate Campus-Wide License 

MATLAB Answers forum - Activate or Reactivate a Campus-Wide License 


Additional information

Any license generated for a Server (concurrent), a user's login (Individual), or for a specific device (designated computer)  BEFORE the December renewal date will have an expiration of Jan 30 of the upcoming year (so, less than 12 months).  Any license created AFTER the renewal date will have an expiration of Jan 30 a year following (so ~12 to 13 months away). In other words, generating a new license on Dec 1st probably means that the license will expire in 60 days since the annual renewal likely hasn't gone through yet.


Referenced from:

9/11/2023 9:15:23 AM