MATLAB by Mathworks is a desktop programming environment for algorithm development, data analysis, visualization, and numerical computation that expresses matrix and array mathematics directly.Simulink is a graphical environment for simulation and Model-Based Design of multidomain dynamic and embedded systems. San Diego State University has a campus-wide Total Academic Headcount (TAH) license for MATLAB, Simulink and application products. You may install MATLAB on your personal computer or laptop.

Commercial use of MathWorks products is not covered by our TAH license! If you are using a commercial license, please continue to do so.

MATLAB is avaliable on the lab computers in the Library Computing Hub, the Library's 24/7 Study Area, and also in the GMCS Math and Computing Science Computing labs.


  1. Verify your computer meets the System Requirements for MATLAB. Aproximately 20GB of disk space is needed.
  2. Go to the SDSU MATLAB Portal to download the software.
  3. Scroll down to Sign in to get started and click the blue button.
  4. Sign in using your SDSUid and password.
    • Sign in to your existing MathWorks Account. Create a MathWorks Account if you don't have one.
    • Download MATLAB, then choose your installer.
    • Run the installer and Log in with your MathWorks Account and password.
    • Select the Individual license (this is the default) and install MATLAB.
  5. Activate the MATLAB installation using your MathWorks Account.

How to Reactivate or Update your MATLAB License

If the MATLAB License you are using has been renewed, you will need to update your license file to continue using MATLAB. Follow these steps to update your MATLAB license:

  1. Open MATLAB (If the license has already expired the activation client will launch and you can skip the next step)
  2. In Windows, Navigate to Help Menu (Click down arrow button) and select Licensing
  3. In Linux and Mac, Click on Resources, Navigate to Help Menu (Click down arrow button) and select Licensing
  4. Click on Activate Software
  5. Choose to Activate using Internet
  6. Once reactivated you will need to restart MATLAB before the new license file is recognized

If the installation has already expired, you will be prompted to activate when attempting to launch MATLAB. As long as the activation finishes successfully it will roll over to the new license file once the old one expires. You might continue to see the expiration warning in MATLAB until the old file expires.

If you have problems downloading Matlab, call MathWorks support at 508-647-7000 Monday thru Friday from 08:30-20:00 Eastern Time. Only current SDSU faculty, staff and students are covered by our TAH license.

Why do I receive a message that MATLAB will expire in XX days?

If you receive the following message when starting MATLAB:

ERROR: Your MATLAB license will expire in xx days. 
Please contact your system administrator 
or MathWorks to renew this license.

MATLAB support has an online article that explains how to clear the expiration message.


  • Use MATLAB Online with your web browser. No installation required.
  • MATLAB Online provides access to MATLAB from any standard web browser wherever you have internet access; no need for downloads or installations - just sign in with your MathWorks account. It is ideal for teaching, learning and convenient, lightweight access. Create a MathWorks account if you don't have one using the SDSU MATLAB Portal.


Online Resources


  • Alumni, staff volunteers, emeritus faculty, and faculty volunteers are not covered by our campus TAH license.
  • Commercial use is not covered by our campus TAH license.
  • MATLAB R2019b Supported Platform Changes:
    • Dropped Platforms:
      • MacOS Sierra (10.12)
      • Windows 8.1 (Windows 7 SP1 is supported)
      • Ubuntu 14.04 LTS
    • If your computer is not supported, use the Previous Releases page to find an earlier release that supports your OS.
    • Or use MATLAB Online