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Network Installation for Intel Mac OS X Computers

An Intel Mac with Mac OS X 10.6.4 (or greater) is required to install and run Matlab R2012a. Not available for Power PC Macs.

32-bit support on MacOS is only available on R2010a or earlier versions. To install Matlab R2010a, please see the instructions at

Software installation cannot be completed over a wireless connection. Please use an Ethernet connection to run these processes.

  1. Highlight and copy the following line into the clipboard:
    (Select Copy under the Edit menu to copy the selected text into the clipboard.)
  2. Return to the Finder by selecting the Finder icon in the Dock or by clicking anywhere on the desktop.
  3. Select Connect to Server from the Go menu.
  4. Paste the clipboard in the "Server Address" field and press return. (To paste, select Paste from the Edit menu.)
  5. Click Connect.
  6. Log on with:
    • Connect as: Registered User
    • Name: <Your Princeton NetID>
    • Password: <Your Princeton password>
    (The Princeton NetID and Password are what you'd use to log into the Princeton Windows domain. If you aren't sure what your Windows Domain password is, you can reset it through the OIT Help Desk.)
  7. You will be presented with a network folder called Unix_MacOSX.
  8. Open Princeton_README using TextExit:
    1. Highlight Princeton_README by clicking it once.
    2. From the File menu, select Open With, and then select TextEdit. If TextEdit isn't one of the options available under Open With, select Other... and then select TextEdit in the Applications folder.
  9. Copy the File Installation Key into the clipboard: drag the mouse across the File Installation Key, and then select Copy.
  10. Return to the Unix_MacOSX window on the desktop.
  11. Double-click InstallForMacOSX.  NOTE:  Do NOT copy folders from Unix_MacOSX to your computer.  The installation will fail, and copying the folders violates our license agreement with Mathworks.
  12. The Matlab installer needs OSX Administrator privileges. It will prompt for your Administrator password. This will most likely be the password you used to log in to your computer:
    • Name: <Admin account name>
    • Password: <Admin account OSX password>
  13. In the Mathworks Installer window, select the default Install using the internet and then click Next.
  14. Select the Yes radio button and then the Next button on Software License Agreement window.
  15. In the File Installation Key window, select the Provide File Installation Key  option. Click anywhere in the text field of the File Installation Key window to select it, and then use the Command-V key combination to paste the File Installation Key from the clipboard into the text field.  The File Installation Key is eleven sets of five numbers, separated by hyphens.  Click Next.
  16. In the Installation Type window, choose Typical and click Next.
  17. In the Folder Selection window, click Next to accept the default location /Applications or Browse to a different location.
  18. The Confirmation window will list the products to be installed.  Press Install.
  19. Read the information on compilers.  Click Next to continue.
  20. In the Installation Complete window, accept the default checkbox Activate MATLAB.  Click Next.
  21. In the MathWorks Software Activation window, accept the default Activate automatically using the Internet.  Click Next.
  22. In the Log in or Provide License File window, select Enter the full path to your license file, including the file name.  Browse to the Unix_MacOSX directory and select license.lic.   Press Open to add it as the file name (rather than browsing, you can also type in the path /Volumes/Licensed/Products/Matlab/R2012a/Unix_MacOSX/license.lic).  Click Next.
  23. Click Finish to close the installation.  NOTE: At this point, you have installed Matlab and a network license.  As long as you are connected to the Princeton network, you will be able to run all toolboxes for which we are licensed.  You will NOT be able to run Matlab away from the campus network or on a stand-alone basis.  To install a local license which will permit you to work offline, please continue.  Note that you will need the appropriate File Activation Key from the Princeton_README file.
  24. Start Matlab by clicking on Matlab_R2012a in the Applications folder or the location you selected during the installation.
  25. In the Help pull-down menu, select Licensing, and then Activate Software.
  26. Select the default option Activate automatically using the Internet.  Click Next.
  27. Log in to your MathWorks account.  Click Next.
    NOTE: If you do not have one, you will be given the opportunity to create a MathWorks account at this point.  A MathWorks account is REQUIRED to use Matlab.  You must use your netid@Princeton.EDU email address as your MathWorks email address. Please do NOT use your LDAP or Windows University password as your MathWorks password.
    NOTE: If you are a student and previously created an account with MathWorks for the student version of MatLab, you will need to login to the MathWorks website and change your profile from "student" to "academic". 
  28. In the License Selection window, select "Enter an Activation Key for a license not listed:", paste or type in the appropriate Activation Key from the Princeton_README file opened at the start of the installation, and click on Next.
  29. In the Confirmation window, press the Activate button.
  30. Disconnect the server smb:// .


These are optional steps to ensure the software, the network license and the local licenses are all properly installed.

Start Matlab if it is not already running.

  1. At the '>>' prompt, type in ver and press Enter.  This will list the Matlab software installed on your machine (30 applications/toolboxes for Unix and MacOSX).
  2. Test network license functionality by typing 'license('test','MATLAB_Coder')' at the '>>' prompt.
  3. If the network license is working properly and you are on the Princeton network, the response should be 'ans = 1'.
  4. Check the locations of the licenses by navigating to /Applications/ (or the equivalent location if you installed Matlab to a different location).
  5. There should be two files in this folder:  network.lic (the network license), and license_<<your_computer_name>>_296492_R2012a.lic (the local license)


Updating the license file for R2008b through R2011b

  • Start Matlab from the location you have installed it to ( usually the Applications folder ).
  • Click on Help->Licensing->Update Current Licenses
  • Push the "Update Now" button.

The license will be automatically updated by Matlab communicating with the Mathworks site.

Updating the license file for R2007b

Please follow the directions at the bottom of this page: .

To Switch Between Running Matlab Offline & Online

There is no longer any need to switch between an online and offline license, since Matlab R2008b and later versions automatically fall back to the offline license when they cannot connect to the license manager.