Department of Engineering

Matlab - Frequently Asked Questions on Licensing at CUED

This page does not have any technical information on MATLAB. It is mainly to deal with the questions that arise regarding licensing of MATLAB within the Engineering Department.

    Q1.1 : What MATLAB Licenses are available at the Engineering Department?

    • TAH (Total Academic Headcount) License which includes the Basic MATLAB, Simulink and 14 other Toolboxes (TLBXs).
    • Additional Concurrent Departmental licenses which includes other TLBXs paid for by the various Research groups and some centrally paid TLBX Licenses. This does not include Basic MATLAB and Simulink. It also does not include the other 14 TLBXs which is part of the TAH License.
    The list of TLBXs in these two categories are mutually exclusive. Nevertheless these can be used in conjunction with each other in computers which are connected to department's network. However reserved licenses which is part of the additional concurrent departmental licences are not available for general use. The additinal concurrent licenses cannot be used on their own as it does not have the Basic MATLAB. The TAH license form the basis of the MATLAB Usage and the additional Departmental concurrent license supplements it.

  • Q1.2 : Who can use the TAH MATLAB Licenses that are available at the Engineering Department?

    Any member of the department can use the TAH License on computers which are connected to and part of the department's computer network.

    Members of staff, postgraduate students and undergraduates can also use the TAH license in standlone mode ie not connected to the network on their personal computers (laptops).

    Visitors can only use it on computers which are part of the departmental network. However they are not allowed to have MATLAB licensed by the department on their personal computers.

  • Q1.3 : I am an undergraduate. Can I use the departmental licensed MATLAB on my laptop which is connected to the university network?
  • ALL staff and students are entitled to install and use MATLAB on their personal machines without the need to be connected to the university networks.

  • Q1.4 : I am a fourth year project student. I need to use MATLAB extensively what are the options that are available?
  • Please see answer to Question 1.3.

  • Q1.5 : How can I get MATLAB installed on a laptop to use it in standalone mode?
  • The steps involved are as follows :

    • Obtain the Installation Key and the Activation code.
    • Create a Mathwork account
    • Associate it with the TAH License (by contacting an Asset Manager)
    • Install MATLAB
    • Activate the License
    You first need the installation key and the activation key (which can be obtained using your Raven Passowrd or PIN number).

    For installation of MATLAB the following options are available :

    • Download from \\diva-appserv site (set up by Peter Benie, pjb1008@eng) For this you need to bring your laptop and connect it to the departmental network.
    • You can borrow the media (DVDs) from the computer operators (you do not need to bring in your computer).
    • Download it from the Mathworks website.
    For the third option you need to create a Mathwork account using the link given below and then contact one of the Asset Managers to enable downloading of the MATLAB software.

    For this Members of Staff and Postgraduates should contact (preferrably by email) their divisional Asset Managers (see the list below), Undergraduates should email pc-support@eng.

    Create a MathWorks Account

    • Division A : Peter Benie (pjb1008@eng)
    • Division B : John Norcott (jpn25@eng)
    • Division C : Paul Long (pml29@eng)
    • Division D : Tim Ablett (taa@eng)
    • Division F : Patrick Gosling (jpmg@eng), Anna Langley (jal58@eng)
    • Signal Processing Group (Div. F): Roger Wareham (rmw29@eng)

    Once MATLAB has been installed users can then activate MATLAB by logging to the Mathworks site and using the Activation key. Once this is done MATLAB can be used either connected to the network or in stand-alone mode.

    Note that the concurrent licenses for additional TLBXs can only be used while the computer is connected to the departmental network.

  • Q1.6 : Can I use the additional concurrent TLBX licenses in standalone mode?
  • No these cannot be used in standalone mode only in the networked mode.

    You need to purchase from Mathworks and additional TLBX license to use it in standalone mode.

  • Q1.7 : How do I get the standard version of MATLAB installed in a PC?
  • You can put in a request to requesting MATLAB to be installed in a networked computer in the department.

    Give details of the computer (select the platform/OS from the following options)

    • Windows
    • Windows x64
    • Linux
    • Linux x86-64
    • Mac OS X (PPC)
    • Mac OS X (Intel)

    Also include the location of the computer and when it is convenient to install it.

  • If you want to install it yourself then contact the Computer Operators to see whether they have loan copies available for borrowing.
  • has set up a facility for installation over the network.

    From the PC, Start -----> Run and in the dialogue box marked Open enter : \\diva-appserv\windows and click on the OK button to start the process.

  • Q1.8 : I have a standalone computer (Laptop) and I want to install MATLAB. Can I use the departmental licenses to run it?

    • Option A (license.dat):

      SERVER matlab-lmserv 0 1711


    • Option B :

      Follow the instructions given below :

      Instructions for Installing MATLAB and accessing the Departmental License server from Offsite (on Windows XP, Vista).

      Instructions for Installing MATLAB and accessing the Departmental License server from Offsite (on MAC OS and Linux).

    • Q1.9 : I want to know whether a particular TLBX is available?
    • Departmental MATLAB License Info.

    • Q1.10 : What are TLBXs covered by the TAH license?
    • The TAH License Info.

    • Q1.11 : What are TLBXs covered by the different licenses?
    • The different licenses available for the members of the department.

    • Q1.12 : What is the difference between the TAH Licence and the departmental concurrent licenses?
    • The TAH license has 2 options. The first is it can be used in computers connected to the network. In the second it is available to members of staff and all students of the department in standalone mode in their personal computers.

      However the the departmental concurrent license are only available to computers connected to the departmental/university network.

    • Q1.13 : I want to try out a new TLBX before deciding to buy it.
    • If it is mentioned in the above list and paid for centrally then you can use it. If it is paid for by a research group then contact the person given as contact for that group and get permission to try it out.

      If the TLBX is not listed then contact to obtain a trial version of this new TLBX.

      However if you need a TLBX to use with R 2009b (or later) then you may have to provide the following information about the computer in which you want to run the trial TLBX :

    • For a windows PC : The Mac address of the ethernet card. Type ipconfig /all on a windows command line and note down the 12 alphanumeric characters listed for the Physical address (6 pairs of 2 alphanumeric characters separated by hyphens : xx-xx-xx-xx-xx-xx).

      Alternatively type : vol C: on the command line and note down the 8 alphanumeric characters (2 pairs of 4 characters separated by a hyphen : xxxx-xxxx).

    • For a computer running the Linux O/S the Mac adddress (same as for Windows 12 alphanumeric characters : xx-xx-xx-xx-xx-xx).

      Include this information when requesting the trial version of any TLBX. Also include the version of MATLAB for which you require the trial TLBX. The trial licenses are only valid for 15 Days.

    • Q1.14 : I want to find out the price of a particular TLBX.
    • MATLAB Academic Price List

      There are 2 categories in the pricing : Individual and Concurrent for purchasing TLBXs which are not covered by either the TAH License or the departental networked concurrent licenses.

      The price for CONCURRENT licenses would apply if it is to be added to the departmental networked license. Otherwise the price for Individual license would apply. There is no provision in the central computing funds of the department to pay for stand alone licenses on personal computers (laptops) of users.

      The cost of individual licenses has to be met by the individual user concerned.

      Again the licenses for Toolbox to be used in research by a group or a researcher has to be paid for by the respective user/group. Research Students should discuss this with their supervisors.

      However there is provision for paying for Toolboxs to be used in Teaching from Central computing funds.

    • Q1.15: Is there a discount for buying multiple licenses at the same time?
    • Yes. If you look at Page 3 under CONCURRENT licenses, the Quantity represents the number of copies bought simultaneously and the unit price for each category (MATLAB, Simulink, Suite, Tier-1 Toolboxes).

    • Q1.16 : How much is the maintenance cost?
    • The maintenance cost is 20% of the purchase price (cost for the first year). However there may be further cost reduction based on the number of licenses held on that particular TLBX.

      For example a license for a single copy of REAL-TIME Workshop is 600 pounds + VAT (the concurrent price). However if the department already has 4 licenses for the REAL-Time workshop this brings the total to 5 and the renewal cost will be based on 5.

      Real-Time Workshop is a Tier-1 product and the unit price is 281 for a group of 5. The maintenance cost for each license = 0.2 * 281 = 56 pounds + VAT compared to the renewal of a single copy = 0.2 * 600 = 120 pounds + VAT.

    • Q1.17 : is there a discount for buying a single additional TLBXs?
    • No there is no discount in purchasing a SINGLE CONCURRENT license. Discount only applies to the number of copies of Licenses purchased simultaneously at the time of purchase and it does not take into account the number of licenses already in use (and paid for).

      However it might be worth asking the contact persons for the various groups

      To illustrate buying a copy of Real-Time Workshop is unchanged by the 4 licenses we already have for Real-Time Workshop.

      Any benefit is on the maintenance costs.

    • Q1.18 : I want to order a TLBX to be added to the departmental license. What do I do?
    • Make sure you check the price first.

      The prices in the column marked Concurrent would apply.

      Email the details of the purchase to for checking.

      It might be worth checking with the contact persons (listed below) for the various research groups to see whether any purchase of TLBXs is being planned in the near future, so that order could be placed together, to reduce costs:

      • Peter Benie (SAI) []
      • David Cole (Vibrations Group) []
      • Anna Langley (Control Group) []
      • Roger Wareham (Signal Processing Group) []
      • David Warren (Whittle Lab) []

      1. Place an order to Mathworks Ltd (address given below will be in the purchasing system database).
        The Mathworks Ltd, Matrix House, Cambridge Busines Park, Cambridge CB4 0HH.

      2. In the "Notes to the Supplier" section quote " Add this to the CUED licenses 38969" and this will ensure it gets added to the departmental licenses.

      3. In the "Deliver to " section enter "your name or name of your lab" so if there is a manual for the TLBX it will get delivered directly.

      4. Notify to indicate that you have placed an order. So you can be informed when the licenses have been received and been installed.

    • Q1.19 : Somebody else is using the TLBX I have paid for.
    • Contact the Computer Operators ( and give them the information about the relevant TLBX and your group name. They will be able to find the user and get the license released. There may be a delay if the user is not immediately contactable.

      See the answer to the next question if you want access to the particular license your research group has paid for.

    • Q1.20 : I want to restrict the use of the TLBX to my research group.
    • Email the system manager ( with your request. There are various ways of reserving the use of one or more of a set of licenses paid for by research group. Access restriction could be at user level, computer level, subnet level).

    • Q1.21 : I want to buy a stand-alone MATLAB license for my laptop. How much is the cost?
    • If you are a member of staff or student of the department you can have basic MATLAB, SIMULINK and the TLBXs covered by the TAH License installed in your computer free-of-charge.

    • Q1.22 : I want to buy a stand-alone MATLAB license for my laptop. How do I go about it?
    • Staff and students can have stand-alone verion of MATLAB under the TAH license scheme free-of-charge. However additional licenses TLBXs for stand-alone use which are not covered by the TAH license will have be met by the user concerned. There is no provision for this to be paid from central funds.

      Others should send an email to giving the name of the user and the details of the type of computer and O/S and mentioning what toolboxes if any is to be added to the basic matlab. Do not forget to mention that it is a stand-alone license.

      A quote will be send back by email. Use this to raise a departamental order with Job Number using the on-line iprocurement system.

    • Q1.23 : What TLBXs are available with the Student's version of MATLAB?
    • TLBXs available with the Student Version

    • Q1.24 : Can I use the Departmental license server to run MATLAB in my computer (a) in college and (b) in private (non-college) residence?
    • Yes. It is possible to access the MATLAB license server from computers (connected to the CUDN) in colleges. Please contact comp-admin@eng for further details.

      However it is not possible to access the MATLAB license server from computers NOT connected to the CUDN.

    • Q1.25 : I have purchased a Student version of MATLAB and installed in my computer. However I want to use a TLBX which is only available with the departmental license server. Can I use the departmental license server along with my student version of MATLAB?
    • No. It won't be possible to make use of both licenses in a single session. These licenses are mutually exclusive.

    • Q1.26 : I want to trial a TLBX on my PC before purchasing. How do I get a trial version of a TLBX ?
    • Email with your request. In the email include the following information :
      1. Your Computer's Operating System : Windows XP or Linux
      2. The version of MATLAB you are using.

    • Q1.27 : I want to trial the Parallel Computing Toolbox for my workstation with 2 Quad-core processors. How much is the cost?
    • This is now included in the Departmental Matlab licence for 2011.

    • Q1.28 : I am interested in setting up a cluster of computers with multiprocessors to run MATLAB in parallel using the Distributed Computing Server TLBX. I want to know the cost of these for different configuration ?
    • In addition to the Parallel Computing TLBX the cost is given based on the Total number of Processors in the cluster :

    Distributed Computing Costs

    Purchase & Maintenance Costs
    Total No. of Processors in Cluster 8 16 32 64 96 128
    Purchase Cost - First Year (GBP) Add VAT 1,500 2,850 5,000 9,000 12,000 15,000

    Maintenance Costs - Subsequent Years (GBP) Add VAT

    The first year of Software Maintenance Service is included with new product licenses. You can continue uninterrupted service in subsequent years by renewing your MathWorks SMS subscription annually. Your MATLABĀ® subscription must be current in order to add new products or additional users to a license and to receive the latest product versions. The annual SMS subscription fee is calculated based on the products installed on your configuration and the license option acquired.

    MATLAB Distributed Computing Server Academic Price List (March 2016)

  • Q1.29 : I am installing MATLAB and I have followed the instructions and have managed to install MATLAB. However when I try to run it it is asking for an Activation key?
  • The networked departmental license does not have an Activation Key and does not require an Activation Key. It only requires the Installation Key.

    However a stand-alone installation of matlab (after being installed using the installation key) will require the license to be activated. This needs to be done only once and will require a Activation key.

    Activation key can be found in Activation Codes

  • Q1.30 : How do I uninstall a MATLAB TLBX which I have un-intentionally installed?
  • The following link explains how to uninstall a MATLAB TLBX :

    How to uninstall a MATLAB TLBX


The following should help you obtain support from the most suitable source:

  • Cambridge University, Engineering Department, Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1PZ, UK (map)
    Tel: +44 1223 332600, Fax: +44 1223 332662
    Information provided by comp-adminMarch 2016