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I recently installed Matlab R2013a and it is working fine, however the only way I can start it is by running /usr/local/MATLAB/R2013a/bin/matlab in the terminal. If I type in matlab it says command not found, and I can't seem to get an icon in the side-bar launcher. How can I make it so I can run from the command matlab or from a launcher?

Edit: I have created a link so I can launch it by typing matlab in the terminal. I still can't get the unity icon launcher working though. I managed to create an icon via a matlab.desktop file in /usr/share/applications. When I click it, it launches Matlab, but after the initial loading screen Matlab shuts down instead of launching the application. It works through the terminal though. My matlab.desktop file is:

[Desktop Entry]
Type=Application
Name=Matlab
Comment=Matlab R2013a
Icon=/usr/share/icons/Matlab.png
Exec=/usr/local/MATLAB/R2013a/bin/matlab
Categories=Office
Terminal=false`
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you sure the matlab.desktop file has executable permissions? If it does not, it won't launch. –  Dan Johansen Oct 9 at 9:41

3 Answers 3

In your matlab.desktop file, you need to specify that you want to execute in the desktop.

Your Exec= should look like this:

 Exec=/usr/local/MATLAB/R2013a/bin/matlab -desktop
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Create a symbolic link in /usr/local/bin, i.e. as su

ln -s /usr/local/MATLAB/R2013a/bin/matlab /usr/local/bin/matlab

Once MATLAB is running, an icon should appear in the launcher toolbar. Right click it and lock it to the launcher.

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1  
That works so I can run it by typing matlab in the terminal. However, the lock to launcher is not working. Is there a way to make it show up when I search matlab in the unity launcher or so that I can have a desktop icon for it? –  Isaac Vandermeulen Jan 8 at 3:52

The lock to launcher is indeed not working for matlab. There is however a .desktop file that is part of the Matlab installation.

sudo ln /usr/share/app-install/desktop/matlab-support:matlab.desktop /usr/share/applications/matlab.desktop

You have to update a few things in that file:

[Desktop Entry]
X-AppInstall-Package=matlab-support
X-AppInstall-Popcon=3
X-AppInstall-Section=multiverse

Version=1.0
Type=Application
Terminal=false
Exec=matlab -desktop
Name=MATLAB
Icon=_usr_share_icons_hicolor_48x48_apps_matlab
Categories=Development;Math;Science
Comment=Scientific computing environment
StartupNotify=true
StartupWMClass=com-mathworks-util-PostVMInit

X-Ubuntu-Gettext-Domain=app-install-data

Give the icon an absolute file path:

Icon=/usr/share/app-install/icons/_usr_share_icons_hicolor_48x48_apps_matlab.png

And change:

Terminal=true

Now you should be able to lock the icon to the launcher as well as start matlab from there.

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