I have downloaded MATLAB R2012a for Unix platform and i want to install it on my ubuntu 11.10. To install i try this command:


and it says:

install: missing file operand

According to it's manual i must give it an input file, So i create an input file like this to install in 'Stand Alone' mode:







Acctually i'm not sure in "activationPropertiesFile" field what file is required, so i supposed it requires license file. I saved this file as txt format in the same directory which installation files are.

Then i tried this command:

install -inputFile my_input_file.txt

and it gets this error:

install: invalid option -- 'i'

I know there is some helps in other websites and also some questions here about this topic, but i can't figure out what's the problem, Please help me, i'm a real noob on linux .

Thank you guys


in properties of the install file i checked the item "Allow executing file as Program", now it's like this: install properties

after that i can run install file by clicking on it or by typing ./install in terminal. but in both ways i get this:

Preparing installation files ...
Installing ...
eval: 1: /tmp/mathworks_xxxx/sys/java/jre/glnx86/jre/bin/java: Permission denied

in third line xxxx is a random number every time like 6370 or 5310 ... . why i have not permission? what should i do?


using Mahesh help i tried these commands:

sudo chmod +x ./install
sudo ./install -v

the result is:

Preparing installation files ...
->  DVD                 = /home/mehdi/qBT_dir/Matlab_Unix_2012a/ml2012au
->  ARCH                = glnx86
->  DISPLAY             = :0.0
->  TESTONLY            = 0
->  JRE_LOC             = /tmp/mathworks_6114/sys/java/jre/glnx86/jre
->  LD_LIBRARY_PATH     = /tmp/mathworks_6114/bin/glnx86
Command to run:
/tmp/mathworks_6114/sys/java/jre/glnx86/jre/bin/java  -splash:"/home/mehdi/qBT_dir/Matlab_Unix_2012a/ml2012au/java/splash.png" -Djava.ext.dirs=/tmp/mathworks_6114/sys/java/jre/glnx86/jre/lib/ext:/tmp/mathworks_6114/java/jar:/tmp/mathworks_6114/java/jarext:/tmp/mathworks_6114/java/jarext/axis2/:/tmp/mathworks_6114/java/jarext/guice/:/tmp/mathworks_6114/java/jarext/webservices/ com/mathworks/professionalinstaller/Launcher -root "/home/mehdi/qBT_dir/Matlab_Unix_2012a/ml2012au" -tmpdir "/tmp/mathworks_6114" 
Installing ...
eval: 1: /tmp/mathworks_6114/sys/java/jre/glnx86/jre/bin/java: Permission denied


Last thing to do is go into /matlab-install-files/sys/java/jre/glnx86/jre/bin/java and :

sudo chmod +x ./java

and then go back to installation files directory and run install by:



sudo ./install

and it will work :-)

Thank you all specially "Mahesh" and "John"

  • what does install --help returns ?
    – Web-E
    Apr 10, 2012 at 18:51
  • A rare case when the question itself contains more helpful information than its answers :) May 14, 2013 at 21:42

4 Answers 4


Something's wrong here. I've installed Matlab R2012a, and the install file does not require any input file.

This should work.

Command line way.

  • Open Terminal
  • cd into Matlab directory ( which has the install file and is shown in your screenshot)
  • sudo chmod +x ./install
  • sudo ./install
  • This will open a window, from where you will be able to proceed yourself.

GUI way:

  • type alt+F2. this opens the run dialog
  • type gksudo nautilus and hit enter
  • open the Matlab directory (as shown in your screenshot)
  • check if install file has execute permissions (as in your screenshot)
  • Double click install. You will get a window asking you wether to display or run.
  • Click on Run
  • you should be able to find your way from here. this opens a window with necessary instructions.

as you see, The Command line way is easier and safer.. ;)

This is guaranteed to work. And just so you know, when you executed install, as described in your question, /usr/bin/install must have got executed. It is probably the one that complained of a missing file operand.

  • 1
    thank you but i keep getting the same error, (permission denied).
    – Mehdi
    Apr 11, 2012 at 12:28
  • Sorry to hear that! Can you update your question with any errors/messages displayed when trying the command-line way by running sudo ./install -v after cd-ing into the matlab directory?
    – Mahesh
    Apr 11, 2012 at 13:20

For the error:

eval: 1: /tmp/mathworks_11425/sys/java/jre/glnxa64/jre/bin/java: Permission denied

You have to give permissions for the java to run (credits to http://kittipatkampa.wordpress.com/2012/02/12/matlab-on-ubuntu-from-install-make-launching-icon-to-uninstall/ )

After proceeding the steps by Mahesh, go to the folder

cd sys/java/jre/glnxa64/jre/bin/ (the folder that appears in your error message)

and then

chmod +x java

Ready to go. Go back to where your install file is and type

sudo sh install

The setup will (hopefully) launch.

  • yes it worked, installation goes to 100%, now the problem is how can i launch it ?
    – Mehdi
    Apr 12, 2012 at 13:09
  • you can find matlab in dash (if using Unity UI). If you cant find it there, Alt+F2 to get run dialog, and type matlab and hit enter. That should work.
    – Mahesh
    Apr 12, 2012 at 13:52

I don't exactly remember how I installed Matlab (R2011a), but I believe it has a wizard you can follow. That way you can login with your mathworks credentials. iirc it is important that the folder /usr/local/MATLAB/ is writable before the installer begins.

Maybe just run install from nautilus?

  • I check the path /usr/local/. neither this is writable nor lots of other folders although i am admin(i think!). what should i do?
    – Mehdi
    Apr 11, 2012 at 7:38

It is possible that you have more problems once you complete the install process using Mahesh's comment (chmod a+x on the folder).

So, I recommend to install the matlab-support package, which will set-up the missing dependencies, paths and scripts, and also will install a shortcut (x.desktop).

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