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How do I update my MATLAB license file for an Individual or Designated Computer license?

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My license has changed and needs to be updated. How do I update my MATLAB license file for an Individual or Designated Computer license?

Accepted Answer

MathWorks Support Team
MathWorks Support Team on 31 Mar 2021
Edited: MathWorks Support Team on 31 Mar 2021
If you are able to launch MATLAB
To update your license manually from within MATLAB, perform the following steps:
  1. On the MATLAB toolstrip in Resources, click the down arrow under Help
  2. Click Licensing.
  3. Select Update Current Licenses...and follow the prompts to update your license.
If you are unable to launch MATLAB
If your license file has expired or there is another license reason preventing MATLAB from starting, you can update your license by launching the MATLAB activation client.
For instructions on launching the activation client, automatically activating using the activation client. 
If you cannot connect to the Internet
If the computer that is running MATLAB cannot connect to the internet, you can download a license file manually from www.mathworks.com on an internet-connected computer and copy the license file to the offline computer.
  1. Sign into www.mathworks.com.
  2. Click your profile picture in the top right and then select My Account.
  3. Select your license number from the list.
  4. Click the Install and Activate tab.
  5. On the right-hand side, under Related Tasks, select Activate to Retrieve License File.
  6. Fill out all required fields and follow prompts. Click Continue.
  7. At Next Steps, click Download License File.
  8. Skip Step 2 and click Done.
  9. Copy the license file to the licenses folder on the offline machine. The following support article contains instructions for finding license file folders on various operating systems: 
Start MATLAB. If you encounter difficulties, contact Customer Support.
  10 Comments
Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson on 5 Mar 2021
Jason Redding:
Yes, you can delete the license file at any time that matlab is not actively writing to it.
The consequences of deleting the license file is that the next time MATLAB goes to validate the license (approximately once per hour), MATLAB will follow the other components on the license path and attempt to find a valid license on them. If it is not able to find a valid license and you are in the middle of using matlab, then it will give you about 10 minutes to save your work before it quits. If it is not able to find a valid licence at startup it will ask you to supply a licence.
In other words, MATLAB does not somehow internally mark the binary as authorized as a one time thing, and it does not have some other internal file that it writes the license information into. The license file is the only repository of authentication information. You can delete it, but that means you are withdrawing the authentication.

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More Answers (6)

Jason Brooks
Jason Brooks on 2 Sep 2015
There are two Matlab help areas. One is the small circle in the upper right next to the search documentation box. That's not it. The other is Home (tab) > Resources (section on the far right) > Help > Licensing > Update current license. Just wanted to be more specific because you can find Licensing info with the other help button. It just won't let you update your license.
  5 Comments

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Nicolas Wongso
Nicolas Wongso on 4 Mar 2015
For license updates
How often can you update the license in Matlab?
My current license expires in 57 days, when license is updated will that one last for 57 days as well?

Nicolas Wongso
Nicolas Wongso on 4 Mar 2015
Also is this license update going to be free?
  1 Comment
Shawn Lyons
Shawn Lyons on 1 Apr 2015
Nicolas,
It sounds like you may be a user of an annually-renewed license. If your organization will be updating the license, you will need to contact them about any related costs. If you are a university student using an academic headcount license, it is likely that the update will be free, but again, you should contact your university to check their policy on license updates.
For further clarification, feel free to contact MathWorks Support and we can discuss the license update process.
-Shawn
MathWorks Support

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Sriram Narayanan
Sriram Narayanan on 5 Sep 2018
That tool doesn't let me load in a new Concurrent License file (ie. to point the client at a new server, or if the server name changed). When I run it - still connected to the old server - it says "update not required".
It seems that the only way to get the client to load a new concurrent license configuration is to run the installer.
  1 Comment
Michael Laumen
Michael Laumen on 1 Oct 2019
Just move (or delete) the license files (located under C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R20XXx\licenses ) first.
After restarting Matlab it will show the "Activate License"-dialog, where you can activate your license.

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