Mathematica

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Mathematica is a commercial program used in scientific, engineering and mathematical fields. Here we explain how to install it.

Installation

Since Mathematica is a non-free application and upgrades may incur costs, this section lists instructions for different available versions.

Mathematica 6

Mounting iso

One way to mount the Mathematica .iso is to create a /media/iso mount directory and add the following line to the fstab:

/location/of/mathematica.iso /media/iso iso9660 exec,ro,user,noauto,loop=/dev/loop0   0 0

Now you can mount it with:

# mount /media/iso

Running the Installer

You can start the installer by navigating to:

/Unix/Installer

Run MathInstaller with:

sh ./MathInstaller
Note: If you do not place the "sh" in front, then you will get an error about a bad interpreter.

Fonts

Add the directories containing Type1 and BDF fonts to your FontPath.

Mathematica 7

Mathematica 7 is much easier to install.

tar xf Mathematica-7.0.1.tar.gz
cd Unix/Installer
./MathInstaller

Follow instructions.

For KDE users, the Mathematica icon may appear in the Lost & Found category. To solve this, execute the following as root:

# ln -s /etc/xdg/menus/applications-merged /etc/xdg/menus/kde-applications-merged

Mathematica 8.0.4.0

On 64-bit machines, two known issues are present; but solutions are provided. The second issue is present on 64-bit installs: but not yet confirmed on a 32-bit arch setup.

The first issue assumes you are trying to use nVidia, CUDA and OpenCL libraries within Mathematica.

The 64-bit archlinux nVidia and opencl driver packages install libraries in /usr/lib, not in /usr/lib64 as does nVidia's binary installer. This is not a problem: /usr/lib is the correct location for 64-bit libraries on a 64-bit arch system. However, a 64-bit install of Mathematica will assume the drivers are installed in /usr/lib64; other distributions that Mathematica has been tested on have their drivers in that location. The easiest method to overcome this is to make a symlink from /usr/lib64 to /usr/lib. Mathematica will be able to find nVidia, CUDA, and OpenCL libraries this way without further tweaking.

A second, separate but partial solution, is to set the following environment variables:

export NVIDIA_DRIVER_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/lib/libnvidia-tls.so
export CUDA_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/lib/libcuda.so

This second method, however, still will not permit Mathematica to find the OpenCL libraries in /usr/local as Mathematica seems hardwired to find them in /usr/lib64.

The second issue with Mathematica 8 in 64-bit archlinux (may also affect 32-bit environments; but not tested) is a reproducible crash when performing WolframAlpha[] functions. By default, Mathematica is configured to detect the system's proxy settings when configuring how to connect to the internet to fetch data. A "bug" exists that will eventually crash Mathematica when the calling library is used. A workaround is to avoid this library call altogether by configuring Mathematica to "directly connect" to the internet. (Edit > Preferences > Internet Connectivity > Proxy Settings). This bug has been reported to Wolfram.

Mathematica 10

Install mathematicaAUR (need historical version). The Mathematica_10.XX.YY_LINUX.sh installation script is required; you will need to download this separately from Wolfram.com, your university, etc. You will also need an activation key.

Mathematica 11

Install mathematicaAUR. Obtain Mathematica_11.XX.YY_LINUX.sh from Wolfram Research, along with an activation key. Successful install may throw non-critical errors: xdg-icon-resource, mkdir, xdg-desktop-menu.

Mathematica 11 automatically creates a document folder 'Wolfram Mathematica' in $UserDocumentsDirectory, which is set by Mathematica according to XDG user directories.

Troubleshooting

Missing symbols

If you have font rendering problems where certain symbols do not show up (i.e. / appears as a square), try uninstalling font-mathematica.

Also, try this solution. It also states the issue is fixed with Mathematica version 9.

Try having applications use anti-aliasing. For KDE: System Settings > Application Appearance > Fonts > Use anti-aliasing (Enabled)

HiDPI / Retina Screens

If you have a HiDPI screen, such as an Apple Retina display, and the main text in Mathematica looks small when you open it, this can be fixed:

  • Go to Edit → Preferences
  • From the Advanced tab, click Open Option Inspector
  • In the tree on the right, go to Formatting Options → Font Options → Font Properties
  • Change the value for "ScreenResolution" to double its current setting, e.g. 72 → 144. You can also use xdpyinfo | grep resolution to get a more precise number (which will need to be doubled).

See also