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


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

Run MathInstaller with:

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


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

An issue with Mathematica 8 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 installation script is required; you will need to download this separately from, your university, etc. You will also need an activation key.

Mathematica 11

Install mathematicaAUR. Obtain from Wolfram Research, along with an activation key, and save it to the package build directory. Successful install may throw non-critical errors: xdg-icon-resource, mkdir, xdg-desktop-menu. For more details see the mathematica PKGBUILD file.

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

Mathematica 12

  1. Install the packages avahi and inetutils.
  2. Start/enable the service avahi-daemon.service.
  3. Check that hostnamectl contains either a static or transient hostname.
  4. Download the install script from Wolfram. The filename will be
  5. Make executable.
  6. Run the install script as root. When ran as user, the installer will ask for another installation directory.
# ./

Mathematica 13

The installation steps are the same as Mathematica 12.


Missing symbols

If you have font rendering problems where certain symbols do not show up (i.e. / appears as a square), 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 to 144. You can also use xdpyinfo | grep resolution to get a more precise number (which will need to be doubled).

Conflicts with system libraries

The Mathematica package includes a number of its own libraries, located in <INSTALL_DIR>/SystemFiles/Libraries/Linux-x86-64. They may lead to some compatibility issues and fallback to the system versions of some of these libraries may be necessary.

Symbol lookup error: /usr/lib/ undefined symbol: FT_Done_MM_Var

Force Mathematica to use the system version of the freetype library.

# cd <INSTALL_DIR>/SystemFiles/Libraries/Linux-x86-64
# mv

Mathematica/11.3/SystemFiles/Libraries/Linux-x86-64/ version `ZLIB_1.2.9' not found (required by /usr/lib/

Force Mathematica to use the system version of the zlib library.

# cd <INSTALL_DIR>/SystemFiles/Libraries/Linux-x86-64
# mv

Symbol lookup error: /usr/lib/ undefined symbol: hb_ot_tags_from_script_and_language

Force Mathematica to use the system version of the harfbuzz library.

# cd <INSTALL_DIR>/SystemFiles/Libraries/Linux-x86-64
# mv

See also