Matlab R2018b

MATLAB is a technical computing environment providing advanced analyses, data visualisation, and the framework to develop bespoke algorithms. The open MATLAB language enables the sharing of ideas and the development of solutions. Interfaces to other programming languages, including Fortran and C, are provided.

With more than 600 mathematical, statistical, and engineering functions, MATLAB gives immediate access to high-performance numerical computing. This functionality is extended with interactive graphical capabilities for creating plots, images, surfaces, and volumetric representations.

The functionality is further extended with add-on toolboxes; the Maple, Symbolic and Signal Processing toolboxes are amongst some of the toolboxes available on this service. Simulink, which provides a graphical design environment for modelling and simulating complex control, DSP, and supervisory logic systems, is also available on this service.

Accessing the software

Attempts to run Matlab on a standard logon node will lead to a licensing error, probably including the message:

License checkout failed.
License Manager Error -38
The user/host has been excluded from MATLAB in the options file on the license server.
Contact your License Administrator to review the Options File.

To load the module:

$ module load MATLAB/2018b

An example command to run in your job script:

$ matlab -nodisplay -r <matlab_script>

Example: Matlab Job

An example can be found at ${BB_EXAMPLES}/matlab/ The example can be copied to a test directory and submitted to the batch system using sbatch.

$ cp -r ${BB_EXAMPLES}/matlab ~/matlab-test
$ cd ~/matlab-test

Edit the script according to your needs, then do:

$ sbatch

Example: Parallel Matlab Jobs

Two example parallel Matlab jobs can be found in ${BB_EXAMPLES}/matlab-parallel/. There is an example of using a parallel for loop, the parfor command, at ${BB_EXAMPLES}/matlab-parallel/parfor/ and an example of a single program, multiple data, or SPMD, at ${BB_EXAMPLES}/matlab-parallel/spmd/ Both of these jobs demonstrate setting up and using a parallel pool of twenty cores on one node.

Installed Toolboxes

Matlab's core functionality can be extended by toolboxes, some provides by Mathworks, who supply Matlab, some by commercial third-party vendors and some that are public domain. The following are some of the most often used toolboxes that are available for this release of Matlab:

  • Simulink, which provides a graphical design environment for modelling and simulating complex control, DSP, and supervisory logic systems. Provided by Mathworks.
  • Signal Processing Toolbox, which provides industry-standard algorithms for analogue and digital signal processing (DSP). Provided by Mathworks.
  • Symbolic Maths toolbox, which provides tools for solving and manipulating symbolic math expressions and performing variable-precision arithmetic. Provided by Mathworks.
  • Parallel Computing Toolbox, which lets you solve computationally and data-intensive problems using multicore processors, GPUs, and computer clusters. This is new to BlueBEAR as of r2017a.

The full list of installed toolboxes can be accessed by running the command:


in Matlab. Mathworks made fundamental changes to the way that Matlab interfaces with third-party toolboxes for Matlab r2013a and only toolboxes which are know to be compatible with this release of Matlab are installed. Requests for additional toolboxes should be made by opening an incident with the IT Service Desk.

Accessing Previous Versions

Wherever possible, previous versions of this application will be retained for continuity, especially for research projects that require a consistent version of the software throughout the project. Such versions, however, may be unsupported by IT Services or the applications vendor, and may be withdrawn at short or no notice if they can no longer run on the cluster - for example, essential operating system upgrades may be incompatible with old versions.

The following  previous versions of this application is recorded below:

Known Problems & Limitations


Other Information

The support level for this software is P2.

The Release 2018b Highlights and "What's New" webpages detail the changes that come with this release.

The proceedings, videos of presentations and example scripts are available for download.

The MathWorks web site has more information about Matlab including full online manuals.

The University's site license also covers running Matlab on your own machine.

NEW: University staff and students now have access to the MATLAB Academy Online Training Suite (MAOTS). The 5 courses available include MATLAB for Financial Applications and MATLAB Programming Techniques. Further information on how to access this can be found here: MAOTS Knowledgebase article.


Last modified: 21 September 2018