Matlab not responding mac

Matlab not responding mac DEFAULT

Not responding on startup, macOS Mojave

I'm the developer of Default Folder X. With the help of Philip Slaymaker I've tracked down the issue with Matlab. Matlab doesn't launch correctly if other apps use the Accessibility API (a part of macOS) to query it for information while it's launching.

A number of apps use the Accessibility API to communicate with other applications. These include Default Folder X, Magnet, Spectacle, and most other utilities that help you arrange / resize windows. If you run into this problem, you can narrow down the possible culprits by going to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Privacy > Accessibility. This list shows all the applications that you've given permission to use the Accessibility API - one of them is triggering the bug in Matlab and causing it to hang. You'll need to use a process of elimination to determine which one, but it'll usually be an app that gets and sets information about other applications' windows.

Note that contacting the developer of any of these applications won't really help much, as it's not their fault. The fundamental issue is that Matlab contains a bug that causes it to hang when other apps request information via the Accessibility API. That bug needs to be fixed to resolve this problem. Phil Slaymaker submitted the bug to MathWorks - hopefully they'll fix it soon.

In the meantime, if you're a Default Folder X user, I have a version of DFX that may successfully work around the problem. I'd appreciate hearing from you at support (at) stclairsoft (dot) com.

- Jon


Why will MATLAB not start up properly on my MacOS?

If MATLAB is not launching properly, and you are not receiving any License Manager Errors, then you may perform the following solutions:

  • Check System Requirements
  • Disable Security Software
  • Regenerate Preferences
  • Start MATLAB from the Installation Folder
  • Provide MATLAB with Full Disk Access
  • Start MATLAB in Debug Mode

Check System Requirements

Ensure that your MacOS meets the system requirements for the release of MATLAB you are attempting to launch. If you have recently updated to a new version of macOS, you may need to update to a newer version of MATLAB.

Disable Security Software

The security software on the machine may be interfering with MATLAB.  To troubleshoot, try disabling any security software or reboot in safe boot. 

Regenerate Preferences

One of the most common reasons for MATLAB to fail to launch is due to corrupted preferences. To regenerate your preferences, remove or rename your preferences directory then relaunch MATLAB:

  1. Open the Finder, the blue face on the dock
  2. In Finder, click on the “Go” menu and select “Go to Folder”
  3. Go to this folder: ~/Library/Application Support/MathWorks/MATLAB
    1. For Ra and earlier: ~/.matlab
  4. Locate the folder that corresponds to your MATLAB version and delete/rename it. For example, rename “Ra” to “Ra_old”.

Note: Do not delete any folders that contain the word licenses in the folder name, e.g. Ra_licenses. These folders contain important license information.

Once the folder has been renamed, try restarting MATLAB to regenerate the preferences.

Start MATLAB from the Installation Folder

The shortcut generated during the installation of MATLAB may be corrupted or broken. To troubleshoot if this is the cause of MATLAB's failure to launch, start MATLAB from the installation folder:

  1. Open the Finder, the blue face on the dock
  2. In Finder, click on the “Go” menu and select “Go to Folder”
  3. Go to this folder: /Applications/
  4. Double click matlab

Note: The R20XXx must be edited to correspond to your install release of MATLAB, e.g. Ra.

If MATLAB launches, you may create a new alias from the matlab executable in the /bin.

Provide MATLAB with Full Disk Access

If MATLAB does not have the required access permissions it may not start, such as access to the Documents folder. To ensure that MATLAB has the appropriate access permissions, please provide MATLAB with Full Disk Access:

  1. Open Security & Privacy from the System Preferences menu
  2. Select the Privacy tab
  3. Select Full Disk Access on the right
  4. Click the '+' symbol
  5. Click Applications
  6. Select MATLAB

Start MATLAB in Debug Mode

To start MATLAB in debug mode, launch MATLAB without the desktop environment. To do so, open a Terminal window (/Applications/Utilities/ and run the following command:

$MATLAB/bin/matlab -nodesktop

Where $MATLAB is the path to your MATLAB directory. For example, if you are using MATLAB Ra and have installed MATLAB in the default directory, the command will be:

/Applications/ -nodesktop

If MATLAB starts, it will start in the Terminal window itself. The title of the Terminal window will change to say “MATLAB_maci64 -nodesktop.”

From the Terminal window, run the command “desktop” to attempt to start the MATLAB desktop environment. This will produce an error message which may help you to identify the problem. If you would like assistance in interpreting the error, please contact Installation and Licensing Support.

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How to avoid Matlab stop crashing on startup on Mac OS when using full-screen and split-screen functions?


I'm using Matlab b on macOS Mojave

Half of the times I'm using the fullscreen / split-screen utilities of macOS, it causes weird problems in Matlab the next time I open Matlab, mainly 2 things:

  • If I close Matlab app after I used split/full screen, then the next-time I open Matlab, it might get stuck on startup (usually while loading the command-line window). When this happens, I have to force-quit Matlab, and it will happen again and again each time I re-open Matlab. The only way to solve this, that consistently worked for me, is to delete a xml file related to the startup layout of Matlab (explained down below).
  • Sometimes the windows of the help-browser and the figures disappear, and they don't appear again, no matter what. (typing 'figure' in the command-line, or trying to open a new help-browser, do not open any new window). Sometimes if I reopen Matlab it is fixed, and sometimes not, and then I have to delete the same xml file that I mentioned before.

As I said, the solution that worked for me, is to delete an xml file, related to the startup layout of Matlab. Instructions:

1) Open finder

2) Go -> Go to Folder (~/Library/Application Support/MathWorks/MATLAB/Rb)

3) Delete 'MATLABDesktop.xml'

4) Reopen Matlab

I have no windows-arrangement app installed such as 'Magnet' or 'Rectangle'.

Searching the forum, I saw this problem happens to many people.

This solution is quite annoying, since it resets many layout settings that I have to reconfigure each time. Will it be fixed?




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Responding mac not matlab

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App Not Responding Mac? Solved ? How to Force Quit Apps in Mac OS X

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Before I describe the full Shabbat punishment, it is probably necessary to describe a little about yourself and your husband.

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