MATLAB R2020a macOS unattended installation

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Todd Pfaff
Todd Pfaff on 14 Apr 2020
Commented: ALSS Licences on 15 May 2020
I'm looking for the non-graphical installation for each platform: Windows, Linux, and macOS.
I have these three MATLAB R2020a installation media images:
  • R2020a_Windows.iso
  • R2020a_Linux.iso
  • matlab_R2020a_maci64.dmg
In the Windows ISO we have: setup.exe and install_input.txt.
In the Linux ISO we have: install and installer_input.txt.
In the macOS DMG file we have: ???
What is the equivalent installation script for macOS that can be used with an install_input.txt file to do an unattended installation?
The example at this page is specific to Windows:
The answer on this page:
  • https://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/512455-matlab-r2020a-won-t-even-install-on-macos-catalina
indicates that there is an "install" program for macOS but I don't find this in a mounted matlab_R2020a_maci64.dmg.
  4 Comments
ALSS Licences
ALSS Licences on 15 May 2020
Seconded.
The -inputFile, -mode and install commands/options (etc) are all broken on the MacOSXinstaller.DMG
Worked fine in 2019b up5.
2020a up1 is not working though.
Please fix this in the next patch -physical install on a device is not always possible considering the environment we work in.
  • Please update when/if you work this out!
I'm sure there aren't that many people looking after large cohorts of computers, but it's functionality like this that really enables IT technicians to deliver applications in an enterprise environment. we're even more reliant on these functions when working remotely.

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Answers (2)

Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson on 14 Apr 2020
The dmg contains a .app . .app are directories with a particular structure. You can show their contents and drill down to find the executable:
/Volumes/matlab_R2020a_maci64/InstallForMacOSX.app/Contents/MacOS
The only resource used by the file is an icon.
  3 Comments
Todd Pfaff
Todd Pfaff on 30 Apr 2020
While I realize that Matlab installations can be done by downloading all of the individual files from MathWorks at installation time, that's not how we do it. What we do now and have for many years is to download the full installation media for all platforms. Those are the ISO and DMG files that I refer to at the beginning of this post. For both the Windows and Linux ISO files, everything that is needed to do a fully unattended installation is in the ISO media and I've been able to do unattended installations on both Linux and WIndows platforms without any further downloads. For macOS, as far as I can tell, some pieces needed for an unattended installation are missing from the DMG media, and I've given details above about what I've discovered.
The fact is that I can use the macOS DMG media to do an interactive installation, but I can not use that same media to do an unattended installation. Thus I assert that the macOS DMG media for R2020a is missing something that should be there, particularly since the unattended installation does work for Windows and Linux platforms.
The MathWorks "help" document referenced above doesn't give nearly enough detail, and gives no indication that an unattended installation must be done differently on each of Windows, macOS and Linux.
In our case we can often just use rsync to copy a MathWorks installation from one Linux or macOS system to another so that's our fallback for systems that we manage.

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Jim Prall UofT
Jim Prall UofT on 29 Apr 2020
As an alternative to setting up the unattended installer for MacOS, what I've found best for our site is to run the installer by hand on my Mac, with our license settings (network license server config in our case.)
I then simply create a .DMG file containing a copy the Matlab program folder from my Applications folder. I give this DMG to our MacOS users, and simply tell them to mount the DMG on their Mac and drag-copy the fully configured Matlab program icon into "Applications" in the Finder. On Mac OS, this gives the same result as having run the install on their Mac.
I only wish it were this simple for Windows and Linux. Note that with R2020a the Windows SETUP.EXE program has been redesigned, and I'm finding that (despite claims in the documentation) the new one doesn't work for unattended installs calling it from the command prompt or a BAT script. I note that the new installer_input.txt template no longer makes any reference to mode=automated or mode=silent, nor to automatedModeTimeout=NN. Bummer.
However, there is a file in bin\win64\ named "setup_legacy.exe" which appears to support the old way: it does recognize flag "-inputFile my_installer_input.txt" and even accepts the mode=automated directive in that config file. I'm still sorting out what paths can be used - so far I've had to place the my_installer_input.txt file in the same subdir \bin\win64\ beside the setup_legacy.exe.
  2 Comments
Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson on 29 Apr 2020
Note: these days on Mac, MATLAB tosses license files and some initialization files into
~/Library/Application Support/MathWorks/MATLAB/
and tosses add-ons into
Library//Application Support/MathWorks/MATLAB Add-Ons/
However, if you do not have any add-ons, and you are using a license server, I think it is okay to not copy any of those: I think they will recreated as needed.

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