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How do I call a simple "Hello World" Java program in MATLAB?

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I have a simple Java program, and I would like to know how to call it in MATLAB.

Accepted Answer

MathWorks Support Team
MathWorks Support Team on 2 Apr 2020
Edited: MathWorks Support Team on 2 Apr 2020
Here is an example. This assumes you already have knowledge of Java.
The following is a Java program:
public class HelloWorld {
public static void main( String args[] )
System.out.println( "Hello World!" );
To call this program in MATLAB:
0. Make sure you have the version of JRE/JDK on your system that is supported with your version of MATLAB. You can get this version by executing this on the MATLAB command prompt:
>> version -java
1. Outside of MATLAB: use Java to compile this class, so you have file HelloWorld.class
2. Locate the classpath.txt file for the MATLAB installation. The location of this file can be found by typing the following command in MATLAB command window:
which classpath.txt
3. Open the 'classpath.txt' with a text editor as Administrator. Add the full path for the directory with the HelloWorld.class to the end of the 'classpath.txt' file as a single line and save the file.
4. Restart MATLAB.
5. In MATLAB: to create an object of class HelloWorld, type:
o = HelloWorld
6. In MATLAB: to execute main() of object o, type:
javaMethod('main', o, '')
Alternately one may also add the directory in which the class files are to the dynamic path. Use the JAVAADDPATH command to add the directory (which contains the HelloWorld.class file) to JAVA's dynamic classpath. This also obviates the need to restart MATLAB. Once this is done the code can be invoked as follows:
o = HelloWorld;
javaMethod('main', o);
For more information on calling Java class from MATLAB, see chapter 3 of the "External Interfaces" documentation. This documentation can be accessed from the following URL:


Eric Barnhill
Eric Barnhill on 8 Sep 2014
I would advise that at this time many users will have Java 1.7 on their machine by default, and this won't work (certainly doesn't on Ubuntu 14.04).
To make it work you will have to compile with backwards compatibility and this (at least on Ubuntu 14.04) requires using -source, -target, and -bootclasspath options. The -bootclasspath will require the rt.jar file from the 1.6 JDK. So an example might be:
javac -source 1.6 -target 1.6 -bootclasspath '/usr/lib/jvm/java-6-openjdk-amd64/jre/lib/rt.jar'
Sepehr Farhand
Sepehr Farhand on 3 Jun 2016
Fyi, it works without -bootclasspath option for me. Just use:
javac -source 1.6 -target 1.6
Ruixin Zhou
Ruixin Zhou on 4 Jul 2019
Alternative to step 2 and 3:
If you don't have Admin rights, create a javaclasspath.txt in the preferences folder (located at prefdir) then add those desired paths in it.
Check out the link below:

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More Answers (4)

sai m
sai m on 24 Feb 2015
step 5 is notworking ??? Undefined function or variable 'Helloworld'. please help me


Show 3 older comments
Elad on 1 May 2015
I know it's basic, but I always fall for it - maybe you forgot to addpath to the Java class? (you were suppose to take care of the path on parts 2-3 class-wise, but sometimes just adding the path as a "full MATLAB" path would be easier and cost little)
Rutuja Shirali
Rutuja Shirali on 7 Jul 2015
Please make sure that you are adding the full path for the directory with the HelloWorld.class to the end of the 'classpath.txt' file as a single line and save the file. Also if you are using the JAVAADDPATH command, make sure that you are adding the directory (do not include HelloWorld.class in the path in this case) to JAVA's dynamic classpath.
Mohammad Reza
Mohammad Reza on 27 Jul 2015
I had the same issue "Undefined function or variable 'HelloWorld'" until I figured out the version of java in matlab and the one used to compile the program must be identical.
I have the latest java installed on my machine but Matlab seems to have its own java installation. But it is possible to "tell" matlab to use my version of java by setting an environment variable. So I start matlab as follows:
c:> set MATLAB_JAVA=C:\Program Files\Java\jre1.8.0_45 c:> "C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R2014a\bin\matlab.exe"
jre1.8.0_45 is the one used to compile the
And now HelloWorld is reconised as an Object and you can run the following to get the Hello World message
>> o.main('')

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Akshay Jain
Akshay Jain on 17 Jun 2016
I am trying to call the HelloWorld code listed above from Matlab 2015b, but am unable to do this. I am using eclipse to write and compile the java code on Windows 10. After compiling the code, I have the HelloWorld.class file in /my_package/bin/my_package/ folder. I have tried the following:
- Changed the MATLAB_JAVA environment variable to the java version used in eclipse as described at Verified the version update by using java -version command. Tried adding the .class folder location both by static and dynamic method. However, when I run [M,X,J] = inmem command, my java class does not show in the J variable. As a result, when I run o = HelloWorld command, matlab says: Undefined function or variable 'HelloWorld'.
- Also tried compiling the Java code with javaSE-1.7 (the default java version in matlab is Java 1.7.0_60-b19) and removing MATLAB_JAVA environment variable. Still the same problem.
I eventually want to call an opensource library written in Java. But for now, I would be happy if I can at least call the HelloWorld class from Matlab.
Thanks in advance, Akshay

  1 Comment

Akshay Jain
Akshay Jain on 23 Jun 2016
It was a very simple fix. I was writing the java class as part of the package, but trying to access it as if it wasn't. Earlier, I was using:
and I changed it to:
and then called the class using o = my_package.my_class
and it worked perfectly.

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Supriyo Srimani
Supriyo Srimani on 7 Jan 2017
This program just prints Hello world...if i have some logic when user give a input in java could it be executed in matlab??? Please give a example like adding two numbers...


Prannay Jain
Prannay Jain on 23 Feb 2017
'javaMethod' function provided by MATLAB also takes arguments as user input. For example, if you have a class 'Addnumber' which contains function 'addtwonum' and 'obj' be its object as follows:
obj = Addnumber;
javaMethod('addtwonum', obj, 1, 2);
This will add 1 and 2.
Refer to this documentation link of 'javaMethod' for more details:
Mehmet Mahmudoglu
Mehmet Mahmudoglu on 12 Dec 2018
Addnumber Class must be defined with package otherwise it is not working
>> obj=numberpack.Addnumber
package numberpack;
public class Addnumber {
public double addtwonum( double a1,double a2)
return a1+a2;

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Vanessa King
Vanessa King on 12 Jun 2018
Are we still meant to add the directory to classpath.txt in R2018a? Classpath.txt explicitly says to not modify it as it is autogenerated. Is it adequate to just use the javaaddpath method to add it to the dynamic Java class path?


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