Mathematica for Staff and Faculty

What is Mathematica?

Mathematica (published by Wolfram) is a fully integrated environment for technical computing, combining interactive calculation (both numeric and symbolic), visualization tools, and a complete programming environment. The Mathematica notebook interface provides an interactive technical document format which combines typeset mathematical expressions, formatted text, hypertext, and graphics, as well as fully customizable buttons and palettes. Mathematica also has a communications protocol named MathLink, which allows it to communicate and share data with other programs written in C, C++, and FORTRAN.

Mathematica Network Version for Faculty and Staff

Mathematica is available for faculty and staff via the UVa Software Gateway on the following platforms: Linux, Windows (Windows 7 and Windows 8), and Mac. This version require the user to be on the UVa network, or use the VPN client to use Mathematica. Users will download both the program files for installation and the server information for licensing from the UVa Software Gateway. Faculty and staff can also use the network version at home or out of the office by using the VPN Client.

Mathematica Home Use Version for Faculty

Faculty can get a standalone license for a copy of Mathematica for home use by contacting Wolfram Research directly. These copies of Mathematica are specifically meant to be used off-Grounds on non-University owned machines by faculty.

Faculty looking to use the home version of Mathematica need to obtain only the University’s Mathematica site license number by ordering Mathematica for HOME USE at The UVa Software Web Store . You will find the license code which starts  with an “L”, and is written in small red characters on the Order Summary. If you also see a server defined in small red characters, you have selected the network version, and need to go back and select the Home version. A specific license number will accompany the home use license which is needed to register the standalone copy and request a password for operation. Please note: Wolfram takes some time to identify you as a member of the UVa community, so this is NOT an immediate installation. It may take as long as a day for Wolfram to send you your download and licensing information.

After Wolfram sends you the information regarding the download  and license code, start the installer sent by Wolfram and follow the instructions provided.

Faculty home standalone copies of Mathematica will require obtaining a new password every year by June 10 to continue operation of the standalone copy. If you have questions regarding installation or encounter problems,  contact us by email to

Transferring a Mathematica License from one computer to another computer

Mathematica license owners can transfer their license to a new computer if their original computer gets replaced, or the motherboard on the same computer is replaced.  To do this users need to request that Wolfram reset their Mathematica activation key by completing this form at WolframOnce the form is submitted the user should be able to reactivate their license on their new computer.

Installation Instructions for Network Mathematica

  1. Download both the program files for installation and the server information for licensing from the UVa Software Gateway.
  2. Make sure that you are connected to the UVa network on-Grounds or via the VPN Client .
  3. Open the installer for Mathematica for your OS (Win: .exe, Mac OS: .dmg, Linux: .sh) and follow instructions using the default selections. Linux installation instructions are located here.
  4. Launch Mathematica. Enter the server name when prompted. If your Order Summary from the UVa Software Web Store does NOT define a license server, then you had previously selected the home version, and need to obtain the network version from UVa Software Web Store . You should not have a license activation code. Select “Other ways to Activate” and select the network server choice. Enter the name of the server here.


Detailed installation instructions and troubleshooting information are available at Wolfram.


If you have questions regarding installation or encounter problems, contact us by email to

Tutorial Documents

Getting Started
Wolfram Research’s Getting Started Guide. Wolfram Research Mathematica Tutorials

Wolfram Research’s self-guided, introductory Mathematica tutorials
These tutorials are also available in notebook format.

Many useful documents in Mathematica’s notebook format (with .nb extension) are available on the Web and can be accessed from a Web browser by configuring the browser to use Mathematica as a helper application. Then the Web browser will start Mathematica automatically when you point to a Mathematica document. This assumes that Mathematica is available/installed on the same machine from which you are running the Web browser.

If users cannot find the answers to their questions in the online documentation, they can email their questions to Research Computing Support.

Frequently Asked Questions

Mathematica Examples

Other Mathematica Resources