# Matlab Cheatsheet

Daniel Weibel
Created 23 Jul 2016
Last updated 27 Jul 2016

# Version

Display the verion of Matlab and the installed toolboxes.

ver


# Exit Matlab

exit


pwd
cd <path>
ls
delete <file>
mkdir <dir>
rmdir <dir>


# Search path

The search path is a set of directories which are searched for script and function files to run.

Display path:

path


Add a new entry to beginning or end of the search path (this does not persist across Matlab sessions):

path('/new/path/entry', path)
path(path, '/new/path/entry')


# Files

Matlab has two types of files that can be executed:

• Script files
• Function files

Script files simply contain a series of Matlab commands. Function files contain a single function.

Both files have the extension .m.

# Run script file

Assume script file /Users/dw/test.m, and directory /Users/dw is in path (note that the file extension .m must be omitted):

test


If the directory containing the script file (/Users/dw) is not in the path, then the script can be executed with run (the file extension .m is optional):

run /Users/dw/test
run /Users/dw/test.m


# Run function file

• Each function file can contain only a single accessible function
• The function name should match the filename (however, it’s the filename that counts)

Assume file test.m containing function y = test(x), and being in the search path:

test(4)


A function file must be in the search path in order to be executable.

Note that the name specified on the command line for executing a function is actually the filename. Matlab then executes the first function found in this file, even if the function has a different name. For example, if the function contained in test.m is called foo, then calling foo(4) does not work, but calling test(4) executes the function foo.

# Help

Display a help message about a function or script extracted from the comments of the corresponding file (works also with operators and toolboxes):

help <name>


Wha help displays is:

• For function files: the first block of contiguous comments before or after the function statement
• For script files: the first block of contiguous comments in the file

# Documentation

Open the documentation of a function or class in an external help browser. The documentation in the help browser is identical to the Web documentation on http://www.mathworks.com/help/. It is usually more comprehensive than the corresponding help texts.

doc <name>


# Get locations of files

Find out the absolute paths of function and script files.

which <name>


# Open file in a text editor

Open a file in a text editor.

edit <name>


The text editor to use can be defined in MATLAB > Preferences > Editor/Debugger > Editor.

# Install a new toolbox

1. Get the Matlab Installer
If the new version belongs to a new release (e.g. R2016a instead of R2015b), then a new MATLAB_R2016a.app is created in /Applications. The old installed Matlab release (e.g. /Applications/MATLAB_R2015b.app) is not affected.
All the Matlab releases in /Applications can be used independently from each other. Similarly, the toolboxes are installed independently to any of these releases.
Note: the executable for starting Matlab is /Applications/MATLAB_R2016a.app/bin/matlab.