The Wolfram Language and Mathematica on Raspberry Pi, for free

One of the best things about working on Raspberry Pi has been the opportunity to meet groups of people who are trying to bring about the same sort of change in the teaching of other subjects that we’re aiming for in computing. One great example is the computer-based math(s) (CBM) movement, which aims to redefine the teaching of mathematics in schools away from mechanical calculation and towards problem solving. From their website:

The importance of math to jobs, society, and thinking has exploded over the last few decades. Meanwhile, math education is in worldwide crisis—diverging more and more from what’s required by countries, industry, further education… and students.

Computers are key to bridging this chasm: only when they do the calculating is math applicable to hard questions across many contexts. Real-life math has been transformed by computer-based calculation; now mainstream math education needs this fundamental change too. is the project to perform this reset. We’re building a completely new math curriculum with computer-based computation at its heart, while campaigning at all levels to redefine math education away from historical hand-calculating techniques and toward real-life problem-solving situations that drive high-concept math understanding and experience.

Today, at the CBM education summit in New York, we announced a partnership with Wolfram Research to bundle a free copy of Mathematica and the Wolfram Language into future Raspbian images. We believe this will make the Pi a first-class platform for teaching CBM techniques to children of all ages. As Conrad Wolfram said today: “Coders will be able to use the power of Mathematica’s maths out of the box, not only enriching what they can do but also showing off the power and importance of maths.”

Plotting 3d graphs with Mathematica on Pi

Deeply inappropriate use of the Heaviside step function

Future Raspbian images will ship with the Wolfram Language and Mathematica by default; existing users with at least 600MB of free space on their SD card can install them today by typing:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install wolfram-engine

You’ll find Mathematica in the app launcher under the Education menu.

We’d like to thank the team at Wolfram Research for the enormous amount of effort they’ve put to get the Wolfram Language and Mathematica running well on the Pi. Over the next few months we’ll be running a series of blog posts from Wolfram exploring some of the neat tricks you can get up to with them. This is going to be fun!


Steve avatar

Awesome – looking forward to it!

DarkTiger avatar

This is so awesome!
I tried wolfram alpha on my mac and I thought it would be cool on the pi and and I saw this and I was so happy

Matt Williams avatar

Or you could provide an actual free and open source toolkit like Sage or Octave which avoids locking in your users into a proprietary environment. I really feel the Raspberry Pi Foundation should be pushing for more use of open source software rather than less.

Dermot avatar

“Or you could provide an actual free and open source toolkit like Sage or Octave which avoids locking in your users into a proprietary environment”

Nobody is *locked* into anything, what a silly thing to say. On the contrary, Pi users have just been given a fantastic educational tool for free. No pleasing some people I guess :)

mongrol avatar

It is not free. It costs you your freedom.

Tzarls avatar

But you are free to choose not to use it, so in the end it´s you the one who will make the decision and accept the consequences. What´s more – you could even choose to build your own FOSS version and give if for free (or not) to the world.
Isn´t that what freedom is about?

clive avatar

And your everlasting soul — it’s right at the end of the million page EULA.

P.S. Just in case anyone thinks that I’m serious (you’d be surprised :)) I’m not. You don’t have to download it. You’re not even obliged to buy a Pi. It’s pretty simple: we are saying, “Here’s something cool and useful and free”. Isn’t that fantastic? :D

P.P.S. While I’m here in mod mode: anyone who would like to further discuss FOSS, freedom, Dante’s 9 circles of hell etc etc please pop across to our forums. Here is not the place.

Barm avatar

Tell me about it! I downlaoded it last night and woke up to find myslf bound with gaffer tape in the trunk of a car. I’m writing this in the dakk on a chamois leather in my own tears so apolgies for any typos.

And all just because I wanted to explre the Lucas numbers.

Update: I have just been released by a coachload of woad-smeared Scotsmen at Pease Pottage services. Phew.

winkleink avatar

Any chance of picking up a Ginsters on the way back.

Mac avatar

What do you mean?

mob-i-l avatar

I’ve not tried Sage, but you can install open source math-softwares qtoctave, wxmaxima, and root-system using apt-get in Raspbian.

Rich avatar

That’s cool. Well done for organising that. I’ve been interested in Mathematica for years but the high price always put me off having a go.

The Raspberry Pi Guy avatar

Perfect step forward! Looking forward to it!

The Raspberry Pi Guy

Andrea Ferrante avatar

Great !

But I’d like to point out that there is also an OS alternative to Mathematica, It is provided by the SAGE project.
It is a bundle of symbolic computation software, mainly in C with python glue.

From the educatioonal point of view I would rather see this supported on the PI for the following reasons:
— it was created and it is maintained by mathematicians for mathematicians and the general public
— you have the source code, and can check it or learn how symbolic computation is made under the hood.

see their website for details

It would be nice to recompile it for ARM and include in raspbian or any other distribution. However I do not think the authors have the resources to do that…Nor do I alone.

Anyone interested ?


liz avatar

Have you ever actually compared Mathematica and SAGE, putting aside the FOSS argument for a moment? The two are not actually particularly alike – I don’t think I’d call SAGE an “alternative”, but it is a FOSS *option* for those wanting to do symbolic computation – and, of course, Mathematica’s usual pricing structure has pushed a lot of people in SAGE’s direction. Mathematica’s definitely the better option in terms of usability (for beginners, it’s got a fantastically shallow learning curve), consistency and sensibleness of syntax; although we do, of course, respect the fact that some of you are committed to using FOSS only. (I do agree that seeing the source code would be a nice-to-have – but again, it’s only a nice-to-have for a tiny minority of our users. You and I are not representative of most of the learners who have a Raspberry Pi.)

As we always say to people with a particular piece of open source software they want to see on the Pi: it’s in your hands. Get a team together. Do the work to port it. Wolfram did that with a piece of commercial software, they did it for free, and we’re very grateful to them; they’ve provided kids learning with the Pi with yet another tool. We want to make access to tools available for as many learners as possible. If we can work with someone like Wolfram to provide commercial learning software like this for free, that’s a huge win for us, and it’s an enormous win for the community.

Andrea Ferrante avatar

Liz, I do appreaciate the work all of you have done and also the excellent work of Wolfram in providing Mathematica for the Pi. Perhaps I did not express myself clearly enough. I did not meant to criticise an excellent choice made by the foundation (Note i did not add my comments on a previous negative post). Of course the Mathematica interface is at the moment more usable and user friendly, and it will propbably run much faster, since it has been ported. In this sense, for the ease of use they are not comparable. For quality and educational purpose they are.

Far from me the idea to provoke a flame war here, I do appreaciate all the excellent work done by you and the foundation.

However I would like to see Sage actively supported on the Pi, and yes, I shall try to put together some volunteeer do do it myself….. Anyway , I shall stop here and transfer any followup on the Forum.
Thank you for listening

ArchimedesPi avatar

I did, in fact, do a port of Sage Math to the Pi.
This is the thread,
and I have a GitHub repo with instructions.
I’d love it if someone could make use of it.

Arnt Karlsen avatar should package it too, most people running raspian on dinky toy cards, don’t have the disk space handy for build tools, and the RPI doesn’t really have the omph to build it from your git tree, unless you get it running on the graphics chip instead of on the cpu.

..if you have the RPI camera, install gst on your RPI and a pc and try these: on your RPI:
/opt/vc/bin/raspivid -n -g 180 -ex verylong -ev +0 -vs -rot 180 -t 0 -h 960 -w 1920 -fps 45 -b 1700000 -o – | gst-launch-0.10 -v fdsrc ! h264parse ! rtph264pay config-interval=1 pt=96 ! gdppay ! tcpserversink host= port=5000

…and on your pc: gst-launch-0.10 -v tcpclientsrc host= port=5000 ! gdpdepay ! rtph264depay ! ffdec_h264 ! autovideosink sync=false & you see, the camera and graphics chip omph is right there, ready to pump out 15 full size stills per second. ;o)

ArchimedesPi avatar

…you should package it too

It's packaged.
I forgot to mention it's a *binary* tarball.
Just download and untar, cd into it.
Then you're good to go.

Bill avatar

“Mathematica’s definitely the better option in terms of usability ”

People use to (and still do) use that argument for using Windows over Linux. Would the Raspberry Pi be possible in a Windows only world?

liz avatar

I see your straw man, and I raise you a brilliant tool for education that’s just been made available to everybody for free. Equine dentists everywhere should rejoice.

Geordie Birch avatar

Even that is relative – I find Linux easier to use than Windows.

What’s wrong with using what you personally find preferable, be it Windows over GNU/Linux, or Mathematica over Sage, etc.

And what could possibly be wrong with someone else using Mathematica? Would you take that freedom from them?

Pavel avatar

If you say Mathematica is free on Pi, is it a permanent licence or a fixed time licence? If I buy Pi today, can I use Mathematica on it for the rest of my life?

liz avatar

The rest of your life. So you’d better get to taking those vitamin pills.

John Dorelli avatar

what about upgrades. i’m sure that when Wolfram completes his program of patenting the Computable Universe, the software pre-installed on the PI will be both a) the latest version, b) free. Right?

Mark Swope avatar

Congratulations on a (hopefully) wonderful partnership development!

Dougie Lawson avatar

I’ve used W|A’s website for many years. This is a massive step in the right direction. I’m downloading it right now.

Elbert avatar

Excellent news!
Congratulations on this awesome addition to what makes the RPi different from other cheap hardware kits!

Henry Brown avatar

This is great.
As a Math teacher I used to struggle showing functions to students.
I now work with college interns who have limited math skills. We use Raspberry Pi to model server rooms, wind farms, power grids. This will really help to provide skills to students who need them.

Nobee avatar

I am really happy. It helps many of Students to start working with CBM.

Wolfgang Keller avatar

After doing the install steps there is a Wolfram icon under Education and Development, but none for Mathematica. You have to type
> mathematica
on a terminal to start it.

Alex Newman avatar

Check that there is a wolfram-mathematica.desktop under /usr/share/applications. If it’s present, you could try doing this:

lxpanelctl restart

If it still doesn’t show up, you could always just do ln -s /usr/share/applications/wolfram-mathematica.desktop ~/Desktop/ for a desktop icon.

Wolfgang Keller avatar

Only the last hint for creating a desktop icon worked. I also rebooted to make sure that this is not the reason why no icon was shown.

To ease the debugging I can only give you the additional information that I set German as the language in Raspian.

Alex Newman avatar

Thanks. I will see if I can reproduce the issue on one of my machines. The package isn’t really marked as en-us in anyway way, so I don’t thing the language would be an issue.

That said, I have seen this behavior before in LXDE sporadically. You could try using “xdg-desktop-menu forceupdate” This may be time consuming, but if nothing else works, re-installing the package could help there.

You can visit the Wolfram community at the link on my name here and post about this and I’ll do what I can to figure out what’s wrong. Sorry for the trouble so far!

spongman avatar

i didn’t get the ‘Mathematica’ menu icone, either. neither the ‘lxpanelctl restart’ nor ‘xdg-desktop-menu forceupdate’ worked for me, until i edited the .desktop file. after that the forceupdate correctly installed the menu item.

Wolfgang Keller avatar

“xdg-desktop-menu forceupdate” didn’t work either.


There is no .desktop file in my home folder. Running

> touch .desktop
> xdg-desktop-menu forceupdate

didn’t lead to a menu icon, either.

Alvaro Busetti avatar

Spongman, how did you edit the desktop file ? (I’m a newbie on linux…).

Thanks in advance

David Martin avatar

Same for me (created desktop icon manually). Hints: Pi is running headless (VNC). Display (X stuff) is started by pi, not root.

Wolfgang Keller avatar

Well, now that you are saying it: on my Raspberry Pi X is also started automatically (not by running startx manually).

Peter Farrell avatar

Alex, Thank you for posting the exact code to input. This worked for me.

Dustin avatar

I had the same problem. I fixed it by editing /use/share/applications/wolfram-language.desktop. In the “Categories” property, take out “Education”. Afterwards, run xdg-desktop-menu forceupdate. Maybe lxde doesn’t like the “Icon” property being the same???

Carl avatar

Let’s hope that accessible CBM is on the radar! Many students with disabilities are “in the dark” (pun intended).

diereinegier avatar

I totally agree that it is AWESOME to have Mathematica on th Pi. Years ago I learned Mathematica at the university and got myself a student version. Never since then, cause it was way too expensive for a private use. Even when the price for private use dropped to something about 300 € I resisted. Why use a tool when you can not share your findings.
But hey, now it makes sense again. I think toying around with mathematica is a perfect reason to get a Pi for.

And at the same time I agree that supporting FOSS is the way to go.

eben avatar

> And at the same time I agree that supporting FOSS is the way to go.

Absolutely. Just to put our commitment to FOSS in perspective, this year Raspberry Pi will spend a little over $1.5 million on open source software development.

liz avatar

We really ought to replace that avatar pic of you with one which reflects how much hair you have lost since we started work on Raspberry Pi…

Chris Evans avatar

I thought his hair had just moved down to above his top lip!
Great news about Mathmatica & Wolfram.

Paul Maunders avatar

Wow that’s a lot – can you reveal any more about the open source projects this money will be going to?

eben avatar

Off the top of my head:

– Wayland/XWayland/Weston
– libav
– Scratch
– Squeak
– Webkit
– v4l2
– libc
– Linux kernel
– PyPy
– Pixman

A certain amount of this work is Pi-specific (in particular stuff that talks to VideoCore or ARMv6 assembler optimizations), but there’s a lot of generally applicable stuff in there too.

Andrew avatar

Great news. Is there work being done for GPU acceleration in WebKit ( canvas 2D, page compositing etc. ) ?

eben avatar

Yes, though right now our Webkit investment is going into memory footprint reduction rather than accelerated compositing.

Dennis avatar

Huge news!

The forum needs a Mathematica sectio, please.

liz avatar

Good point. I’ll go and add one. :)

Dave Conroy avatar

I dont use Mathematica, so can someone please help me understand what sort of things can be done now with the wolfram engine?

Thanks in advance

Martin avatar

I suggest you have a look at the Wolfram Demonstrations Project:

Martin avatar

So excited it’s finally announced! Can’t wait to see all the great projects this will allow.

Philip Ashmore avatar

Is it OK to use mathematica from a Raspberry Pi Qemu image?
I got the steps from

and I use it to compile programs on my pc for use by the ‘pi over nfs.

I could install mathematica onto this image and run it through my pc’s X server but I’d like to know of it’s an “approved” means of running mathematica.

Alex Newman avatar

These are the licensing terms for the Mathematica bundled with the Raspberry Pi:

Basically, it’s free for non-commercial use on a Raspberry Pi specifically. Running it on any other device requires a license.

Mathematica applications and packages are not really compiled into device-specific code, so you could certainly do development on a desktop version of Mathematica and run the software on the Pi (or have the two Notebooks communicate with each other directly). It’s largely an interpreted language, so cross-compilation isn’t beneficial or necessary for all but very esoteric uses (like linking with C libraries).

liz avatar

*Points up* Alex works for Wolfram, so what he says here goes!

fx5 avatar

Thanks, Alex! :)

Alex Newman avatar

You’re welcome, Frank.

Philip Ashmore avatar

OK, so no running inside Qemu,
Just to be clear, is it OK to connect to my ‘pi over ssh -x and have mathematica’s GUI run on my PC?

It’s just that I don’t fancy standing in front of the wall-mounted telly with the wireless keyboard in my hand as I’m short sighted.

If I sit on the sofa I make a really good imression of a mole when I squint trying to read the text.

Alex Newman avatar

I’m no lawyer, but that sounds like a perfectly valid way to use a network transparent user frontend. In fact, we encourage doing “remote development” through mathematica on the desktop (Mathematica has a very robust remote kernel architecture). If you don’t have desktop Mathematica, remote X is a great idea.

Eric avatar

Dear Alex,

Mathematica is an wonderful addition to the selection of Pi software. At our university and other universities I’m familiar with, Maple, is preferred, mostly due to the cost effectiveness of university site licenses. I read the license agreement from the link you posted. And was wondering about item f under limitations:

“f. allowing access to the Product by any user other than Licensee, including, without limitation, access to the Product via a web server, which is only allowed pursuant to a valid webMathematica™ license agreement;”

I would like to know whether Mathematica could be used by students at a private school in a computing lab equipped with Raspberry Pi’s. Also what about in an after school computing club with a small enrollment fee?

I ask because the license appears to be a single user license. Are there other site license arrangements needed for using Mathematica on a Raspberry Pi in, for example, a private or Catholic school?

I think Mathematica makes a wonderful programming language for doing mathematics and am very interested on an economical way to bring this into schools.

Thanks for you time and work,

liz avatar

I think Alex is taking a much-deserved week off this week, but I’m sure he’ll be back to answer your question soon.

py avatar

Do you get the full power of Mathematica or are there things that does not work on the py version?

Dennis avatar

From Wolfram’s blog post: “And it’s the whole system. Nothing is left out. All 5000+ Wolfram Language functions. All capabilities of Mathematica and its notebook interface.”

James K. Pray Jr avatar

That’s so awesome! I’m in the middle of moving as well as transporting my “maker-lab”, and once I am done in the next week I can’t wait to get going more in the Pilot version, hopefully that will get me ready for the full release!

Thanks again Wolfram and Raspberry Pi, this move itself is huge progress!

David avatar


Craig Van Degrift avatar

I have lusted for Mathematica since college in the 1960’s, but the price was always too high. This news is particularly great because I plan to show some of my colleagues at the community college where I work about the Raspberry Pi in January and Mathematica will certainly be part of the demonstration.

Craig Van Degrift avatar

Oops. Obviously, my memory is wrong since Stephen Wolfram was born in 1959. It must have been when Mathematica 1.0 came out in 1988 that I priced it and gave up.

Dennis avatar

Wow! That’s amazing since Mathematica was released in 1988!

Jim Manley avatar

As those of us who qualify can attest on your behalf, if you can remember the 1960s, you didn’t _live_ during the 1960s! :D

salts avatar

This is fantastic, how much effort has gone into this from not only the Pi Foundation but also from Wolfram Research to port it for the RPi and then offer it free.

Big well done and thank you from me.

I do have a ‘But’ and that is, you guys need to have a break, don’t want you to burn out! Long Christmas holiday with no blog updates prescribed :-)

Tom avatar

This is fantastic good news! I have remarked before that I would have committed serious crimes to have these tools (Mathematica, Labview, for instance) as an undergraduate. Pencil and slide rule do slow one down.

scruss avatar

This is really great news!

Computer-based maths saved my university career. I would always know the right techniques to apply, but for $reasons I’d never get quite the right result down at the end of those huge strength of materials problems. When I discovered that one of the computer labs had a symbolic maths system on it, I taught myself how to use it and managed to fly through assignments and exams with no frustration. I ended up showing some of the professors how to use it, as they’d never seen it before.

So yes, this is a very good thing. I look forward to working with it.

Simon Jackson avatar

+1 on that! This is an awesome tool.

James K. Pray Jr avatar

I purchased my Raspberry Pi Friday and am downloading Mathematica now, if you need help for the Mathematica section let me know as I am taking pictures of everything that happens after the configuration part, after where you have to tab through to select “Ok”.

Or…if you are accepting volunteers to help document it, I would love to say I was a part of it! Thanks and awesome job!- James Pray

liz avatar

I’m sure that those reading the (new, and so far unpopulated) Mathematica section on our forums would be interested in your screengrabs and what you think of it all: have at it!

Alex Newman avatar

If you make a better installation guide than mine on the Wolfram Community (see the link on my name here), I’m sure everyone would be much obliged.

Jim Manley avatar

I’ve been using the Mathematica beta for the Pi in my educational work since it was first offered and couldn’t be a happier little clam. As some have noted, the drudgery of doing mechanical things such as calculation, plotting, etc., often derails students from understanding the CONCEPTS underlying the math(s). We should all recall that Albert Einstein failed arithmetic and couldn’t get hired as a professor to save his life, and thank goodness for that, or he’d have been too busy dealing with administrivia to let his mind wander and ponder important imponderables. He would have loved a tool like Mathematica on an educational platform such as the Pi, and so should you.

SAGE will be great to have too, when (I hope not if) the resources are applied to port it to the Pi. The more, the Raspberrier, I always say! :D

Napier avatar

Jim, sorry but Einstein didn’t fail maths – a long held misconception.,28804,1936731_1936743_1936758,00.html

Jim Manley avatar

Thanks! Over 500,000 Google hits that say he couldn’t do arithmetic can’t all be wrong, can they? :D I wasn’t talking about mathemetics in general, but doing the boring mechanics of arithmetic calculation. Whatever the truth about his arithmetic abilities is, he still couldn’t get hired as a beginning professor because he couldn’t perform the mundane administrivia required by people starting out in that profession – which includes simple arithmetic.

We can all be quite thankful of that because the patent clerk job that he finally was able to be hired for gave him plenty of time to stare out the window at things like a clock tower across the town and posit his thought experiments about time, the speed of light, and everything that extends from those two quite simple, yet complex, phenomena.

BTW, for anyone not familiar with the area of mathematics concerned with groups, fields, rings, etc., you might be shocked/awed/fascinated by the fact that all of the arithmetic operations we’ve grown to love/hate are based on assumptions … that can be changed. So, things like the additive identity (zero) and the multiplicative identity (one) that don’t change an original value when operating upon any other number, can be changed to any other value you might want. That blows everything you know about arithmetic completely out of the water, but it’s very useful when dealing with very odd things like quantum mechanics.

In any case, mathematics is fun, even if it means having to rewrite incorrect mathematical history! ;)

paddy gaunt avatar

Jim, can Mathematic solve famous simple tensor equations such as
Gμν = kTμν ?

Jim Manley avatar

Why, yes, yes it can! Symmetrical, assymetrical, spherical … pretty much any form you might conjure up. You do have to be careful about how big things like matrices can become, though, as memory consumption can quickly exhaust resources if you don’t use optimized Mathematica syntax (as in any computational endeavo(u)r). That’s another reason why I love the Pi – it forces one to operate within its constraints and use its resources efficiently – something we all used to have to do.

We just began demoing our 1960-vintage IBM 1401 mainframe (complete with tape drives, keypunches, and punched-card reader!) at the Computer History Museum and we have to really think before we run anything that hasn’t already been optimized. This is an example of the difference between education and mere training.

Shijor Shamsudeen avatar

A big thanks to the whole PI and Wolfram team. You are setting example for the whole world!

RMW5 avatar

This is fantastic news. Mathematical programming is what draws many people into computing, and for many it is as far as they go. Glad to see that they have not been ignored.

Wirk avatar

Does anybody know if one could use Mathematica in a parallel RPi environment with say 16 boards and what kind of speedup could be achieved?

Alan Bell avatar

there is information about cluster configuration here
it won’t be a fast way to use mathematica and you would have to find a bigish problem that lends itself to parallelisation, however it would be fun and educational to try (which is the point – if you wanted fast, you have come to the wrong place) I am very tempted to set this up on the cluster I am building.

meltwater avatar

that is excellent!

Username avatar


markb avatar

Write out 100 times:
The abbreviation for mathematics is ‘maths’.

Jim Manley avatar

That is, unless you’re from the more sensible New World, where we take such frumpiness as an opportunity to morph, transmogrify, and otherwise mangle such fuddy-duddy thinking. Otherwise, you’d all be using ridiculosities that would be the British version of Donaudampfschiffahrtsgesellschaftskapitän, which in English means “Danube Steamship Company Captain”.

You’re welcome! :lol:

Andrew avatar

If anyone is interested in why this is a good thing for your children here is Conrad Wolfram’s TED talk on the subject

and also

his blog featuring the announcement.

liz avatar

That TED talk is Conrad all over – he’s absolutely fascinating when you get him going on CBM.

Jerry Wasinger avatar

I think this is just plain wonderful.

David Martin avatar

PLEEEESE every good product needs examples/samples … where are they?

Lars Hohmuth avatar

A good place to start would be the Wolfram Community. We posted 5 examples from how to tweet using the Wolfram Language to setting up a weather station. And we’re looking forward to users submitting their own.

Our Wolfram Language documentation also has hundreds of more general examples and tutorials

Jongoleur avatar

Terrific stuff!

Thinking on this weekends anniversary, the Pi is rather like a TARDIS – much more going on inside than you’d think… ;-)

btw have a peek at the coverage the Pi/Mathematica linkup is getting over at Slashdot. Its a hoot!

liz avatar

I’ve seen it. I’m hooting.

Thomas avatar

Oops … ‘unable to locate package wolfram-engine’

Has it been removed? :-( (yes, I did update the lists)

Neil avatar

An interesting and positive development.

Regarding F/OSS alternatives, I’ve been using maxima for a few years now for the kinds of things mathematica does. Mostly messing around with filter designs in the Laplace domain and so on.

There is even an online web version:


Lazza avatar

Have you also tried Sage? I think it’s a quite nice piece of software. :)

Neil avatar

Hmmm.., yes I did look at it, but it looks like you need to learn Python in order to use it for anything. I’ll stick with maxima on its own thanks.

Neil avatar

Julia ( ) looks promising as well.

Carl avatar

Can I somehow install Mathematica on my Raspberry Pi running Arch Linux?

Alex Newman avatar

1) Download the debian package directly here.

2) Unarchive it.

3) Find the contents of the “opt” directory under DEBIAN and stick into your /opt directory. Drop the contents of the “usr” directory into /usr, ignore “etc” as its Debian-specific.

4) Symlink out the executables in /opt/Wolfram/WolframEngine/Executables/(wolfram, mathematica, etc.) to wherever you wish.

5) Have fun.

I really should write a guide…

mob-i-l avatar

I couldn’t find mathematica-engine using sudo apt-get install. The only mathematica-related package i found was mathematica-fonts. I then downloaded this “.deb”-file from but then sudo dpkg -i says it’s not a debian format archive and refuses to install. I use Raspbian from latest NOOBS and it’s most updated and upgraded. I also installed mathematica-fonts and then tried dpkg -i but with the same error. I guess I just have to wait until Mathematica is in the Raspbian repository. It’s strange that many people claim to have installed it.

Steve W avatar

I have downloaded that same file and installed it successfully using ‘sudo dpkg -i’ as you describe. Are you sure the .deb file isn’t corrupted?

mob-i-l avatar

Yes, the file was 0 bytes when I downloaded it from Midori. Then I downloaded it using wget and now I run Mathematica!

bonybabbs avatar

Yes, it is entirely possible to install on Arch.

First decompress the .deb file using the command ‘ar vx filename.deb’ This will give you a few files. Extract the contents of ‘data.tar.gz’ into the raspberry pi root.

If you unzip the file ‘control.tar.gz, there will be a file called ‘postinst’ that shows you how to make symlinks to stuff.

Hope this gets you on the right track.

Bryan avatar

This takes me back to my colledge days doing partial diff eq in physics. A big thanks to those who worked to make this happen. And a big kudos to Wolfram for his generosity.

Shahab avatar

Hi guys, I am a mathematician and have been thinking of creating educational applications with Mathematica for quite a while now. So glad to see this happen. I only have a question: I am totally new to the whole Raspberry-Pi thing. I noticed there are some variations of the kit. Which one of the models do you think I should get for trying Mathematica on?


Shijor Shamsudeen avatar

You can buy a Model-B and an 8GB SD card with Raspbian OS.

Ken avatar

Incredible! Longtime Mathematica user, and have a “Home” version on my desktop machine. Another great reason to have a Pi around for the kids! (me too)

Bravo Wolfram!

(yeah, I know, they want you to love it and buy it for larger platforms… no different from any other company — but great nevertheless!)

Steve W avatar

Wow, my little Pi is now a Mathematica workstation! Oh, they grow up so quickly, sniff!

arthur doohan avatar

This is wonderful news! … I cannot comprehend all the nay-saying in these comments.

May I ask…When will the SD cards with Mathematica already on them be in stock at the distributors..approximately?

I am a ‘newbie’ and have been waiting to buy a few RPis as seasonal gifts for friends and myself. Am not so confident of my ability to effectively do the downloads at this stage, so would rather purchase with it M included.

Again, thanks to you and SW for this.

John C avatar

I am also interested in wondering when I can get a copy. I have already downloaded the OS for the pi. Anyone have any instructions they can post for those of us that have already downloaded but would like to get Mathematica?

Peter Farrell avatar

This is unbelievable news for a STEM teacher/math geek like me. (In the US we say “math.” Sorry.) Started downloading it last night and went to sleep. In the morning, no Mathematica anywhere. Just tried it on another SD card (with Google Coder on it) and I get an error message:

After this operation, 588 MB of additional disk space will be used.
E: You don’t have enough free space in /var/cache/apt/archives/.

It’s a 16GB SD card! Help! I’ll post to the forum, too.

Peter Farrell
San Mateo, CA

Peter Farrell avatar

Worked on the second install try on another SD card (this one only 8GB!) No icon for Mathematica anywhere, but thank you to the poster who advised to enter “mathematica” in the command line. Works fine!

Keith Sloan avatar

Does it make much use of the GPU for calculations etc?

gerard te meerman avatar

It took me some time to discover that you need to use the right arrow to highlight and press return in order to accept the license statement. Making Mathematica available in this way is a major step forward to make advanced numerical and symbolic processing available to pupils and students.

Jim Sturges avatar

Thank you, Gerard! I had tried everything else. This would be GREAT info to put in the original artidcle!! Hint off.

mob-i-l avatar

I made a video where I run Mathematica on Raspberry Pi:
In the end of the movie I rotate the 3D-plot.

ntbobnot avatar

I like Pi. I installed Mathematica last night. I have been in love with Mathematica since my student version X^2 years ago. But if you are interested in a quick easy CBM learning tool try Microsoft Mathematics. A free download for Windozs.

Ken avatar

Adding “StartupNotify=true” to the wolfram-mathematica.desktop file got the Mathematica icon to appear for me in the Education folder and Education start menu.

electronmage avatar

Where do you update the Mathematica bit to get it to appear in the education menu? What is the file location?

electronmage avatar

Incredible!! apt-get’ing it now. My only concern is if the rPi has enough computer power to do serious math crunching. Hope so!! Fractal Calculations, here comes the Pi.

edefault avatar

I tried to install using the apt-get command mentioned (cut and paste)… when lengthy license agreement terms appear, there is no way to accept, decline or continue somehow. STUCK!
Worse, dpkg –configure -a does not heal it … any attempt to invoke apt-get brings back the wolframs license terms garbage again. Got to get rid of it!

Colin avatar

The MathKernel (typing ‘wolfram’ from the terminal) works great! Unfortunately, trying to run mathematica over ssh (with the -X flag) causes a segfault for me. Valgrind says this is due to an illegal instruction. Regardless, the MathKernel solved an equation that WolframAlpha repeatedly “timed-out” with, even with the extended time, just about instantaneously! Unfortunately, the solution is more-or-less unreadable without a GUI.

Colin avatar

Oops. The segfault still remains, but the reason the solution was unreadable was because it was treating ‘sin(Bw)’ as ‘s*i*n*B*w’, rather than a function. Just had to read up on the syntax.

RJD avatar

What are the differences between the Raspberry Pi version and any of the other mathematica versions?


Ian Furniss avatar

The download works but the installation comes up with an on the license page which will not be agreed to by anything I can do. It looks like a DOS screen??? So it doesn’t install.

Robert M avatar

Ian –

Hit the TAB key to select the “OK” message at the bottom of the first license screen, then hit the ENTER key. That will move you to the next screen where you will actually “accept” the license agreement. There are options for “YES” and “NO” at the bottom of the second screen. Choose your option by using the TAB key, then press ENTER to select.

Ian Furniss avatar

Error in my last post. The email is this one not the previous and there is a less than OK greater than sign missing between the ‘an on’ in my text. Sorry

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