7 Best MATLAB alternatives for Linux

MATLAB is a programming language and numeric computing environment. It is used for solving mathematical problems and displaying the result graphically. MATLAB is a paid tool, they provide a free trial for one month.

Here in this article, I will discuss some MATLAB alternatives for Linux most of them are free and open source.

GNU Octave

GNU Octave is software that features a high-level programming language for numerical computation. It can be used for solving linear and non-linear problems numerically, its syntax is largely compatible with MATLAB.

GNU Octave is the best-known alternative to MATLAB. It is available for different operating systems including Windows, Linux, macOS, etc.

Features of GNU Octave 

  • Free and opensource
  • Compatible with all major operating systems
  • High-level language intended for numerical computations
  • Equipped with graph plotting and visualization tools
  • Can be used to solve linear and nonlinear problems numerically
  • It can run both interactive and batch jobs
  • Largely compatible with MATLAB

Download GNU Octave


Scilab is another good alternative to MATLAB which is a platform and programming language for numerical computational. It can be used for signal processing, image processing, statistical analysis, numerical optimization, modeling, creating simulations of dynamical systems, etc.

The syntax of Scilab is similar to MATLAB it also provides a source code translator to convert MATLAB code to Scilab.

Features of Scilab

  • Free and opensource
  • Supported on all major operating systems
  • Dynamically typed language
  • MATLAB like syntax
  • Supports automatic memory management
  • Image and signal processing
  • Includes Xcos a hybrid dynamic systems modeler and simulator
  • Real-time simulation
  • Interface with Fortran, Tcl/Tk, C, C++, Java, LabVIEW

Download Scilab


Julia is a high-level, general-purpose, dynamically typed programming language that can be used for developing any kind of application. It provides functions for matrix manipulation, data visualization, etc so it is best suited for numerical analysis and scientific computing.

Julia is capable of direct calling C and Fortran libraries. You can create scripts in interactive mode (REPL) and by using its embedding API you can use Julia with other programming languages easily.

Features of Julia

  • Free and opensource
  • It is simple and fast
  • Dynamically typed which feels like a scripting language
  • Provides various functions for matrix manipulation and data visualization
  • It can use C and Fortran libraries directly
  • Can be easily embedded into other languages

Download Julia


SageMath is a free and open-source software for mathematical computation. It is built on top of many existing open-source libraries which include NumPy, SciPy, Matplotlib, SymPy, Maxima, etc.

SageMath provides a command-line interface, browser-based notebooks, and tools for embedding formulas in other documents. Its syntax is similar to Python.

Features of SageMath

  • Free and opensource
  • Provides a browser-based notebook for review and reuse of previous input and output
  • provides a command-line interface using IPython
  • Supports parallel processing
  • Include libraries for linear algebra, calculus, multivariate statistics, etc
  • Graph theory visualization and analysis tool
  • Supports complex numbers
  • Provides interface to some third-party software including Maple, Mathematica, R, Magma, etc.
  • Offers an automated test suite

Download SageMath


AnyLogic is a multimethod simulation modeling software developed by AnyLogic Company. It provides a platform to solve dynamic business challenges. It supports the discrete event, agent-based, and system dynamics simulation and you can model accurately complicated events.

AnyLogic is a cross-platform software that can be installed on Linux, macOS, and Windows.

Features of AnyLogic 

  • It provides a multimethod modeling environment
  • You can easily animate and visualize your model
  • Offers industry-specific libraries
  • Agent-based modeling and simulation
  • Integrated GIS maps
  • Data interoperability between a variety of forms of data storage
  • Easy model export and integration
  • Extensible and customizable platform
  • Commercial support for building your models

Download AnyLogic


Another alternative to MATLAB is Maxima which is a computer algebra system (CAS) for manipulation of symbolic and numerical expressions including differentiation, integration, Laplace transformation, linear algebraic equations, tensors, etc.

You can use it to plot functions and data in two or three dimensions. Maxima is inspired by the legendary computer algebra system Macsyma which was developed in the late 1960s at MIT.

Features of Maxima 

  • Free and opensource
  • Available for all major operating systems
  • Specialize in symbolic and numerical computation
  • Functions can be plotted in 2D or 3D
  • Includes a complete programming language with ALGOL like syntax
  • Various GUIs such as wxMaxima, GMaxima, GNU TeXmacs, Climaxima, etc are available for Maxima

Download Maxima


FreeMAT is a free and open-source software for numerical computation. It is used for rapid engineering, scientific prototyping, and data processing. It is similar to MATLAB and GNU Octave and supports its various functions.

FreeMAT features a codeless interface to external C, C++, and Fortran code. It possesses parallel processing and 3D visualization capabilities.

Features of FreeMAT

  • Free and opensource
  • 2D and 3D plotting and visualization
  • Can process N-dimensional array
  • Codeless interface to external C, C++, and Fortran code
  • Native Windows and macOS support
  • Native support to sparse matrix
  • Handle based graphics

Download FreeMAT


So here we have discussed a few good alternatives to MATLAB for Linux. Now for any queries or feedback, you can write us in the comments below.

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