Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center 

Advancing the state-of-the-art in high-performance computing,
communications and data analytics.


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MATLAB Distributed Computing Server

MATLAB is a high-level language and interactive environment that enables you to perform computationally intensive tasks faster than with traditional programming languages.

At PSC, the MATLAB Distributed Computing Server (MDCS) is installed on blacklight. With MDCS, you develop your program or model on your own local multicore computer using MATLAB's Parallel Computing Toolbox™ and then scale up to many cores by running it using MDCS on blacklight. It is important to remember that you must fully develop your application in parallel on your local machine before trying to scale it up to blacklight. At the PSC you must use the MDCS to use MATLAB. You cannot run MATLAB directly on
 blacklight in serial mode.

There are three things you must do before you can use MDCS on Blacklight:

  • You must install the MATLAB Parallel Computing Toolbox (PCT) on your local machine.
  • You must request access to MDCS by submitting this form. PSC has 32 MATLAB licenses, but special permission is required to use them.
  • You must set your PSC password. Even if you access PSC resources through the XSEDE User Portal, MDCS requires your PSC password to be set.

Instructions for running MDCS on PSC’s Blacklight

You must have the MATLAB Parallel Computing Toolbox (PCT) installed on your local machine before you can use MDCS on blacklight.

After you have successfully installed PCT on your local machine, you must define the correct environment to run on Blacklight.  The exact steps to do that depend on the version of MATLAB that you have installed.   PSC only supports the 2013a version of MATLAB.


If you have a problem running MATLAB report it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. When you report a MATLAB problem you need to tell us the version of MATLAB you are using and the operating system version and hardware type of your local system. You must also make all your MATLAB input files available to us in an accessible location. PSC does not provide consulting on developing MATLAB code, but does provide assistance in moving existing codes to blacklight.