This is documentation for Mathematica 6, which was
based on an earlier version of the Wolfram Language.
View current documentation (Version 11.1)
Mathematica System Program


starts the full Mathematica system including notebook interface on Unix and Linux.
  • The Mathematica notebook interface provides dynamic interactivity and enhanced graphics functionality, and calls the kernel via MathLink to perform calculations.
  • The first calculation in a notebook may take slightly longer, as it typically launches the kernel.
  • The following command-line options are accepted on Unix and Linux:
-appHelpercombine the options -querySingleLaunch and -forceSaveAs
-cleanignore stored caches and rebuild the front end preferences file
-backgroundTaskDelay nspecify the time (in milliseconds) that the front end delays background tasks while waiting for input
-copyrightdisplay copyright information on the command line
-dontUpdatePrefsprevent changes to the user's preference settings
-font fspecify the font used in menus, buttons, etc.
-forceSaveAsforce the front end to display the Save dialog box when closing a file passed on the command line
-helpdisplay a list of all command-line options
-lmverboseprint diagnostic information to stderr when connecting to MathLM
-mathlinkmake the front end run as a child process that is capable of accepting MathLink packets
-noSplashScreenprevent the splash screen from being displayed on startup
-nostderrWindowdo not display stderr messages in a pop-up window
-preferencesDirectory dirspecify the location where preference settings are stored
-printCommand cmdspecify a command for sending a file to the printer
-pwfile filespecify a file in which to look for Mathematica passwords
-querySingleLaunchask if a file given on the command line should open in the current front end
-singleLaunchallow only one copy of the front end per display
-style sspecify the widget style used by the front end
-topDirectory dirspecify the location of the Mathematica installation directory
-versionprint the current version of the front end on the command line
-wwwBrowser commandspecify the command to use when opening URLs
  • When using -font, a list of possible font names can be found by using xfontsel. The name can be expressed either as an X Logical Font Description or as a valid font alias.
  • When using the -wwwBrowser option, the command can contain a %s format argument that is replaced with the URL.