A working (or studying) mathematician's guide to getting your hands on SageMath

Here is a description of various possibilities to get access to SageMath. There are two main ways of using this software:

Below we explain how to get access to either of these formats. Once this is accomplished, you can read e.g. here for a quick introduction to some of the functions available in SageMath (described for using it in a Terminal) or see e.g. this guide on how to use the Jupyter notebook.


If you have an internet connection and want to perform a short computation, you can go to the website of SageMathCell. Enter the lines of code you want to run and click a button to see the result. Or you just try it out directly below!


For longer computations and projects, you can got to the website of Cocalc and create a free account. Then you can create a new project, and add either a Terminal or a Jupyter notebook as a new file (or upload an existing notebook). Use them as explained above.

Local SageMath installation

The most convenient way to work with SageMath is to install it on your computer. You can have a look at the official installation guide. Here is the short version for the most important operating systems: If you still have some older version of SageMath installed on your computer, note that starting with Version 9.0 it switched from Python 2 to Python 3 so some older code might no longer work as expected.

For students of my course

SageMath will (hopefully) be installed on the computers of the Mathematical Institute once the semester starts. Thus you can log onto them (or use ThinLinc on your own computer) and open the program Terminal. Then you can type
to start SageMath in the terminal, or use
sage-9.4 -n jupyter --browser=google-chrome
to open a Jupyter notebook. We will mostly use the second option in our course. You should then navigate with the Jupyter notebook to the place where you saved the files for the lecture (like "01 Introduction.ipynb") and open them with a click.
Note that in the process above you will be asked for your password approximately \(N\) times (for \(N \to \infty\)) and probably you will always use your standard password for logging into the computers of the Mathematical Institute.
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