Is there a way to obtain a free BARON or Knitro license? I am doing academic research and I really need these global optimization solvers (Knitro is not necessarily for global optimization, although it is pretty strong in many problems in global optimization)...

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    $\begingroup$ What types of problem are you trying to globally optimize? New for 9.x, Gurobi solves (at least attempt to) non-convex quadratics in objective and/or constraints, to global optimality. That includes bilinear expressions as special cases of non-convex quadratics. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 12, 2020 at 1:27

3 Answers 3


You can use BARON and Knitro for free from the NEOS Server. Also, you have the following options:

  • If you are in the first year of graduation, you can apply for a one-year free graduate student license of AMPL which includes both solvers.
  • If you are an individual with a CMU or UIUC email address or related to sponsors of the CAPD you can have a free academic license.
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for your answer. Is there any way to obtain an academic API for MATLAB, etc? I think sending models to the server repeatedly is not too practical at the research. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2020 at 1:49
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, some universities support academic license for Matlab as well. Check with your university's IT department to see whether they have such a service or not. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2020 at 1:51
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    $\begingroup$ If you cannot get free access to MATLAB, you might check whether GNU Octave would work for you. It is open source and tries to be compatible with MATLAB. $\endgroup$
    – prubin
    Commented Feb 21, 2020 at 21:40
  • $\begingroup$ My university does not have MATLAB API for these solvers. We only have thme via GAMS. I really need the API since I wrote hundreds of line codes in MATLAB and I can't change the whole code. But I am also now aware that there is no much options I have ... :) $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 22, 2020 at 18:26
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    $\begingroup$ @independentvariable, maybe page 12 and the provided link to the codes in optimization-online.org/DB_FILE/2007/01/1559.pdf can be helpful. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 22, 2020 at 18:56

You can also download our Octeract Engine - it's free for students and academic staff and solves a superset of the problem types that BARON and KNITRO do (global optimality for non convex problems + trigonometric & nonsmooth & discontinuous problems).


You can download a 1 month trial licence of Knitro from Artelys website and ask for an extension if needed. Artelys also offers free licenses for teaching programs.


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