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Installing MathType on a Mac with multiple user accounts for use with Microsoft Office

TechNote 122


The information on this page applies to:

MathType for Mac

All supported versions of macOS Microsoft Office 2011


When you install MathType 7 on a Mac with more than one user account, MathType 7 will only work with Microsoft Office 2011 applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) for the account under which the installation was performed. Other user accounts will not create or edit MathType 7 equations from the Microsoft Office 2011 applications. This is not an issue for Office 2016 and later, including Office 365. It only affects Office 2011.


MathType 7 registers itself as the equation editing application for Microsoft Office at the time of installation. This registration information is stored in the installing user's preferences folder, located at:

  <Home Folder>/Library/Preferences/Microsoft

Since each user's home folder is protected and cannot be accessed by any other user (including administrative accounts), MathType 7 remains unregistered for other user accounts on the same computer.


To register MathType as the equation editing application for Microsoft Office, each user must log in and perform the following steps. This will only need to be done once for each user account:

  1. Quit any running applications.

  2. While holding down the Option key, launch MathType.

  3. In the resulting window, enter the command, -regserver as shown below. Click OK.


MathType will register itself and immediately quit.


We hope this has been helpful. As always, please let us know if you have questions about this or if you have additional techniques that work. We'd love to hear from you.