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Written By
Ruffin Pauszek
Date Created
Tue, Dec. 23 2008
Updated By
Ruffin Pauszek
Date Modified
Tue, May. 7 2013
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   Blackboard Collaborate - Setting up


How do I get Blackboard Collaborate to work?


Introductory Information

In order to use Blackboard Collaborate, you will need to configure your computer and install the necessary component files. The steps below will guide you through the process.

Instructions for Setting-Up Blackboard Collaborate (Desktop Client)

  1. Verify that you meet the minimum computer requirements
    In order to use Blackboard Collaborate your PC or Macintosh must meet the following minimum computer system requirements:


    • Windows XP (32 bit), Vista and Windows 7
    • Pentium III 1 GHz processor (or equivalent)
    • Minimum 512 MB RAM
    • 20 MB free disk space 
    • Internet access at 28.8k or above (Broadband connection recommended)
    • Soundcard w/ Headset microphone

    • Mac OSX 10.5 or higher
    • G4, G5, or Intel processor
    • Minimum 512 MB RAM
    • 20 MB free disk space
    • Internet access at 28.8k or above (Broadband connection recommended)
    • Soundcard w/ Headset microphone

    For a complete list of supported Operating Systems click here. [Alternatively, If the link does ot work, navigate to the Blackboard Collaborate support portal, then from the left side navigation panel, select the following sequence of options: Blackboard Collaborate (web conferencing) >  Version and System Requirements > 1. Blackboard Collaborate - System Requirements (Desktop Client).] 

    Note: If your computer does not meet these requirements, contact the course instructor immediately.
  2. Disable Your Pop-up Blockers
    Using Blackboard Collaborate requires that pop-up windows be enabled to access related material or activities. If you have pop-up blockers enabled, follow the instructions in the related knowledgebase article Pop-up Blockers and Settings.
  3. Run the Java software test
    Check your computer for this required software by navigating to the following page:
    This test will identify whether the recommended version of Java is installed for your operating system. If not follow the instructions to install Java.
  4. Allow your browser to download Blackboard Collaborate files
    You will need to download and install several component files each time you access a new Blackboard Collaborate session. Use the Configuration Room to test the installation and connection process.

    Note: Some internet browsers may block the these files. Make sure that the browser security settings permit the download of these files.  To accept the file download, in Internet Explorer 7.x, or 8.x right click on the Infomation Bar appearing towards the top of the page, then click Download File... from the menu.
    Blocked Script

                                                                                                                                                  Download Script                           
    To accept the file dowload in Firefox, click the Open with radio button then click OK.
    Open Meeting

    If prompted, click the Run application button
    Run Application

    For accepting the downloaded .JNLP file in the Safari Web Browser for Mac, click here  support.blackboardcollaborate.com/ics/support/default.asp

    If your browser has properly dowloaded the files you will see the following progress bar during the installation process:

    Loading Screen

    Note: If Blackboard Collaborate is being accessed for the first time, you will be prompted to select an appropriate connection speed. For home users with a broadband connection, select Cable/DSL and click the OK button  

     Selecting Cable As Your Connection Speed

    Alternatively if you are connecting via a hard-wired ESC workstation, select the ISDN connection from the drop down menu, then click the OK button.

    Connection Speed Drop Down Menu Connection Speed Selection: ISDN

    Wait until all components load. The completed installation will open a new browser window as depicted below.

    Configuration Room

  5. Plug-in your computer headset/microphone
    In order to use Blackboard Collaborate, you should use a headset (with microphone) for your computer (which you can purchase for around $20). At a minimum, you can use a computer microphone and speakers, but this will diminish the online experience for you and others considerably.  
  6. Configure the Blackboard Collaborate session for audio and connection speed
    As a final step, run the Blackboard Collaborate audio wizard and select the appropriate connection speed. This will ensure that your computer is properly configured to recognize your microphone and run Collaborate. 
     Configure Audio 

Instructions for Using America Online

Blackboard Collaborate is not compatible with the America Online Browser. If you use America Online, you will need to: 

  1. Sign on to America Online
  2. Once you have logged-on, minimize the America Online window
  3. From your Windows desktop, double-click Internet Explorer or Firefox
    If you can't locate the icon on your desktop
    1. Click Start on your Windows Toolbar
    2. Point to Programs or All Programs
    3. Click Internet Explorer or Firefox

If you have problems during the setup process, you can contact Blackboard Support by one three methods:  by phone at their toll free number [1 (877) 382-2293], Live Chat, or by submitting a help ticket by clicking here. You can also view their online support material at:  http://support.blackboardcollaborate.com

Related Articles 

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Pop-up Blockers and Settings Mon, Apr. 28 2008 11766 rating: 80%
Blackboard Collaborate Wed, Jun. 4 2008 7982 rating: 2%
Blackboard Collaborate - Student Training Mon, Dec. 15 2008 14975 rating: 88%
Blackboard Collaborate - Tips for Logging In Wed, Mar. 4 2009 4795 rating: 66%
Blackboard Collaborate - Selecting ISDN Connection Speed Thu, Nov. 10 2011 1635 rating: 80%

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