Collaborate Quick Start For Students
Desire2Learn (D2L) Users

Very Important!
Please follow this setup guide BEFORE using Collaborate.

Technical Bulletins

  • Apple MAC OS X 10.8.4 Users - If you are using a Mac that's running OS X 10.8.4, please read this technical update.
  • Windows 8 Users - Please read this bulletin about issues with Java and Internet Explorer's "Metro" version.
  • Pop Up Blockers - With ALL browsers, please make sure your pop-up blocker is either turned OFF or will allow pop ups for "" to open.
  • Vacant/Empty Sessions and JAVA Errors - If you are getting Java errors, end up in a vacant/empty Collaborate session, or get a message that
    reads "unable to launch the application"
    when starting a session, please clear your Java memory. Here are the instructions for both Windows and Apple/Mac.
  • Firewall Settings - If you are behind a security firewall, please know this may be problematic. This is more common in office or institutional locations. We recommend
    that ports 2187, 443 and 80 be opened. Please visit or ask your campus or office technology specialist to refer to this helpful guide if you get connection errors.

General Information and Policies

  • SFA currently uses Blackboard Collaborate (version) v12.
  • Mobile devices, tablets and Chromebooks are not supported with our current version of Collaborate.
  • When trying to access a recorded session, please keep in mind that it may take up to 24 hours to become available online.
  • All recordings become unavailable seven calendar days after a semester has ended, unless your instructor chooses to download one or more session files on
    some type of alternative storage media. Please check with your instructor and plan accordingly.

Setup Guide

  1. Check your computer's system and browser versions to be sure they meet Collaborate's specifications. Come back to this page and go to Step 2 when finished.

  2. Follow the configuration steps on Collaborate's "First Time" users setup guide. Come back to this page and go to Step 3 when finished.

  3. Log in to SFA's Collaborate test session (always available) to make sure you can access SFA's version of Collaborate. No password is required, so all you need to
    do is choose the guest login, enter your first name and click on the login button (lower right area of that screen). Exit the test session when finished and go to Step 4.

  4. Now that you have been through the Collaborate setup guide, please follow steps A - J (below) to learn how to locate, join and view recorded sessions from inside of
    the Desire2Learn (D2L) course system.

Instructional Videos
uides for successfully starting a Collaborate session in both Windows and Apple/Mac.

Choose desired operating system to watch:
windows logo apple logo

Need additional help?
Collaborate Technical Support Number
- Toll Free: 1-877-382-2293 (Always Open)
Please follow the directions on this page before contacting technical support. Most setup issues can be resolved with the information found here.
Local SFA Help: (936) 468-7649 (Available during regular business hours.)
Chat Live With A Technician - Click Here


Locating and Accessing Collaborate Sesions in Desire2Learn (D2L)

Step A

Log in to Desire 2 Learn and navigate to the desired course.
(Choose the course in which you will be participating in the Collaborate live session.)

Step B

Once at your course home page, find the "Collaborate" link and click once. There will be a delay while the next page loads.


Step C

Click on the appropriate "Join" link that your professor has setup for your session (if any). The link will not be active until 30 minutes prior to the
scheduled session time.
If the "Join" button does not appear in your list, or if the list is totally blank, then your instructor has most likely not
created an active session yet.


Step D

After a pause, you may be asked to open/allow the Java service to run (depending on which browser you are using), so please choose "open".
Then, you will see the Java banner pop up briefly. Next, you will briefly see the manager banner as the service begins to start.
Please wait. Depending on your computer's security and browser configuration, you may also be asked some security-related questions about allowing the
Collaborate service to run. If so, then please answer "yes", "allow" or "OK" in order to let the service run on your computer.

session startup graphic
java_graphicLaunch Graphic

Step E

Following a pause while the program is starting, you should find yourself in a Collaborate session that looks similar to the image below. You are now
in a live session! Please continue on to steps F - K in order to setup your microphone and web cam (if needed).
Obviously, you will need to have a web cam and\or
microphone connected or built into your computer in order to send audio or video. Nothing else is needed to receive someone else's web cam video, but you will
need a set of working speakers in order to receive audio from others.

Main Screen Graphic

Step F

To configure audio features, simply click on the audio setup wizard icon (as shown below) and follow the directions. Also, please be sure that your
microphone was properly connected to your computer before it was last started. If not, please re-boot before proceeding.

Audio Setup GRaphic

Step G

After you have sucessfully completed the audio setup wizard, you may click on the "Talk" button to turn the microphone on in order to test your ouput. You should see the
microphone level bar bouncing back and forth as you speak. Please click the "Talk" button again to turn the microphone off. Please do not leave your microphone on if
not speaking during any session. This can cause problems for other speakers who may also be trying to send audio.

Talk Setup Graphic

Step H

Click "Video" to turn your web camera on or off. Also, if you have a web camera, please be sure that it was properly connected to your computer before
it was last started. If not, please re-boot and check to make sure it is working with your computer first, before attempting to use it with Collaborate.

Video Setup Graphic

Step I

To share your computer screen, simply choose the icon indicated below, select "share desktop" in the available selections and then click the "Share" button.
also using a webcam, please click on the icon that's like the one shown below. (Please note: This feature can be disabled by your instructor.)

Desktop Sharing Graphic

Step J
When you finish sharing your desktop, click on the stop button located in the upper-right screen area.

Stop Desktop Sharing Icon

Viewing Recordings (Archives)

Please note that any recorded sessions may take up to 24 hours from the recording time before appearing in your course archives area. To view a recorded
session, go to the Desire2Learn/Collaborate archive section (shown below), then choose the approriate session link for the desired recording.



Go back to the main Quick Start Guide