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maypumphreymary
New Member

Problem with Canvas Conference screen-sharing

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I have a MacBook Air which works perfectly fine for screen-sharing within Google Hangouts BUT not within a Canvas Conference. Since I'm teaching an online community college class, I really need to be able to share my screen with students!

The problem is with the display itself. When the screen-sharing window appears, the display is messed up--I see the colors that are on my screen, but everything is a diagonal swirl of lines--nothing other than the colors indicate that it's even my screen.

I've run this by both my college's contact and the after-hours support to no avail. Nobody has any ideas on how to diagnose the problem.

I've tried three different browsers--Safari, Firefox, and Chrome. All exhibit the exact same behavior.

Any ideas?

--Mary Ann M-P

De Anza College

1 Solution

Yes, he does! Fred and I just got off a join.me session, in which my 11" MacBook Air was finally able to display its screen in a Canvas Conference! I've documented the workaround below. Basically, we had to make my external monitor the primary display to get things to work. However, his team is working on a fix that will allow even my laptop all by itself to display its screen successfully.

WORKAROUND:

1. Apple=>System Preferences=>Displays=>Arrangement

2. Drag the menu bar over the external monitor.

3. Restart the Canvas Conference.

I *really* appreciate Fred's dogged determination to get to the bottom of this mystery! I'm going be teaching two online classes and one hybrid next quarter, and really won't have time for any technical obstacles!

--Mary Ann M-P

View solution in original post

13 Replies
Stef_retired
Community Team
Community Team

Hello,  @maypumphreymary , and welcome to the Canvas Community! I had a look at the website for BigBlueButton (the engine behind Canvas conferences), and came across this software requirement for screen sharing: BigBlueButton : FAQ  As you'll see, you'll need to make sure that Java is installed and up-to-date on your MacBook Air. Click on the link in the FAQ to test your computer, update your Java installation if prompted, and see if that solves the problem.

Hi Stefanie! Thx for the quick response! However, I have definitely got the latest version of Java installed. I had a slightly older version installed to start with and got tired of the repeated warnings about it not being the latest so went ahead and installed the latest just to calm it down! It's now calm, but the display is still messed up. BigBlueButton starts but it doesn't display my screen correctly. Seriously vexing weirdness!

 @maypumphreymary , in that case, unless someone else has run across this issue, I think we've reached the limits of what the Community can do to help. Since you've already exhausted the local support possibilities, the next step would be to initiate a help ticket and ask your campus support people to escalate the case to Canvas so that Canvas Support can troubleshoot the installation. Follow the instructions in https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-1524?sr=search&searchId=4c7894c7-f800-42ab-9205-f3d98e3913c...‌ and select the Report a Problem option directly from the Conferences page.

Is Report a Problem different from reporting it via [phone number redacted]? I've already done the latter at the request of my college's Canvas guru. My local guru also suggested I post the problem here in case anyone else had ever bumped into the problem....

--Mary Ann

Hi,‌  @maypumphreymary , if the number you've listed is the one you see when you click on Help from the global navigation (I've redacted it, because if it is, then those phone numbers are unique for each school), and it directed you to Canvas Support, then yes, that is the same as Report a Problem, and you would have received a follow-up email with a case number associated with your call. I'm going to share your question with the good folks at BigBlueButton to see if they've ever received reports of this.

Hi stefaniesanders! Yes, that is the number I called. They could not figure out what was going on either. Hopefully,  @ffdixon ‌ will be able to figure it out. For my online office hour with my class last night, I used my Lenovo/Windows notepad computer, which is inferior to my MacBook in every way except one--it can successfully display my shared-screen via Canvas!

--Mary Ann

ffdixon
Partner
Partner

Hi Mary Ann,

I'm the product manager for BigBlueButton (and CEO of Blindside Networks) and we're very interested to reproduce and solve your issue.

I personally use a MacBook Air as well.  I'll reach out to you directly and circle back to the community and let them know the results.

Regards,.. Fred

You rock  @ffdixon ‌!

Yes, he does! Fred and I just got off a join.me session, in which my 11" MacBook Air was finally able to display its screen in a Canvas Conference! I've documented the workaround below. Basically, we had to make my external monitor the primary display to get things to work. However, his team is working on a fix that will allow even my laptop all by itself to display its screen successfully.

WORKAROUND:

1. Apple=>System Preferences=>Displays=>Arrangement

2. Drag the menu bar over the external monitor.

3. Restart the Canvas Conference.

I *really* appreciate Fred's dogged determination to get to the bottom of this mystery! I'm going be teaching two online classes and one hybrid next quarter, and really won't have time for any technical obstacles!

--Mary Ann M-P

Thank you,  @maypumphreymary , for taking the time to post the solution you and  @ffdixon ‌ hammered out!

Hi Eeryone,

Just an update -- the workaround that Mary Ann gave is no longer needed.

We've fixed the underlying issue so the screen sharing should work out-of-the-box on all 11" MacBook Air models.

Warm regards,.. Fred

YES! Just tried a Canvas Conference with myself, using NO external monitor at all--just my 11" MacBook Pro--and I could see my screen via the screen-sharing feature! THANKS SO MUCH, Fred and team! It's great to have this annoying mystery solved AND in plenty of time for my much busier spring quarter which starts in April.

--Mary Ann M-P

dibsj
New Member

How do I screenshare my iPad to a canvas conference via iPad. I want to use Notability which all my students use and screenshare my notability as I lecture and write notes for them to view and write notes (trying to emulate what we do in the c,as room while I screenshare my iPad with the smart board. All I have at home is my IPad and a windows laptop.

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