Blog from August, 2023

From 7.4.2023

The new version 2.6 of BigBlueButton brings again numerous improvements and new features, this time mainly concerning the whiteboard.

New whiteboard

New functions and style elements

On the right side of the whiteboard there are now two function bars. In the horizontal bar, a menu can be opened via Styles, which can be used to define, among other things, the color and stroke type of a drawing element or the font and size of texts.

Furthermore, there is a Resdo and an Undo function in this bar.

In the vertical toolbar, new features such as the eraser, a drawing function for arrows and the note function have now been added to the previous elements.

The Options menu (three dots) at the top of the vertical toolbar can be used to access various alignment options, as well as functions for duplicating and grouping.

All functions of the two menu bars of the whiteboard can also be called up via keyboard shortcuts. You will find a corresponding list if you select Keyboard shortcuts in the top right of your BBB room in the Options menu (three dots) and in the subsequent window Whiteboard.

Download whiteboard/presentation with annotations

Presenters can enable participants to download the content of the whiteboard or a presentation including annotations made during the meeting. To do this, select Upload/Manage presentations from the action menu (plus icon) at the bottom left. Click on the Send to chat button for the desired presentation. The download link will now be displayed in the chat.


Transfer shared notes to the whiteboard

Shared notes can now be converted into a presentation and displayed on the whiteboard or pinned to the whiteboard for further editing. Both functions can be found in the options menu (three dots) in the top right corner of the shared notes.

Shared notes that are converted into a presentation are saved in PDF format as a separate presentation. Subsequent changes in the shared notes are not applied to this presentation. However, annotations can be made using the whiteboard toolbars. The file is listed in the bottom left corner of the action menu (plus icon) in the upper part of the menu. You can select it and display it as a presentation in the whiteboard area. The file is also listed under Upload/Manage presentations.

Shared notes that are pinned to the whiteboard are not saved as a file. Instead, the larger, clearer right section of the BBB room is used for further editing of the notes. If the settings of your BBB room allow students to edit shared notes, participants can also write in the pinned notes. While the shared notes are pinned, they cannot be edited in the narrow left column of the BBB room. To unpin notes, click the X icon (Unpin notes) at the top right of the whiteboard.


All innovations related to the whiteboard are explained in the following video:

New features for breakout rooms

Import shared notes and whiteboard to main room

When creating breakout rooms, you can specify that after the time has expired, the shared notes and/or whiteboards of the breakout rooms will be saved as PDF files. To do this, simply check Capture whiteboard when breakout rooms end and/or Capture shared notes after breakout rooms end.

The saved files can be selected by the presenter as a presentation in the main room via the Actions menu (plus symbol) at the bottom left.

Easier moving of participants between the group rooms.

While the breakout rooms are active, you can switch to the user administration of the breakout rooms via the new menu item Manage users in the options menu (three dots) on the right above the time display. There you can then move the users to other breakout rooms via drag & drop. Once you have saved the new assignments using the Apply button, the affected users will be removed from their original rooms and will receive a prompt to join the new room.

New webcam settings

Own background images

In the new BBB version, you can now upload your own background images in addition to the predefined webcam backgrounds. To do this, click on the camera icon at the bottom (Share webcam) and then scroll the virtual background selection all the way to the right. Click on the empty field with the plus symbol (Upload from your computer). Now select the desired image from your computer. It will automatically be added to the first place of the selectable backgrounds. To delete it again, click on the X icon in the upper right corner of the icon (Remove added image).


Brightness settings

You can now also adjust the brightness of your webcam image or background. To do this, click on the camera icon at the bottom (Share webcan) and position the brightness display slider accordingly.

Easier layout management

The layout settings determine the positioning of the presentation and the webcam(s). The layout settings can now be accessed simply and easily via the Actions menu (plus symbol) at the bottom left.

The layout selection is now very clearly represented by icons. The selected layout can be applied to the view of the meeting participants by using the Push layout to all slider.

If you have set the Custom layout, you can use drag & drop to move the webcam image above, below, and to the right or left side of the presentation. If necessary, you can transfer this layout to all participants who have also selected the Custom layout. To do this, select the Popagate layout option of the Actions menu (plus symbol) in the bottom left.


Participants can change transferred layouts at any time and make their own individual layout settings.

Other changes/improvements


Polling has been extended with a possibility of user-defined input. To do this, select Start a poll from the Actions menu (plus icon) in the bottom left corner.

Then set in the upper right corner the Custom Input switch to ON. An input field is displayed, which is already filled with a demo question. You can enter your question and answers in this field.

As soon as you start typing, more setting options will be displayed below the text field. Finish typing the question by pressing the Enter key on your keyboard. Now write the answer options one below the other in the text field. For each answer alternative, a separate input field is automatically generated below the large input field. The answer texts you have typed are automatically entered in these fields. Alternatively, you can also click on Add item below to add answer options. In this case, an empty input field is generated for the answer alternative, in which you can type the answer text. This is also automatically entered in the large text field at the top.

Dark mode

If you want, you can switch your view of the BBB room to Dark mode. In Dark-mode the background of the two left columns and the toolbars of the whiteboard are displayed in black with white text. To activate Dark mode, select Settings from the Options menu (three dots) at the top right of your BBB Room.

Then, in the subsequent window turn the switch for Dark mode to ON and save the settings using the Save button in the upper right corner.


The dark mode is a personal setting and will not be transferred to the view of the participants.

Echo test

The echo test dialog has been renewed and now also includes a volume display.

From 13.2.2023

When you create a Zoom meeting in Moodle, you can now create Breakout rooms in advance in the settings and assign them to participants or groups as needed. If participants* are to be assigned, they must already be registered in the Moodle course. You can then select the individual students via the drop-down menu Add participant.


Only the email addresses and not the names of the students are displayed here.

In order for the entry into the breakout rooms to also work according to the allocation made in advance, the following conditions must be fulfilled:

  • Enhanced encryption is enabled in the Zoom activity.
  • Students need an active Zoom account at the University of Vienna.
  • Students must log into Zoom via SSO.

Guids for activating the Zoom account and SSO login can be found on the ZID webiste.

From 13.2.2023

In the settings of the Moodleoverflow activity, you can now specify whether posts written by participants must first be approved by teachers before they are visible to all participants.

To enable this review option, select the desired option in the General section under Review. Select Questions if you want to review only new topics and Questions and answers if you also want to review answers to posts.

Teachers and the respective author of a post will see the post as soon as it is saved. As in normal forums, participants now have 30 minutes to edit or delete their own posts. After that, teachers can accept or reject posts. In the teacher view, the Review needed! button appears in Moodleoverflow if there are posts that can already be reviewed.

If you click the Review needed! button, you will see the posts that you need to review. By clicking the Accept button you publish the post for all participants. If you don't want to publish it, click the Reject button. Before you save the rejection, you can enter a reason for the rejection. The post will then be deleted from the Moodleoverflow activity and the author of the post will receive an email notification.


Once you have finally rejected a post, you cannot reverse that decision. Rejected posts will no longer be listed in the Moodleoverflow activity.

From 28.11.2022

A text editor is now available by default for writing comments in the PDF Annotation activity. It can be used to perform simple formatting of the text and to insert formulas and images. To display all editing icons, click the arrow icon (Show more buttons) on the left above the input field.

From 28.11.2022

In the settings of an Etherpad, there is now the possibility to set an availability period, just like for other activities in Moodle.


You must tick Show to set the date and/or time.

When the Etherpad is accessed, the availability data is displayed in the upper left corner.


From 10.10.2022

The Studentspace is designed to help instructors quickly and easily create an area in the Moodle course where students can work in groups (previously created in the course).

To create the Studentspace, select the option Add/Update studentspace from the Actions menu (gear icon) in the upper right corner of the course.

On the following page you can enter a name and, if desired, a description for the Studentspace and select for which groups of the course it should be available.

Furthermore, you can choose from some activities that should be created automatically in group mode (Separate groups) in this area. Currently you can choose between BigBlueButton, Etherpad, Forum, Student Folder and Wordcloud. As soon as you have ticked an option, an input field appears in which you can enter a name for the activity.

When you have made the desired settings, click the Save button at the bottom. The Studentspace will be inserted at the bottom of the course. Like all other course sections, it can be edited normally and additional resources and activities can be added manually if required. The activities that are automatically generated during creation can also be adapted afterwards by manually adjusting the respective settings. To add more activities automatically to an existing Studentspace or remove existing ones, select Add/Edit  Studentspace from the course action menus (gear icon) in the upper right corner.


Currently, only one Studentspace can be created per Moodle course.