Posts in Category "Seminars"

Avoiding Inaccurate Completion Reports when a Meeting is Part of a Curriculum

When a meeting is part of an Adobe Connect Curriculum, a trainee can click on the Meeting and complete the Meeting task prescribed in the Curriculum prior to the Meeting taking place.

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One way to help manage this is to choose the Meeting options to block Meeting access illustrated in the screen captures below:

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The Meeting access options may be inconvenient to use, so here is another option to add a Meeting to a curriculum, while at the same time restricting the ability for a trainee to complete the Meeting task prior to the Meeting taking place:

Step one: The first step is to set a date and time under the Meeting properties. Make sure the date and time correspond to when the Curriculum task takes place. Note that this date and time has no effect on when the Meeting can be used. It is strictly an administrative tool to help with Meeting invitations and has no effect on when the meeting can be opened, Meeting persistence, etc. In this example I have set the meeting to October 22, 2014 at 12:45 for 1 hour:

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 Step two: Download and unzip the Meeting Curriculum Wrapper: https://platinum.adobeconnect.com/lmfc/default/launchMeetingInCurriculum.zip

Note that it is zipped twice to facilitate download:

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Step three: Identify the Meeting sco ID from the Meeting that you wish to add to the Curriculum and copy it to the clipboard:

The Meeting SCO is in the Meeting URL:

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Note: You can also see the Meeting sco ID by pasting ?mode-xml at the end of the Meeting URL and reading it from the output:

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Step four:  Edit the index.htm in the unzipped LaunchMeetingInCurriculum folder by pasting in the Meeting sco ID from the Meeting that you wish to add to the Curriculum. Use your favorite text editor such as notepad or textpad. Where the index.htm reads,  Enter the SCO of the Meeting, Virtual Classroom or Seminar var meetingScoID_str = ‘1660065186’; change the default Meeting sco ID, 1660065186, to the Meeting sco ID of the Meeting that you wish to add to the curriculum, in the case of my example here, the Meeting sco ID is: 502114549. Be sure to save the changes:

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Step five: Zip all the edited contents of the LaunchMeetingInCurriculum folder and rename it to represent the Meeting that you wish to add to the Curriculum. This will help you identify it and differentiate it from other Meetings with which you use this wrapper:

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Step six: Upload the edited zip file to the Adobe Connect Content Library:

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Step seven: Import the wrapper from the Content Library into the Curriculum:

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Note: Import options; the wrapper is Content and points to the Meeting:

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Step eight: Test the Curriculum item; unless the time and date coordinate with the actual Meeting schedule, the pop up will deter the trainee from gaining premature access to the Meeting and skewing the Curriculum completion report:

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 Conclusion: With proper management and administration, an Adobe Connect Curriculum accurately measure the progress and completion of trainees. There are two ways to prevent a trainee from completing a Meeting curriculum task prior to the meeting taking place, the first is to block access to the Meeting and the second is to use the Meeting Curriculum wrapper.

Seminar Session creation might fail intermittently with the “Not Authorized” error for some users

Some users might run into this problem intermittently while trying to create seminar sessions. This is not a very widespread problem; it seems random and is certainly rare.

Problem :

Unable to create a Seminar Session:  It fails intermittently with “Not Authorized” error.

Environment : Connect Hosted

Version : 9.2.x

Method via which issue can be produced :

1.    Login to your Connect application as a Seminar Host.
2.    Go to Seminar > Seminar Sessions > Click “New Seminar Session”
3.    Select a Seminar room with which to create a Session.
4.    Enter name of the Session and click Create.

Result:
It might fail with “Not Authorized” error intermittently. Most if the time it works fine and a session is created successfully.

Workaround to avoid the issue :
Instead of creating a Session from the Seminar Sessions tab, schedule a session from the seminar room itself.

Solution :

This is fixed in Adobe Connect 9.3. Check your account upgrade date here.

 

In Connect Meeting, Clicking “Don’t show this dialog again” has no Effect on the Tips Dialog

Issue: Upon startup, Tips for using Adobe Connect for Hosts is displayed. After clicking on “Don’t show this dialog again” and dismissing the dialog, the next time Connect is launched the dialog is again displayed.

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This is caused by a problem storing the changes locally available to flash applications on client machines. Here are workaround steps:

  1. Open the connect meeting in the IE/Firefox. You can append launcher=false to the meeting URL to open it in browser: <url>/?launcher=false
  2. Right click on the meeting and select Settings; the  flash dialog GUI will appear:

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3. Click on the folder icon:

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4. Check that the variable for storage is allowed and is greater than 0 (make sure the slider is not all the way to the left) and also check to see if the Currently used variable is equal to the allowed value.

5. If the Currently used variable is showing 0 then close this dialog and again right click on meeting and open the Global Settings. The following dialog will appear:

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6. Click on Local Storage Settings by Site:

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7. Make sure that the Adobe Connect server is listed there and it is allowed as depicted in the third column. If it is not allowed, then allow it using the drop-down menu.

Here are some additional references that may be helpful:

http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/help02.html

http://helpx.adobe.com/flash-player/kb/disable-local-shared-objects-flash.html

http://help.adobe.com/en_US/FlashPlayer/LSM/WS6aa5ec234ff3f285139dc56112e3786b68c-7fff.html

Adobe Connect Offline Recording Option Captures and Records Local Client Screen Activity

Adobe Connect Offline Recording Option Captures & Records Local Screen Assets:

While in the process of creating an offline recording in Connect, the recording will capture extraneous desktop application activity if Windows is in Non-Aero mode

To stop extraneous recording,  turn on the Aero theme: Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Personalization – choose any Aero theme.

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This workaround will limit the offline recording to the Connect Meeting archive.

Here is the related forum discussion for reference: https://forums.adobe.com/message/6629306#6629306

Ensuring that Email Generated by Adobe Connect Servers is Received

There have been more than a few incidents reported on the topic of email messages from Adobe Connect servers not getting delivered. These include messages generated by the Adobe Connect Events module as well as system email messages such as that generated by changing a password.

The first thing to avoid to prevent this problem is that of using special characters in the host’s name. This is scheduled to be fixed in Connect 9.3, but currently, in 9.2, if you place a comma in the Event host’s name such as Frank D., El Presidente’  it will cause an error identified in our server logs by a messaging exception.

The second thing to avoid is inviting over 20,000 participants to an Event. This generates an operation size error and causes problems with email messages being sent out. We also plan to address this ceiling tentatively in Connect 9.3.

With specific reference to Adobe Connect Hosted accounts, we just made the following change to ameliorate email problems: As of April 28th, 2014, administrative email notifications sent from Adobe Connect servers will now be coming from admin@adobeconnect.com instead of admin@acrobat.com This will help by disassociating Connect-generated email from that of the Acrobat domain which could be potentially blocked by virtue of its identification with document storage. We also made some internal changes to the way the Connect servers handle email and we worked with our Web infrastructure partners to insure that Connect generated email was not being treated as SPAM on the Web.

There is a bit of a conundrum here. If Adobe Connect Events email invitations are sent out in massive mailings to those who perceive the email as SPAM, then the Adobe Connect servers could be tagged as producing SPAM by those end-user recipients. An overzealous Events manager may cause Gmail and other providers to treat Adobe Connect email as SPAM. When an Event that is capped at 500 participants sends out 5000 email invitations, it is expected that many recipients will at best ignore the inbound email traffic and many more may consider the traffic to be a nuisance. We are investigating possible approaches to ameliorate this problem and plan in 9.3  to add an opt-out option for Events invitations that will offer a convenient alternative to any SPAM reply option for recipients to invoke.

We love large Events and Adobe Connect handles them very well; this is a case when our success can potentially lead to some problems. Currently the Adobe Hosted Service is green for SPF record checks.  We pass all major email providers and are not blacklisted according to common checker tools on the internet.  This should resolve the lion’s share of current email issues and the upcoming changes in 9.3 will serve to harden this capability for future Events.

Be Aware of the Closed Captioning Pod Defaults

Last week we found out that Caption Colorado changed their IP address and port number for the Closed Captioning pod downloadable from the Connect Exchange Website. Here is the direct link to the Connect version 9 Closed Captioning Pod

The new Caption Colorado information includes:

If you are experiencing any trouble with the Closed Captioning pod while using it in a Connect Meeting with Caption Colorado, please set your host to “captionedtext.com” and to port 11100 in the adobe pod. Note that the new IP, 54.193.31.11, depending on your infrastructure’s network security settings, may need to be white-listed.

For an updated user’s guide referencing the Closed Caption Pod, see this PDF: http://platinum.adobeconnect.com/cc/

 

 

Estimating the Size of Archive Meeting Recordings

I was recently asked if I had any test data showing how big a recording becomes based on the use case during the Connect Meeting being recorded. While plenty of anecdotal information exists,  I thought it prudent to begin a list of use cases and show what the size was after five minutes of each use case. This article will be a work in progress as I add different use cases in order to offer various concrete examples to use as a basis to estimate recording size based on what is being recorded, whether multiple Video pod camera feeds or screen-sharing or VoIP, etc. Among its purposes, this exercise will help meeting hosts to avoid exceeding the 2GB limit on Adobe hosted clusters for recording size.

Most relevant among the variables considered is the notion that recording size is affected by the streams present in the meeting being recorded. Typically a Video pod with VoIP (640X480) shared per hour will result in an FLV of around 200MB. Sharing a screen in a meeting (1680X1050) will result in an FLV size of around 150 MB. PPT/PPTX files uploaded to a meeting room and displayed while recording will not play a significant part in recording size because the recordings link to external content rather than contain that content intrinsically. For example,  a meeting with two Video pod streams could have recording size of around 400MB and a meeting having a single Video pod stream with VoIP and screen-sharing could end up around 350MB. The actual results may differ as the screen resolution of the publisher, the type of sharing and the amount of movement are all variables that can affect recording size: If there is little movement on screen or in the Video pod stream, the recording size will be less than it would be with a lot of movement.

Here are some concrete examples to use for planning; each recording is approximately five minutes in length:

A meeting with a single video feed for the Presenter to display and scroll through an uploaded PowerPoint file while using integrated telephony:Title: Recording Size Test_0
Type: Recording
Duration: 00:05:31
Disk usage: 8335.3 KB

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A recording of a meeting with six video feeds and an uploaded PowerPoint file
Title: Planning Troubleshooting and Support Meeting Room _15
Type: Recording
Duration: 00:05:48
Disk usage: 13873.8 KB

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A recording of a meeting with four video feeds and screen sharing an application with normal activity
Title: Planning Troubleshooting and Support Meeting Room _16
Type: Recording
Duration: 00:05:56
Disk usage: 21660.8 KB

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More examples to follow.

Where is my Engagement Dashboard?

At some point you may want to use the Engagement Dashboard to track your users’ attentiveness in an Adobe Connect Meeting room, but wonder where oh where it may be…  You glance up at your Pods menu (as a host) and see it is not listed.  You may wonder why.  Well, here’s why…

If you want to use the Engagement Dashboard, one of the following scenarios has to be true:

  • You are a Seminar Host and created a Seminar Room.  Seminar Rooms have the Engagement Dashboard in the Presenter Only Area.
  • You are an Event Manager and created an Event that points to a meeting, seminar room, or virtual classroom, in the Event Management area of Adobe Connect.  If you point an Event to any meeting, virtual classroom, or seminar room, it will have the Engagement Dashboard in the Presenter Only Area.
  • You are a Training Manager AND Meeting Host and you create a Virtual Classroom (you must be both to even create a VC in the first place), it will have the Engagement Dashboard in the Presenter Only Area.
  • You are an Meeting Host AND Event Manager and you create a Meeting (just being a Meeting Host will NOT give you access to the Engagement Dashboard).  Only then will the Meeting have an Engagement Dashboard in the Presenter Only Area.

Situation where you will have a room open and you won’t have the Engagement Dashboard as a Pod option:

  • You are a Meeting Host but NOT an Event Manager as well.  You will not see the Engagement Dashboard in the available pods and it will not be in the Presenter Only Area.

Additional Resources around the Engagement Dashboard…

http://blogs.adobe.com/adobeconnect/2012/06/sneak-peek-the-engagement-dashboard.html

https://www.connectusers.com/tutorials/2013/06/rules_of_engagement/index.php

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How to completely delete content from a Meeting room

To completely delete content from any meeting room there are at least two places and possibly a third place in Connect from which you must delete it.

The first place is the most obvious and it is in the Meeting room itself under the Pods menu and Manage Pods option:

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The second place is in the Uploaded Content directory under the Meeting Information. To get there from a Meeting room, a host and owner can click Manage Meeting Information under the Meeting tab:

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Then go to the Uploaded Content tab:

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The third possible place is the Content Library. If you uploaded or published to the Content Library and pointed the share pod to it, you will need to go to the Content Library to delete it. If you uploaded directly to the Meeting room then you may skip this step:

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Using iframe to Invoke an Adobe Connect-hosted URL

Make sure that the iframe reference is formatted correctly.

When referencing an a meeting archive recording, it is best to first move an archive from under its parent meeting to the Connect Central content library before referring to it via iframe.

Do not let the URL of the archive recording redirect to Connect Central login page. To bypass the login screen you may either parse a username and password as a parameter in the URL or you may set permissions on the referenced content URL in Connect Central to allow for public viewing.  The latter option is usually the best. To avoid exposing the genuine user’s password as plain text in a GET request, it is usually best to simply make the recording public in Connect Central then link it. Alternatively, you may also create a new user in Connect Central with no other permissions except access to the referenced URL.

Referencing content in Connect Central that is set to public viewing:

<iframe src=http://connectdomainname.adobeconnect.com/customurl1″></iframe>

Referencing content by parsing a username and password:

<iframe src=”http://connectdomainname.adobeconnect.com/username?login=username@adobe.com&password=userpassword&account-id=12345678” width=”600″ height=”600″></iframe>

When referring to multiple URLs whether archives or MP4s or other Connect-hosted links, be sure to use a separate iframe reference for each Conenct URL rather than attempting to wrap all URLs in a single iframe reference. For example, two public links together in a table might look like this:

  <tr>
    <td width=”600″><iframe src=”http://connectdomainname.adobeconnect.com/customurl1″></iframe></td>
  </tr>
  <tr>
    <td><iframe src=”http://connectdomainname.adobeconnect.com/customurl2″></iframe></td>
  </tr>