Connect Meeting and Client-side Speaker Audio Output Control

There is a Connect feature request from various customers in place asking for the Connect Meeting GUI to offer an option to choose audio output devices. The request is a complex one because the audio output control options are opaque to Flash; the settings for audio output are in the various operating systems (OS) of the many possible clients. Connect uses what is chosen as the OS default as depicted in our help documents:

Set up audio broadcasting

The feature request number is: CONN-4082570; one customer recently suggested that we add expanded functionality for client speaker audio output control roughly similar to what we already have in Adobe Connect for Microphone and Webcam selection.  A speaker drop-down menu for sound output is desirable for obvious reasons.

There is no set date for implementation of this enhancement in Connect and I will update this blog entry if that changes. In the meantime, if the default client OS audio output option is not the option desired for use with Connect Meeting, the following example may help: I will show how to add a Bluetooth speaker to a Windows client and toggle the audio output in Connect from the built-in laptop Realtek speaker to a new iHome Bluetooth speaker. While audio output options may vary, by showing how it is done with this common example of a Bluetooth output device, it will hopefully help to show how other optional client-side speaker output devices may also be managed in kind.

To see the enabled audio output options on a Windows client, look at the Device Manager under the Control Panel:

sound-dev-mgr.fw

Here we see a Realtek device and this corresponds with the option in the lower right of the desktop tray:

audiowzd-bt5b.fw

Opening the mixer shows more detail:

realtek.fw

If I play music by invoking the Audio Setup Wizard in Connect Meeting, the Realtek speaker will play:

asw.fw

conn-soundoutput.fw

Since our example will be to switch to a Bluetooth speaker, the first step will be to make certain that Bluetooth is enabled. On my Lenovo, that is done by pressing the keys FN>F5 simultaneously. Here we see Bluetooth is enabled:

sound-bt.fw

The next step is to follow the device instructions to pair the Bluetooth speaker with the client computer; these will vary.

See the Bluetooth icon enabled and  highlighted in my system tray:

sound-bt1.fw

After putting the iHome speaker in pairing mode, I am able to search for it from the client:

sound-bt2.fw

sound-bt2a.fw

sound-bt3a.fw

Now we have more than one speaker option to toggle as the Device Manager and the system tray attest:

sound-dev-mgr1.fw

sound-bt5.fw

In Connect we now see the option to use the new audio output device:

sound-fin.fw

Note: The iHome Bluetooth speaker also has a built-in Microphone so the Connect Audio Setup Wizard will see it in the Microphone drop down menu.

Without audio output controls built into Connect, adding and/or changing the default audio output device in the client OS is the way to toggle the audio output option in Connect. The key thing to be aware us is the danger of audio feedback loops. When separate speakers feed back into a microphone and cause echoing in a Connect Meeting. On a mobile device such as an iPAD, without a headset the speaker audio will feed right back in the microphone; it is best practice to use a headset with iPad to prevent audio loop/echos.

Generating Server-side Logs to Troubleshoot On-premise Connect Deployments

In order to diagnose unexpected behavior within Adobe Connect, it may be necessary for the Adobe Connect Support team to examine server-side logs from an on-premise Connect deployment. The logs directory is located in the Connect (or Breeze – it is not uncommon for Connect upgrades to reside in legacy Breeze directories) directory:

logsdir.fw

Within the logs directory there are sub-directories containing various logs:

logsdir1.fw

The most commonly requested log by the support team, is the debug.log. It can be found in the logs>support directory. With the services running, the current debug log will appear without a date at the top of the debug.log file list. The default rollover is 12 hours generating AM and PM logs each day:

logsdir2.fw

In order to make the debug.log file more useful for purposes of diagnosis, you can enable verbose logging by adding entries to the custom.ini file located in the Connect or Breeze version sub-directory. Here you see it located in a 9.3.1 directory under the Breeze root installation/upgrade directory:

logscustomini3.fw

Before editing the custom.ini file, be sure to create a backup copy of it. Add the following lines in order to enable verbose logging:

HTTP_TRACE=true
DB_LOG_ALL_QUERIES=true

Note that for versions of Connect 9.2 and prior, use yes instead of true:

HTTP_TRACE=yes
DB_LOG_ALL_QUERIES=yes

Save the custom.ini file (be careful not to accidentally change the file type to .txt) and during a scheduled maintenance window, cycle the Connect and AMS/FMS services in order to load the changes and begin verbose logging (note this will bring Connect down while the services cycle):

logssvcs4.fw

There are occasions when it may be prudent to provide more than one log for a more complete diagnosis. To provide a full sample of the various Connect logs without sending a massive historical sample of log files, you may simply stop the Connect services (during scheduled downtime as this will bring down Connect) and rename the entire log directory to log.old. Then upon starting the services back up, recreate the issue being diagnosed and then stop the services.

This activity will generate a new small log directory isolating the issue under scrutiny that you just reproduced in Connect: Zip/compress this new abbreviated log directory with all its fresh abbreviated sub-directories and provide it to the the Adobe Connect Support team to help expedite more exhaustive server-side log analysis. This option is particularly helpful when examining a cluster as each server will have a set of logs. When providing cluster logs, always label each compressed log folder to easily identify the server from which it came.

Note that often when diagnosing unexpected behavior in Adobe Connect Meetings, it may also be prudent to enable client-side Connect addin verbose logging as well.  The relevant client-side logging tech-notes are here:

Enable logging | Meeting Add-in

Troubleshooting Verbose Meeting Addin Logging

Connect on-premise: Event Emails may fail to be sent.

This is specific to Connect on-premise installations with Events and with SSL configured for the Event service.

 

When you create a new Event there are a bunch of different email notifications available, including confirmation of new registrations, event reminders, thank you notes etc.
These emails are created from email templates that the Connect application server needs to download from the CQ publish server before they’re sent out.

If you have the CQ service configured with SSL the Connect server needs to trust the certificates you configured on the remote CQ publish host, otherwise it will fail on the template download and you will get a log message as below written in the debug.log on your Connect server:

 
[…]
[03-21 08:37:52,983] cqEmailer0 (INFO) 1ms spid:197 fetch com.macromedia.breeze.model.CQTemplate(“84457”)
[03-21 08:37:52,990] cqEmailer0 (INFO) Error while fetching template from CQ: sun.security.validator.ValidatorException: PKIX path building
failed: sun.security.provider.certpath.SunCertPathBuilderException: unable to find valid certification path to requested target
[03-21 08:37:52,990] cqEmailer0 (ERROR) Exception thrown
javax.net.ssl.SSLHandshakeException: sun.security.validator.ValidatorException: PKIX path building failed:
sun.security.provider.certpath.SunCertPathBuilderException: unable to find valid certification path to requested target
[…]

 
To fix this, import the SSL certificate of your CQ publish server to the Connect server keystore.

On the Connect server, open a command line and change to this directory:   <drive>:\Connect\9.x\jre\bin\

The command to import the certificate is as follows (of course replace c:\pathToCertFile\cert.crt with your own path and filename). Also, make sure the path to the keystore is correct for your environment and version of Connect.

keytool -importcert -trustcacerts -alias connectcerts -file c:\pathToCertFile\cert.crt -keystore c:\Connect\9.x\jre\lib\security\cacerts

 

(If you are using intermediate certificates, you can import the whole chain as one single .crt file).

 

 

 

Virtual Classrooms and Account Limit Reached Error

This article is applicable ONLY to Adobe Connect users who have purchased a Named Virtual Classroom Manager license within the Training Module and are running into Account Limit Reached messages unexpectedly when they are launching Virtual Classrooms.

With the release of Adobe Connect 9.4 in May of 2015, we introduced a new training license model called the “Named Virtual Classroom Manager”.  This is specifically for Connect users to create and host Virtual Classrooms (plus it gives you access to the Events module).  It is basically another way we are licensing access to Virtual Classrooms.  This means there are technically two different types of Virtual Classrooms that can be created when you have the Training module enabled:

  1. The ‘traditional’ model of Virtual Classrooms (VC) which use the Concurrent Learner seat quota on the account (up to 100 seats per room), and…
  2. The Named Virtual Classroom Manager (NVCM) model of Virtual Classrooms which use a built-in 200 seat quota and does not use any Concurrent Learner seats.

When accounts are provisioned and quotas and features purchased, customers have the option of buying ONLY a Named Virtual Classroom Manager license.  They do not need to buy any additional training seats for Concurrent Learners.  In the older traditional model, in order to use a Virtual Classroom, you had to buy Concurrent Learner seats (say 250 seats for sake of discussion).  When a training manager created a VC, it would utilize seats out of that (in this example) 250 seat quota, up to 100 attendees (the rest of the concurrent seats could be used for another VC or other training content).  It was capped at 100 per VC.  With the new Named Virtual Classroom Manager license, you can now have only the NVCM feature enabled (and essentially have purchased no other training seats…so Concurrent Learner quota =0) or you can have it in conjunction with other training seats purchased in case you have a need for on-demand courses and curriculum, etc.. The NVCM model VC will not use any Concurrent Learner seats. It has a built-in 200 seat quota per room.  However, the caveat here is that the VC created for intended use with the NVCM model needs to have one of a few conditions in place in order to take on that NVCM model.  Otherwise, it may inadvertently take on the behavior of a traditional model VC and it could lead to unexpected circumstances like an ‘Account Limit Reached’ when the very first person joins the VC.

Let’s explain…

To create a Virtual Classroom, no matter what type of training features/quotas were purchased, all you need to be is a Training Manager, Named Virtual Classroom Manager, or Administrator.

The process of creating a VC is always the same.  You click on the “New Virtual Classroom” button from within the Training module.

Each time a Virtual Classroom is launched, Adobe Connect checks a few conditions to see how the VC should be licensed when it launches.  The result of which will dictate the quota used for the seats.  Where this becomes very problematic and confusing for customers is when the customer ONLY purchases a NVCM license and doesn’t have any Concurrent Learner seats (so Concurrent Learner = 0).  It is possible for a customer to create and launch a VC that is trying to use a Concurrent Learner quota by mistake.  If that happens, you will get the error ‘Account Limit Reached‘ right away.

For the sake of the scenarios below that explain how the VC’s are licensed when they launch, I will also mention that when a VC is created in a NVCM’s individual user folder under the Training tab, it automatically is a NVCM model room.  If it’s created under the Shared Training area of the Training tab, then there is a setting you can check or uncheck called ‘Named Virtual Classroom Model‘.

nvcm

The value can either be Yes or No.  Below in the listed scenarios, that is what ‘set to yes’ or ‘set to no’ means.

Also below in the listed scenarios, a ‘NVCManager‘ is a person who is in the group ‘Virtual Classroom Managers’ in the Users and Groups area of Connect.  That is what gives that person the ability to utilize the NVCM model.  A ‘non-NVCManager‘ indicates someone who is NOT in that group.  This would be a normal Training Manager or Administrator.

Here are the conditions and scenarios (assuming the room is Public) where a VC can be launched with or without the 200 seat expected NVCM quota:

Green = NVCM is used and quota will be 200 seats
Red = traditional model is used and quota will be taken from Concurrent Learner seats and could result in an “Account Limit Reached” error if that quota is 0.
Orange = NVCM is used but there could be some confusion due to the lack of NVCM in the room or permissions for that NVCM.

Scenarios:

  • VC created in My Training folder by NVCManager – launched by NVCManager = Will use NVCM license (quota 200)
  • VC created in My Training folder by NVCManager – launched by non-NVCManager = Will use NVCM license (quota 200) however will not have the host present even if non NVCM who launched the room is a host (permission-wise).  A NVCM needs to be present for the room to have an initial host, similar to Named Host Meeting.  If the VC is ‘public’ as far as access level, it will launch and use the 200 seat quota for that owner, but if the owner isn’t in the room, the users who have entered will be participants.
  • VC created in Shared Training folder by NVCManager (set to yes) – launched by NVCManager = Will use NVCM license (quota 200)
  • VC created in Shared Training folder by NVCManager (set to yes) – launched by non-NVCManager = Will use NVCM license (quota 200) however will not have the host present even if non NVCM who launched the room is a host (permission-wise).  A NVCM needs to be present for the room to have an initial host, similar to Named Host Meeting.  If the VC is ‘public’ as far as access level, it will launch and use the 200 seat quota for that owner, but if the owner isn’t in the room, the users who have entered will be participants.
  • VC created in Shared Training folder by NVCManager (set to no) – launched by NVCManager = Will use NVCM license (quota 200)
  • VC created in Shared Training folder by NVCManager (set to no) – launched by non-NVCManager = Will use Traditional VC license (quota 100 taken from Concurrent Learners quota).  IF there is no quota for Concurrent Learners purchased, user will get ‘Account Limit Reached’ error.
  • VC created in Shared Training folder or My Training folder by non-NVCManager (set to yes) – launched by NVCManager = Will use NVCM license (quota 200)
  • VC created in Shared Training folder or My Training folder by non-NVCManager (set to yes) – launched by non-NVCManager – the room will behave like a Named VC and will use the 200 quota. But The room will not be owned by anyone, to be more precisely, there will not be an active host until an Named VC manager enters the room. Also all other non-NVCM hosts and presenters will be downgraded to participants until NVCM, who is assigned as a host, arrives.
  • VC created in Shared Training folder or My Training folder by non-NVCManager (set to no) – launched by NVCManager = Will use NVCM license (quota 200)
  • VC created in Shared Training folder or My Training folder by non-NVCManager (set to no) – launched by non-NVCManager  = Will use Traditional VC license (quota 100 taken from Concurrent Learners quota).  IF there is no quota for Concurrent Learners purchased, user will get ‘Account Limit Reached’ error.

So ultimately if you have purchased a NVCM license and you are expecting a VC to open and allow 200 seats, but you are getting an Account Limit Reached error either right away OR after a lower number of people access the room (so under 200), then most likely one of the situations above (in RED) has occurred.  To confirm, make sure that the creator of the room is in the NVCM group, the room exists inside of a NVCM’s My Training folder, the host launching the room is a NVCM, or at the very least the room has ‘YES’ set for the ‘Named Virtual Classroom License Model’ setting if the room is in the Shared Training area.

Articulate Project not Displaying Web Objects After Publishing to Adobe Connect

Issue: If you will publish an Articulate project to Adobe Connect containing web objects, it may not display those web objects. Upon opening the project the client will see the below message at the bottom of the screen.

show

If “Show all content” is clicked then the content re-launches and displays the video.  This behavior is expected on any HTTPS server where the content is hosted and is not unique to Adobe Connect/hosted.

The solutions include:

  • If your content (web object) is on the HTTPS server then you should have HTTPS enabled on your Adobe Connect server.
  • If your content (web object) is on the HTTP server then you should have HTTPS disabled on your Adobe Connect server.
  • Don’t reference external content

SQL Update Warning Message in 9.5.2 Patch can be Safely Ignored

While applying the SQL update in the 9.5.2 patch,  you might encounter a warning message as depicted below:

sql3

This is a general message and can be safely ignored while applying the patch. It is not expected to cause any unexpected inconsistencies in the environment later although full function testing is always prudent after and updates.

Here is the SQL update file that is used in the 9.5.2 patch for your reference :

sql2

Environment :  Adobe Connect Licensed Upgrade

 

Troubleshooting the Flash-less Connect Addin Launch Feature

In order for the Flash-less Connect Meeting Addin to work, you must install the latest Connect Addin as an executable. The reason behind this requirement is that the Addin executable setup inserts needed registry keys within the Windows platform that are necessary to launch the Meeting Addin without Flash. The default, Lightning Addin download by design does not have admin access and cannot configure the Windows client for Flash-less Meetings.

With reference to Macintosh clients, the same rule applies as well. The complete installer needs to be run locally on each client to enable launching the Connect Meeting Addin without Flash.

flashlesssnapshot

If the Flash-less launch continues to be problematic, check for older version of the Addin and uninstall them:

flashlessunsint.fw

If the problem still persists, check also in the registry as there may be residual “connectpro” entries there under HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT:

forceaddin-reg.fw

Manually delete these entries carefully.

CSO: DATE (03-02-2016) – Adobe Connect Meeting/Content Launch Issue – RESOLVED

Update #2:

This issue is now resolved.  The issue was fixed as of 11:01 ET.

Meetings and content should be launching and saving normally.

 

Update #1:

We are investigating a storage issue where existing meetings, recordings, and content aren’t launching/accessible if they are needing to be pulled from the main shared storage infrastructure.

Some meetings and content may launch (if they are recent and still in local server cache) but there may be issues saving the current state of those meetings after they are done.

This is affecting accounts on clusters in the SJ1 datacenter which include: NA1NA2NA6NA8NA9, and NA12.

This appeared to have started about 10:20 ET.

The teams are all involved and troubleshooting the issue as a priority issue.

Updates to follow.

Please see the Status Page for more information.

New Adobe Connect Support Blog Subscription Option

Now you can stay on top of the new articles and posts by subscribing to the Adobe Connect Support Blog. Simply go to the Adobe Connect Support Blog home page and enter your email address and check off the categories about which you would like to be notified. Click “Subscribe me” and you will begin receiving  regular updates:

subscribe.fw

 

 

Recording Message in Edge Browser

When using the Microsoft Edge browser in an Adobe Connect Meeting, you may see the following dialog box in the upper left:

msedge1.fw

This does not indicate that the Adobe Connect Meeting is being recorded for later playback as an on-demand archive. To see if an Adobe Connect Meeting is being recorded, the place to look in the 9.5 Meeting is here:

msedgerec.fw

The Microsoft Edge notification is not actually denoting recording in the traditional sense understood by Adobe Connect Meeting users. If you hover the mouse over the red dot in Edge, the recording message will appear in an Connect Meeting, but it has nothing to do with any actual recording. It seems merely to be triggered by the act of broadcasting with a camera or microphone. The recording indicator dot will disappear in Edge if the microphone and camera are not in use or muted, paused or turned off.