©2021 Donald R. Snow - Page last updated 2021-06-05

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ABSTRACT: Zoom is one of several online video programs for meetings and claesses.  It has a free version with time-limited length of meetings and paid versions with unlimited lengths of meetings.  During the Coronavirus-Covid-19 world-wide pandemic, it became widely known and used by families, organizations, businesses, churches, and many other groups.  This class will show how to use the basic properties of the free version on a Windows computer.  The UVTAGG will have a more complete class in the near future which will include running Zoom on mobile devices and using other features. The notes for this class and related articles, all with active internet links, are posted on my website  http://uvtagg.org/classes/dons/dons-classes.html .


  1. Instructor is Donald R. Snow ( snowd@math.byu.edu ) of Provo and St. George, Utah.
  2. The notes for this class with active URLs, as well as additional information in other notes and articles, are posted at http://uvtagg.org/classes/dons/dons-classes.html .
  3. Tips:  (1)  To put an icon on your desktop for these notes, or any webpage, just drag the icon from in front of the address in your browser onto your desktop.  (2)  To open a link, but keep your place in these notes, hold down the Control key while clicking the link.
  4. The problem for today:  How to use the free Zoom program for meetings and classes on a Window computer.
  5. A more in-depth class, including on mobile devices and with other uses, will be done at a UVTAGG meeting in the near future.

  7. The Zoom website is -- https://zoom.us/ 
  8. A Quick Reference Guide (cheat sheet) with basic commands is free at -- https://www.customguide.com/quick-reference -- the Zoom sheet is way down at the bottom 
  9. Zoom video tutorials are at -- https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/206618765-Zoom-Video-Tutorials        
  10. Download and install Zoom on your computer 
  11. Set up a free account with your name and email address and select a password; sign in and fill in at least part of your profile
  12. To check for updates, when running Zoom, click on the circle with your initials (top right) and click on Check for Updates; if needed, the update will be downloaded, but not installed until you tell it to; Zoom has updates every few weeks
  13. To use Zoom you need a speaker or earphones; a mike and webcam are helpful for you to speak, but Zoom can be used without either; earphones usually work better than speakers, since sound from them can't feedback into the mike 
  14. The Settings menu (click on circle with your initials in upper right corner . Settings) has ways to set your mike, webcam, what you want to start when running Zoom, etc.

  16. To join a Zoom meeting in progress you need the meeting number and password or the invitation which will already include these; Zoom meeting numbers look something like NNN.NNN.NNNN
  17. The first time you click on a Zoom invitation, if you don't already have Zoom installed on your computer, it will be downloaded and installed, and then go to the meeting
  18. Meetings can be set to require a password or else have people in a "waiting room" until the host lets them in; both methods help to prevent problems like Zoom-Bombing where hackers interrupt the meeting with extraneous stuff, sometimes including pornography   
  19. Zoom Settings (click on your initial circle in upper right > Settings) allow you to always join meetings with your mike and webcam turned off until you turn them on 
  20. In a Zoom meeting there are several ways to view the screen; click on the icon in the upper right corner; Speaker View shows a large panel with the speaker and the other participants in smaller panels; Galley View shows everyone in the same size panels with a yellow line around who is speaking.

  22. Sign into Zoom.us with your password and click Host A Meeting -- The host is the person who starts the meeting and has control; the host can invite other participants to be co-hosts or even to be the host in place of him/herself
  23. The free Zoom version allows meetings of up to 100 participants for up to 40 minutes; paid versions allow more; for the free version, you can start another Zoom meeting when the first one finishes, but everyone has to log in again to attend the continuation meeting 
  24. The same Zoom meeting number can be used for each meeting or you can let Zoom select the meeting number 
  25. Meetings can be open to the public, or require passwords or waiting rooms, as discussed above; Zoom bombing can be controlled by using passwords or waiting rooms
  26. When the meeting has been started, the host or co-host can email "invitations" to attend "Zoom meeting in progress"; the invitation is in the Participants box at the bottom; can copy the entire invitation or just the Zoom link to email out
  27. Zoom meetings and their Chat Boxes can be recorded 'in the cloud" or to the host's computer; for the free Zoom version recording space 'in the cloud" is limited, so you can only have one or two Zoom recordings there, but you can download them to your own computer to have space online to record more there.    


  28. The "Zoom toolbar" is the the panel containing the icons for mikes, webcams, partipciants list, chat bgx, sharing screens, etc.; it can be moved to top or bottom of your computer screen and only your see you own Zoom toolbar; click on "More" at the right end to see more icons, if there is not enough space for them all on one line in the toolbar  
  29. The Chat box icon opens a panel to write messages to all attendees or just to some; it can be used to post instructions, questions, links to handouts, etc.; people joining the meeting late only see the chats from after they join, so you may need to repost links to handouts or instructions  
  30. The Screen Sharing icon in the Zoom toolbar allows you or others to show their computer screens; this is helpful and there are various options of what part or all of your screen to show; if you also plan to share a video or sound, click the boxes at the bottom of the Screen Share menu to make the sound better
  31. To 'Raise Your Hand" (to ask a question or make a comment), click on the Reaction icon and click "Raise Hand"; all attendees see a small hand appear in the person's panel and the host or speaker can invitte them to unmute their mike and/or webcam and ask their question or make their comment; then click in the Reaction box again to Lower Hand; this box also has hand-clapping and thumbs-up icons

  33. Zoom is an extremely useful program and these basics will get you started.
  34. Zoom has many additional features and more are added regularly.
  35. Watch for the more complete Zoom instructions in a near future UVTAGG Saturday morning meeting.

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