Zoom provides remote conferencing services that combines video conferencing, online meetings, chat, and mobile collaboration.

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The Zoom client can be downloaded from the link above or from the PNW Software Center.

Zoom Guides

Request Forms

Request for assistance with an online/virtual event needing a Zoom license.

Request to purchase Zoom license(s).

Frequently Asked Questions

No.  Neither PNW nor Purdue University has a site-wide license for Zoom.  PNW departments wishing to utilize features only found in the licensed version of Zoom will need to contact IS via this form to purchase Zoom licenses.  IS will then work with the department to ensure that licenses are being purchased appropriately and in the most cost-effective manner.

table displaying differences between zoom licenses

The first step is prevention.  Setting up your meeting with the correct options will make it much more difficult for an unwanted guest to enter the meeting in the first place, and much more difficult for them to actually do anything if they do.

  • Do not publicly advertise your meeting’s link.  Put the link to your meeting in materials only accessible to your intended attendees.  E-mail, Brightspace/Blackboard, etc.
  • Enable the Waiting Room feature. The Waiting room allows you, as the host or co-host, to allow people into your meeting.  When attendees first join your meeting, they are placed in a virtual waiting room.  The host and co-host see those users waiting and can then let each person in individually, or can allow everyone in who is waiting.
  • Set a password on your meeting. Setting a password, and then distributing that password to your attendees via private communication (e-mail, Brightspace/Blackboard) adds a barrier to those simply searching for open meetings.  While that password can easily be used by anyone who has access to it – meaning, it is not unique to each user and can be shared freely – it does create a speed bump for bad actors just looking for an open door.
  • Control your screen! Do not allow your attendees to share their screen without first asking your permission.  By limiting this access, if someone were to join your meeting, they would be unable to share any inappropriate materials to your other attendees.

The next section is about knowing what to do once the meeting starts and someone tries to interfere with your meeting.

  • Kick them out! Make sure that you are familiar with the participant controls.  That way, if a user joins unexpectedly, you know how to remove them.
  • Mute all attendees. You can mute all attendees, and not allow them to unmute themselves.  This can be helpful in general when trying to prevent unwanted background noise from attendees’ microphones, but is especially helpful when someone is purposely interrupting your session.  You can not only mute and un-mute everyone, but you can also prevent attendees from un-muting themselves.
  • Lock the door! If everyone you expect in your meeting has arrived, you can lock the meeting to all additional attendees.  This will prevent anyone, even if they have the meeting link and password, from joining.
    • How to: When you’re in the meeting, click Participants at the bottom of your Zoom window. On the bottom of the Participants window, you will see a button that says “More”.  Click on that button, and choose “Lock Meeting.” When you lock the meeting, no new participants can join, even if they have the meeting ID and password.

If you are the host or co-host, and you would like to remove someone from your meeting, follow these steps:

      1. Hover your mouse over the attendee’s name that you would like to remove.
      2. Click on “More >”
        Screen showing how to remove users from a Zoom Meeting
      3. Click Remove.
      4. This user will be removed from your meeting and will not be able to return.A dialog box telling you that the removed user cannot return to the zoom meeting

Zoom is free to use (with limitations.)  PNW does not have a site-license for Zoom conferencing.  If you would like to use a licensed version Zoom for your meeting or gathering, please contact the CSC (csc@pnw.edu) and they can help arrange a Zoom license for your event.

According to Zoom, all accounts have a “Default Region” which is locked to an account, and cannot be changed. This default region contains the data center(s) that routes your call.  Due to concerns over encryption, specifically of calls routing through China, Zoom has made changes to the way calls are routed.

Paid Users:

Starting April 18, 2020, paid users can add/remove additional data center regions to be used by their accounts.

Free Users:

Free users will be locked to data centers within their default region where their account is provisioned. For the majority of free users, this is the United States. Data of free users outside of China will never be routed through China.

For more information: https://blog.zoom.us/wordpress/2020/04/13/coming-april-18-control-your-zoom-data-routing/

All Zoom meetings must have a host.  This person must be present to start the meeting, or allow users in from the Waiting Room.  If a host selects “Join Before Host” in their meeting settings, users will be able to join the meeting without them, but the meeting will automatically end after a certain amount of time if the host does not join.  If you would like to arrange a Zoom meeting with your account, but would like another user to be the host, there are two ways you can do that:

  1. Create the meeting as you normally would, with your account listed as host.  Join the meeting, and then transfer the host role to another user.  You may then stay in that meeting, or leave, and the meeting will continue as planned.  Instructions: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362573-Pass-Host-Controls-and-Leave-the-Meeting
  2. If both accounts are paid accounts, you may appoint another user as an alternate host.  NOTE – the user MUST be a paid user under your account.  This involves adding them in User Management, and then adding them as an alternate host.  How to add another user to your account: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201363183-Managing-users How to schedule for someone else: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362803-Scheduling-privilege

Depending on how you wish to connect to the meeting, you will need some combination of the following:

Virtual backgrounds are available to all users, free and licensed.  Virtual backgrounds allow you to hide your surroundings with an image that is automatically “stitched” behind you.  It is very similar to the green screen effects used in television and movies – and by your local weatherman!

To use the virtual background:

  • When in a meeting, click on the small ^ arrow to the right of the Start/Stop Video icon on the toolbar.  (If the toolbar is hidden, move your mouse to the bottom of the meeting screen, or press the ALT key.)
  • Select Choose Virtual Background
  • From this window, you can select an image to appear behind you.  This image can be a still image or short movie.  You can select from the pre-loaded options, or upload your own file.

For best results, make sure you have good lighting.  Your physical background should be a solid color, and try to avoid wearing clothes that are similar in color to the virtual background.  Custom backgrounds should have an aspect ratio of 16:9 and minimum resolution of 1280 by 720 pixels.

Further Reading: Zoom guide to virtual backgrounds

  • If you’d like to give participants screen sharing permission when hosting your next meeting, simply click the arrow to the right of the Screen Sharing icon, select Advanced Sharing Options and select All Participants.
  • If you’d like to re-enable participant content sharing at the account level, please visit zoom.us/account/setting > In Meetings (Advanced) > and select All Participants.

The Waiting Room feature allows the host to control when a participant joins the meeting. As the meeting host, you can admit attendees one by one or hold all attendees in the waiting room and admit them all at once. You can send all participants to the waiting room when joining your meeting or only guests, participants who are not on your Zoom account or are not signed in.

Waiting rooms are enabled by default, but can be turned on or off for your account, or for each meeting.

To toggle the waiting room feature for your account:

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation menu, click Account Management then Settings.
  3. On the Meeting tab, navigate to the Waiting Room option under In-Meeting (Advanced) and change the setting to enabled or disabled.
  4. Select who you want to admit to the waiting room.
    • All participants: All participants joining your meeting will be admitted to the waiting room.
    • Guest participants only: Only participants who are not on your Zoom account or are not logged in will be admitted to the waiting room. If not logged in, they will have an option to log in.
    • Note: If Guest participants only is enabled, you can also enable the option to allow internal participants (users on the account), to admit guests from the waiting room if the host is not in the meeting.


To toggle the option per meeting:

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. Click Meetings.
  3. Click the Personal Meeting Room tab.
  4. Click Edit this Meeting.
  5. Under Meeting Options, check Enable Waiting Room.
  6. Click Save.


How to use the Waiting Room when in a meeting:

  1. As the meeting host, click Manage Participants.
  2. Click Admit next to each user’s name to have the participant join the meeting.
  3. Click Admit All to allow all users in the waiting room to join the meeting.
  • To send a user back to the waiting room, hover over the user’s name, and click on the More menu.  Then select Put in Waiting Room.

Please email the Customer Service Center one week prior to your scheduled meeting to ensure equipment will be available during this time. Include the room number, date, and time of your meeting.

Contact Us

Customer Service Center

(219) 989-2888