Regional University Computing Center

Video conferencing with Jitsi

Jitsi is an open source high quality video conferencing application with low latency.

This application has been developed for ad hoc video calls. The more participants you have in a call, the more resources you need for your hardware.

For best use, you are advised to limit the total amount of participants to six.

If you are planning on a conference exceeding 6 participants, you should keep the usage of video and audio streaming as low as possible.

Notice: The RHRK is running the Jitsi server but cannot provide support for your conferences. We do appreciate your understanding.

Starting a Jitsi video call in your browser

Use Chrome Browser or Jitsi Client only to avoid interferences affecting all participants.

Download Client from jitsi.org

Mobile App Jitsi Meet available for iOS, Android

FAQ

on jitsi.org

Video calling tips

How to make your video conference a success for all participants.

Prerequisites for use of Jitsi

  • Webcam/Microphone: If you should use a newer generation notebook, the required hardware should be installed. You may have to activate the appliances. As an alternative you may want to use an external webcam and headset with a built-in microphone.
  • Client:  An additional client should not be necessary. The entire application is browser-based.

Initiating/ Starting a webconference

  1. Start your browser and type https://jitsi.uni-kl.de in the address field.
  2. Chose your own name for the web conference.
  3. By pressing the „LOS“ or „Start“ button you initiate the start of your web conference.
  4. A new pop-up window will appear and you will see a button called „Zulassen“ - „Permit“. By pressing the button, you will authorize your browser to gain access to your webcam and microphone.
  5. If you are the first participant of the conference you will be the moderator, admin at the same time.

Invite participants to your conference

  1. In order to invite additional participants to your web conference press the Info-Button.
  2. A new pop-up window will appear with the name an URL of your conference-room. Here you can protect the entry to your web conference by choosing a password in order to enter your web conference.
  3. You can copy the URL of your  web conference by clicking „Kopieren“ - „Copy“. Now you can invite participants by e-mail inserting the URL of your web conference.
  4. The guest, new participant, can copy the URL inside your e-mail, paste it in his browser and join your web conference. (If applicable the new participant will be asked for a password.)

Explanation of the menu icons

1. Screen-sharing on/off

Once you press this button you can switch from sharing the image captured by your camera to sharing your desktop.
If you are using this feature for the first time you may be asked to install an additional plug-in (depending of your browser). If the screen sharing feature does not work right away you may want to reload the page. There is no plug-in required for the latest version of the Google Chrome browser.

2. Raise your hand

By pressing this button you are requesting to talk. Raising your hand before talking will simplify the communication. As soon as you press this icon a blue colored hand will appear on the screen. If you press the button a second time, the blue hand will disappear.

3. Chat open/close

By pressing this button the chat window will appear on the left hand side of your browser and you will be able to communicate with other participants by sending short text messages. Pressing the button a second time will close the chat window.

4. Mute on/off

You can mute your microphone by pressing the microphone icon. If the microphone is muted, the icon will change to microphone-icon with a capitalized X.

5. Leave the web conference

You see a red telephone headset on the screen. If you press this icon you will leave the
web conference.

6. Start/stop the webcam

By pressing the camera-icon you will activate the webcam and stream the camera output to all the other participants of the web conference. Once again, by pressing the button a second time, the icon will change telling you that no video stream is being submitted.

7. Tiled screen

With this button you can change between full screen and tiled screen with the images of all participants.

8. Conference information

The „I“-Button will give you general information about the web conference like the URL and the number of
participants. The moderator of the room (this is the first participant to join) may set a password for new participants here.

9. Advanced settings

Here you will find the advanced settings menu which will be explained in the following section.

Advanced settings

The button „advanced settings“ is located right next to the „I“ information icon.

1. User profile

By pressing this button, a pop-up menu will appear and you can change your username.

2. Screen resolution

There is a total of four screen resolutions available starting with low density all the way up to HD, high density.

3. Full screen on/off

Here you can select „Full Screen“ on and off. In addition the escape key can be used to exit the full screen.

4. Share a YouTube video

If you press this button an additional window will appear where you can paste the URL of the YouTube video. After pressing  „teilen“ „share“ the URL will appear in a chat-window for all other participants.

5. Density of you webcam

By applying this feature you can manipulate the background settings of your webcam.

6. Settings

There is a tab called „hardware“. Here you can select and test your camera and microphone.
Tab called „profile“ – You can change your name.
The tab labelled with „more“ is reserved for the administrator or proponent of the web conference.
The admin will be able to mute, audio and video, all participants once they enter the web conference. The „Follow-me for all participants“ feature can be used  to show the video stream of the proponent on the main window of all participants of the web conference. In addition the default language of the user interface can be selected.

7. Mute all

While a web conference is going on, the admin can mute all participants. This action is irreversible and should be handled with care.

8. Statistics

Here you will be able to find the total amount of speaking time used by each participant of the web conference.

9. Speed keys

In this chart you will find a listing of the most common shortcuts and speed keys i.e. video on/off

A short how-to for a successful web conference

  • Chose a unique name for your web conference. (Names like „test-meeting“ are not unique and used to play with jitsi.)
  • You're advised to mute yourself if you want to listen only. Press the M-key to do so. If you want to talk „raise your hand“ and hold the space bar. As soon as you press and hold the space bar you will be able to talk.
  • For short comments use the chat-feature. If there is no need for a voice stream avoid it to save resources.
  • Only one speaker at the time. You always have to take in consideration that some participants may have weak hardware and may run into problems with multiple speakers at the same time.

FAQ

See Advanced Settings - 6. Settings

A menu will appear and you can select „microphone“ and „camera“. You can select either one to get an additional pull-down menu with brand/model of available microphones and cameras. Now you can select the hardware you want to use.

Make sure that the hardware is installed properly and all drivers are on hand.

Depending on the manufacturer of your personal computer or laptop there might be special function keys to activate the microphone and the webcam.

For Windows 10 you may have to grant special permissions for the webcam and the microphone to
access the browser and/or the video/audio hardware.

The quality of the video and the audio steam depends on your hardware, the connectivity and the total of participants in the web conference.

We do recommend Google Chrome, because other browsers do not have full Jitsi compatibility and may cause streaming problems affecting all participants in the meeting.

No, this is not possible. When the first participant joins a web conference the meeting room is being created and the first to join will administer the web conference. As soon as the last person leaves the web conference the meeting room is being deleted.

The web-conferencing service https://jitsi.uni-kl.de is governed by german data protection law (Datenschutzrecht).

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