LockDown Browser is a customized web browser that prevents students from printing, copying, going to another URL, or accessing other applications during an assessment. If an instructor has set up online exams or assessments in Blackboard to require that LockDown Browser be used, the exam won't be accessible with a standard web browser such as Internet Explorer, Firefox or Safari. Instead, students must use a computer that has the LockDown Browser software installed, and when they launch it they will be taken directly to FAU's Blackboard login page to access and complete the test. Once students begin the assessment they will be locked into it until the student submits it for grading.
The LockDown Browser software has been installed in most FAU instructional and open labs. Students wishing to take an assessment requiring LockDown Browser from their own computer must first install the software (see installation links below).
LockDown Browser provides a custom interface for the Internet Explorer (Windows) or Safari (Macintosh) software that is already installed on a computer. It does not modify an existing copy of Internet Explorer or Safari, but rather, installs a separate program that displays a custom interface and set of features. LockDown Browser uses the same security features and service packs that are currently installed for Internet Explorer or Safari. Installing LockDown Browser won't modify your current version of Internet Explorer or Safari in any way.
Note: LockDown Browser should only be used for taking online exams and assessments. It shouldn't be used to access other areas of Blackboard.
LockDown Browser creates a "locked" testing environment for Blackboard assessments and includes the following features:
- Assessments are displayed full-screen and cannot be minimized
- Assessments cannot be exited until submitted by users for grading
- Task switching or access to other applications is prevented
- Printing functions are disabled
- Print Screen and capturing functions are disabled
- Copying and pasting anything to and from an assessment is prohibited
- Right-click menu options are disabled (Windows); key + click options are disabled (Macintosh
- Browser menu and toolbar options are disabled except Back, Forward, Refresh and Stop
- Function keys (F1-F12) are disabled
- Source code for the HTML page cannot be viewed
- URLs cannot be typed by the user
- Hundreds of screen capture, messaging, screen-sharing and network monitoring applications are blocked from running
- The browser automatically starts at the institution's login page for Blackboard
- Links in questions that point to other servers don't compromise the "locked" testing environment
- Pages from the assessment aren't cached or stored in the browser's history listing
Windows 7, Vista, XP
Internet Explorer 7 or higher (configured to the minimum requirements for the Blackboard platform)
4 MB of permanent space on the hard drive
128 MB RAM
OS X 10.5 or higher
Safari browser (configured to the minimum requirements for the Blackboard platform)
2 MB of permanent hard drive space
512 MB RAM
A knowledgebase is available at http://www.respondus.com/support. If you cannot resolve your problem, a support ticket can be submitted from this same area.
Updating LockDown Browser
To update to the latest version of the LockDown Browser, start the browser, click the "information" ( i ) button on the toolbar, then the "Check for Newer Version" button. If an update is available, information about the update and a "Get Update" button will be displayed (unless administrator access isn't available on a Windows computer). Click the button, wait for the download to complete, and then exit the browser to complete the update.