Blackboard is written in the Java programming language. In order to ensure that the Java application you are using is authentic, Java applications use code signing certificates to authenticate (verify authenticity) to the application developer's server.
Blackboard updates its code signing certificate periodically (about every two years). When this happens, you may see an error message asking you to "allow" or "deny" running the Java application. If you choose "allow", you will be able to run Blackboard and you won't see the error message again. If you choose "deny", parts of Blackboard may not work properly.
You can prevent the Java code signing certificate error message from appearing following a Blackboard code signing certificate update by doing the following:
1. Clear your Browser Cache - Instructions (opens in a new window)
2. Clear your Java Cache - Instructions (opens in a new window)
3. If you are using Internet Explorer 8 or 9, make sure you are in Compatibility Mode.
4. If you are not sure how old your Java runtime is, we also recommend downloading the most recent Java 6 Runtime. (The current version of Java is Java 7, but it is not compatible with Blackboard at this time, so we don't recommend using it.) Click here to download the installer for Version 6 for Windows: JavaInstallerWindows. If you need assistance with installing Java or if you are accessing Blackboard using any version of Mac OS X, please contact the Help Desk for more information.
5. Restart your browser.
You should complete Step 1 for all of the browsers you use for interacting with Blackboard. You only need to complete Step 2 once for all browsers, because they all use the same Java run-time.
You won't see a warning until you attempt to use a function in Blackboard that depends on the Java engine on your computer (the Java runtime). For instance, the text editor (VTBE) that is used for editing an item in Blackboard will run a Java program if you have the Editor option in the upper right corner of the text box set to "ON".
When you see a warning, just click "Allow", "Run", or "Yes", and you should be able to proceed. (The button may be different depending on which browser you're using.)
Depending on your browser version, you may be able to "always trust" the certificate. If you have that option, you should do so in order to prevent the dialog box from popping up again. (Internet Explorer 8 or 9, Firefox 3.6 or greater, and the newest version of Google Chrome Browser should all allow you to "always trust" the certificate.)
If you click "More Information" when you get a Java code certificate warning, you may see something like one of the images below, saying that the source of the certificate is not trusted, the certificate is trusted but has expired, or similar language. Clicking "Certificate Details" will give you more detailed information.
If you choose "Deny" instead of "Allow", when you attempt to run functions in Blackboard such as the Visual Text Box Editor (VTBE), you will see an error message similar to the following:
To clear this error, you will need to restart your browser and accept the code signing certificate when prompted.
If you run into any difficulties with the steps above, please contact the Help Desk at 650-3333 or by emailing email@example.com.