General - Zoom Settings, Customization, and Basic Usage

This is a KB detailing basic setup and options present in the video-calling application Zoom.

Getting Started

To get started, go to the UW-Madison Zoom page located at You will be prompted to download the Zoom Desktop application to Join or Host a meeting.

Sign In

Zoom allows for sign-in using your NetID. This is routed through the "Sign in with SSO" option. All you need to do is input the web address for the UW-Madison Zoom page written above and your UW email if prompted, [netid], and it will take you to the NetID log in page, where you can log in normally. 

zoom-signin.pngZoom Desktop Sign-In

zoom-sso.pngZoom SSO Sign-In


Accessing Settings 

To change your settings, look for the gear icon in the upper right corner, under the profile picture. 

zoom-mainpage.pngZoom Main Page

Note: The main settings most users need to change are in the desktop settings pages shown above, including changing your webcam, audio input/output, and your virtual background.

Additional Settings For Power Users

For additional detailed settings, under the General tab of Settings, choose the option to "View More Settings." This will link you to a window in your web browser for the Zoom web client. We've listed some important ones that you may want to consider below. 

Meeting Tab

  • Waiting Room - This is a setting that requires people joining the meeting to get manual approval before gaining access, even when joining using a link or code. Turning this off means that anyone that has access can join the meeting immediately without needing manual oversight. This setting is on by default. 
  • Only authenticated users can join meetings - This means that only those with a NetID can access your Zoom meetings, you can modify this permission if you wish, but it's not advised. 
  • Only authenticated users can join meetings from Web client - similar to the previous, but only for the web client. As a general statement, it is advised that all staff use the desktop client where possible, as the web client does not give access to all needed features. 
  • Join before host - This allows all participants to join and start the meeting before you arrive, despite being the host of the meeting. Generally, if you would like to keep this setting, it is advised to have a waiting room, so the meeting isn't started before you arrive. 
  • Disable desktop/screen share for users - This setting is turned on by default, meaning that users cannot share their screen in a meeting. We advise you to turn this setting off as screen-sharing is useful in the work-place. 
  • Nonverbal feedback and Meeting reactions are very useful. You can re-enable them.
  • Allow participants to rename themselves - Disabled by default, but advised to re-enable. 
  • Email notification - If using "Join Before Host," you should probably turn this setting off as you will get an email for every participant that joins before you. 

Recordings Tab

To enable recording, either local or cloud recording (or both) has to be enabled. You may want to adjust the recording settings for what is recorded.

  • Local recording - if you want to save a recording to your computer. If you would like this setting enabled, make sure you uncheck “Hosts can give participants the permission to record locally,” if you don't want your participants to have that same option. The participant option will appear once you've enabled local recording. 
  • Cloud recording - if you want the option to record meetings, you probably want to save them to the cloud.
  • Automatic recording - It is not advised that you turn this setting on. With automatic recording, every meeting that you have will be recorded, whether to the cloud or to your local disk.

Keywordszoom settings usage video call join in login custom modify how to   Doc ID105732
OwnerDylan R.GroupLibraries
Created2020-09-10 10:58:03Updated2022-10-03 08:14:06
SitesUW-Madison Libraries
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